Hospitals are Businesses too

Imagine having car problems while out of town.  The nearest repair-shop is a quaint little place, nicely kept, and the mechanic is friendly and knowledgeable.  In a hour, he has fixed your original complaint, but now he is telling you that there is more wrong with your car.  The transmission fluid needs changing, your brake discs are warped, and you are leaking anti-freeze. He wants to keep it overnight and charge you 4-figures tomorrow morning.  For most of us, this would set off alarms.  Do I really need all those things?  Can I trust him, or is he just trying to siphon cash out of me?  This is a normal distrust of a stranger, a stranger whose primary intentions are making money and not necessarily to keep your car in perfect working order.

Yet, walk into a hospital, and all those good instincts fly out the window.  The doctor said I need it, I must definitely need this drug or surgery.  He couldn’t possibly have profits on the mind instead of my well-being.  But he is a businessman too, along with the hospital, and the drug companies.

Stop and think about what first pops into your mind when an acquaintance tells you they are a doctor.  They must be rich! is likely to be first, followed by They must be smart!  Yet when you walk into the doctor’s office, immediately the thought becomes, They have my well-being at heart!

So why the dichotomy?  Why is it so hard for people to see all the advertisements for drugs and hospitals, and realize it’s about making money, not keeping you healthy?  When the doctor pushes a drug on you, do you not realize a drug company pays him to do it?  When he says you need a surgery, his bank account may benefit more than your body.  Look for alternatives.  Use your own God-given brain; it might just be smarter than the “good” doctor’s.

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