There is not enough information regarding the usefulness of general medicine, despite the fact that the countries that have a well-structured first level of care have the best level of quality. Patients do not have enough information about the qualities and advantages that various types of specialized care can offer them;
- They do not know the differences in quality of the centers with a high academic level, of those others organized only for the purpose of achieving a productive business.
- This is evident in the United States, for example, the difference in quality that exists in dialysis centers of institutional origin, from those organized for commercial purposes.7,8
The cost of health care in the United States has grown 3 times faster than the growth of the general rate; 216 trillion in 2006, this is double the cost of other countries that have medicine with better quality indexes.9 We must remember the study carried out by the New York Academy of Sciences, which pointed out the high mortality rate in hospitals in that site, attributing it to deficiencies in the care system.10
The increase in costs is due, in part, to the overuse of technological resources, used in order to obtain profits. In 2002, 40% of bypasses and angioplasties were of doubtful indication, not to mention some surgical procedures for spinal problems.11
The privatization of Medicare has been more costly and inefficient
The association between medicine and public health bore its best fruits in the middle of the 20th century, when tuberculosis, infections, diarrhea and typhoid could be controlled. Current treatments are aimed at controlling hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, coronary heart disease, diabetes, various types of arthritis.
The industry produces treatments for these ills, which are the ones that are “productive”, since they are used by the population group with the best income, and must be used for life.
- On the other hand, investing in the pharmaceutical industry is the most profitable in that country, and the same happens in the countries where this industry has representatives.
- In recent years, thanks to the policy of high prices without control (as exists in some countries), year after year their profits have increased.
- Another segment of the medicine industry is the one that produces technological implements for the care of various diseases.
They are undoubtedly useful resources, which have offered novel diagnoses and treatments, but which are abused thanks to direct advertising to the public. 85% of dialysis centers in the United States have the structure of a business and operate with lower quality than public services.
There, most of the health homes for the care of the elderly
In the current health care system in the United States, patients are exploited by medicine that is constantly increasing in cost. A study showed that the administrative bureaucracy of the private health system in that country, in the various types of companies that offer medical insurance, consumes 31% of each dollar invested, money that should be dedicated to the medical care of its policyholders.
One report mentions that a single HMO in one state had $2 billion in profits in one year.12,13 Some types of insurance policies drive many families into insolvency, with the result that 46 million people in that country They do not have access to medical services.
Geyman1 reflects on what are the forces that have caused the breakdown of health services?, and believes that the market as a concept is an overwhelming force. Bigelow14 points out that the free market does not promote the public good but rather group interests.
It is evident that HMOs are a more expensive solution than Medicare, and it should be offered to all citizens of that country as the simplest and most efficient mechanism for extending universal coverage.15