Minnesota health care: Condition critical

  • Article by: CHEN MAY YEE , Star Tribune
  • Updated: February 2, 2009 - 10:50 AM

Once immune from recessions, the industry finds itself ailing as people forgo doctor visits. Local hospitals have shed more than 1,000 workers since last year and postponed construction projects. The University of Minnesota Medical School is "looking under every stone'' for savings.

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wearebrokeJan. 31, 09 5:36 PM

why is this such a surprise? unless they are deathly sick people can't afford a doctor. my guess, dentists are in the same boat. maybe this will cut the cost of health care so people can afford it.

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larazascumJan. 31, 09 9:52 PM

Now that the Obama Administration passed the SCHIP bill there are now 4.3Million American children, children of illegal aliens and pregnant illegal aliens that have health insurance and that will help keep those clinics and hospitals hopping. Thank you US Taxpayers for the health care insurance!

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spooliesJan. 31, 0910:40 PM

I am insured in the "Get Well Or Die" plan. When a simple Clinic visit is $140, without any lab test, you just have to get well or die. Medicine as big business shows a lack of care of the population. It's one way to weed out the poor, unemployed, and now with Pawlenty's proposed cuts, the aged.

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ljb6599Feb. 1, 0912:25 AM

mommaka...please tell me where you get the free health care.I suppose they also offer free medications.

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bluebird74Feb. 1, 09 1:10 AM

the gen x'ers. Ridiculous. Now that baby boomers were handed things on a silver platter, they are doing their best to rape and pillage the younger generations. Throw in a recession, and it really gets ugly.

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memorylaneFeb. 1, 09 1:10 AM

There is something that is called "charity" care. And, with my family of six. We need as much charity that we can get. We like Minnesota. And, have been pleased with our subsidized care.

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rangefareFeb. 1, 09 1:11 AM

It's freeeeee. That is the bottom line and it is the Democrats fault.

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mommakaFeb. 1, 09 1:20 AM

Any emergency room at a hospital that accepts public money.

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bradtheissenlaFeb. 1, 09 1:29 AM

Who wants to pay thousands of dollars for a doctor visit, at a monstrous medical building, with excessive staff? I had a common male medical problem of a cyst on my back. I went to three doctors in high rise medical centers for diagnosis and estimate. They all wanted $700, with an appointment in 3-4 weeks. Then I found a surgeon, with one receptionist, who charged $250 and I was out the door in 30 minutes. The price included the 14-day followup and stitches removal. Medical facilities are built backwards - patients are required to wind their way through the bowels of those massive buildings to get to one or more dark waiting room(s). Instead, medical facilities should follow the example of strip malls, and put the doctor's offices as close to the front door - and parking - as possible. The more obstacles you put in the path of patients - parking, walking, stairs, elevators, hallways - the more stress you place on patients, and the more resistance placed on patients will equal more resistive patients. Take the lead of retail: get the doctor and the patient as close as possible. A patient wants blood draws? Get them in and out right now. No waiting 2 weeks! Medical needs to get responsive and responsible to the consumer patient. Get blood draw centers in malls, and let grocery store and drug store pharmacists issue and monitor mundane patient prescriptions regarding diabetes and cholesterol. Patients don't need to wait 3 weeks to see a Doctor to get a Rx, let the Pharmacist be the eyes and ears for the Doctor.

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iceicebaby46Feb. 1, 09 1:30 AM

I think the job flucuation is area based. If you look on craigslist jobs section, in the medical feild there are plenty of opennings yet. It may not be as close or the pay may not be as great as what the Mpls/St Paul area pay is, but there are still job openings. I was also looking in the St Cloud area as well, openings as well. I firmly believe that there are less available jobs in this area due to job loss in other areas of the business sector. No jobs, no insurance, no money means not able to go to the doctor as often. I also know there are plenty of back breaking, under paid, understaffed, over worked nursing assistant jobs that are available. That most people would never dream of doing. By the way, that STUPID STAR SYSTEM the nursing homes set up, is just that, STUPID. Ask a nursing assistant how many patients are on their list. If it's over 9/10 patients, look for the nearest EXIT DOOR. A good aide/patient ratio would be more like 6/7. The average reality of a nursing home patient is about 15 minutes of time to get up.

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