Creating a New Path

new_pathOld paths are full of certified folks. To protect the financial value of certifications, professionals wrap endorsements around their status quo.

Over time, with much wrapping, a school of thought closes down unique thought. This is similar to everyone in a room agreeing with the boss, when they really don’t.

In the case of doctors, they have wrapped their school with drugs, radiation, and surgery. These are “healthcare” in America.

When asked as individuals, many doctors disagree with the current school. For instance, 42% of doctors think patients get too much medical care (Sirovich et al 2011). This explains how iatrogenesis, harm caused by doctors, is a leading cause of death.

Does the third leading cause of death change your risk analysis?

  1. Heart disease
  2. Cancer
  3. Medical treatment from doctors

Privately, many doctors understand patients are being hurt, but they are minnows among a whale. Yet, if so many doctors disagree with the way healthcare is being run, why doesn’t it change?

It actually does change, but slowly. For instance, a federal committee recently put forward that dietary cholesterol isn’t hurting us. Nice job committee, but this comes after generations of people have already hurt their benelles by artificially lowering cholesterol.

The old path is sticky with paychecks, security, and power. If you have $200,000 in student loans, and a new power to get rich by prescribing Lipitor, well, it’s a disaster if the government says, “Hey, cholesterol is healthy and best leave it alone.”

Let’s compare this to the past. Way back when the church ran society, priests were a powerful group, and used complicated rituals to separate themselves from us.

In a way, doctors are today’s priests, empowered by the state to make large sums of money through treatments. But to rationalize this financial relationship, treatments had to become more complex. Neither the government nor doctors could feel comfortable allowing large payments for treatments like letting cholesterol levels be normal, getting sunlight, walking, or drinking black tea.

To justify large transfers of wealth to the healthcare priests, there is an ongoing array of new drugs, new radiology machines, and new surgeries. All this would probably make Hippocrates barf, a condition he would treat with fresh air and rest.

Currently, the way to more pay is more complication. In this equation, benelles are locked out, as artificial complexity hurts good cells. As a result, we have a national healthcare system that charges giant sums of money based on cancer research that is 89% non-reproducible (Begley 2012), but which prevents doctors from prescribing tea, though it reduces risk of heart disease death by 45% (de Koning Gans 2010).

The complexity behind cancer drugs provides the veneer that doctors and the government need to legitimize wealth transfer. Eating grapefruit is too simple to provide cover, which is why it works. Simple is good and powerful; a hundred letters would have been less than these three, E = mc².

All this presents an exciting new solution to our national healthcare problem. The evidence base is already telling us how to repair national healthcare. The government could legitimize the simple, evidence-based path.

When nearly half of doctors think that patients are being over treated, the system is ripe for change. As soon as people understand that doctors don’t actually support the current system, change will speed up. I mean, who wants to take their child into a system that doctors think is dangerous?

For change to happen, the government must assure doctors of continued wealth. The solution is a new path to wealth where evidence-based doctors can make as much money as cardiologists, but by prescribing sunlight, cocoa, garlic, walking, etc. Once this alternate path to wealth is available, many doctors will come out of the woodwork to tell the truth about today’s treatments.

The current school has alienated people. Only the rich can afford treatment, which is often harmful. Actually, if you talk to people, many mistrust drugs and doctors. Plenty of nurses know the current regime is dangerous and won’t allow their kids near it. Only the people at the top, making all the money, are enthusiastic about our medical super-beast. Yes, they’re boss, and think everyone is nodding yes in agreement, when really they’re nodding for paychecks. People are ready for new leadership, for the government to open a new path.

Once 30% of the population chooses the benelles path, healthcare costs will begin to dramatically decrease.

Yes, pharma and radiology companies will lose share, but public gains are worth this. Doctors should be independent. The government should divorce the interests of doctors and companies, just like we achieved separation of church and state. If research supports it, doctors should be paid the same whether they recommend cocoa or Lipitor. We should go with the evidence. It’s the smart way, the affordable way.

It is time for a new path that protects our health and doesn’t bankrupt us. Our government should open up the benelles path.

Citations:

Sirovich B, Woloshin S, Schwartz L “Too Little? Too Much? Primary Care Physicians’ Views on US Health Care” Arch Intern Med 2011;171(17):1582-1585. doi: 10.1001/archinternmed.2011.437

Begley G, Ellis L “Drug development: Raise standards for preclinical cancer research” Nature 2012; 483,531-533. doi: 10.1038/483531a

Gans J, Uiterwaal C, van der Schouw Y, Boer J, Grobbee D, Verschuren W, Beulens J “Tea and Coffee Consumption and Cardiovascular Morbidity and Mortality” Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol 2010; Aug;30(8):1665-71. doi: 10.1161/ATVBAHA.109.201939