Economics of Medical Technology-Dr. Milstein
There are new technologies being developed in all fields of medicine and ophthalmology is no exception. Ophthalmologists have the ability to do incredible things to improve people’s vision and their lives. The future of medicine and ophthalmology is even more impressive. There is, however, an obstacle, and that obstacle is money. The economics of healthcare and the introduction of new technology inevitably increases cost.
Our country is facing a real dilemma. On one hand we have the ability to provide advanced technology to cure disease and extend the quality of life and on the other hand, we have millions of people who have no medical insurance at all and cannot afford even the basics of medical care. The ethics and morality of this problem have challenged and eluded all of us.
We must develop a system that provides basic healthcare for those who cannot provide it for themselves, but we also must have the ability to encourage the development of new technology and the opportunity to fund that development. That means that physicians should be able to charge a fee that is not controlled by the government and individuals should be allowed to purchase services over and above basic “government issue,” healthcare.