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Come On Guys, Give Them A Chance!

Stanley Feld M.D.,FACP, MACE

It is clear that Donald Trump won the presidential election.

The U.S. economy is in bad shape despite what President Obama has been telling us. Economic growth has been stagnant with growth at less than 2%.

People are feeling the loss of jobs as factories are closing.

Corporations are moving factories overseas for cheaper labor.

The many unemployed gave up looking of jobs. Full time jobs have been switched to part-time jobs so corporations can avoid the Obamacare mandate. People need to have at least two jobs to make ends meet.

Price inflation continues but is not measured because food and fuel are left out of the inflation calculation.

Inner city unemployment is worse despite President Obama’s saying it is getting better. Neighborhood security has declined. National security is threatened. People do not feel safe.

Obamacare, which was supposed to provide universal healthcare that was affordable to all, was a outright failure both in terms of affordability for individuals and to the national economy.

Yet, the Obama administration, through the mainstream media, keeps telling the people everything is going as planned.

The people could easily see that the administration was tell them a lie. The unemployment rate was reported as being less than 5%.

Americans realized that much of the money for food stamps was being abused. It was discovered that many people were not using the money for food.

Hard working Americans found out that one could collect at least $49,000 non-taxed dollars from the government for not working.

Our foreign policy was in a shambles.

Americans were being told by President Obama that we winning the war. Yet we were losing territory to ISSI and experiencing terrorism both at home and abroad.

Ordinary hard working people were beginning to realize that the tax and spend Democratic Party were ripping them off even if the details of these rip offs were unclear.

Many state governorships and state legislatures were lost to Republicans. Many seats in the U.S. Senate and house were lost to Republicans.

It was clear that the people wanted a change even though they felt the Republican establishment had deceived them previously.

They understood that government was too large. The government bureaucracy consisted of people who could not be fired. These people can obstruct change.

As government grows it employs more people and it becomes more stagnant and less functional.

Along comes Hillary Clinton.

Hillary Clinton was a non-charismatic presidential candidate who received millions of dollars from rich people to buy uninspiring advertising on television.

Her message was that she was going to continue President Obama’s legacy. She missed the point completely.

Donald J. Trump comes along and tells the people they are being ripped off by our own government and by other governments. Our trade deals stink. Other countries are living off our tax dollars because of our government’s stupidity. He promises to fix it.

He says America has to be run like a business. He will bring back jobs, decrease waste, increase the status of our military all around the world and uncover the great energy and potential of America, especially in the decaying inner cities.

It is a great message. Few know how he is going to do it. He is not telling anyone. He says he is going to hire great people to help him. He is going to hire successful people to help him.

He is going to create opportunities for everyone using a free market based economy.

America as been sliding toward a central government controlled economy for many years.

It should be clear to everyone that Keynesan based central controlled economy does not work.

Fredrick Hayek taught us that in 1937. However, few listened.

I think it is because the central government fears a loss of control over the economy and the people. It fears that very smart people can take advantage of an economy if they have the ability initiative and become innovative without government restraints. The government does not want to believe that the free market works.

Steve Jobs believed it. Jeff Bezos believed it. All the start-ups believe it.

At the Consumer Electronic Show I saw many companies tying to succeed without government interference.

Why? People want to have the freedom to be innovative and creative.

Maybe the American people believe that Donald Trump is going to give them that opportunity without as many government restraints.

The establishment’s fear is warranted.

My view is the government’s job is to legislate the rules that put everyone on a level playing field. The government should step aside and make sure everyone plays by the rules.

This brings me back to my title, “Come On Guys. Give Them A Chance!”

Donald Trump might just know how to navigate through the swamp of the dysfunctional government bureaucracy.

He doesn’t have to tell us how he is going to do it yet. He just has to do it. He might know how to navigate around America’s bad trade deals.

He might just know how to pick a Secretary of Health and Human Services in the name of Tom Price M.D.. Tom Price M.D. might be the person who can navigate across the failed Obamacare healthcare system.

Tom Price M.D. is a smart and decent man. The Democrats and the media might want to indulge in his character assassination out of fear that he might have a workable plan to repair the healthcare system.

The American people are wise to the Democrats’ tactics.

These tactics will hurt them and not Tom Price M.D..

Maybe he knows how to create a system where if you like your doctor you can keep your doctor. If you like your insurance you can keep your insurance. If you like your freedom to choose you can keep that also.

The Democrats, the main stream media and the government bureaucrats should not criticize Donald Trump when the Democrats have failed so miserably. They do not know what the Republicans will propose.

We know what doesn’t work. That is Obamacare!!

Give the new guys a chance!

The opinions expressed in the blog “Repairing The Healthcare System” is, mine and mine alone.

All Rights Reserved © 2006 – 2017 “Repairing The Healthcare System” Stanley Feld M.D.,FACP,MACE

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Our Consumer Electronics Show (CES) “Weekend”

Stanley Feld M.D.,FACP,MACE

As my readers know every year each of my sons and I go away, separately, for weekend. We love to hang out, catch up with each other and eat plenty of chocolate ice cream.

Brad, my older son, is venture capitalist involved in startup technology companies. I am a retired endocrinologist who is a nerd. I love computer technology.

My wife, Cecelia, insists that I would have gone into compute science rather than medicine if I understood its potential when I was in college.

