How would you like to go to a doctor for say, a pain in your groin, and find yourself in an office with 10 other people all having pains in various parts of their lower half and everyone sits around chatting about it? The doctor is there and basically acts as a coach when you all decide what’s wrong.
In a nutshell, that’s what some doctors are doing because they have so many patients and are tired of the merry-go-round of seeing them all day long.
And given that Obama-Care now has so many more million people going to doctors for which we as taxpayers pick up the tab, you can expect group-therapy-doctoring to be the norm.
We’re fucked as a nation!
And, of course, it’s being touted in an article by a company owned by a statist prick.
According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, around 10 percent of family doctors already offer shared medical appointments, sessions that bring together a dozen or more patients with similar medical conditions to meet with a doctor for 90 minutes. With pressure from the government and insurers to bring down the cost of care while treating the increasing number of people with health insurance, patients can expect group visits to become more common. “It’s efficient. It’s economical. It’s high-quality care when it’s done right,” says Edward Noffsinger, a California psychologist who created the model in the 1990s at Kaiser Permanente, the state’s largest health maintenance organization (HMO).
In a group visit, exams and tests are still conducted privately, but patients discuss their ailments in front of the group. The theory is that each patient can learn from the others’ experience, and doctors get to have a longer, more relaxed discussion instead of hopscotching to three or four exam rooms in an hour. “You have one appointment with 10 observers,” says Marianne Sumego, an internist at the Cleveland Clinic. “Patients are really getting the equivalent of 10 visits.” Sumego started doing shared visits 15 years ago and has led the health system’s expansion of the practice in the past four years. She says Cleveland Clinic has conducted more than 10,000 group visits in recent years. The approach is particularly useful for patients who are managing such chronic conditions as diabetes, asthma, or osteoporosis, she says. Sumego also conducts regular group checkups for women. “This model is really attractive in being able to let me spend more time with my patients,” she says.
As for the effectiveness of group medical visits, there haven’t been extensive studies. An analysis of existing research published by the Department of Veterans Affairs in 2012 found that the approach helped diabetics control blood sugar and blood pressure, but what the impact is on hospital admissions or total health-care costs was less conclusive. There’s some evidence that group pain treatment may help manage such conditions as back pain or arthritis, according to a review by the Cochrane Collaboration, which synthesizes medical evidence. Another Cochrane review, covering just two studies, found similar outcomes for pregnant women in group visits compared with those who got one-on-one prenatal care.