South Florida Hospital News
Saturday September 19, 2020

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September 2020 - Volume 17 - Issue 3


Available on Amazon: "Healthcare from the Trenches" by Dr. Alejandro Badia Exposing Barriers to Patient Care, Pandemic Exacerbating Weaknesses of U.S. Healthcare System

August 3, 2020  - Dr. Alejandro Badia’s book Healthcare from the Trenches, published in June 2020, exposes systematic barriers that have led to skyrocketing health costs, lack of patient access and inefficient delivery of care, and comes at a time when the COVID-19 pandemic is further exacerbating weaknesses in the US Healthcare System.

Dr. Badia calls his book “an insider’s account of the complex barriers of U.S. health care from the providers’ and patients’ perspective.”  
According to Dr. Badia, “People are challenged because of a flawed system. Staff at insurance companies with no medical training dictate what constitutes reimbursable care. The result is that their interference disrupts the doctor-patient relationship, delays or prevents delivery of care and presents obstacles to new approaches that would improve patient outcomes and reduce costs.”
Dr. Badia is the founder and chief medical officer of the Florida-based OrthoNOW®, a pioneering network of single-specialty, immediate orthopedic care centers in South Florida. Dr. Badia also treats patients hand and upper limb issues at the Doral based (Miami) Badia Hand to Shoulder Center, also a one-stop shop outpatient facility. 
“Since the implementation of the [U.S.] Affordable Care Act, health care in America has become an even greater bureaucratic nightmare than before,” Dr. Badia states. “What started as incremental interference in the relationship between doctor and patient with the passage of the Medicare Act of 1965 is now an impenetrable barrier made up of governmental and health care insurance industry red tape. The result is higher costs and greater inefficiencies.”
Dr. Badia points out that experts agree with his perspective. An article in a 2017 issue of the Journal of Health Informatics & Management refers to the nation’s health care system as being in “crisis” and indicates the “U.S. health care system consumes far more resources to produce the same or lesser [patient] outcomes as compared to health care systems elsewhere.” The author of the report goes on to say that “powerful interest groups,” including insurance and pharmaceutical companies, hospital organizations, medical equipment firms and information technology businesses have “rigged” the system, sending some 2,400 health care industry representatives to Washington, D.C. to lobby Congressmen.
Early last year (2019), results of a Gallup poll showed 70 percent of Americans believe the U.S. health care system has “major problems” or is in crisis.
“The current COVID-19 pandemic has only inflamed the problems. More people are unemployed and find themselves without employer-financed health insurance, according to the Urban Institute.  A May 5, 2020 online New York Magazine article reports survey numbers indicating 14 percent of all U.S. adults would avoid treatment if they developed coronavirus symptoms because of health cost issues. The pandemic is further taxing our doctors, health care system – and our economy,” Dr. Badia adds. “Despite the political debates and media coverage on health care policy and reform, there remains little or no feedback from the people in the trenches – the physicians and other health care professionals who provide care to the patients. That’s why I wrote the book. My hope is that a broader discussion of the issues can be a catalyst to positive change.” 
More information is available about Healthcare from the Trenches here:
Watch Dr. Badia on the Be Mspired Podcast with Miguel Global and offers a from “the trenches” perspective on the healthcare crisis
Alejandro Badia, MD, FACS, internationally renowned hand and upper-limb surgeon and founder of Badia Hand to Shoulder Center and OrthoNOW®, a walk-in orthopedic care clinic. He is a member of the American Society for Surgery of the Hand, American Association for Hand Surgery and the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons and an honorary member of many international professional hand societies. Dr. Badia specializes in treating all problems related to the hand and upper extremities, including trauma, sports injury, joint reconstruction, nerve injuries and arthroscopic surgeries. and
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