In my day the computer was a pencil, pencil sharpener and eraser.

Image1

My goal has always been to understand how everything works. I love to figure out trends and what will develop in the future.

This was the fifth year that Brad and I went to CES for 5 plus year. We walk the floor together and get a good feel for what is happening.

 Badge ces

Brad made a mistake thinking that the exhibition started January 4,2017. The only flight I could get on when I got my ticket to get in to La Vegas at a reasonable time from Dallas was a 7 am flight. It got me to Las Vegas at 8 am. However, he exhibition started at 10 am January 5th not January 4th.

It was no problem for me. I walked the entire Venetian Hotel and the Paris Hotel. My lunch was chocolate gelato.

Brad got to the Venetian with his partners Lindel Eakman and Ryan McIntyre at 2.30 pm.

Brad then negotiated a 3,000 square foot suite for the both of us. He gave up our two rooms for one.

We were happy and the hotel was happy because they were out of rooms. Now the Venetian Hotel had an extra room to sell.

We then walked from the Venetian to the Sands to get Brad’s registration badge.

On the way back to the Venetian for our afternoon nap stopped for my second chocolate ice cream of the day,

Ces brad 2 ice cream1

Brad, Ryan, Lindel, Morris Wheeler (a venture capitalist friend of Brad’s) and I had great dinner at the Lake Side in the Wynn Hotel.

My problem was that no one would share a salad or entrée with me. I am a clean plate guy and had much too much food.

I became sleepy after the large dinner that ended at 9 pm Las Vegas time since I had been up since 4.30 am Dallas time.

However, walking back to the hotel I was ready for another chocolate ice cream.

Ces brad 3rd icecream copy

At 8.45 am Thursday we were on the bus to get to LVCC from the Venetian. Las Vegas transportation authority did not create a bus lane. The one and one quarter mile drive took one hour.

I was starving at 9.45 am. I had no breakfast. I found a Nathan’s Hot Dog stand. I bought a hot dog and a coffee. All I needed was the coffee. The hot dog was great. The coffee was undrinkable. I threw it away.

Ces brad 5 nathans copy

CES seems to grow each year. This year it covered 2.5 million square feet of showroom space. It is a formidable challenge to walk 2.5 million square feet and see all the products of all the vendors.

I covered 9 miles a day for 3 days according to my Fit Bit.

The largest venue is the (LVCC) Las Vegas Convention Center. The Sands Convention Center was the second largest venue.

LVCC was where the big guys hang out. This year the automated automobile dominated.

For the first three hours we went from exhibit to exhibit quickly.

Brad was forever looking for patterns of innovation. Every few feet someone stopped Brad to ask him a question.

Many wanted to take a picture of Brad with them. Many wanted to take a picture of Brad and me.

Brad and stan randomn pic

The autos in the exhibits were phenomenal. Some of the sensor technology was otherworldly.

I was most impressed with the 3 D printed motorcycle.

Image1

A splendid exhibit at LVCC was a small exhibit by Sphero the creator of DB 8 and other Spheros one can control with a smart phone.

Brad is a major investor in Sphero, which originated as a TechStars start-up company.

We were led into the inner sanctum exhibit by Paul Berberian`, the CEO, to see the new products coming out in 2017.

There will be several new products that I believe will be big hits for both kids and adults in the next nine months.

The Sands Convention Center was the exhibit hall for all the start-ups and near start-ups exhibiting.

Eureka Park was where all the action and excitement was for me at CES.

Eureka park

Eureka Park was start-up heaven. This year CES outsourced Eureka Park’s development to TechStars. There were bout 600 vendors this year. Next year TechStars anticipates doubling the exhibitors in Eureka Park.

Brad was scheduled to interview James Park co-founder of Fit Bit at 1 p.m. After the interview I had my lunch in the TechStars green room. It was strawberry yogurt with a bunch of green and white TechStars M&M in the yogurt.

Brad ces yoguart 9

So far it has been a terrible eating day.

After lunch we continued in Eureka Park until 4 pm.

Was anyone tired yet?

Anyone tired yet

We were scheduled to go to the YPO meeting in the LYNKS Hotel after Eureka Park.

Brad met a couple of people as a favor to YPO’s CEO.

The hotel was advertised as being only 1 hotel away from the Venetian. The problem was it was over a mile away from the Sands in the bitter cold. I was done when we got there.

The next get together was a Foundry Group get together in a Mexican restaurant at the Venetian. It was a lot of fun. I spoke to lots of people and met lots of new people.

I was on running on empty. The wonderful people at TechStars begged me to come to their dinner that I was invited to. I tried but had to bale out for a good night’s sleep.

After a great night’s sleep I was determined to have a mellow day. It just did not happen. There were too many things to see and absorb.

I went to Brad’s panel on Diversity.

Brad diversity

I spent a lot of time in the area of micro-sensors and their use. We have not seen anything yet folks.

The use in clothing and exercise clothing made my head spin

I also spent a lot of time in the Smart Home and Smart Lighting area.

The night before I left Dallas Cecelia and I watched a Netflix movie entitled IT with Peirce Brosnan. https://dvd.netflix.com/RoleDisplay/Pierce-Brosnan/11699.

It is about the building of a Smart Home and its consequences.

My wife will never let us have a Smart Home after that movie.

