Access to surgery with clear cost, convenience, and choice

Guest post from Arnon Krongrad, MD, CEO of Allevion creator of

Suppose you have a uric acid stone in your ureter. This can be treated with endoscopic surgery or oral medication. The former requires anesthesia and acts quickly. The latter requires no anesthesia and acts slowly. One treatment may be better for if you need quick resolution or to avoid anesthesia. Choice matters to you as you take care of your health. This is a real issue as choice contracts and cost goes up.

It’s not enough to have choices. You also have to know, compare, and gain access to these choices. And this is where the complexities for patients so often seem to arise. This is why surgeons – supported by their associated facilities and be they in solo practice, group practice, or academic practice – are working together to develop a market of surgery packages that expands choice and simplifies access. The premise is that every patient deserves quality, convenience, and choice. The quality comes from peer credentialed surgeons. The simplicity comes from how they are delivered. Here is how it works: Continue reading

Ayn Rand’s speech against socialized medicine in 1963; 100% relevance today.

VA to vets, “Delay, deny, wait till they die”

Craig M. Wax: VA to Vets, “Delay,
deny, wait till they die.” – The Washington Times

As a physician, I have the privilege of knowing and helping thousands of individuals. One patient in particular stands out as a victim of government’s malignant ineptitude. He is an affable, hard working 71-year-old male, who is a veteran of the Vietnam War. There was no Veterans Day parade for him but scorn and disdain, given the antiwar sentiment at the time.
He returned with severe post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), sleep apnea, hypertension and multiple other issues. He married, had children and has worked just about every day in industry until his retirement. His medical conditions grew worse and worse, as his PTSD was not diagnosed till age 69.

The Veterans Administration (VA) has done little to recognize, admit responsibility, and take care of the medical consequences of the political military work our brothers and sisters performed abroad. He has fought the VA to recognize his PTSD, medical and hearing disability for years. It took three years, for instance, just to get a partial disability rating, despite his years of psychological counseling for severe PTSD. This patient revealed during an office visit that veterans share the impression that the VA’s true motto is, “Delay, deny, wait till they die.”

We all have heard of the VA scandals including the one that documents the deaths of over 300,000 vets while on the medical waiting lists to be seen. And to compound insult with further injury, VA employees were financially rewarded to take dying vets off the waiting list to make the waiting times appear shorter ( And still, Washington government bureaucrats still rave about how “great” VA healthcare and its electronic health record’s (EHR) are every day.

When will we as independent, individual citizens, stand up for those who have fought for our rights and sovereignty? When will we stand up against the bloated federal bureaucracy in Washington DC and demand that administrative ranks be thinned, budgets be balanced, and our debt paid down instead of given away as political presents to politicians’ cronies in exchange for votes and contributions to fill their campaign coffers?

Let’s not model our healthcare system after the VAs death by administration. Similar failure for patients is what ACA/Obamacare, Medicare, Medicaid and other government malignant ineptitude programs will ultimately lead to. Let’s reestablish the free market in healthcare for individual insurance and private individualized care. Individual citizens should be empowered to make their own decisions about what care to obtain and how to obtain it guided by each individual’s value system.

Government burdensome red-tape regulations have only raised costs and complicated care administration and delivery since the federal government first intervened during World War II with tax-deductible employer-sponsored insurance, again in 1965 for Medicare and Medicaid, and again in 2010 with ACA/Obamacare. Free market competition will again create innovation, effectiveness and lowest cost of care. 

CRAIG M. WAX: VA to vets: 

Delay, deny, wait till they die