Help Your Loved One to Determine When Less Is More in Health Care

health careMost people want the most beneficial health care for their family and friends, but is it feasible that every so often, less is more? According to a recent study published in Plos One by Dr. Martin Makary, professor of surgery and health policy at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, a full 21% of treatment people receive is unnecessary – which means that millions of individuals subjected to a variety of treatment methods, screenings and scans are receiving little if any benefit. And these kinds of unwarranted healthcare services come at a price: up to $210 billion each and every year, as revealed by the National Academy of Medicine.

As a particular example, screening for survivors of early stage breast cancer frequently includes advanced imaging such as PET, CT and bone scans, and tumor marker screenings – while the American Society for Clinical Oncology particularly encouraged doctors in 2012 not to order these types of tests. But around half of patients within that criteria received these kinds of scans between 2007 and 2015.=

The outcome is unnecessary pain, suffering, and financial expense for tests and procedures that may have no bearing on bettering or lengthening life, according to Dr. Lisa Schwartz, professor at the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice. Dr. Rebecca Smith-Bindman, a University of California-San Francisco professor, takes it a bit further, reporting, “It’s just bad care.”

Because of the Choosing Wisely campaign, launched by the American Board of Internal Medicine Foundation in 2012, awareness is being raised about irrelevant treatments. “Patients used to feel like ‘more is better,’” said Daniel Wolfson, Executive Vice President of the ABIM Foundation. “But sometimes less is more. Changing that mindset is a major victory.”

It is important for all of us to be proactive in informing ourselves to the fullest extent possible about any health conditions our senior family are facing, and then to discuss with the healthcare team regarding any tests or treatment options that are in question.

Are you aware Home Sweet Home In-Home Care provides transportation and accompaniment to health appointments and procedures, and serves as an advocate for older persons to help ensure they’re obtaining the very best possible medical care? Just some of the numerous ways we are able to assist:

  • Provide prescribed medication reminders
  • Pick up prescription medications
  • Make healthy and balanced meals in accordance to any required dietary program
  • Evaluate the home for fall risks
  • Offer mobility and ambulation assistance
  • Ensure safety during bath/shower time
  • And much more

Call us at (269) 849-9252 to learn more!

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