Wednesday, May 22, 2024
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Many Patients Object to Focusing on Costs
By NCPA @ 3:37 PM :: 3119 Views :: Health Care

Many Patients Object to Focusing on Costs

NCPA March 13, 2013

To rein in health care spending, health policy experts have proposed having patients weigh the costs and benefits of clinical options. If patients are involved at the provider level, controlling costs has been deemed ethically justifiable. Though the benefits of this cost containment strategy could be great, patients have numerous beliefs and attitudes that must change before spending can be reduced, say Roseanna Sommers and her coauthors in the journal Health Affairs.

This cost containment approach of physicians discussing treatment options with patients is more transparent and allows patients to have more input and understanding about the decisions and processes that affect their own out-of-pocket costs. Sommers and her coauthors convened 22 focus groups and determined that there are four barriers to patients taking cost into account.

  • A majority of patients prefer the best care possible, even when the relative benefit it offers is only marginal. Cost becomes trivial to many patients who want to eliminate uncertainty and take preventive screening measures against rare diseases and conditions. The mentality of "do everything" prevails over "do something."
  • Many patients are inexperienced with making trade-offs between health and money, indicating an inability to even perceive a trade-off between a less expensive option and more expensive option that is only marginally better. In fact, some patients even prefer to have their physician tell them what to do.
  • Patients also exhibit an aversion to considering insurers' costs when choosing between treatment options. While most patients are familiar with the problem of unsustainable health care, they express skepticism that cost-consciousness is necessary and few accept they have any personal responsibility for the state of health care spending.
  • Seventy-five percent of patients reflect the opinion that it is not necessarily in their best interests to reduce extra expenses for private insurers.

The study shows that many patients believe that medical decisions should not consider financial costs but only consider health. It indicates that public attitudes about health care costs must undergo a significant shift if patients are to engage in meaningful discussions with physicians that result in cost-conscious decisions. Such decisions would be useful in reducing the long-term projections of growing U.S. health care expenditures.

Source: Roseanna Sommers et al., "Focus Groups Highlight That Many Patients Object to Clinicians' Focusing on Costs," Health Affairs, February 2013, 2013.

Links

TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote

2aHawaii

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

AntiPlanner

Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Broken Trust

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

DVids Hawaii

FIRE

Fix Oahu!

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute

Habele.org

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii Legal News

Hawaii Legal Short-Term Rental Alliance

Hawaii Matters

Hawaii Military History

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Together

HiFiCo

Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

House Minority Blog

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

July 4 in Hawaii

Land and Power in Hawaii

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

MentalIllnessPolicy.org

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

NAMI Hawaii

Natatorium.org

National Parents Org Hawaii

NFIB Hawaii News

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Obookiah

OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

Practical Policy Institute of Hawaii

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii

RailRipoff.com

Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

School Choice in Hawaii

SenatorFong.com

Talking Tax

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

Waagey.org

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii