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August 27th, 2009
10:54 AM ET

Low-cost health care model

Health care reform. It was Senator Ted Kennedy's cause to the end. But, in this make or break month reform is as uncertain as ever. One puzzle in the debate is how to keep costs down.

CNN's John Roberts went to the Cleveland clinic which provides top notch health care and they do it at a much lower cost than most places.


Filed under: Health
soundoff (14 Responses)
  1. Nik Bramblett

    In answer to Joan Wraxall's question: "Why are we not replacing 'gateway' Primary Care physicians with Nurse Practitioners?"

    Because the same folks that say that the Canadian system of healthcare doesn't work (although every Canadian I know is happy with said system and the argument is moot anyway because no proposed US plan is similar to that plan) say that replacing PCPs with NPs will lower quality of care in the US, even though they use urgent care clinics where this is already the case. And you wonder why health care costs in the US are so high?

    September 16, 2009 at 1:07 pm |
  2. Joan Wraxall

    Family Practice Physicians earn median salaries of $159,228 (take home, before bonuses and benefits).

    Nurse Practitioners earn median salaries of $82,590 (take home, before bonuses and benefits).

    Why are we not replacing 'gateway' Primary Care physicians with Nurse Practitioners? It's half the cost for essentially the same care. This is working well in many clinics and many areas with few Family Practice Physicians right now.

    I don't think we need more Family Practice doctors. I think we need less.

    September 15, 2009 at 2:27 pm |
  3. Jason

    I wrote my Tennessee Congressman with this suggestion last year but of course got no reply from this bought-and paid-for-by-big Medicine politician: Simply pass a bill that the uninsured cannot be billed any more for a procedure/lab test/office visit/etc. than Medicare pays. That would effectively slash the bill of the uninsured by 2/3. Without the US Government spending a cent. Who are the patients that are making Big Medicine rich today? Is it the uninsured? No, it is the vast volume of Medicare patients. So let the rest of us get charged these same prices!

    September 10, 2009 at 9:08 am |
  4. Velladean Loesch

    Don't you get it, when the bill passes all those illegals will become legal and be covered under our healthcare. You need to ask the real questions

    September 10, 2009 at 7:36 am |
  5. Jerilyn Lessley

    Why do we need health care fixed? I know a young lady who broke her ankle. At the emergency room she had a cast put on and was told it needed to be plated and pinned to be certain of proper healing. The local bone doctor won't do the surgery. She has no insurance. Now, our congressman was in a bad boat wreck last week. He needed his ankle surgically repaired. Of course, he is a congressman. He is insured. He will be fine. He is also against health care reform.

    August 31, 2009 at 12:14 pm |
  6. james

    very good idea

    August 31, 2009 at 9:14 am |
  7. rob

    "...not ‘Good’ profit, but InSane profits like our “free market system” thinks is mandated."

    Please. Econ101. A free market system doesn't mandate anything. And the very reason we're in this mess in the first place is because the market ISN'T free.

    August 31, 2009 at 8:34 am |
  8. Serena Tidwell

    While obviously the Cleveland Clinic does a wonderful job, comparing their costs to other hospitals is unfair on one major level – many residents and fellows (physicians in training) are at Cleveland Clinic providing care. These Drs. are not only working for significantly reduced salaries – the CClinic receives funding from the federal government (as all teaching hospitals do) to pay these salaries. The labor costs for the CClinic are therefore significantly lower than many other hospitals.

    August 28, 2009 at 9:28 am |
  9. Greg

    Salaried doctors, electronic records, strong preventative care, etc. all at a lower cost. This sounds exactly like the socialist medicine of Canada, Great Britain, France and other modern nations.

    The questions remains, why is the US the only nation left with private health care? The other posters have answered this question above.

    August 28, 2009 at 5:59 am |
  10. tara

    Low costs or not I pray to GOD that the health care bill Dies if thr gornment rules our healthcare whos to say they can't check our bank accounts??? We already have the candians who are coming down from canada and telling us that this system does not work....and that it takes people very sick people weeks months or even years to be seen...and by then you could be dead.....so i say DIE BILL die.....stay away from my family! Least this end in another civil war! Because that is what my whole town is sayingAND I BELIEVE IT!!

    August 27, 2009 at 3:29 pm |
  11. JohnWinNC

    Some things need to be out of the "profit" arena. Basic health care seems like one of them. It seems obscene that people literally get "filthy" rich from excess and abuse of the medical needs of others. Should people be paid well for their services? Sure. Should some people go broke or go without services while others always have the best of care? No.

    August 27, 2009 at 2:25 pm |
  12. jay m

    This country was built on greed, and greed in the name of human sufferage is all we know.

    August 27, 2009 at 1:48 pm |
  13. Mark

    KILL GRANDMA, not true, it's grandma who is selling out on the grand kids. They sit there and say no to the public option except for themselves. They do not want to give up their plans but refuse to share it with their kids and grand kids. Disease, unemployment, politicians and insurance companies don't discriminate. One day they may need health care and not have it because you believed the lies and sold them down the river.
    Unless grandma has so much money she can afford all the medical bills for anyone of her kids and grand kids who get sick. I hope she won't have to sell everything she has and then have to move into subsidized housing paid for by the government.
    So I was at the Claire McCaskill Hillsboro meeting and she asked the seniors their if they wanted to give up their government plans. Out of the hundreds of seniors their less than six held up their hands. I don't think those six or so understood the question or thought it was a trick question.
    These people are apparently under the believe that it is cheaper to dig graves than to insure those who are not.
    They rubber stamped two wars we are fighting now. Once again its OK to kill our own people and people in other countries but no way can we take care of our own. The money we spend on these wars can insure the uninsured. What happened to these so call religious people, have they no compassion for anyone but themselves.

    August 27, 2009 at 1:19 pm |
  14. Steve

    So does just about every other 1st world country but ours. Thats because other countries dont believe corporations should be exploiting human beings health for UnGodly profits.....not 'Good' profit, but InSane profits like our "free market system" thinks is mandated.

    August 27, 2009 at 10:57 am |