Healthcare and the Consumer
Value-based healthcare should be our focus. How many times have you gone to the doctor, waited for goodness knows how long in the waiting room? Had the doctor come in, do his/her thing and then fly out like the Flash? You were sent off with a prescription for medicine or referral to go see another doctor. You did what you were told to do and took what you were told to take. You may or may not have gotten better with this course of treatment. Then you got the bill and felt even sicker.
This is not uncommon. We all have had this experience at one time or another. But what are we to do? How do we know we are getting the best care for us? How do we know we are not being taken for a ride just because we have health insurance?
Believe it or not, healthcare is just another service we pay for just like anything else. That’s not to say that it’s not important. Actually, it’s really important. Probably one of the most important services we need. So why do we follow blindly?
As consumers we spend a lot of time researching everything we buy except for healthcare. We trust that our doctor knows best. But does he/she really? How much is what we are told to do just part of a standard practice? Is it really necessary to take that pill?
We also trust that our employer is providing us with the best insurance plans to help us stay healthy. We know that they are using all the best resources to help keep costs down.
But do we think about how we are making decisions about our healthcare? Are we being responsible with our insurance dollars? It’s time to start thinking more and actively engaging in our own healthcare treatments. We want to make sure we are getting value in healthcare as much as we want to make sure we are getting the right treatment.
Consumer Reports encourages us to ask these questions of our doctor at every visit. Be a responsible healthcare consumer and play an active role in your next visit.