For more than three decades of being involved in delivering Healthcare in the USA, it has been always my passion to introduce real solutions to our unhealthy Healthcare system. Here are basic facts to start with.
We spend the most money on healthcare, but ranked number 37th in the World according to healthcare outcome!
We face many challenges relating to implementing the needed change of culture into Health and Wellness. . Main elements for culture change to take place are Clinical, Business and policy elements and I have been fortunate to be involved in all three elements to varying degrees. Hopefully, this will add a critical element in providing real healthcare solutions to provide better care for less cost.
I believe, we need to promote concepts of Free Healthcare Market including ( direct contracting ) between patient and doctor without third party hassle and abuse to both .
The cash flow is what keeps any business viable and would not thrive without positive cash flow ( more money coming in that going out ) to also allow future growth and operational development.This is case of Concierge Medicine which brings back the direct relationship between Patient and Doctor for better health outcome and less money spent. Promoting the concept of early risk factor detection and intervention to prevent future health problems which are certainly getting more expensive every day. Simply, Wellness is great business for both Employers, Employees, individuals and the entire society.
It also helps to keep the small businesses alive, ( traditionally ) small businesses are considered the main engine of the economy contributing to 84% and Corporate contribute to 16% of total economy.
Unfortunately, during the past 10 years this ratio flipped and thus many small practice( businesses) have shot down due to non payment by the insurance companies or get very little that does not cover the operational overhead forcing many physicians to go out of business, early retirement, declare bankruptcy, or change to non clinical positions at a time that our Nation is suffering from critical physician shortage!
Or simply have physicians consumed with paperwork adding to the physician burnout which is affecting more than 60% of physicians nationwide.This is clearly adding harm to our unhealthy Healthcare system .
It costs an average of one million dollar to recruit and train a replacement physician and costs an average of one million dollar to settle a malpractice claim originating from burnout physician.This will add financial strain due to added costs
The issue of Automation of Medicine and increase in rate of Physician extenders including Nurse practitioners and Physician Assistants can potentially help to ease the work load on physicians in a supportive and collaborative way rather than replacing physicians with lesser pay providers which would affect bottom line dollar spent!
This is important to point out that doctors would be always needed for delivering quality care and meet demands of patients who for the most part request to see doctors only !
The proper use of healthcare Information Technology to facilitate, co-ordinate the patient care can not be over stressed. Technology can help reduce healthcare disparity, promote patient education, engagement, improve patient safety , reducing errors and help implement the practice of evidence-based Medicine.
The current model of Healthcare is better described as ( Sick Care) with quick fix and neglecting to address the root cause of the problem till it comes again or other diseases arise.
Thus, we must switch our attention to Wellness and Disease Prevention by early detection and Intervention. This has been proven to be economically successful across the board to patients, employers and the whole Nation as healthcare cost is consuming about 20% of the GDP.
Thus , smoking cessation,staying physically active with regular exercise, limiting alcohol intake and proper nutrition are critical goals in achieving better health outcome with billions of dollars saved in cost!
This will prevent many chronic diseases such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, obesity, arthritis, cancer and chronic pain with associated depression from the disease process and the high cost involved leading to further economic devastation resulting in many cases in Bankruptcy.
The status of our healthcare and economy are closely correlated. So, restoring the healthy status of both which will decrease the added stress on low and medium class of hard working Americans. Help their respective employers become more productive economically by keeping them healthy on the job.
Ultimately, consumerism will play a key role in the choice of healthcare providers, products and services. Consumer-driven healthcare would also increase demand for Healthcare advocacy to help patients ( consumers) to navigate through a very complicated system with complicated choices of coverage and providers as more consumers take charge of their health management through active education and engagement to empower patients( consumers).
Consumerism would also drive completion towards better personalized care, price transparency and overall experience and hopefully the consumer will be the winner at the end of the day.
The goal is to help alleviate the pain of many Americans resulting from ongoing healthcare crisis. By helping both patients, doctors, economy and the entire community by implementing successful Health and Wellness program through Direct Contracting.