Monday, July 20, 2009

Reichsminister fur Gesundheitsvorsorge

Well, not exactly health-care. It's rationing...

Ted Kennedy and Bob Shrum write on the topic:

We also need to move from a system that rewards doctors for the sheer volume of tests and treatments they prescribe to one that rewards quality and positive outcomes. For example, in Medicare today, 18 percent of patients discharged from a hospital are readmitted within 30 days--at a cost of more than $15 billion in 2005. Most of these readmissions are unnecessary, but we don't reward hospitals and doctors for preventing them. By changing that, we'll save billions of dollars while improving the quality of care for patients

Aside from the obvious silliness of that statement (detailed at the link), here's the plain English:

The government is going to decide--ahead of time, obviously, since deciding after the fact wouldn’t save any money; and based on certain general criteria, since the government isn’t going to review each individual case--what kinds of hospital readmissions for the elderly are “unnecessary” and what kinds aren’t. And it’s going to set up a system “to reward hospitals and doctors for preventing” the unnecessary ones. That is, the government will reward hospitals and doctors for denying care they now provide, care the government will now deem “unnecessary.”

Indeed, this understates the case. For in reality the government isn’t going simply to reward “good” and penalize “bad” admissions. It’s going to prevent insurance companies from paying for “unnecessary” admissions and procedures, if those companies want to participate in the government system. In other words, government bureaucrats are going to deem entire categories of treatment inefficient for all or certain categories of patients, and put those treatments out of bounds for doctors and hospitals

Too bad the best candidate for Reichsminister--Herr Doktor Mengele--is not available for service.

1 comment:

Billiam said...

As I wrote at my place, if Congress and the President are not required to be under the same plan as the common volk, then it's a crp plan. Only lemmings and fools would be for such a plan. Then again, many Dems want this travesty. 'Nuff said.