Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Health Care?

An example of why health care costs are so expensive in the U.S.

From a respiratory therapist.

My next work task will be to make a "round" and administer breathing treatments to people. Also, I will write down numbers from mechanical ventilators.

The breathing treatments are totally unindicated in about 98% of cases. Doctors order them for non-respiratory problems such as kidney failure or a broken femur. We are literally giving people treatments so it "looks like" we're doing something. This is why medicine is so expensive. The numbers from the ventilators are useless because nobody, not even other respiratory therapists, will ever look at them. I could show up, clock in, go home, and then come back later and clock out, and it wouldn't make a lick of difference. The really scary thing is, most of what happens at a hospital is like this: we kill time while people heal themselves.

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