Health care will continue to be ineffective until lawmakers prioritize patients’ needs above the economic interests of insurance companies and other third parties. When patient treatment plans are dictated by insurers rather than doctors, it frays the fiduciary relationship between patient and provider that is essential to care.
My colleague and I run a free cardiovascular risk reduction service at a local clinic, and nothing is more important to us than our patients’ health. We work closely with patients and providers to tailor medication regimens to an individual’s needs, but often spend our days sparring with insurers who deny access to these evidence-based medication recommendations. The arbitrator of those denials is not always who you would expect, and often someone with little or no medical education.
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