In The Wall Street Journal, Mark Sklar writes about endlessly entering data or calling for permission to prescribe or trying to avoid Medicare penalties—when should I see patients? Sklar writes:
The patient should be the arbiter of the physician’s quality of care. Contrary to what our government may believe, the average American has the intellectual capacity to judge. To give people more control of their medical choices, we should move away from third-party payment. t may be more prudent to offer the public a high-deductible insurance plan with a tax-deductible medical savings account that people could use until the insurance deductible is reached. Members of the public thus would be spending their own health-care dollars and have an incentive to shop around for better value. This would encourage competition among providers and ultimately lower health-care costs.
Mark Sklar: Doctoring in the Age of ObamaCare – WSJ.
Twila Brase of the Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom writes:
Eastern European hackers have stolen 780,000 people’s medical records, including 280,000 Social Security Numbers, from the Utah Department of Health. “On March 30, they downloaded 24,000 files to computers in Eastern Europe,” according to The New York Times. “Each file contained records for hundreds of recipients.” Many were children’s records, preferred because “their identity can be exploited for years.” Already the identity of “some 10 percent” of American children has been stolen. Meanwhile, a new report reveals a rise in breaches at hospitals. Specifically, 27% of respondents had experienced a security breach in the last year, up from 19% in 2010 and 13% in 2008. How vulnerable will patients be when the National Health Information Network (national medical records system) is fully in place?
Amy Oliver of the Independence Institute writes:
Colorado’s APCD [All Payer Claims Database] is a disaster waiting to happen and makes a mockery of transparency, which is intended for citizens to watch government not the other way around. Among civil libertarians, the Independence Institute was the lone defender of your medical privacy.
Fortunately for Coloradans, the database is behind schedule. It was supposed to be operational by summer 2011. That has been delayed until December 2011. Enjoy your medical privacy while it lasts. As supporters claim, they cannot “manage” your health care, unless they can “measure” it.
Read her whole post: Spotlight on your private medical records.
Many studies fail to show evidence that electronic medical records improve quality of care. Since advocates of politically-controlled medicine are pushing this, you might think their real goal is to track what doctors do for the purpose of controlling them and what treatments they can provide you.
A study in this months Archives of Internal Medicine says there’s no evidence. It concludes:
Our findings indicate no consistent association between EHRs [electronic health records] and CDS [clinical decision support] and better quality. These results raise concerns about the ability of health information technology to fundamentally alter outpatient care quality.
This is via John Goodman, who also noted a couple years ago:
- that orthopedic surgeons using PDA made seven times more errors than those using paper-based records
- three other studies showing no evidence that EMRs did not improve quality of care.
Read the whole post: Will EMRs Save $80 Billion a Year?.
The Denver Post reports:
In coming weeks, patients across Colorado will receive letters saying their health care provider is about to join an “information exchange.” More than 800 Colorado providers have signed agreements with the state agency sponsoring the exchanges.