The Way Healthcare is Going, We Need More Nurses, Not More Doctors
11+ years of training just to follow public health protocols??
People receive medical care for two almost diametrically opposed reasons.
One is to get routine screenings, immunizations and preventative advice, things that are basically protocol based. Those things are a terrible waste of time when we lay them on physicians’ shoulders. I mean, do you really need to go through medical school and residency training to recommend tetanus, flu, COVID, pneumonia, RSV and shingles shots? (But individual score cards for physician performance are largely based on such metrics.)
The other reason is to get diagnosed and treated when they don’t feel well. As far as diagnosis goes, that could be something simple, like a stomach flu or a rash, or something more complicated, like a heart attack or a broken hip. But that stomach flu could be a case of ischemic colitis, clostridium difficile infection, colon cancer or carcinoid syndrome and that rash could be the first manifestation of acute leukemia. As far as treatment, there may be guidelines that could be used as protocols in straightforward cases, but down the road, education, experience and judgement become more and more critical, especially when patients have more than one medical problem to consider with every treatment choice.
So, the population here in the US is getting sicker, with more chronic diseases, like diabetes with all its complications. We could make sure doctors spend more time with their patients trying to prevent them from becoming diabetics. But that takes time away from treating sick people, like the diabetics who already have complications and require intensive management with insulin and newer medications.
In this crazy healthcare non-system we have, there are voices advocating that nurses and pharmacists should treat blood pressure so that doctors can do more public health. But the public health we are “supposed” to do would take more than 100% of our time!
STOP THE INSANITY, to quote Susan Powter, the 1990s self taught weight loss and fitness phenomenon. And, my own go-to analogy, THE EMPEROR HAS NO CLOTHES!
Let’s talk turkey… American healthcare needs to be cut in half!