This evening, PBS will air a special investigative report on the dangers of our current medical system. Money & Medicine takes us inside two world-renowned hospitals -- UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles and Intermountain Medical Center in Utah -- and shares first-hand stories of unnecessary medical spending, as well as effective methods for improving the overall quality of care and reducing costs.
Money & Medicine captures the variations of care from birth to death and paints a powerful picture of our country’s medical crisis. The film also depicts effective strategies currently practiced at UCLA and Intermountain that reduce wasteful medical spending and improve health care quality. These strategies include improving coordination of care, implementing shared decision making and practicing evidence-based medicine.
The recent New England Journal of Medicine paper titled “Effect of Three Decades of Screening Mammography on Breast-Cancer Incidence” look at thirty-two years of cancer statistics in the U.S. and comes to the startling conclusion that roughly 1.3 million women have been overdiagnosed with breast cancer. In our newest “Foundation Perspectives” video, Dr. Mary McNaughton-Collins, medical director at the Informed Medical Decisions Foundation and a primary care doctor, gives us her take on the importance of this study. She provides a brief overview of the authors’ findings, explains why the overdiagnosis of breast cancer is harmful and provides her view on how these findings will affect how she engages women in a shared decision making conversation about screening mammograms.
Any cancer screening offers the benefits of early detection on one side versus the risks of overtreatment on the other. Patients need to be educated on the pros and cons of any type of screening, and should make the decision along with their doctor. Dr. Michael Barry, president of the Boston-based Informed Medical Decisions Foundation, recommends asking the following questions...
Others, however, defended the researchers' conclusions, saying the study verifies research data that's been published in other countries. "They just took a different way of looking at the likely benefits of mammographic screening and the overdiagnosis rate," said Dr. Michael Barry, president of the Informed Medical Decisions Foundation.