Common sense for doctors, patients, and the public
Size: 5.00 x 8.00 in
Throughout his fifty-year medical practice, Dr. Keith Dahlberg has practiced family medicine both in the United States and among the hill tribes of Southeast Asia. He has focused especially on those who have difficulty getting access to medical care.
This book offers a common sense, many-sided approach to America's present medical delivery problems, and the more than forty-five million American citizens who have no medical insurance.
Dr. Dahlberg writes both to the family that is searching for better medical care, and to doctors who seek to improve it.
This book came out just at the beginning of the health care reform debate but it remains sensible, concrete and highly relevant.
Dr. Dahlberg has practiced medicine in the US and other countries for half a century and he brings to the debate a clarity of values and analysis that is often lacking in current discussions on how to restructure our complex and ruinously expensive health care system. Through liberal use of examples from his professional and his personal life, the good doctor helps us overcome our fears of changing the health care behemoth, offering his thoughts on what works (high-tech trauma care) and what doesn't (communication between practitioners and departments). He gives numerous practical examples of how costs can be cut and what the concerned citizen can do to improve efficiency. Although Dr. Dahlberg denies having real expertise on health insurance, his many years in the field betray a savvy understanding of how insurance companies operate and some of the ways they increase their profit margin.
Above all, Dr. Dahlberg is professional and considerate in his recommendations. He is reluctant to assign blame and strives to suggest changes that would benefit all parties, increase access to health care by people with lower incomes, and reduce superfluous and preventable medical procedures that burden the system. Dr. Dahlberg believes that it is essential for patients to learn about their own problems and participate in their own care, and for medical professionals to permit and encourage them to do so.
Every piece of advice here is worth listening to, and although the debate continues to rage, we are a long way from resolving many of these issues. This fresh, insightful work should crystallize some of the murky thinking and help both patients and doctors--and lawmakers--make the best decisions.