Thursday, February 5, 2015

Sandeep Jauhar

Sandeep Jauhar was a Ph.D. student in physics at Berkeley when a girlfriend’s incurable illness made him yearn for a profession where he could affect people’s lives directly. Once situated at a New York teaching hospital, Jauhar wrestled with his decision to go into medicine and discovered a gradual but deepening disillusionment with his induction into the profession. Jauhar’s conception of doctoring and medicine changed during those first eighteen months as he asked all the hard questions about medicine today that laypeople are asking—and reached satisfying and often surprising conclusions about the human side of modern medicine. Today he is a thriving cardiologist and the director of the Heart Failure Program at Long Island Jewish Medical Center. He writes regularly for the New York Times. He lives with his wife and their son and daughter on Long Island.

Jauhar's new book is Doctored: The Disillusionment of an American Physician.

From his Q & A with Alex Blau at Doximity:

AB: If you could snap your fingers and change one thing about healthcare in the US, what would it be?

SJ: Increased pay to primary care physicians, so they don’t have to run on a demoralizing treadmill everyday, seeing patients every 10-15 minutes. Besides being the right thing to do for a segment of our profession that, in my view, is underpaid and under-appreciated, I believe increasing “cognitive care” reimbursement will have the added benefit of reducing unnecessary consultations and tests (or rather, tests and consultations that are necessitated by the lack of time doctors have to devote to their patients).

I wrote a piece in the New York Times recently in which I note that physician incomes make up only 10-20% of healthcare costs. However, our decisions (whether to hospitalize a patient, order that MRI, etc) determine close to 80% of healthcare spending. Take doctors off the office treadmill — the biggest driver of that treadmill is decreasing reimbursements — and you will likely see healthcare savings....[read on]
Learn more about the author and his work at Sandeep Jauhar's website.

The Page 69 Test: Intern: A Doctor’s Initiation.

The Page 99 Test: Doctored.

--Marshal Zeringue