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View Diary: My secret from the clinical research world. (7 comments)

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  •  Three comments . . . (5+ / 0-)
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    Catte Nappe, FG, TheOrchid, semiot, TiaRachel

    Human subjects should be compensated for their time. No, not enough money that it becomes the reason why they do it, but it's also wrong to exploit them. That's the consensus of most IRBs. Also, it gets you a higher response rate and a more representative sample.

    Second, the real problem here seems to be that the investigators for these studies know about clinical research, but they aren't businesspeople, don't really know anything about the business of running a health care practice, so they were letting you screw them, basically.

    Third, this shows why the conservative claim that if people have to pay out of pocket, that will hold down costs, is bullshit. Insurance companies have much more market power than individual consumers, and they're already using it, to get much cheaper services than people can negotiate on their own.

    •  Disagree with 2nd and 3rd points... (0+ / 0-)

      1) Agreed.

      2) The people I was negotiating with were usually people with a JD or an MBA.  They knew what they were doing.  The people in charge of writing the checks, however, were completely incompetent, had a high turnover, and always seemed understaffed.  All the drug companies seemed put a complete idiot in charge of payments because we never got the right amounts or at the time they were supposed to be paid.

      3) If the 3rd party payers were gone, prices would crash.  But no one wants that to happen because then the medical field wouldn't be profitable.  Doctors and hospitals raise prices for the deep pockets.  Even though that CT machine was bought a decade ago and paid itself off after one year, the hospital is still going to charge $1000 per scan if it can get away with it.
      Like I said, insurance companies don't really argue to keep the costs down, they just pay a fraction of what medicare does.  Thus, medicare (i.e. the government) is already setting the prices.  I'm not sure how they decide how much a medical procedure should cost, but if it were up to the suppliers of health care - it would be exorbitant.

      The real problem is that health care shouldn't be a business, but a public utility.  There are all kinds of examples where a market system creates inefficiencies.  The pharma companies waste all kinds of resources on "me too" drugs that don't work any better than generics, but will hold a patent (and a higher price tag) for another 10 years.  And don't even get me started on medical records!

      We should have single-payer healthcare.  The government should decide the payouts, and should lead investment into worthwhile therapies.

      "We have now sunk to a depth at which restatement of the obvious is the first duty of intelligent men." George Orwell

      by El Wiemo on Wed Aug 21, 2013 at 07:23:29 AM PDT

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