New eBook Shines Light on What's Wrong with U.S. Health Care and Offers Ways to Fix It
NEWTOWN, Conn., Jan. 15, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- To shed light on one of the toughest issues facing the country, fiscally and socially, a new eBook is asking the critical questions about why patients often don't get the right care, why America spends twice as much per person as the next biggest spender, and why the rules that apply to every other industry don't apply to health care? More importantly, "The Incentive Cure: The Real Relief for Health Care," also provides answers to many of the questions around why the U.S. health industry fails and highlights some of the most promising ideas for change.
"It's tough to do right when you're encouraged to do wrong," said Francois de Brantes, eBook author and executive director of the non-profit Health Care Incentives Improvement Institute (HCI3). "We must change the incentives of our health care delivery system – those impacting patients, physicians, hospitals, insurers, and policy makers alike. Real and lasting change won't happen until the incentives change and we begin to pay for value instead of volume to encourage physicians to do right; change health insurance benefit designs to encourage patients to do right; make all price and quality information easy to get and act upon in order to create a real health care market; and remove regulatory and legislative barriers that impede payers and providers from innovating."
The Affordable Care Act addresses some of the imbalances of our U.S. health care system (for example, hospitals are starting to be penalized when they have excessive rates of readmission or patient safety failures; and Medicare is starting to experiment with payment models that move away from fee-for-service), however, far more needs to be done far faster. Change needs to come not only by the Administration, but ordinary Americans need to take action.
In addition to helping consumers understand the forces at work (both for us and against us) in the U.S. health care system, the eBook also provides information to help all Americans make smarter decisions about their care:
- Ask your doctor why that test or procedure is necessary.
- Find out what a procedure or test costs before you agree. Perhaps you can get the same quality treatment at a lower cost (for example, an MRI at an imaging center instead of a hospital).
- Don't go for the brand name drug if the generic works just as well for you.
- Write to your state's legislators and congressional representatives, call them, visit them in their offices, and ask them why they have refused to significantly reduce the negative incentives that plague health care.
Co-authored with business writer Bob Conte, and illustrated by artist Kriss Wittmann, the eBook is available in various formats and can be found on the Amazon Book Store, Smashwords, and forthcoming on iTunes.
About the Authors
Francois de Brantes is executive director of the Health Care Incentives Improvement Institute where he leads the organization's efforts to accelerate the transformation of the health care industry into delivering greater value. Francois has been published in a number of journals including the New England Journal of Medicine, Health Affairs, the American Journal of Managed Care, and his work has been featured in articles in The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bob Conte is a business writer, editor, and communications consultant. He works with a broad range of local, national and global clients, and has received many industry awards for his work across the communications spectrum. Bob is also the author of a textbook on American music. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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Francois de Brantes
SOURCE Health Care Incentives Improvement Institute (HCI3)