I have news for everyone. Singularity is here. We do not have to wait for an Artificial Intelligent world.

It is here and we are living it.

The opinions expressed in the blog “Repairing The Healthcare System” is, mine and mine alone.

All Rights Reserved © 2006 – 2017 “Repairing The Healthcare System” Stanley Feld M.D.,FACP,MACE

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The opinions expressed in the blog “Repairing The Healthcare System” is, mine and mine alone.

All Rights Reserved © 2006 – 2015 “Repairing The Healthcare System” Stanley Feld M.D.,FACP,MACE

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President-elect Trump Part 9

Stanley Feld M.D., FACP, MACE

I am extending my discussion on the importance of malpractice reform because politicians ignore the potential costs and decreased access of care resulting from the present system.

In 2003, Texas Governor Rick Perry and the Texas legislature unenthusiastically changed tort reform laws in Texas.

I thought it was inadequate tort reform. It turned out that the meager reform has had great results.

Rick Perry and the Texas legislature ended plaintiff attorneys’ practice of venue shopping for friendly judges.

They also put a cap of $250,000 on noneconomic damages like pain and suffering.

These reforms have changed the malpractice climate in Texas. The reforms limited plaintiff’s attorneys’ profitability on frivolous liability claims.

Texans believe that because of these reforms and the lack of a state income tax, Texas has become the country’s best state for economic growth and job creation.

A Perryman group report concluded,

“Perhaps the most visible economic impact of lawsuit reforms is the benefits experienced by Texans who have better access to high-quality healthcare.”

 

“Doctors and hospitals are using their liability insurance savings to expand services and initiate innovative programs; those savings have allowed Texas hospitals to expand charity care by 24%.”

The medical malpractice business for plaintiff’’s attorneys has dried up in Texas. plaintiff’s attorneys are moving to other states.

Physicians are applying for licenses to move to Texas from other states.

“In 2001, according to the American Medical Association, Texas’ ranking in physicians per capita was a dismal 48th out of 50.”

“Beginning in 2003, physicians started returning to Texas. The Texas Medical Board reports licensing 10,878 new physicians since 2003, up from 8,391 in the prior four years.”

 “Dr. Perryman, subsequent to the issuance of his Report, informed TLR Foundation that at least 1,887 of those physicians are specifically the result of lawsuit reform.”

 The Texas Hospital Association reported a 70% reduction in the number of lawsuits filed against the state’s hospitals.

Medical liability insurance rates declined. Many doctors saw average rates drop 20% to 50%.

The American Medical Association removed Texas from its list of states experiencing a liability crisis; marking the first time it has removed any state from the list.

A survey by the Texas Medical Association also found a dramatic increase in physicians’ willingness to resume certain procedures they had stopped performing, including obstetrics, neurosurgical, radiation and oncological procedures during the Texas malpractice crisis.

Two simple changes in the tort laws made malpractice suits unprofitable for plaintiff attorneys.

Rick Perry has been so impressed with the results of his tort reforms that he wanted to extend his state’s impressive tort reform record.

Mr. Perry is proposing a British-style “loser pays” rule, which would require plaintiffs to pick up the legal costs of their targets if they lose their suits.

The Wall Street Journal showed that Ezekiel Emanuel malpractice cost estimate was wrong. It is not $25 billion year.

According to the Pacific Research Institutes estimate it is at least $242 billion dollars a year. I think the cost is closer to $750 billion dollars.

 

President-elect Trump, there are other consequences of the present malpractice liability system in the U.S. that cannot be measured in dollars.

One is alawsuits emotional wear and tear on both patients and physicians,

In order to avoid potential lawsuits physicians are avoiding high-risk patients and high-risk patient procedures. The result is a decrease in patient access to necessary care.

The details of the Massachusetts Medical Society Defensive Medicine 2008 survey is profoundly important in explaining trends in the healthcare costs due to the lack of malpractice reform.

Unfortunately, the mainstream media has published only meaningless sound bites about malpractice reform significance.

The survey’s significance has not had the impact on policy it should.

The authors state that the dollar estimates do not include the diagnostic procedures, hospital admissions, specialty referrals and consultations, or unnecessary prescriptions by physicians in specialties not included in the study.

The eight specialties surveyed represent only 46% of the physicians in the Massachusetts. The real costs to the healthcare system from the practice defensive medicine in the state of Massachusetts are much higher.

I believe the costs of defensive medicine in many other states are also much higher because in many states malpractice awards are higher. This encourages litigation.

President-elect Trump, defensive medicine is a huge burden nationally to the healthcare system. Its costs will undermine any attempt at healthcare reform. You must take medical malpractice liability reform seriously. There has to be a fundamental change in the structure of adjudication.

The survey’s findings must be studied carefully. The physicians surveyed estimated their percentages for defensive medicine testing to avoid lawsuits.

The real percentages can be studied objectively using big data. . Nonetheless the current estimates reveal unsustainable waste in our dysfunctional healthcare system.

Radiological imaging is one tool overused by physicians defensively to avoid litigation. Physicians feel they must test everything even if the probability of a positive result is insignificant.

“Plain Film X-Rays: An average of 22% of X-rays were ordered for defensive reasons.”

“CT Scans: An average of 28% of CT scans were motivated by liability concerns, with major differences among specialties.”

