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Gazzetta Medica Italiana - Archivio per le Scienze Mediche 2019 July-August;178(7-8):560-2

DOI: 10.23736/S0393-3660.18.03891-3

Copyright © 2018 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Healthcare consumerism is a threat for health

Carlo V. BELLIENI

Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Siena University Hospital, Siena, Italy



In the richest countries, health level is not perceived by the people as good as it could be. This dissatisfaction is due to how the healthcare system provides its services rather than to what the healthcare system gives. This paper investigates if the corporatization and bureaucracy of healthcare has a role in this process of dissatisfaction. Healthcare consumerism improved patients’ choices about their own health, but it also dramatically increased the number of unmotivated patients’ requests; it also soared doctors’ prescriptions. A “medicine of abundance” is needed, which devotes more resources to improve the human and physical environment in hospitals, cutting the wastes due to medical consumerism.


KEY WORDS: Delivery of healthcare; Health; Patient-centered care; Bioethics

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