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Overhauling America's Healthcare Machine: Stop the Bleeding and Save Trillions Hardcover – February 4, 2011

ISBN-13: 978-0132173254 ISBN-10: 0132173255 Edition: 1st

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

“Finally, a healthcare system that works! Overhauling America’s Healthcare Machine is a superbly written book on what it takes to reduce administrative bloat, simplify the system, slash costs, and give all Americans sustainable medical and financial security.”

–William Bernstein, Bestselling author of A Splendid Exchange and The Birth of Plenty

 

“Scholarly both in thinking and writing. A terrific accomplishment.”

–Dr. Donald A.B. Lindberg, Director, National Library of Medicine

 

Bureaucratic complexity is smothering America’s healthcare system–pointless, costly, wasteful complexity created by both the government and insurance companies. In Overhauling America’s Healthcare Machine, leading physician, healthcare expert, and entrepreneur Douglas A. Perednia, M.D., systematically identifies worthless overhead that is making healthcare inaccessible to millions, driving providers from practice, and bankrupting America. Then, he shows how to design a far simpler system that delivers care to everyone by drawing on the best of both free markets and carefully crafted public initiatives.

 

The Obama “healthcare reform” involved more than 2,000 pages of special interest-friendly legislation. It mandates 168 new federal committees and programs, which reflects even higher healthcare spending and billions in new taxes. Yet, the system is still utterly broken–and unless it’s fixed, it will break us all. Perednia offers a better way: a logical, comprehensive, and nonpartisan approach that gives providers and patients both security and freedom, enhances competition, and will save more than $570 billion each year.

 

Why we spend twice as much on healthcare–without better results

The real reasons American healthcare costs more without delivering more

Where does all the money go–and why?

Uncovering the insane waste and bureaucracy pervading American healthcare

Scrubbing the sand out of the gears

Eliminating the worthless tasks, processes, and rules that cause soaring costs

Focusing spending where it will do the most good

Getting the greatest medical benefit from limited dollars

 

About the Author

Douglas A. Perednia, M.D., graduated from Swarthmore College with a degree in Economics, and obtained his medical degree at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. A medical internist and dermatologist, he has spent many years in clinical medicine, in academia as a principal investigator for the National Institutes of Health, with non-profit healthcare organizations, and as a business executive in private industry. A popular speaker and writer, Dr. Perednia periodically works as a consultant to government, business, and nonprofit organizations. In his spare time, he writes for The Road to Hellth blog (www.roadtohellth.com), which deals with the interactions between doctors, patients, insurers, government, and the business of medicine.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: FT Press; 1 edition (February 4, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0132173255
  • ISBN-13: 978-0132173254
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.3 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,285,357 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Doug Perednia, M.D. is a medical internist and dermatologist who has been a clinician, healthcare researcher, entrepreneur and employer. Originally trained in Economics at Swarthmore College, he received his medical degree from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. This was followed by residencies in internal medicine and dermatology.

Over the course of his career he has done research into a variety of areas; particularly the application of computers in clinical medicine. For nearly ten years he served as principal investigator for projects funded by the National Cancer Institute and the National Library of Medicine. Much of this work involved research into digital imaging of skin and the use of telemedicine in the management of skin diseases. Along the way he founded and worked with the non-profit Telemedicine Research Center and Association of Telehealth Service Providers. He left academics in 1999 to work in the private sector, concentrating on the development of simple, inexpensive and economically sustainable ways to solve common problems faced by doctors and patients in the course of clinical practice. These are often as much business problems as they are medical.

Now living in Portland, Oregon, he spends much of his time working to make American healthcare simpler, less expensive, more efficient and economically sustainable.

Customer Reviews

The author blames "friction" for most of the waste, which usually means bureaucracy.
Ed Pegg Jr
Dr. Perednia's book is the best analysis of our current and potential future states of American health care that I have read.
Bookworm
The book is well illustrated with charts but some of them could use better annotating.
Paul Cassel

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Theresa Welsh on February 21, 2011
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
The need to reform our dysfunctional healthcare system is a subject dear to my heart. The 2010 heathcare reform bill did not satisfy me because it amounts to more of the same, with millions of Americans still unable to afford medical care. It also did not satisfy author Douglas Perednia, but what I like about his book is that it is not political, not partisan and his solutions are not based on an ideology, but on a rational look at what's broken and how to fix it.

