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Who's Responsible for Reducing Healthcare Costs?


Many physicians say others are more responsible for reducing healthcare costs than they are. Do you agree?

Most physicians say they don't have a "major responsibility" to reduce healthcare costs. That's according to a recent survey appearing the Journal of the American Medical Association.

More specifically, of more than 2,500 physicians surveyed, only 36 percent said physicians have a major responsibility to reduce healthcare costs.

The majority of physician respondents, however, did say that other major healthcare players have a major responsibility to reduce healthcare costs. More specifically:
• 60 percent said trial lawyers have a major responsibility to reduce healthcare costs;
• 59 percent said health insurance companies have a major responsibility;
• 56 percent said hospitals and health systems have a major responsibility;
• 56 percent said pharmaceutical and device manufacturers have a major responsibility; and
• 52 percent said patients have a major responsibility.

In an editorial that accompanied the survey findings, Ezekiel Emanuel and Andrew Steinmetz wrote that the survey responses from physicians were a "denial of responsibility," according to a recent MedPage Today article that highlighted the survey findings. 

Emanuel and Steinmetz continued: "Of course, physicians do not want to be blamed for the country's major problem. But can they really be both the captain of the healthcare ship and cede responsibility for cost control to almost everyone else?"

Do you agree with Emanuel and Steinmetz that physicians are in denial of responsibility? Why or why not? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.


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