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Stop Blaming Patients, Guys!

First, a shout-out to an absolutely terrific blog by health economist Aaron E Carroll:  The Incidental Economist

Under the rubric, “We have to stop blaming patients for overtesting and overtreating,” he reports on a study on “Patient Demands [sic] for Cancer Tests and Treatment.”  Bottom line:  a clinically inappropriate modality was requested only 1% of the time, and doctors acceded to only a small fraction of that 1%.  As Carroll concludes, we can’t blame patients for the high cost of medicine.  Which brings me back to my irritation with Choosing Wisely, and its unspoken assumptions that it is consumers who need to understand why “less is more.”  Hey, guys, we’re not the problem!

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