About 33% of scans ordered by obstetricians/ gynecologists, emergency physicians, and family practitioners were done for defensive reasons.

The total number of unnecessary CT scans needs to be calculated along with its costs in order to understand the significance of the percentage presented.

The health policy solution should not be to lower the reimbursement for CT scans. The solution is to fix the medical malpractice liability system.

MRI Studies: An average of 27% of MRIs were ordered for defensive reasons, with significant differences by specialty.

Obstetricians/ gynecologists, general surgeons, and family practitioners reported the highest rates, with the lowest rates by neurosurgeons and emergency physicians.

Ultrasound Studies: An average of 24% of Ultrasounds were ordered for defensive reasons. Orthopedic surgeons (33%) and obstetricians/gynecologists (28%) reported the highest rates, with neurosurgeons (6%) and anesthesiologists (9%) the lowest.

I believe neurosurgeons are underestimating their use of radiologic procedures in order to look good. Neurosurgery is one of the specialties with the highest malpractice rates.

Please note that obstetricians/gynecologists take no chances and order the most procedures for defensive purposes.

Laboratory Testing:

An average of 18% of laboratory tests were ordered for defensive reasons, with emergency physicians (25%) reporting the highest rates and neurosurgeons (7%) the lowest.

Specialty referrals, consultations and hospitalizations are overused the most for defensive reasons. No one wants to take a chance and send the patient home even if the indication for hospitalization is small.

Specialty Referrals and Consultations:

“An average of 28% of specialty referrals and consultations were motivated by liability concerns, with significant differences by specialty.

 Obstetricians/gynecologists reported that 40% of their referrals and consultations were done for defensive reasons, and anesthesiologists and family practitioners said that 33% of their referrals and consultations were done for the same reasons.”

Hospital Admissions:

An average of 13% of hospital admissions were motivated by liability concerns, with surgical specialties reporting lower rates than the other specialties.

The cost of defensive medicine is very high and extremely wasteful.

The repair of the dysfunctional malpractice system is simple. The system must decrease financial incentives for plaintiff’s attorneys to file frivolous lawsuits.

The opinions expressed in the blog “Repairing The Healthcare System” is, mine and mine alone.

All Rights Reserved © 2006 – 2015 “Repairing The Healthcare System” Stanley Feld M.D.,FACP,MACE

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President-elect Trump: Part 6

Stanley Feld M.D.FACP, MACE

There has been no mention of the importance of tort reform in your proposal to replace Obamacare. President Obama made no mention of tort reform either.

Without medical malpractice reform your administration will not be able to reduce the cost of healthcare and increase the quality of medical care.

It is very difficult to institute malpractice reform. It is in direct opposition to the vested interest of plaintiffs’ malpractice attorneys and malpractice insurance companies. These two group have very powerful lobbies.

I have estimated that there is at least one trillion dollars of waste in our healthcare system because of over-testing, over-treating and over diagnosing as a result of the threat of malpractice lawsuits.

Malpractice insurance and the time and money spent in litigation has to be include in the one trillion dollar estimate. Ezekiel Emanual M.D., Obamacare architect, proposed an artificial threshold of significant cost savings in order to form a policy.

“ A useful threshold for savings is 1 percent of costs of healthcare, which comes to $26 billion a year. Anything less is simply not meaningful.”

One percent is arbitrary. It permits Dr. Emanuel to dismiss problems that cost the healthcare system less than $26 billion a year.

The validity of the data collection is of no concern to Dr. Emanuel. He says only $1.3 billion results in malpractice costs. He ignores over testing, and lawsuit costs.

He said,

“Health care spending in the United States typically increases by about $100 billion per year. Cutting a billion here or there from something that large is undetectable and meaningless.

 In health care, you have to be talking about tens of billions of dollars before you are talking about real money.

Dr. Emanuel has no difficulty in producing fake data to make his point to the unknowing.

 A study, closer to truth than just an opinion, disclosed:

The truth is a full accounting reveals that more than 10 percent of America’s health expenditures per year are spend on tort liability and defensive medicine.

This study concludes that $242 billion a year extra is spent because of the lack of tort reform.

The $242 billion is well above Dr. Emanuel’s fictitious threshold.

“Much of this waste is generated or justified by the fear of legal consequences that infects almost every health care encounter. The legal system terrorizes doctors. Fear of possible claims leads medical professionals to squander billions in unnecessary tests and procedures.

Physicians and nurses are afraid to speak candidly to patients about errors. They try to explain the risk reward ratio of treatments for fear of assuming legal liability. The result is the practice of defensive medicine and over testing to cover every possible contingency.

This legal anxiety is also corrosive to the therapeutic magic of the physician patient relationship.

It would be relatively easy to create new rules that would provide a reliable system of justice for patients harmed by medical treatments and procedures without encouraging costly litigation.

A new and effective tort reform system would decrease the costs of defensive medicine significantly. It would encourage physicians to use of clinical judgment rather than expensive tests. It would improve physician/patient relationships.

“ The good news is that it would be relatively easy to create a new system of reliable justice, one that could support broader reforms to contain costs.”

Everyone makes mistakes in every walk of life. The medical legal liability threat could result in further unnecessary errors. Physicians, nurses and hospitals are advised not to offer explanations about mistakes. Sometimes errors are concealed to avoid a legal ordeal. The hidden error could be compounded by additional mistakes.

