Medicare Patients are currently 10 times more likely to have amputations than higher income patients. Those amputations currently cost Medicare over $100,000 each….
The Medicare Advantage plans do basic care process design to help those patients. The Medicare Advantage care teams know that almost 90 percent of amputations are caused by foot ulcers. The plans all know that you can reduce foot ulcers by more than 40 percent with dry feet and with clean socks for those patients.
More than 90 percent of the Medicare Advantage plan patients in the special-needs Plans have clean feet and dry socks and those care sites and plans have extremely few amputations. That’s why their mortality rates for the special-needs plans are so low.
We know that … the basic care delivered in the special-needs plans improves the patient status level from the 7 percent of the people being at very high risk to only 2 percent at very high risk for the people in the plans.
That’s a huge improvement!
Source: HealthPlanMarkets, April 21, 2023.
2 thoughts on “George Halvorson on Amputations: Medicare v. MA Plans”
“That any sane nation, having observed that you could provide for the supply of bread by giving bakers a pecuniary interest in baking for you, should go on to give a surgeon a pecuniary interest in cutting off your leg is enough to make one despair of political humanity.”
George Bernhard Shaw, about 1906.
I think Shaw was saying that incentives matter.
Milton Friedman and most economists agree. But, as we now know, Friedman is “no longer in charge”.
I think George Halvorson is great, and the disease-focused Medicare Advantage plans are very good…….
but it is a little jarring to look at a Medicare program costing $800 billion a year and we are getting meaningful results from dry socks……Dry socks?