--- SIMPLIFY HEALTHCARE
The major point this author makes is that our healthcare "machine," as he calls it, is too complex. There are too many parts, and too much friction and its very complexity leads to extra costs that do not contribute to anyone's good health. Just like a machine with too many parts will break down more often than one with a simpler design and fewer parts, so we need to reduce the complexity of healthcare in America. Dr. Perednia points out that nothing ever gets taken away in health care, but always more is added... more types of insurance, more companies, more rules and regulations, more laws, more commissions, etc.

So, in his view, the answer is simplify, simplify, simplify. He says we should throw out the current system and start from scratch. On this, I couldn't agree more. In My Humble Opinion: There is absolutely nothing we spend money on in this country for which we get such poor value as the money we shovel into healthcare. A huge percentage of it goes to people doing what the author calls "useless busywork." Healthcare is always cited as a growing sector for employment, but more people doing administrative work just adds to the already outrageous cost of healthcare.

--- DESIRED OUTCOMES FOR A REFORMED HEALTHCARE SYSTEM
Dr.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Ed Pegg Jr TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 12, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
There is no shortage of facts and research in this book. The United States spends on average more per person on health care than any other country in the world, by a wide margin. For identical routine procedures, the cost in the US will almost always be 4-7 times more expensive. The author lays out all the gory details, with report after report.

Some of this, I've seen in the news media, but for a clip lasting seconds, data is cherry-picked. Not much of that here. The tables and charts presented were comprehensive. Much of the book was *fascinatingly* tedious and boring. For example, in one section, he covers the 20+ codes that a doctor must use to cover one simple procedure for one patient -- and then all the paperwork that triggers, along with with all the different agencies and companies that much be contacted. If the doctor gets one of the many codes wrong, they are liable for a $10,000 fine.

The author blames "friction" for most of the waste, which usually means bureaucracy. For example, there are thousands of credentialling boards. To be certified, a doctor must submit his entire history, every time, either annually or semi annually. They don't provide updates -- they much provide their full record.

A very interesting synopsis of where the system in the US is broken.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By BrainDoc VINE VOICE on February 23, 2011
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I see that there's already been several excellent & quite detailed reviews posted, so I'll be brief. This book is the best one on the topic that is currently available. Dr. Perednia is an expert in the subject of health care reform. His ability to organize & relate this complex subject is remarkable.

Here's a question I have: Why have we given these shysters (er, I mean politicians) so much authority when most of them are either lawyers (6 semesters of law school) or the very types (business criminals) who should not be making decisions in the best interests of the American people? Why not let the real experts prevail? We aren't living in 1776 anymore. Everything has gotten quite complex & we can't expect those w/6 semesters of law school to understand very much (most I've known barely understand the law).
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Stephen W. Templar VINE VOICE on April 21, 2011
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This book is well researched and is filled will facts and data. Given that we spend more than any other country on earth, per capita, for health care it is generally assumed that the reason is, simply put, because it is the best. The author clearly details the how's and they why's of the United States health care system.

The author does not painstakingly edit the data to prove a point, but rather provides all of the data and explains it. All that data can be a bit much, but it is real and it is all there.

I found the authors explanation of the various bureaucracies that bog down our health care system to be quite accurate. The inefficiencies described are true and almost painful to consider. I hear about them frequently from my wife, who works in hospital administration, and can attest to the accuracy of the author's findings.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By M. Stewart VINE VOICE on July 17, 2014
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Oh, if only the politicians would be forced to read this book. Even with Obamacare causing all sorts of issues, all the ideas in this book could still be implemented and literally make health care affordable and useful. The book has startling statistics in it showing that the huge amount of money spent on health care in the United States does not produce better outcomes. It has some simple straightforward solutions that would solve the problems. One simple one: Have a dreaded national ID number, that privacy advocates would abhor, to greatly streamline paperwork. The amount of paper and busy work involved in a simple visit is mind-boggling; billions are wasted on making sure the lab results for M. Stewart are for the M. Stewart that saw the doctor, and the prescription for M. Stewart is for the same person.
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