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Sunday, February 21, 2010

Four Things to do for the Health Care Reform Summit


For the health care reform summit:

1. Protect the doctor-patient relationship, and nurse-patient relationship, FOR PATIENTS.
2. Facilitate all prices being transparent (except in emergencies) FOR PATIENTS.
3. Facilitate the social networking of physicians, nurses, and allied health care professionals to rate all the medical studies and treatments FOR PATIENTS.
4. Improve the science of medicine, by using the same social networking, to let physicians, nurses, and all allied health care professionals direct medical research that can save lives right now FOR PATIENTS.

If the President focuses on what patients need, and ignores all the third parties, he can get health care reform done, because THE PEOPLE are more powerful than either party or any special interest group.

Patients must be told the prices of everything in advance, because getting health care costs under control is the primary objective of health care reform. Runaway costs are why the system is broken. This cannot be fixed unless patients are told the prices of lab tests, x-rays, and medications BEFORE they buy them, so they can shop around, and drive prices down.

My friend recently underwent open heart surgery. During the entire pre-operative workup, hospital stay for surgery, and post-operative care period he was never told the price of anything in advance. Patients cannot spend their Insurance Company money, their Medicare money, their Medicaid money, or their out-of-pocket money wisely if they don't know the prices.

There are non-partisan physicians and patients who should have more responsibility for health care reform. Health care reform should be scientific, not political. The attitudes of health care reformers should reflect those of my colleagues:

Dr. Hal Scherz: "Doctors don't take care of Democrats or Republicans. We take care of patients, and they deserve something better from Washington than what they have been receiving." - Docs4PatientCare.org

Dr. Jeffrey English: "I do not take care of Democrats or Republicans in my practice, I take care of patients." - http://nowitspersonalbook.wordpress.com

Dr. Richard Armstrong: "Not right, not left, but about what is right for patients and physicians."

And there has been no mention by the government plans of the latest Internet technology, social networking, which can be used to greatly improve the science of medicine. This technology can be used to give patients secret inside medical information that has always been kept from them in the past. It is time to throw out the old ideas and incorporate better new ones.

Please see "The People's Health Care Reform Plan" on Facebook here:
http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=278494234024&index=1

And see "The People's Health Care Reform Plan" on BradMD.com here:
http://bradmd.blogspot.com/2010/02/peoples-health-care-reform-plan.html

by Bradley Hennenfent, M.D., Physician & Economist
Copyright (c) 2010 Bradley Hennenfent, M.D.


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