Save Billions in Healthcare

My name is Harold C Spear III MD, I am the family physician and ER doc. This is a proposal that addresses resource utlitization and efficiency of healthcare delivery. It uses tele-medicine.

The broad definition of tele-medicine is using various forms of electronic communication to extend and make more efficient medical care. In many cases, this modality can supplant the front line of our existing brick and mortar health care delivery system. It can also be used to suppliment physician extenders such as PAs (physician assistants), NPs (nurse practitioners) or nurses who want a resource to turn to. Used it with lay receptionists who have good communication skills, it adds a whole layer to medical provider resources. Conceiveably, every patient coming through the door of a clinic will be there for a legitimate reason, will know what to expect and why.

This is a tried and true system of tele-medical care that I have been using for many years with great success. It can save billions of dollars in expenditures if implemented. The benefits can manifest in a matter of months instead of years and alleviate a care delivery crisis: attrition of primary care doctors. Because of its flexibility it vastly improves physician quality of life. Covering doctors may hand off their responsibility in seconds if working with a telemedical pool. An added bonus is that tele-medical contact is so easy for the patient that conditions are nipped in the bud due to improved doctor availability for emergency or insipient health crises. This will vastly improve the appropriateness of emergency room use, a huge cost center that is frought with over utilization. It will not require approval of our self serving ponderous medical care delivery system currently in place.

I am a 'Marcus Welby' type primary care doctor from rural Kauai, practicine solo family practice for 27 years. I have had excellent mainstream medical training. I attended to Emory University School of Medicine class of 1979, a 3 year University of Florida family practice residency in a busy Jacksonville area and 27 years of solo-family practice on the west side of Kauai which I assumed in 1982 and ran ever since. My father is a thoracic and cardio-vascular surgeon from Miami who attended Yale undergraduate, Harvard Medical School, Mayo Clinic and then worked with one of the country's's first cardiac surgeons, Dr Lindscog at Yale New Haven hospital. I have come from a mainstream medical family and have an almost congenital feel for the practice of excellent medicine. >> Read More

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