Meaningful Money

How much does bureaucracy cost?  Well, it turns out that it costs a lot:

  • A new study by the American Hospital Association (AHA) found regulatory burden imposed by federal programs including meaningful use costs health systems and post-acute care (PAC) providers nearly $39 billion a year.
  • Researchers determined the average-sized hospital spends $760,000 annually to comply with meaningful use administrative requirements. Total, hospitals spend an average of $7.6 million to meet all federal regulations — $1,200 per admitted patient.
  • Furthermore, hospitals devote the equivalent of 59 full-time staff members to administrative tasks related to federal regulations. More than one-quarter of these staff members are healthcare providers who would otherwise be caring for patients.

I just LOVE when these articles come out.  The same associations who agreed to ALL this crap are now crying like babies.  Let’s go back in time, shall we?

  • The American Hospital Association (AHA), the American Medical Association (AMA), and the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) have their fingerprints all over Obamacare.
  • The American Hospital Association was among the first to take the deal.
  • What the AHA wanted most was to preserve the flow of government money to its member hospitals, especially through Medicare and Medicaid. In exchange, the AHA agreed to the $155 billion in payment cuts, spent incredible sums of money on lobbying, and steered most of its campaign donations toward Democrats.
  • Despite supporting the White House through the legislative process, the AHA never issued an official endorsement of the final Obamacare legislation, but two weeks after President Obama signed the bill, it unrolled an unusual million-dollar ad campaign in the districts of 16 Democratic House members, most of them in vulnerable seats in red states, thanking them for their “yes” votes.

Don’t you just love the internet?

I do not believe that this is easily fixable.  Even if the bureaucratic burdens were removed, I also don’t see hospitals putting any money back into patients or staffs’ pockets.   I just see that money going into their coffers or CEO’s bonuses.  Maybe I am too cynical but I have seen this story before.

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Douglas Farrago MD

Douglas Farrago MD is a full-time practicing family doc in Forest, Va. He started Forest Direct Primary Care where he takes no insurance and bills patients a monthly fee. He is board certified in the specialty of Family Practice. He is the inventor of a product called the Knee Saver which is currently in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Knee Saver and its knock-offs are worn by many major league baseball catchers. He is also the inventor of the CryoHelmet used by athletes for head injuries as well as migraine sufferers. Dr. Farrago is the author of four books, two of which are the top two most popular DPC books. From 2001 – 2011, Dr. Farrago was the editor and creator of the Placebo Journal which ran for 10 full years. Described as the Mad Magazine for doctors, he and the Placebo Journal were featured in the Washington Post, US News and World Report, the AP, and the NY Times. Dr. Farrago is also the editor of the blog Authentic Medicine which was born out of concern about where the direction of healthcare is heading and the belief that the wrong people are in charge. This blog has been going daily for more than 15 years Article about Dr. Farrago in Doximity Email Dr. Farrago – [email protected] 

  2 comments for “Meaningful Money

  1. Ken
    October 31, 2017 at 6:09 pm

    Doug, this doesn’t have anything to do with this article but I wonder how you handle having a chaperone with female patients with DPC, especially evening visits?

  2. Perry
    October 31, 2017 at 8:00 am

    Between all this waste, and the huge waste spent on the failed Obamacare rollout and the exchanges, the gov’t could well afford to buy a nice insurance policy for everyone in the country.

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