We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
It's not either-or. Hospitals are looking for good ratings and market share. It definitely can go to ridiculous lengths and it remains a good rule of thumb that the hospitals with the best "hotel services" are not the most medically-advanced. And sometimes the "most advanced" can get you into new problems.
Have any liberals ever seriously contemplated the ideas of Adam Smith? They have grossly distorted the medical marketplace over the last 70 years repeatedly coming up with more costly "solutions" to the problems they create only to have those solutions become the new and bigger problem.
The progressives imagine that in a world of finite resources, they can somehow promise everyone easy access to the highest quality medical care and do so at a lower cost. If that was really the case, why don't they apply this model across the board and put us all up in luxury waterfront mansions and have us all driving Mercedes Benz sedans - right now and for low prices!?
A free market allows suppliers of medical care to exchange medical care with someone who desires to consume medical care for whatever good or service that person provides and they both get something they desire more than what they already have. For some patients, the key factor may be low price. For others, it may be the very best quality or luxury amenities or extra time chatting with the doctor.
Every patient has his own blend that he is able to freely choose. He isn't forced by some progressive bureaucrat to take what the government deems is best for him.The free market provides a feed back mechanism so that there are the correct number of medical providers in all these categories - low cost or high quality or no wait, etc. - such that everyone ends up with the trade they want.
Make no mistake about it - there are tradeoffs. Despite what the progressive fairies promise, there is no such thing as low cost, high quality, easy access ANYTHING (except air - if you don't live in one of the cities inhabited by a progressive majority). However, in a free market, each of us gets to choose what those trade offs will be rather than the government telling us what we'll get (even though they will select a different plan for themselves).
At some point, people providing products and services at a fair price are going to get tired of this constant "jump a little higher" attitude of progressives. Are they never satisfied? Why are they always moving the bases, upping the bar, changing the rules? The sheer stress that accompanies all these machinations shall lead us all to an early death from nothing more serious than The Meddling Factor.
Truth be told, someone is making a bundle off this. We just lost the best school principal I've encountered in decades over the idiotic PARCC tests accompanying Common Core. She morally could not participate in such lunacy and is more than capable of having a career where she doesn't need to lose herself in useless regulations and oversight. It's the children's loss and our country's loss because I'm sure other outstanding educators also find this Federal program destructive to their vision of excellence.
Our hospital system has jumped onto this bandwagon, big time (I'm a specialist hospitalist). Of course, the most intractable, non-compliant, abusive, obnoxious patients (think: active drug addicts, as a common example) who already require an inordinate amount of time from physicians and nurses, generate the large majority of these complaints. Each of these (mostly frivolous or vindictive) complaints requires an administrative response, i.e., a written response from all providers, reviewed by committee, and all patients thus complaining get some sort of amends made (bill reduction, gift certificates, apologetic letters, etc etc) -- thus incentivizing them to complain anew on their next admission.
There is, I might add, no parallel channel for physicians & nurses to complain about verbally and physically abusive, manipulative, and non-compliant patients. It's a one-way street.
And of course, the elephant in the room behind these complaints is a legal system and trial lawyers salivating to find "malpractice" in your "substandard" care.
And the downward spiral continues, at an ever-increasing rate...
Only one question, Dr. Bob: Did you vote for Obama like many of your hospital based colleagues?
Dr. Mike aka Mike M
Went thru the survey bit x2 recently when She Who Must had cataract surgery. The nurses were quite honest in admitting they needed high scores else the outpatient surgery unit would be closed by corporate (a church affiliated group) HQ.
While I understand the article's point, the current measure proves GIGO, the current rush to quantify everything does not give much hope it will be replaced.
I only had to skim the article. It describes the hospital where I work to a fair the well. The suck upping done on all levels is nauseating. Patient satisifaction levels and length of stay is all that is talked about. (Low and high respectively.) Then in the same breath the CEO will read letters from almost too giddy patients ecstatic about the wonderful care they received.
I can't wait to get out of the clinical setting.