Maybe the one thing that every politician and every citizen will agree on is that medical care is CO$TLY. But when we buy medical care, as individual or as a society, how smart are we as consumers?
Are we buying what we ought to buy?
We attempted to answer this.
Our research at Dartmouth:First, we sorted the different procedures that doctors and hospitals charge for into three(3) categories:
1."Effective care" treatments are those for which there is strong scientific evidence that they save lives or prevent disability, such as vaccination against pneumonia and the use of certain drugs in people with a heart attack to limit the damage.
2."Preference-sensitive care" treatments are those that patients often want but for which the scientific evidence is shaky, such as chemo, radiation, and surgery for early prostate cancer.
3."Supply-sensitive care" treatments are ones that doctors and hospitals (rather than patients) choose but for which there is even less scientific evidence, like the use of intensive care unit(ICU) or office visit with specialists.
We, researchers, then carved up the nation into 306 medical care regions and studied what happened to patients in the Medicare(United States) system. What we found is frightening. Singapore also adopt the same pattern , but name it "Medisave."
The range in spending was big, with Medicare spending about 60 percent more per capita in some regions than in others, even after taking into account the age of the people enrolled and the local cost of living. Overall only about half of all patients received procedures classified as "effective care."
And in the regions where medical spending was higher, the percentage of patients getting "effective care" was generally lower.
What was higher in the big-spending areas was "supply-sensitive care." So when we spend more on medical care we are just buying more expensive care, not higher quality effective care and certainly not health. The Wrong Remedy, in short.
Our studies also show that in regions where there was more medical care, people were more likely to die following such common events as hip fracture, colon cancer, and heart attacks. It's hard to understand at first why, if medical care is mostly ineffective, it might increase our chances/possibilities of dying, until you realize just how dangerous medicines and surgical procedures are.
In 1999 we woke up to a report by the Institute of Medicine that mistake made by doctors and hospitals were killing a stunning number of people - between 44,000 and 98,000 people a year.(Source from To Err Is Human: Building a Safe Health System,Washington,DC:National Academy of Sciences, 1999).
Even the lower figure represents more deaths than due to car crashes, breast cancer, or AIDS.
That alone might make us think twice about visiting our doctor, but it gets worse: mistakes account for a minor fraction of the total untimely deaths caused by modern medicine. There are many more "iatrogenic deaths" - people killed by doctors - because many more die untimely from medicines or procedures even when medical care is standard practice and the doctors perform flawlessly. It is not the doctors' fault, but the knowledge which is in use that is obsolete, though, more machines were invented. The underlying principle of nature is the real issue of health.
How can people die from "correct" medical care? This is a fair question we all can ask the medical communities, as human as they are, so are we.
Some people have a fatal allergic reaction to a medicine or an anesthetic. Others develop blood clots or pneumonia after surgery of have a fatal heart rhythm during a catherization. Others acquire drug-resistant infections (note: human body is naturally designed to detest/resist any substance which is not organically compatible with it's nature DNA, through infections manifesting signs of inflammation)after being treated for another disease. Things can go wrong even when the doctors at hand are doing everything right.
An expert (name withheld for personal reason) at Johns Hopkins estimates that these iatrogenic deaths total about 225,000 a year (the Institute of Medicine estimate even more), which, if it were classified that way, would make medical care the third largest killer in America. (Source from Barbara Starfield, "Is US Health Really the Best in the World?" JAMA 284 (2000):483-485.)
A brighter future? Try water cure protocol as preventive measure daily. In 1989, the Scientific Secretariat of the 3rd Interscience World Conference on Inflammation, etc. invited me to make my presentation of histamine at their conference. The abstract of my presentation "Neurotransmitter Histamine: An Alternative View Point" is attached. [Note: The same can be found at www.watercure.com] These, and many other articles on the topic of the "molecular physiology/pathology of dehydration,"are also posted on my website, www.watercure.com
Not only the primary cause of body pain and the body degenerative diseases of the human body seem to have emerged from my research, the uncanny simplicity of their prevention has also become clear - prevent dehydration to prevent disease !!
To show you how stagnant medical thinking at prestigious medical schools is, and how it is hurting the public, I have taken the liberty of adding my rebuttal letter to Dr. Valtin of Dartmouth College, School of Medicine to this letter.
My dear Dr Eisenberg, if you ponder the way the water industry has grown in the past 10 years, you will realize that my information, presented in my books, newspaper and magazine articles, (water cure:drugs kill, how water cured incurable disease), in addition to many thousands of radio interviews, has already impacted the public's desire to stay healthy.
Some secondary schools are teaching my books. In California they passed a resolution to throw soda-vending machines out of the schools. The rising new generation of Americans, hopefully other developed/industrialized nations follow suit, is becoming acquainted with the information on preventing thirst.
If medical schools, such as Harvard University, wish to remain as significant as they are, they need to engage in the research of the "solvent" paradigm. This blogger hope the National University of Singapore (NUS)will do just that. You are so beautifully situated to engage in this topic; it would be a crime to let the opportunity pas you by. I know you are impressed by Chinese medicine, but tell me, if people learn to prevent body pain by drinking water, how many would go to an acupuncturist for the hell if it? No malice intended here.
If you go to my website and wish to have some of my educational products to share with others, doctors, in your office, please let me know, I will send them to you as a gift.
Feredooy Batmanghelidj, M.D.
NOTE: During the thirty one (31) months of his imprisonment, Dr Batmanghelidj treated more than three thousand(3000) peptic ulcer sufferers with water alone. He conducted extensive research during his political-prison stay into the medicinal effects of water, and discovered water could prevent, relieve, and cure many painful, degenerative diseases. Pain is in fact the body's "cries" for essential ingredients which are running low, and water is one of the most important ingredients.
He found Evin prison(Iran) an "ideal stress laboratory," and despite being offered an earlier release, he chose to stay an extra four months in prison (voluntarily) to complete his research into the relationship of dehydration and bleeding peptic ulcer disease. A report of his findings was smuggled out of Iran and became the editorial article in the June 1983 issue of the Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology, which was reported on by the New York Times science section.
Request The Straits Times of Singapore to publish this article, if at all possible, for the benefits of this nation,too.