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Cost is Not Related to Quality

High medical costs will get you only one thing – a high medical bill. In fact, there are many cases in which lower medical care costs get you better care.

Two key notes about quality:

  1. In-network. There are plenty of good choices in-network and vetting of medical providers to include them in your network is meant to provide you reassurance as to their quality.
  2. Pratter focuses on routine care, such as blood work, imaging and surgery center procedures.

There is no quality issue to discuss for blood work and imaging studies since they do not even require a physician to be performed.

If you are seeking a high quality physician for an elective medical procedure, consider the following:

  1. Board certification.Verify that your doctor is board certified by one of the 24 medical specialties under the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) umbrella at:http://www.certificationmatters.org
  2. Training locations.  This includes both medical school and residency program.  There are three ways to learn where a doctor has been trained with those that are American university-trained being most frequently held in high regard.
    Check the doctor’s website.
    Check the hospital’s website. Hospitals go to great length to verify a physician’s credentials before providing him or her with hospital privileges. This renders this technique trustworthy.
    Call the doctor’s office and ask.
  3. Volume. If a doctor performs too few or too many procedures, you may wish to go elsewhere.  While there is no magic number to consider, the answer to this will either add or subtract from your decision comfort level.  Call and ask this question also.
  4. Ask your doctor. Ask your doctor if he or she or a family member would or has gone to this doctor. And remember, hospital-employed physicians have to refer you to another hospital-employed physician if possible or else risk losing their jobs. Know that it’s your physical and financial health so you get to decide where you want to go.