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More is Less

January 2, 2010 1 comment

Where is more less?  Health care, that’s where.  For the average consumer, less is best.  The US model of health care is more is better, has been for decades.  This has led to our bloated, expensive but ineffective health care system where the major players work to keep the status quo.  Think about how expensive health care is in the US.  Does it really make sense that insurance and pharmaceutical companies make more money than hospitals, clinics, and health care providers?  There has been a lot of debate on health care reform this year.  And while both sides have legitimate points, I would go further by saying health care reforms has to start at home.  We have to think carefully about how we want to consume health care.  If your child has a fever, do they always need antibiotics and chest x-ray?  Do you think about the risk associated with them?  Antibiotic resistant MRSA (methicillin resistant staph aureus) or Clostrium Difficile colitis from antibiotic overuse, and leukemias and skin cancer with radiation exposure.  Now the cancer risk is very low, but radiation doses are cumulative.

Look to examples overseas like in Norway where they achieved dramatic reduction in MRSA infections http://bit.ly/4M0qfu.  Another study published in JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association) in 2006 http://bit.ly/63gwIV showed that Wait and See Prescription method was equally effective in treating ear infections in children with substantially less antibiotic use.  The point to all of this is more is not necessarily better.  We need to embrace this paradigm one person at a time and realize that health care reform starts with us.

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