Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Which radiologist would you prefer?

The Healthcare Blog has a post, "Who is the better radiologist", that highlights the inherent conflicts with practicing medicine today.

You can have a doctor who makes decisions quickly, but is prone to miss a possible diagnosis.  Hospitals and payers appreciate the speed at which decisions are made, but come to hate the .01% of missed diagnosis, as it potentially results in higher costs and malpractice suits.  Patients also appreciate doctors who can definitively give them a diagnosis, but also do not want the doctor to miss anything when it comes to them.

On the other hand, you can have a doctor who hedges every diagnosis with the word "possible" or "probably".  Hospitals and payers dislike this approach, because they have to spend more to rule out such concerns (however small they may be), but can be assured that nothing will be missed.  Patients, if anything is caught in follow up tests, appreciate the attention to detail.  But if it turns out to be nothing, then patients have suffered days & weeks of anxiety, all for nothing.

Which would you prefer?


  1. Definitely first. Because you know they're fallible anyway, so the first is just imprecise.

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