A few years ago after my second shoulder surgery ( and they don’t know what is causing the pain) I asked my doctor what he thought about alternative medical methods. He said the Chinese have been practicing different methods for over 4000 years so they must be doing something right. That mindset is becoming more and more prevalent in today’s western medical mindset. That is a good and necessary thing to be happening. Modern western medicine has the mindset of fixing people after they get sick instead of trying to keep people from getting sick in the first place. There are so many theories as to how to control medical cost. Wouldn’t it make sense to keep people from getting sick in the first place? Yet many Americans don’t want to change the way they live but prefer to run to the nearest ER at the first sign of illness. Of course the ER is the most expensive part of most hospitals. So why not at least explore other forms of treatment? What do you have to lose?
With all this gnashing of teeth over the health care there are things that happen that the general public does not know. We can start with the Friday afternoon patient dump. What is this you may ask? Rural hospitals will send patients who they know have a procedure at a larger hospital on Monday on Friday and the reason? To drop the number of staff they have to have in place and therefore reducing their cost. Which is great for them but its more expensive to have them in the larger hospital. The insurance companies are no saints but neither are the american people when it comes to their health care. There is this big sense of entitlement that many feel. Just because you happen to be in this country does not mean you should have whatever you think you need. Somewhere someone has to pay for that. One of the many struggles is how to ethically provide for those patients who are either at the beginning of life or the end of life. Just because science has the capabilities to do things does that mean it’s right. I have heard the argument that if it was your family member you would want everything possibly done. Especially at the end of life there does come a point that you just have to say ” were done”. I am not saying its easy to make those types of those decisions because having been there not.
The really tough one is the issue of premature babies. The reality is that years ago many would die. The reality today is that in some cases the baby can be saved. There are so many ethical and financial issues that are not easy. The reality is that many large hospitals simply right off over 100 million dollars yearly. People run to the ER for the slightest thing although the ER is the most expensive part of the hospital. Then you get these mental health professionals who put on their answering machines telling their clients to go to the ER if they feel they are a danger to themselves. The problem with that of course is many ER medical professionals just don’t have the knowledge or time. Another reality is that if anyone tells you that they know how this health care maze is going to turn out they are blowing smoke. One thing I have failed to understand in this health care debate is this. The insurance companies have been portrayed by the government as the devil himself. My question is this? If they are so bad why is the government forcing people to buy their products? It just makes no sense.