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The Health Care Handbook: A Clear and Concise Guide to the United States Health Care System 1st Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 51 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0615650937
ISBN-10: 0615650937
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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Medical students Askin and Moore have partnered to write an extremely easy-to-understand book that explains the U.S. health-care system. The book succeeds in making sense of health care without opinion, bias, or dense textbook language. Divided into five chapters, the book contains a wealth of information that will leave health-care professionals, students, and patients well educated about a system that usually leaves everyone confused. “Health Care Systems and Delivery” covers the different kinds of hospitals (public, private, for-profit, and physician-owned) as well as networks and outpatient care. “Health Care Providers” explains the titles of various health-care workers, from doctor to nurse-practitioner to medical transcriptionist, and includes licensing, certification, and education requirements for each profession. “Insurance and Economics” covers the various types of medical insurance in detail and breaks down the economic concepts of health care, including administrative overhead, behavioral economics, chronic care, government regulations, and overtreatment. “Research, Pharmaceuticals, and Medical Devices” explains the costs of prescriptions, what qualifies as a generic drug, and evidence-based medicine. “Policy and Reform” includes a large section on the Affordable Care Act that is thorough and dispassionate in its explanation—a refreshing change from many books on the topic. Packed with easy-to-use tables, graphs, and charts, this inexpensive book is a must-have for anyone who wants a basic understanding of the U.S. health-care system. Highly recommended for all medical, public, and academic libraries. --Steve Stratton

Review

"This wonderful book by and for students is exactly what it claims to be - a clear and concise guide to the incredibly complex health system we have in the United States. It is chock full of important knowledge; and it is engagingly written. Although the authors invite readers not to read straight through, it is hard to put it down." --Stephen C. Schoenbaum, MD, MPH, Special Advisor to the President, The Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation

"Medical students Askin and Moore have partnered to write an extremely easy-to-understand book that explains the U.S. health-care system. The book succeeds in making sense of health care without opinion, bias, or dense textbook language. Divided into five chapters, the book contains a wealth of information that will leave health-care professionals, students, and patients well educated about a system that usually leaves everyone confused." --Booklist

"[G]iven their evenhanded and highly organized prose, it's hard not to put their book in the same revered category as a medical textbook or dictionary. In a mere 175 pages, and with an impressive roster of references and well-placed graphics, "The Health Care Handbook" illuminates the maddeningly opaque terms, acronyms, organizations, personages and policies that abound in health care. The authors do so not by expounding on the minutiae, but by jettisoning the jargon and gobbledygook and presenting only the core ideas." - Pauline Chen, M.D., The New York Times

"I think The Health Care Handbook is amazing, really perfect in so many ways.  As an overview it is very thorough, and equally valuable, very well written and accessible.  The information in this book provides a solid understanding of the health care system, how it functions and the role of professionals in it.  As such, any school training physicians and allied health professionals would be well advised to consider this as required reading." - Kathy Dolan, Ph.D.
University of North Texas Health Science Center / Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 239 pages
  • Publisher: Washington University in St Louis; 1 edition (2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0615650937
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615650937
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 5.9 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #164,194 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
My father was a doctor and I grew up hearing about how the various regulations, insurance reimbursements, changing economic landscape etc., was hurting his practice. I'm not sure he fully appreciated all the moving parts out there. This book does a fantastic job of connecting the dots for individuals and professionals alike. I consider it a great resource and am just disappointed that I didn't have the chance to discuss it with my dad. I think it provides clarity and value for everyone.

I highly recommend it!
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This book is a great reference, and is especially useful for someone starting out in the healthcare field. With so many areas of healthcare, the book does a good job of laying out the framework, and explaining all aspects of the field in a very easy to understand way. While much of the book may be too basic to a physician or experienced nurse, someone starting out hoping to understand the various areas of healthcare would benefit greatly from the book.

Similarly, patients and children of elderly parents could benefit immensely from reading this and getting a better understanding of what is an incredibly complex field.

Wouldn't recommend reading cover to cover, but definitely worth skimming and supplementing your knowledge.
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There is so much confusion about health care in the US, even among health care professionals. The authors have written a terrific resource that answers many questions asked by patients and their families. American health care feels complicated because it IS complicated. Kudos to Askin and Moore for their work and for making this an electronic, living document, that can be updated as needed. One caveat is that this is a basic guide, so policy wonks and those who have a lot of experience in the Slough of Health Insurance Plan Despond will probably not find much new information here, but for most readers, this book provides just the right level of content depth and is written in a very accessible style.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Finally an easy to read book that helps a novice, a pre-med or medical school student, navigate through the maze of health care information out there. Students are taught science and medicine but not how it fits in the real world. This book by Washington University medical students fills that big gap in a very helpful way. Thank you.
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I read this book before my medical school interview to help me out with topics in health care. I am so glad i read the book. It really helped clarify some things I did not know of before. It also helped me get into the medical school of my dreams!
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This book is very informative and well-written. You'd thing a topic like the healthcare system would be very dull and monotonous, but they did a great job of explaining things and making it easy to read. I read it to become more knowledgeable about the healthcare system before attending medical school interviews. It teaches you everything about the healthcare system starting from the basics. It also discusses hot topics such as recent changes in policy, and the problems and advantages of the American healthcare system and their causes.

I definitely recommend this book for anyone working or thinking about working in healthcare.
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I found this book THE NIGHT BEFORE my medical school interview. It was a quick read and is very informative. I can't believe how straight-forward and easy to understand it is! I never fully understood insurance and was frustrated with all the biased articles or opinions I'd read. This offered information that was documented and well-supported, without any bias. I recommend this to everyone no matter what their profession.
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This book is great for a person who wants to better understand how our healthcare "un" system is "un" organized and highly fragmented. Also provides a good introduction to what to expect from the new law. Excellent for persons wanting a better basic understanding of how the health system works.
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