Healthcare charges in the United States have gone too high in the recent years compared to 1990s and before. Records show that $933 billion more was spent on healthcare in 2013 compared to 1996. Part of this figure could be attributed to an increase in population, but the effect of rising medical costs cannot be ignored. Aging is also a factor that contributes to increased doctor visits and a consequent increase in healthcare expenditure.
The JAMA Report
JAMA recently published a report on the analysis of expenditures related to healthcare. One peculiar thing about the report was that Americans were not seen to have changed the frequency in which they sought for medical services over the years. This means that besides the increase in population and the long life expectancy in America, the other prominent healthcare expenditure driver is increased charges. Gerard Anderson of the Bloomberg School of Public Health argued that prices shape the spending curve; the higher the cost, the higher the expenditure will be. Although Gerard took no active role in the 2013 research, he was part of a similar undertaking in 2003. He has been consistent since then that it is the prices that escalate spending, with the recent survey vindicating his claim.
Joseph Dieleman is of the opinion that different diseases come with various costs. Joseph, one of the senior professionals in the study, gave an example of diabetes whereby about $44 billion out of $64 billion was spent on pharmaceuticals. That said, it is clear that prevalence of diabetes has had a substantial impact on Americans’ expenditure. Another major finding in research was that even though the duration of patients’ hospital stay has reduced significantly, the cost associated with it has remained stagnant. Joseph Dieleman explained that this was an effect of the increase in daily hospital charges.
The Role of Lefkofsky
Eric Lefkofsky is a co-founder of several firms including Tempus. The 48 years old native of Michigan has been on the front line in trying to find solutions to cancer-related problems. As the CEO of Tempus, Eric has played a key role in ensuring that clinical data on cancer patients is available for physicians’ future use.
Tempus was established only a couple of years back, and to this end, the firm is doing a wonderful job. Eric has led the company in getting partnership deals with institutions like the University of Michigan- his alma mater, Northwestern’s Lurie Cancer Center, and Cleveland Clinic among others. His passion towards helping cancer patients is driven by a personal experience with a cancer patient.
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