Saturday, October 25, 2008

The Cost of Paperwork

Do you wonder why medical care is so expensive? Consider what Philip Howard wrote in The Death of Common Sense. Talking about all the paperwork that comes with governmental regulations Howard writes:
The medical care industry is the hardest hit. Everything—every aspirin, every simple lab test—requires that a form be filled out. How else, the theory goes, can we assure that everything is in order? But hospitals now spend on the order of 25 percent of their budget of administration, mainly to comply with these procedural requirements. The machines that bind the forms at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital in New York City can no longer accommodate an average patient file. In the middle of a medical care crisis, it is unsettling to consider all the time spent by doctors, nurses, and staff on paperwork. Supposedly, the goal is to make sure that money isn’t squandered, but the process itself squanders the money. Forty percent of all doctors say they would not choose the profession again, the main reason being “the ‘hassle factor’—the growing levels of paperwork.” (pp. 93-94)


One of the things that is absolutely killing the United States is regulation. It increases the cost and reduces the quality. Medical care and education are two examples that we are able to encounter on a regular basis. The more government gets involved, the worse off we will be.

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Our Identity

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