Sunday, November 4, 2007

The Genie is Back at Scienceroll

Thanks again to Bertalan Mesko for putting the Sherpa on the Map at the Gene Genie. Number 19 is up at his blog Scienceroll. A nice Texan tells us about our 95% "Junk" and the 0% in the Puffer Fish.

More importantly today I read a verification of what I already know. The United States population is fed up with our healthcare system. Is that a surprise to anyone? I know that the patient is fed up with short visits, uncoordinated care, and increasing costs. Why pay for a system that fails to place emphasis on preventative care? I for one am fed up with the system we have.

But what is the alternative? As a farily recent medical grad I face 280,000 USD in debt. In addition, I am in a field where the governmental rate at which the pay for interpretation of a complex genetic test is 18 USD. How many tests would I have to interpret to pay that cost back? You do the math. This is precisely why you have so few genetics providers in the US. The same is true for primary care physicians. We are headed down a dangerous road.

How will we ever achieve personalized medicine if the physician only has 20 minutes to do your preventative care. Lipids, Blood Pressure, Glucose, Colonoscopy, Mammo, Pap Smear. Once I address all of these things there is no time to take the family history. There is a reason why most EMRs don't have good family history intakes....There is no CPT code for taking one!! If you don't get paid for it, some would argue "Why do it?"

With Thanksgiving coming up I would like to remind everyone of the Department Of Health and Human Services tool to take your own family history. Take this time on this national family history day and use this. It truly could save your life.

The Sherpa Says: If Medicare pays 18 dollars for test interpretation (The largest amount of any insurer).....Maybe we should ask the public what they think it is really worth.

1 comment:

Berci Meskó said...

20 minutes? In Hungary, a physician has about 5 minutes for a patient, in average...