Health care professionals are a cynical lot. We joke about the “fad or buzz word of the month”…usually some vague concept heralded by the powers on high. Our job is to promote the idea…knowing full well that the “next big thing” is probably right around the corner.
Take “Patient-Centered”…it sure feels like a buzz word. I suspect most hospital and physician executives, and their ad agency partners, would agree. But this time things are very different.
Why Hospitals and Physicians Should Get Serious About Patient-Centered Care
Reason #1 – Patients Are Starting To Discover That Their Doctors & Hospitals Are Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Mind The Gap*
“HERE is the dirty little secret of health care in America for the elderly, the one group we all assume has universal coverage thanks to the 1965 Medicare law: what Medicare paid for then is no longer what recipients need or want today.”
So argues New York Times reporter Jane Gross in a provocative op-ed in last Sunday’s New York Times. She makes the case that too much of Medicare is going to medical treatments and drugs of little value to the elderly, and nearly nothing on long-term care, citing the case of her own family’s experience:
“In the case of my mother, who died at 88 in 2003, room and board in various assisted living communities, at $2,000 to $3,500 a month for seven years, was not paid for by Medicare. Yet neurosurgery, I later learned was not expected to be effective in her case, was fully reimbursed, along with two weeks of in-patient care. Her stay of two years at a nursing home, at $14,000 a month (yes, $14,000) was also not paid for by Medicare. Nor were Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at The ACP Advocate Blog by Bob Doherty*
Twenty percent of people who leave their doctors’ offices with a new prescription don’t fill it. Up to one-half of those who do fill their prescriptions don’t take the drugs as recommended. These individuals are considered non-compliant. But does that mean they are not engaged in their health care? Engagement and compliance are not synonyms.
I am compliant if I do what my doctor tells me to do.
I am engaged, on the other hand, when I actively participate in the process of solving my health problems. This new prescription is an element in that process. If I am engaged in my care, I might want to learn about this medication. Such as: what it can and cannot do to ease my pain or slow the progress of my disease; what side effects it might produce and what I should do about them; how long it will take to work; when I should take it and how; how much it may cost; and what will happen if I don’t take it. I might want to consider the barriers to taking it and weigh the risks and benefits of alternatives. Could I instead make changes in my physical activity level or diet, try a dietary supplement or watchfully wait to see if the symptoms subside?
If my clinician has done more than just hand me the prescription – if she has, for example, raised these questions and discussed these concerns with me, I probably won’t have a prescription in my hand if I don’t intend to fill it.
But I can be engaged in my health care even if I don’t have that conversation with my provider. I can Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Prepared Patient Forum: What It Takes Blog*