Sunday, December 11, 2005


GP's complain about extra paperwork and to much work for their salaries.
reducing paper work is a good idea but overal there is only one solution - the same as I have advocated for the last couple of years here - to reduce our reliance on GP's and to break their monopoly.

The movement towards allowing nurses to perscribe drugs is a good first step - how moronic is it for me to have to ask a doctor to do the simpilest piece of diagnosis on me?

There are many occasions when I go to see the doctor when I already know what I have - in fact I can describe it in great detail to the doctor and yet I still end up paying them for a consultation at a VERY high rate for just a few minutes.

The basic point is that I don’t need a person with a 12 year doctor’s degree to give me a simple diagnosis a person with 8 years would be fine and at times a person with a 6mth course would be adequate. The same will be true in the vast majority of function of a doctor and such a system diverts talent towards less productive uses as well as creating a "get a degree and wait for the money to roll in" part of society. The problem of course is that there is an effective "doctors union" that would oppose such a splitting up of activities.

So why dont poepel just start up busiensses as sickness analysts? well
1) they can't perscribe drugs or do various other things and are more exposed to being in trouble with the law.
2) They lack the systems to ensure they are compitent.

Generally - the same reasons as any monopoly You can set up a telecom company and anyone who wants to use you instead of Vodafone can. Of course no one will because the system won’t allow you to operate properly and you will never gain the confidence of the market.

Any profession that was to take up part of the role of doctor would have to have universities and government backing it up because otherwise people would (with good reason) not trust it or the government would cripple its ability to operate - those people also need rules to make them accountable to modern medicine to prevent them from becoming natural "health practitioners". But none of that requires them to go through a full service 6 year training.

If we don't whant that they could also increase the output of doctors to force supply closer to demand by allowing more people into the medical schools. And in the end result in better (more focused) and cheaper care.

Obviously simple things like GP check ups would take just a 1 year course (and updates on current medicines and diseases) more complicated parts such as being the doctor who accepts the patients those doctors cannot diagnose or who perform other tasks might require more time.


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