HCA Probe Spotlights Cardiologists' 'Irresistible Temptation'
"In many ways, I think we need to realign both physicians and patients into understanding what the limits and options for treatment are. And what they would prefer."
Nissen, chairman of cardiovascular medicine at the Cleveland Clinic, says that today around the country, cardiologists "are being much more careful about appropriateness, recognizing that the field is under scrutiny. And I think that's a good thing, that people who pay for these procedures are saying we have to do a better job of documenting appropriateness.
He adds, "Every place that does these procedures needs to have in place safeguards to make sure they're being done on the right patients."
I'm hoping that details from HCA, as well as Chan's ongoing research, can be unveiled soon to help us understand why so many patients might be getting care they didn't need, and wouldn't have wanted if they knew it wouldn't do any good.
Cheryl Clark is senior quality editor and California correspondent for HealthLeaders Media. She is a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists.
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