“Even in ordinary daily encounters, an invisible wall separates doctors from their patients. As one pediatrician told me, “You wouldn’t want to say something off the cuff that might be used against you.”

There are cost multipliers created as mistrust accelerates between the patients and physicians. You would like physicians to adopt electronic medical records. Some physicians avoid using EMRs because the information could be misinterpreted and used against them.

The Electronic Medical Record available through hospitals systems or standalone physician practices is used by the government and the insurance industry to verify the treatment in order to guarantee treatment is best practice treatment.

Physicians are producing cut and paste reports to cover best practice observation by a third party rather than the actual encounter with the patient in order to avoid reimbursement penalty or possible liability.

There is an increasing use of second opinions. Every medical problem is requiring multiple unnecessary laboratory tests to rule out something that might have been missed in the evaluation of patients in order to avoid malpractice suits.

An example is a CAT scan done in Emergency Rooms for the slightest head trauma.

“Medical cases are now decided jury by jury, without consistent application of medical standards.

 According to a 2006 study in the New England Journal of Medicine, around 25 percent of cases where there was no identifiable error resulted in malpractice payments.

 The malpractice insurance companies want to settle the malpractice claims before the court charges mount.

“Nor is the system effective for injured patients — according to the same studies, 54 cents of every dollar paid in malpractice cases goes to administrative expenses like lawyers, experts and courts.”

These are some of the major tort reform issues that must be addressed in effectively.

They must be addressed to decrease wasteful expenditures in the healthcare system.

Malpractice lawsuits have been a growth industry for defense attorneys. The malpractice suits have also been a tremendous psychological and economic burden for physicians who have to defend themselves.

Politically is has been a tremendous economical burden to the healthcare system. In the past politicians have refused to acknowledge the economic burden to the healthcare system.

Malpractice reform is a threat to the vested interests of the defense attorneys and malpractice insurance companies.

Malpractice reform is essential to any meaningful healthcare reform.

President-elect Trump the big question is.

“Do you have the will and the courage to take on the plaintiff attorneys and the malpractice insurance industry in order to correct the medical tort reform system?”

 Effective Malpractice reform must treat both injured patients and physicians fairly.

 

The opinions expressed in the blog “Repairing The Healthcare System” are, mine and mine alone.

 All Rights Reserved © 2006 – 2015 “Repairing The Healthcare System” Stanley Feld M.D.,FACP,MACE

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  • Naina Katyal

    It’s a great pleasure reading your post. It’s full of information I am looking for and I love to post a comment that “The content of your post is awesome” Great work!
    Desi chhokri kurtis

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Dear President-elect Trump: Part 5

Stanley Feld M.D. FACP,MACE

Dear President-elect Trump,

A blog from a medical student appeared in www.KevinMD.com

The medical student, Jacob Chevlen, got it right.

Don’t call me a provider.”

President-elect Trump, if you really want to repair the healthcare system and I believe you do, you must listen to this medical student carefully.

You must realized that patients are not commodities. They are living human beings with emotions as well as concrete illnesses.

Many illnesses and their complications can be avoided if the way to maintain good health is understood by consumers. Cultural changes must occur to decrease the external stimuli that lead to these illnesses including obesity and drug abuse.

It must be recognized that the most important stakeholders in the healthcare system are patients (consumers). A viable healthcare system must be built around patients who have incentives to remain healthy.

Consumers of healthcare depend on physicians. Physicians are the second most important stakeholders in the healthcare system.

Patients depend on physicians to use their expertise and judgment to help them maintain health and to fix them when they get sick. This skill is developed over 6 to 10 years of post-graduate education.

The government, the healthcare insurance companies, the hospital systems, and the pharmaceutical companies are all secondary stakeholders.

Both patients (consumers) and physicians have been devalued by the government’s desire to simply reduce healthcare costs.

Government bureaucracies believe that they can reduce costs by regulating physicians’ “decision making” and “second guess” their clinical judgment.

The federal government is trying to control the healthcare system. The harder the government tries to control the healthcare system the more dysfunctional it becomes.

Some day the federal government is going to realize it costs more in the long run to try to control the two most important stakeholders. (consumers and physicians) than it is to provide financial incentives to consumers to maintain their health.

Society has been programed by government and other secondary stakeholders to consider physicians as healthcare providers.

We are not healthcare providers. We are physicians! Medical student Jacob Chevlen expresses this sentiment perfectly.

“I am a medical school student. Like many of you reading this, my life is spent between the walls of the library and the walls of the clinic.”

I remember being told as a first year medical student that I would have to learn a new language and live a different life than my college friends not going into medicine.

“I was told at the beginning of this journey that it was fair; that it was an “equivalent exchange.”

“You want to relieve suffering — great — you’re going to suffer.”

“You want to extend lives — fantastic — you’ll trade years of your own.”

“You want to lead your patients to healthier relationships — beautiful — I promise you’ll be distanced from your family, friends, and other loved ones.”

One of these statements with its consequences has been true for many physicians I have known through the years.

“We accepted this trade because we are driven to be physicians.”

“Ultimately, it’s a small price to pay to join that sacred society of men and women who devote their lives to healing.”

It is truly a fulfilling emotional experience to have practiced clinical endocrinology for 30 years. I have developed so many wonderful physicians/patient relationships. I know these relationships that I had added to my therapy. These relationships had immensely improved my patients’ treatment outcomes and well-being.

