Drew Madden has become renowned as one of the nation’s foremost experts in the healthcare industry. With a specialty in healthcare IT systems, Madden has spent the last 20 years helping healthcare professionals to deliver better care at a lower cost to patients. He has seen the good and the bad, gaining critical insights into how healthcare workers can make better use of the limited resources at their disposal to enhance the patient experience as well as medical outcomes.
But Madden has become increasingly concerned with the general direction in which U.S. healthcare is headed. He cites the fact that healthcare costs in the United States have increased by a factor of more than five times since the 1970s. Madden says that this is measured in real dollars, meaning that while the average American today spends about $9,500 per year on medical expenses, in the 1970s, that figure was just under $2,000. Madden says that this increase is incredible and has little justification. It is largely the product of increasing administrative costs, including the gouging of consumers by big pharmaceutical companies.
But Madden says that this is far more dire a situation than even the above numbers might indicate. Madden points out that a huge portion of the federal budget, more than $1.5 trillion, is being spent directly on medical expenses. While other government programs can be cut, doing away with aspects of the nation’s government-subsidized system of medicine is going to cause real pain for millions of people. Madden says that Americans are probably not well prepared for the consequences that will ensue from not maintaining adequate control on escalating prices. Eventually, there will be ugly outcomes that are no longer choices but that will be unavoidable by default.
Drew Madden says that the continued escalation of healthcare costs could also easily threaten the financial viability of the United States as a whole. It is not inconceivable, he says, that a time will come when the country is facing both rapidly declining health and hyperinflation as a result of the government trying to print its way out of a healthcare-induced catastrophe.