Casino Healthcare: The Health of a Nation: America's Biggest Gamble

Casino Healthcare: The Health of a Nation: America's Biggest Gamble

by Dan Munro

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Overview

Author Michael Lewis was recently interviewed by Steve Kroft on 60 Minutes and a quote from that interview was the inspiration and influence for Casino Healthcare. “If it wasn’t complicated, it wouldn’t be allowed to happen. The complexity disguises what’s happening. If it’s so complicated that you can’t understand it - then you can’t question it.” What he was referencing, of course, was high-speed trading on Wall Street, but the quote could just as easily be applied to healthcare. In fact, it's tailor-made. The statistics prove just how much of a casino the U.S. healthcare system has become. • As a country, we now spend over $10,000 per year - for each person - just on healthcare. • Measured as an economic unit, U.S. Healthcare is now the size of Germany. • Preventable medical errors are now the 3rd leading cause of death in the U.S. (behind cancer and heart disease). • Medical debt is the leading cause of personal bankruptcies in the U.S. • Hospital pricing is determined by a cabal – in secret – and beyond legal challenge. • The Pharmaceutical industry – with profit margins that often eclipse tech giants like Apple and Google – paid out a whopping $15 billion in fines over the last six years – just for off-label drug marketing. • American healthcare was recently ranked dead last when compared to 10 other countries. The system has become so complex and opaque that most Americans have simply given up on understanding how it works. Whole families are crushed in this casino trying to pay for unanticipated medical expenses, many of which are immediate, unavoidable and life threatening. The huge expense might be defensible if the system delivered exceptional quality, but it doesn't. When the World Health Organization last ranked health systems, the U.S. came in at #37 – just ahead of #38 (Slovenia) and behind #36 (Costa Rica). Casino Healthcare is not a theoretical policy book for the elite, but a book that penetrates the blanket of fog surrounding a major – and growing – household expense. With the research and style of an investigative journalist, the book is easy to understand and accessible by every American. The U.S. healthcare system was never designed from whole cloth with a strategic vision or intent, but instead it has evolved through the decades with a host of legislative "patches" and temporary fixes. The reason for this is simple. When a casino is generating profits of this magnitude it's critical to keep the casino humming and almost impossible to close it. Rick Scott – now the Governor of Florida – captured the enormous scale of this challenge with this simple two-sentence quote: “How many businesses do you know that want to cut their revenue in half? That's why the healthcare system won't change the healthcare system.” Americans have a right to be angry with how the U.S. healthcare system has been hijacked for revenue and profits. One analyst recently categorized it as “legalized extortion on a national scale.” In the same way that Michael Lewis exposed the complexity of high-speed trading on Wall Street, Casino Healthcare will expose the U.S. healthcare system for what it really is – a giant casino of epic proportions where the risks are both personal and nothing less than the health of an entire nation.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781483565545
Publisher: BookBaby
Publication date: 03/25/2016
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 208
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Dan Munro is a writer and international speaker on the topic of U.S. Healthcare. He is currently a Contributor at Forbes where he's been writing about healthcare innovation and policy since 2011. Other global brands that Dan has written for include TEDMED, Cisco, GE Capital, Re/Code, HL7 Standards, HIT Consultant, Nuviun and The Health Care Blog. Dan was also awarded “Top Writer” status for 4 consecutive years on the globally popular Q&A site known as Quora. Dan is a regular speaker, moderator and commentator at healthcare industry events including the Digital Health Summit (both summer and winter at CES), Our Future Health and via online events hosted by major industry sponsors like Dell, Xerox, and TEDMED. Dan graduated from the International School of Brussels before completing undergraduate degrees in Computer Science and Communications (with a minor in Journalism) at the University of Redlands. Twitter: @danmunro

Table of Contents

Preface 1

I A Casino Culture 3

II The Big Sort 11

III The Big Shift 25

IV The Big Squeeze 35

V The Pricing Cabal 45

VI The Original Sin 55

VII 24.5 65

VIII The Holy Wars 75

IX The Genetic Lottery 85

X An Ounce of Prevention 103

XI The Disruption That Wasn't 115

XII Pharma Poker 127

XIII Dead Last 141

XIV Health Data Sudoku 149

XV The Cyber Threat 161

XVI The Four Fears 171

XVII The First Step 177

XVIII The Road Ahead 189

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