“However, none of us made these sacrifices to be a “provider,” and this is the culture we must fight.”

As President of AACE and subsequent author of Repairing the Healthcare System, I have tried to fight for a cultural change.

Obamacare has devalued physicians and downgraded the physician/patient relationship.

Some of these sick human beings have no interest in listening to a provider when the government or the health insurance company will take care of them when they get sicker.

Consumers who desire to develop a patient/physician relationship are finding they have access. So many physicians have given up on developing physician/patient relationships.

Consumers are now gravitating to concierge physicians in their quest to find a physician that cares and will develop a physician /patient relationship with them.

“Recently, the director of the Governor’s Office of Health Transformation spoke at my medical school.”

It sounds like an agency in Atlas Shrugged to me. The “GOHT” is a mind programing agency whose goal is to manipulate physicians’ minds.

“To enroll in that will give them enhanced reimbursement for reducing costs to Medicaid.”

“Not once during his entire lecture did he use the word “doctor”, when referring to physicians, or advanced practice nurses; he only referred to them as “healthcare providers.”

The “experts” believe that social engineering works. President-elect, you surprised the government, the media and the experts and showed them social engineering does not work. You won the election, didn’t you?

Jacob Chevlan goes on to say;

“Stop.

Have you ever considered what a “provider” is or does?”

“Well, that’s obvious: A provider provides! A provider is the source of a good or service. They disseminate it freely and happily, expecting nothing in return.”

Unimportant is the many years of schooling to develop an understanding of the subtleties of disease, its presentation and treatments.

Physicians’ judgment and patient physician relationships should not be discounted.

“That is how government, insurance companies, and hospitals look at physicians. We are obliging tools, conduits along the path of the flow of money from patients to insurance companies, and insurance companies to hospital systems.”

Medical Student Jacob Chevlan has nailed it President-elect Trump. If you have any chance of Repairing the Healthcare System you should listen to this medical student who has not been involved in the present disillusionment of the practice of medicine.

I have outline simple fixes that can cure this dysfunction rapidly.

“Our feelings, and our goal of providing top-level care, are fundamentally irrelevant.”

“ Why else would prior-authorizations exist?”

The government and the healthcare insurance industry’s data supersede physicians’judgment.

“Or electronic health records whose only real function is to facilitate billing?”

EMR’s as crafted can easily provide irrelevant false “big data.” EMR’s should be used as a continuing education tool to enhance physicians’ judgment rather than a punishment tool for physicians’ reimbursement.

“ Or the fact that it is illegal to provide pro-bono care to Medicaid or Medicare patients?”

“These and other “innovations” burden physicians and patients, slowing or even completely halting the delivery of care.”

This medical student goes on to say;

I do not know when physicians allowed themselves to be called “providers,” but I do know that no positive change will happen to our toxic and unsustainable health care system until we stop accepting it.

I can only hope Mr. President-elect that you take heed and listen to this medical student as your surrogates formulate your replacement for the disaster called Obamacare.

“I am not a “provider school” student. When I graduate, my diploma will not say “provider” on it. It will say “doctor,” and we should accept nothing less.”

Bravo Jacob Chevlan !!!

 

The opinions expressed in the blog “Repairing The Healthcare System” are, mine and mine alone.

 All Rights Reserved © 2006 – 2015 “Repairing The Healthcare System” Stanley Feld M.D.,FACP,MACE

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  • Naina Katyal

    Such a very useful article. Very interesting to read this article.I would like to thank you for the efforts you had made for writing this awesome article.
    Desi chhokri

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Dear President–elect Trump Part 4

Stanley Feld M.D.,FACP, MACE

In 2008 I thought President Obama was the real deal.

I thought he cared about Americans and cared about repairing the healthcare system. I wrote six letters to him giving him suggestions on how to repair the healthcare system.

Then, I realized he was not interested in the improved delivery of healthcare to all Americans. He was interested in the central government controlling the healthcare system in order to control the people and limit their freedoms.

Obamacare was the answer to his goal. Most physicians did not agree with his plan. Many felt powerless to object. Many felt they should go along to get along.

Many in the healthcare industry figured that greater government involvement in healthcare financing would lead to its economic benefit.

Everyone has been deceived. Everyone is starting to believe that government managed healthcare leading to a better healthcare for all and a better healthcare system is a myth.

In my letters I tried to explain this to President-elect Obama. My explanation fell on deaf ears.

Dear President Obama Part 1

http://stanleyfeldmdmace.typepad.com/repairing_the_healthcare_/2008/11/dear-president-elect-obama.html

Dear President Obama Part 2

http://stanleyfeldmdmace.typepad.com/repairing_the_healthcare_/2008/11/dear-president-elect-obama-part-2.html

Dear President Obama Part 3

http://stanleyfeldmdmace.typepad.com/repairing_the_healthcare_/2008/11/dear-president-elect-obama-part-3.html

Dear President Obama Part 4

http://stanleyfeldmdmace.typepad.com/repairing_the_healthcare_/2008/12/dear-president-elect-obama-part-4.html

Dear President Obama Part 5

http://stanleyfeldmdmace.typepad.com/repairing_the_healthcare_/2008/12/dear-president–elect-barack-obama-part-5.html

Dear President Obama Part 6

http://stanleyfeldmdmace.typepad.com/repairing_the_healthcare_/2008/12/dear-president-elect-obama-part-6-why-dont-you-listen-to-practicing-physicians.html

Over the last seven and a half years I have developed a simple but effective consumer driven healthcare system that should replace Obamacare after it is repealed.

