It’s Free!

Well, not really. But it’s sort of like that:

It’s a very odd system where we make purchasing decisions on behalf of patients but we don’t know what anything costs. There’s no disincentive to ordering tests — all we have to do is click a button and we’ve ordered it.

Above, the words of Dr. Neel Shah, a resident at Brigham and Women’s in a New York Times article. Below, those of Dr. Michael Whitcomb, former senior vice president for medical education at the American Association of Medical Colleges:

Medical schools have done a really terrible job over the years in educating students about the system that they’re going to encounter.

Healthcare, in general, has done a pretty terrible job over the years in educating patients about the system they encounter.

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