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The best way to find dangerous physicians

Jan
08

Date: January 8th, 2014

How patients prescribe to patients having Medicare part DThe ability of doctors to prescribe drugs and medications is what makes them different from other kinds of providers. While this not hold true anymore, still, doctors write most of the prescriptions. The practice of physicians prescribing drugs is different across different specialties and populations. Where the doctor is dealing with Medicare patients, the pattern of prescription used by the doctor will depend on the data mountain collected by Medicare about its patients. The government in 2003 passed a Medicare expansion called part D. under the program, Medicare pays for prescription drugs and over 35 million people have this program.

About Medicare part D

According to not for profit investigative reporting organization, ProPublica, there is a real problem when it comes to Medicare part D. The reason for this isn’t that the idea was bad and costs a little too much. The program has a good intention and actually cost less than what was initially anticipated. What seems to be the problem is prescription of too many inappropriate and dangerous drugs to patients by the doctors, especially the elderly. The organization checked at data provided by Medicare and found 70 doctors with some outlying prescription records, which included daily prescriptions that were abnormally high and high prescription numbers of narcotics, sedatives and antipsychotics. According to the article, CMS or Center for Medicare Services isn’t doing enough to monitor the doctors closely.

While the precise number of doctors prescribing to patients having Medicare part D might not be known as such, the truth is that this number could be over 70. To illustrate this point, ProPunlica tabled some egregious examples. The truth is that there are some unscrupulous physicians out there and charlatan ones, but they are not many. Forget about physicians who do cash prescriptions or those who game the system. The truth is that everybody else in the field could be trying hard to do what is right albeit in a misguided manner. For instance, the organization cites a physician who gives demented patients too many antipsychotics. Dementia is a condition that makes patients to do things, which are a danger to their own selves.

A good illustration: dementia

Sometimes, prescribing these drugs can go a long way in helping to reduce disordered thinking, which results in the dangerous behavior. What’s more important for the demented patient however is to have a caring person near them and watching over them most of the time in order to prevent harm. Of course, this doesn’t happen and tens of demented persons are stocked up in a huge ward with only two or three nurses looking after them. If no one is available to watch them, it is important that they are medicated. As such, a medical director at a nursing home could be doing the best and most possible thing in such a bad situation.

 

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