Obamacare is missing the major ingredient necessary to create creating a successful healthcare system.

The healthcare system must be market driven, with consumers being responsible for their healthcare and healthcare dollars. The tool that will accomplish this is my Ideal Medical Saving Account. Please include reading the article  My Ideal Medical Savings Account Is Democratic! among all the articles in the group explaining My Ideal Medical Savings Accounts.

The Republicans in the House got many things right in its legislation to replace Obamacare. However they have left out the three most important elements necessary to Repair the Healthcare System.

The first is the revival of the physician/patients relationship.

Consumers must control their health and their healthcare dollars. America must have a consumer driven healthcare system.

Consumers can be taught to drive the healthcare system though public service education.

Consumers must be taught through public service education to change their eating and exercising habits. The emphasis must be on the health dangers of obesity and its development.

Secondly, consumers must be given financial incentives as outlined by my Ideal Medical Savings Accounts to control their own health and have access to available care available in necessary.

Third, there must be significant tort reform included in the replacement of Obamacare.

If the Republicans simply send you the bill they have passed in the house and you sign it you will have an impending disaster as large as Obamacare.

If you include my suggestions in your bill, you would excite consumers and physicians. All the people who have been hurt by the failures of Obamacare will cheer you.

The repeal of Obamacare is vital. It should only be replaced with a consumer driven healthcare system that I have outlined. It will be economically sustainable. It would win over all conservatives and independents. It would even make progressives rethink their ideology.

The opinions expressed in the blog “Repairing The Healthcare System” are, mine and mine alone.

 All Rights Reserved © 2006 – 2016 “Repairing The Healthcare System” Stanley Feld M.D.,FACP,MACE

  • Naina Katyal

    Really impressed! Everything is very open and very clear clarification of issues. It contains truly facts. Your website is very valuable.
    Desi chhokri kurtis

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Dear President-elect Trump Part 3

Stanley Feld M.D.,FACP, MACE

The following is Part 3 of my review of your healthcare reform platform. You have a viable alternative to Obamacare. Your alternative needs some vital additions.

In my last blog I omitted the link proving that only 1 million people signed up for Obamacare health insurance exchanges.

I apologize for the oversight. Today enrollment is only 2.3 million. I also noticed that the enrollment date was extended to January 30 from December 31 without fanfare. The site I omitted that follows daily enrollment is acasignups.net.

Obamacare is still a long way from the 20 million claimed and the actual 10 million enrolled for 12 months.

The Obama “experts” still believe that Obamacare is viable. They refuse to believe it has been a healthcare disaster as well as a disaster for America’s economy.

Your next proposal is;

  1. Allow individuals to use Health Savings Accounts (HSAs). Contributions into HSAs should be tax-free and should be allowed to accumulate.

Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) should be changed to Medical Savings Accounts (MSAs) to provide better financial incentives for people who choose this form of insurance. The Medical Savings Accounts can easily be customized so that consumers can choose the level of insurance they desire.

The cost of first dollar reinsurance for coverage after the deductible is met plus the MSA contribution is much cheaper than the first dollar coverage Medicaid coverage. The insurance vendor will still make a sizable profit by providing first dollar coverage reinsurance.

The contribution to the MSA should be flexible to provide an adequate amount of money to be put into the savings accounts to provide financial incentivizes to consumers to maintain their health.

Obesity is a huge problem to health maintenance of health. Obesity can be effectively cured behavioral change of consumers.

The incidence of chronic diseases in obese people is five times that of normal weight people. Financial incentives must be provided. The is also the area that social engineering might be helpful.

Obese children are becoming diabetic and hypertensive at a young age. This must be prevented because of the potential explosive cost effect of complications of both diabetes and hypertension on individuals. The overall costs to patients, Medicaid and society will be devastating.

Medicaid must be converted to a system where the recipients are responsible for their health with financial incentives. Only then Medicaid patients will not be treated as a commodity. Service will improve. .

  1. Require price transparency from all healthcare providers, especially doctors and healthcare organizations like clinics and hospitals.

Price transparency is an essential provision for individuals, businesses and groups in order to produce smart consumers of healthcare.

It is also necessary to require insurance companies to provide verifiable price transparency for their administrative costs and their direct patient care costs.

Consumers must be empowered to be responsible and shop for the best healthcare service value. They must look for the best prices for procedures, exams or any other medical related procedure.

The only way to decrease the cost of healthcare services is to produce smart and motivated consumers of healthcare.

The Healthcare System must be converted to a Consumer Driven Healthcare System.

Social networking should be used as the backbone for the establishment of consumer empowerment.

The success of Angie’s list, Trip Advisor and Open Table are a result of social networking.

All medical care is local. Local communities have their individual social networks that empower people in their neighborhood to know which vendors provide the best value in their community.

Healthcare consumers can use this simple procedure to decrease the cost of healthcare and medical care.

This could also be a place where government can lead the way in establishing accurate educational resources.

  1. Block-grant Medicaid to the states.

These block grants can be used by the states to fund MSAs without a threat of increasing state budget deficits or giving up states’ rights to the federal government.

