Health Care In a New World
Time for a change
Normally these posts don’t surround other posts, however, someone sent me an article from Harvard talking about a whole new world for health care and I wanted to share it with you and draw it out and think about it a little more.
In the current system, we go to the doctor with a problem, he tests or doesn’t. The ultimate goal is for her/him to diagnose and treat. The system is based on a direct “fee for service”. The doctor bills for time, costs, tests and maybe even sales. These bills are done on a visit-by-visit basis. If what you need is outside the office, like nutrition and behavior, then, you’re referred to another office, where you’ll be paying a whole other set of fees for their services.
In the new system:
Physicians and patients will determine specific health goals, which can then result in bonus incentives. Practices will be rewarded for things like helping a patient lose weight and get blood sugar under control — that is, for keeping them healthy and out of the emergency room and hospital.
But how do you keep people healthier more efficiently? We will use more modern and creative tools to keep track of a patient’s status and progress from home, with tools such as health equipment that links in to the chart, and computers for virtual visits. We will hire more nursing staff to call patients and assist with monitoring from afar. We doctors will also need to be more accessible, with more phone calls or e-visits. Hiring extra staff and buying new equipment is expensive, but that is the investment we need to make in order to function in this new world.
According to Harvard Medical School, not just any doctor can decide to do this. If they want to be a medical “home” they have to go through a certification process monitored and administered through a third party agency. This will guarantee that the patient’s needs are being met and the patient is satisfied.
Studies show that these types of practices are working to lower costs, reduce emergency room visits, keep the patient following directions and most importantly, they even claim to reduce deaths.
Founder, The Health Coach GroupCathy helps health coaches build and maintain successful businesses that improve the lives of others.
The Key is Results and Satisfaction
For years our health care system has been growing in the wrong direction. Many of us have experienced situations where we’re treated more like cattle in a system of ticket taking and 1-minute doctor visits. I recently showed up for a “mandatory” doctor visit, only to find out that it was a misunderstanding and I didn’t really “need” to come. It still cost me over $200. Health insurance is often north of $1100 a month for major medical that covers only catastrophic events. (my case) So, when I read this article about patient satisfaction, lower costs, fewer visits and saving lives – I get excited.
This is a place that health coaches fit into. Where the doctor HAS to do more hand holding and hire extra staff – that’s us! Health Coaches can do that. We were taught to do that. Coach and listen and improve quality of life.