Research Paper: Flows in Health Care

Pages: 8 (2383 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1+  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Healthcare  ·  Buy This Paper

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[. . .] Patients departing their home country in search of remedial treatment abroad, is indeed not a new happening, though, the swift growth and the extent of medical travel are new. It is anticipated that medical travel will grow up further in the near future providing new horizons for growth.

The costs are high due to the following factors:

So much paperwork from so many insurance companies (paperwork costs money, insurance companies also charge money for their services). Hospitals keep old people for too long in hospitals. Senior health care professionals are not willing to refer their patients to junior health care professionals whereas; senior health care professionals are expensive. Increasing cases of obesity is also increasing the health care costs. As doctors and hospital managers know what insurance companies will reimburse for the health care, they focus on how to formulate money, by doing the following:

Filling hospital beds with patients and getting the maximum appointments for the doctors of the hospital. Getting patients referred to the specialists' hospital. Huge billing at the time when diagnostic equipment is used and getting as much patients scheduled for imaging exams and ICU's (Intensive Care Units).

Another factor that increases the health care cost is that, hospital managers, team up with doctors to maximize the income of hospitals without much regard of the quality of health care. They do anything and everything insurance companies are going to pay for. According to a research titled "Practice Variations," done by Mr. John Wennberg, which was aimed to cut health care costs, data was collected on how health care was given in Vermont towns. It was revealed that: the rate of tonsillectomy of Vermont towns to the adjacent towns is 60% to 20%. Uterus surgery cases reported were more than four times than the cases reported in adjacent towns, and Gallbladder Surgery cases reported were three times more than the cases reported in adjacent towns (Michael, 2006 ).

These results paved the way for future work on Practice Variations. Mr. Wennberg and his associates studied how people with chronic diseases were treated in the last two years of their lives. They found out the following things: More than 90 Million Americans lived with at least one persistent disease, seven out of ten American die from chronic diseases. In the population that has medical care, nine out of ten people die of just nine chronic diseases. As the magnitude of chronic diseases increase, the cost of health care also raises. 32% of the total health care expenditure is used up in the care of patients with continual diseases; the majority is spent in the physician and hospital fees, due to repeated visits.

What did they find? There was little correlation between the prevailing chronic diseases and per capita Medical Care Spending across regions. The study showed three times variation across hospitals in spending dollars, average of the days spent in hospital and the visits to the physician. For example, at Duke University hospital, patients of chronic disease, on average, spent only 3.4 days of the final six months of their lives in the ICU. On the other hand, patients spent, on average, mare than eleven days in the ICU, at the UCLA Medical Centre (Leiyu, 2011 ).

According to the research, both the doctor and the patient think that more care is always better than less care. Money paid to the health care providers are a result of many negotiations. Each and every Insurer negotiates for each and every service with every hospital. The negotiations result in the amount paid for the same or similar kind of service between the hospitals. High and increasing amount paid in hospitals, in Massachusetts, for example, are because of its dominance in the hospitals' market, and not due to high utilization of its hospitals, neither due to the quality, nor due to the cost of providing health care.

When a market has lots of hospitals, prices can go up, as the hospitals struggle with each other to buy the best new technology out there, attract available doctors and win patients from other institutions. Hospitals with a larger array of unique services are more likely to charge more money. This will be due to the monopoly and the high demand in the particular field of treatment. The name and reputation of the hospital also plays a function in the cost of health care given in the hospital. The greater name and reputation is, the more likely it is to charge more money for its services. The more well-insured patients there will be in a hospital, the more the hospital will be able to charge, because it would know that the patients would be able to pay their bills.

References

Del. Donna M., Christensen M.D. (Oct 2003). Women on the Cutting Edge of Health Care and Research. Ebony, 82.

Funtleyder, L. (2008). Healthcare Investing: Profiting from the New World of Pharma, Biotech, and Health Care Services. McGraw-Hill Professional.

Harry A. Sultz, Kristina M. Young. (2010). Health Care USA. New York: Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Leiyu Shi, Douglas A. Singh. (2011). Delivering Health Care in America. Jones & Bartlett Publishers.

Marsa, L. (Oct 1988). Managing The High Cost of Health… [END OF PREVIEW]

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"Flows in Health Care."  Essaytown.com.  March 14, 2012.  Accessed May 25, 2019.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/flows-health-care-since/8286892.