Block grants for social networking should be used to provide incentives to help individual Medicaid patients seek out and eliminate fraud, waste and abuse of some of its local providers.

It would eliminate expensive big data collections that often times are inaccurate for policy making by central federal control.

  1. Remove barriers to entry into free markets for drug providers that offer safe, reliable and cheaper products.

Federal and state governments should help their citizens choose safe, reliable and cheaper products for the treatment of their diseases.

This would help with compliance and adherence to recommended treatment and also decrease the cost of care.

It would provide consumers with information to take responsibility for their own health and healthcare dollars.

  1. Encourage Congress to step away from the special interests and do what is right for America.

One example is allowing consumers access to imported, safe and dependable drugs from overseas. It will stimulate competition for consumer dollars in the U.S. and lower the cost of brand and generic drugs sold here. Drug prices are artificially high in the U.S.

This is only one example of many ways to decrease the cost of drugs in this country.

You have made many proposals to make a lot of important changes to the healthcare system.

Some are good proposals. Some are not very well thought out by your advisors.

You left out Tort Reform, which is one of the most important proposals. Effective Tort Reform will result in a precipitous decrease in the cost of medical care.

It is absurd to let Obamacare “experts” like Ezekiel Emanuel and Jonathan Gruber heckle your “non viable” healthcare reform plan.

However, you are missing the other important elements in reforming the healthcare system. Those elements are the elements of the use of consumer power, consumer initiatives, and consumer incentives.

 By utilizing these elements you will begin to “Drain the Healthcare Swamp.”

Your healthcare changes must include a consumer driven system with an ideal medical saving account. Otherwise, the healthcare system will remain an unmanageable, expensive and abused mess.

You have admitted these proposals are simply a start. You can easily fall into the trap of listening to academicians who have never practiced medicine in a private setting. You need people who understand patients’ needs.

Obamacare has been a disaster that is unsustainable. It is increasing the cost of care week by week, while rationing care and decreasing access to care.

You must repeal and replace Obamacare. No one wants it. You have outlined a viable proposal even if the progressives don’t like it.

It is a good start.

The opinions expressed in the blog “Repairing The Healthcare System” are, mine and mine alone.

 All Rights Reserved © 2006 – 2016 “Repairing The Healthcare System” Stanley Feld M.D.,FACP,MACE

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Dear President-elect Trump Part 3

 

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Dear President-elect Donald Trump: Part 1

Dear President-elect Donald Trump: Part 1

Stanley Feld M.D.,FACP,MACE

Repairing the Healthcare System

Dear President-elect Donald Trump: Part 1

In 2008 I wrote to President-elect Obama and told him what has to be done to repair the healthcare system from a practicing physician’s point of view.

He did not listen to one suggestion.

I am going to try to help you out also. You are correct to want to repeal and replace Obamacare. It is a failure. It is also a disaster to both America’s healthcare system and economy.

The healthcare reforms you propose on you website are good so far. However they are incomplete and inadequate if your goal is to achieve a viable market driven healthcare system.

I will list the others elements with links to the documentation in future letters to you.

Patients and physicians are the two most important stakeholders in any market-driven healthcare system. They are the only stakeholders that can drive the market in an affordable way.

The insurance industry, the government, hospital systems and the pharmaceutical industry are all secondary stakeholders.

You have told a biased media that you will repeal and replace Obamacare.

They are now trying to make fun of you because of your threat to the establishment. Please ignore them.

The progressive spin machine using Ezekeil Emanuel and other surrogates are wrong when they keep repeating that neither you nor the Republican Party have not offered a viable replacement plan.

You might remind them that their plan was not very viable. What makes Ezekiel Emanuel an expert when he has never practiced medicine in a private office setting?

You and the Republican house have some very viable suggestions. Democrats refuse to read them or recognize them. They have not analyzed their economic effect on the healthcare system.

However, you do not go far enough in including the patients who are essential to drive the healthcare system. Patients must assume the responsibility for their health and care of their diseases.

Patients must be provided with treatment options and potential outcomes in order to be responsible for their health. They must also be provided with financial incentives to take care of their health.

Consumers must be in control of their health and healthcare dollars to achieve an efficient market driven healthcare system.

Obamacare treats the two most important stakeholders as economic commodities. It disregards patients’ feelings.

Healthcare policy should be built around patients’ needs and not the needs of secondary stakeholders.

The key to Repairing the Healthcare System is the promotion of individual consumer responsibility for their care. Patients must feel physicians and their healthcare team care about them.

The physician patient relationship is the most important healing element in a therapeutic equation. It can lead to patients understand and adhering to recommended treatment.

Patients must be the captains of their therapeutic team. Physicians must be the head coaches with their nurses and physician assistants being the assistant coaches.

Only then will we have an efficient and affordable healthcare system. I have written in detail about the mechanisms necessary to achieve an affordable healthcare system.

A successful and affordable healthcare system must be a consumer driven healthcare system using my ideal medical saving accounts .

Medical Savings Accounts are different than Health Savings Accounts.

The opinions expressed in the blog “Repairing The Healthcare System” are, mine and mine alone.

All Rights Reserved © 2006 – 2016 “Repairing The Healthcare System” Stanley Feld M.D.,FACP,MACE

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