Saturday, October 17, 2009

Newtons First Law of Medicine

I got into a discussion of healthcare policy today while watching football in the OR lounge waiting for the OR to get ready. The discussion was with one of the anesthesia folks who is a bit on the liberal side. Anyway, the discussion came to how much we could save with preventitive care. He thought that with national health insurance, everyone would be able to get the preventitive care and the savings would be huge. I thought it was ironic that we were waiting for the OR to be ready so we could operate on a patient who had Medicaid but did not want to go to the doctor for years and then comes into the ER at deaths door. From my experience, people only want to come to the doctor when they are sick or in pain, otherwise they will blow it off. Likewise, the people who are not motivated to get a job or education will tend to just collect wellfare and will not be the ones who get up and get their screening exams. Oh, for what its worth. If you have you Medicaid appointments before 11:00 am, almost none will show up.


Andrew_M_Garland said...

If more healthcare "prevention" is cost effective, people could pay for it themselves and gain the greater income of a longer and more profitable working life. Even better, insurance companies would reward lifestyle changes with so much lower premiums that it would be profitable to the individual to pay to take more tests or enroll in effective weight loss clinics.

Unfortunately, prevention is usually more expensive than treatment, because you must apply prevention to everyone, but only a few become ill and need treatment, or the prevention is not very effective and most people need treatment anyway.

Prevention costs 8x as much


SeaSpray said...

I disagree with that doc because most people will blow off yearly exams, etc. You are right.. it usually takes some people something that alarms them in some way to go.

Ha! The government will just have to fine people who don't get preventative check ups and follow ups ... just like they fine everything else.

Even then... those adverse to medical care/doctors would probably pay the fine... or not pay it.

SeaSpray said...

Throckmorton ...
I thought being a surgeon and with commentaries on lawyers ... that you might appreciate the following:

Three surgeons met at a convention, and during the break, they began discussing what types of patients they liked to operate on.

The first doc said, "I prefer to operate on short people because it's more of a challenge to get the job done without making as large an incision."

The second surgeon replied, "Challenge, shmallenge. I prefer to operate on asian people because their anatomy is always textbook perfect. Everything is in the right place every time.

The third doctor said, "Obviously neither of you has ever done surgery on a lawyer. They are by far the easiest patients to cut on. When you open them up, you'll see that they have no heart, they certainly have no guts, and their rear end is interchangeable with their mouth."

I hope it's alright I put this in comments. Delete if offensive. Not meant to be. :)

SeaSpray said...

Hope you don't mind, but I quoted your funny comment in an old post in comments in in this post:

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