PBS documentary explains healthcare costs

Sept. 11, 2012 at 2:07 AM
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NEW YORK, Sept. 11 (UPI) -- "Money & Medicine," is a film attempting to explain why U.S. healthcare costs $2.2 trillion a year yet ranks poorly with developed nations, the producer says.

Recent studies suggest one-third of all U.S. healthcare expenditures were unnecessary, partly because healthcare providers are rewarded for the quantity instead of the quality of the services they offer and many Americans still believe the notion that "more care is better care," "Money & Medicine" producer-director Roger Weisberg said.

Healthcare policy experts are concerned about the financial implications of a healthcare system that encourages the over-utilization of medical services, further inflating healthcare costs without necessarily improving patient medical outcomes, Weisberg said.

Filmed at the University of California, Los Angeles, Medical Center in Los Angeles and Intermountain Medical Center in Utah, "Money & Medicine" illuminates what the producers, Public Policy Productions in association with THIRTEEN for WNET, say are the powerful forces driving soaring healthcare costs and offers ways to rein in excessive medical expenses.

Experts assert in the documentary that in order to contain healthcare spending, more comparative effectiveness research needs to occur, and the results need to be widely disseminated so they alter the practice patterns of doctors and encourage more evidence-based medicine, Weisberg said.

Money & Medicine, is to premiere Sept. 25 at 8 p.m. on PBS-TV.

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