Unfortunately, they leave out Gawande's central claim, which is that good health care costs less because good health care organizations place the needs of the patient first. Above the needs of the doctors, nurses, administrators, & c.
I would like to know how true this is of health care, broadly speaking, and I would particularly like to know how true this is of education.
If the needs of students were more important than the needs, wishes, and desires of the adults, would public education cost less than it does?
I think the answer is yes.
in a nutshell
- Rochester, Minnesota, where the Mayo Clinic dominates the scene, has fantastically high levels of technological capability and quality, but its Medicare spending is in the lowest fifteen per cent of the country—$6,688 per enrollee in 2006, which is eight thousand dollars less than the figure for McAllen.
- Two economists working at Dartmouth, Katherine Baicker and Amitabh Chandra, found that the more money Medicare spent per person in a given state the lower that state’s quality ranking tended to be.
- The core tenet of the Mayo Clinic is “The needs of the patient come first”—not the convenience of the doctors, not their revenues. The doctors and nurses, and even the janitors, sat in meetings almost weekly, working on ideas to make the service and the care better, not to get more money out of patients. I asked Cortese how the Mayo Clinic made this possible. THE COST CONUNDRUM by Atul Gawande THE NEW YORKER JUNE 1, 2009