Hi, this is Nick Webb and welcome back to another episode of fixing healthcare. This is video number four in my five part series on how we reestablish the important relationship between the doctor and the patient. Now in my first module, I talked about time, there is no way in the world that we can fix healthcare without giving doctors and patients more time. As I mentioned in that module, believe it or not, there are consultants traveling around the country, helping hospitals and clinics do what we now call patient throughput optimization. What is that you ask? It means shoving more patients through a clinic every day. Why is that good? doctors offices, clinics and hospital they make money seeing patients the more patients they see, the more money they make. Why is it bad? Doctors cannot have a meaningful, impactful, especially preventative dialogue with a patient without more time. So we’re going to need to fix that through changing the economic incentives and the focus of these consoles.
The second thing I talked about in my last program was the importance of data. Unfortunately, the average caregiver is data starved. They’re looking in your ear with an otoscope. They’re taking blood pressure, which is oftentimes falsely elevated because of the white coat syndrome. We also have problems with just fractional data from listening to the chest with an acoustic telescope, our stethoscope, so we don’t really have the right instrumentation and the information we get is very cursory. It’s just a moment in time so that we know that in order to ultimately fix the data starvation that we have in healthcare, we are going to have to move towards continuous patient monitoring. A lot of people are afraid of that concept, it’ll be the best thing that ever happened to individuals because we’re going to save, and I’m not exaggerating millions of lives by using continuous sensors to monitor all of the vitals of a person so that the artificial machine can look at those disparate data signals to find potential problems so that they can notify your doctor before becomes deadly or become before treatment options start to fall off the table, which will be even more common. In fact, one of the major common causes of a severe cardiovascular condition is death. That’s the symptom. So the key is to know what’s going on before you get that troubling symptom. Right.
So in this module, I want to talk about the resources that patients and doctors need in order to be able to fix healthcare. Now, there are two hemispheres to these resources. One hemisphere is wellness and prevention tools. The other is training. So there’s tools and training resources that are needed in order for us to fix healthcare. Now I work at one of the largest medical schools in the country. And I can tell you that historically, there’s been very little emphasis a matter of hours of training on nutrition and prevention. And that’s unfortunate because that, of course, is where the greatest opportunity is. So we’re going to now today through CME programs and through new programs, like our university has the physician of the future program, we’re going to bring these new tools and these wellness and preventional modalities to our students to help them leave their medical training with the knowledge to be a wellness practitioner, a health practitioner, rather than just a person that transacts interventions. We can’t just transact interventions, that is a beautiful thing. So tools and training are going to be key.
So let’s talk about some of those resources. You know, believe it or not, if a patient comes into a practice, they’re typically time starved and they’re data starved. And the patient, let’s say the patient comes in, and they’re 35-40 pounds overweight, which represents about 60% of the US population. And they’re hypertensive, meaning they have high blood pressure. And they may have a really, really bad lipid profile, meaning that their cholesterol numbers are are through the roof. Now, these are chronic conditions. And remember, a chronic condition means it’ll kill you. So the problem is, is that remember, we are creating scenarios where hospitals and clinics are hiring consultants to find out how fast they can shove patients through this conveyor belt. Well, if you don’t have time to talk to a patient about weight loss and provide them weight loss resources, to understand the social and economic barriers to weight loss, to understand them really at a human level rather than a diagnostic node level, then the chances are you have only one choice as a caregiver and that’s to write a prescription for Staton drug, write a prescription for a blood pressure medicine. And now the merry go round of prescription intervention, prescription intervention. They get sicker, they need more medicines, their doses are, are getting greater. There’s, there’s there’s all kinds of complications from the combination of medicines, it gets worse and worse and worse. So we started this patient on a really, really bad journey. That’s unfortunate. And as I’m doing this video, it’s happening in 10s of thousands of caregiver interactions right now as we speak. We need to give them better resources. The resources need to be apps, coaching, compliance coaching and accountability coaching, we need to be able to give them access to healthy natural food that’s as affordable as unhealthy food. We need to focus on prevention and wellness. It’s the only financially scalable model. But the truth of the matter is most primary care doctors can’t even suggest an app to you. They can’t suggest a diet to you, because it’s just not in their toolbox. We need to create thoughtful, comprehensive toolboxes that allow our caregivers to focus first that the initial trigger mechanism, mechanism has to be prevention and wellness and not treatment intervention through writing script. We’ve got to make this changes. But unfortunately, most caregivers are the victims just as much as the patients. They’re not given those resources. And because of the health systems that they serve, they’re not given the time. We’ve got to give them the time. We’ve got to give them the data. We’ve got to give them the resources and we’ve got to give them the incentives. We don’t have those four things in play. We’re never going to fix healthcare.
Now thanks for listening to this module on the resources that are necessary training and tools to be able to help us get to a point where we’re moving from a broken state to a fixed state in healthcare. The last module in this five module series is incentives. And this is where we talk about, well, why aren’t we incentivizing people to be well? Why aren’t we incentivizing caregivers to focus primarily on prevention, wellness, anticipation, and even predictive analytics and personal health and all these great tools we have, instead of focusing on rewarding them for getting the patient out of the office, we don’t change those economic incentives. There’s no way that we’ll ever be able to reestablish this amazing relationship between the doctor and the patient. Please join me for the next video on incentives.
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