If you are to write a book, what will your topic be? For sure, it would be about a niche or topic you know very well, one that’s close to your heart, one you are passionate about.
For Etan Walls, that subject is the complex and confusing maze of the healthcare system.
After listening to a thousand questions (and complaints) from friends during the pandemic, he decided to write the book The Megafactory of Healthcare: Retooling the Machine to Create a Healthier World to educate people about U.S. healthcare and how it works.
The book exposes the truth behind the complicated system and practices of medical groups, hospitals, and urgent care centers. It aims to inform everyone what’s going on behind the scenes so we can make better healthcare decisions.
Carl Sagan once said, ‘You have to know the past to understand the present.’
In his book, Etan took us on a journey to healthcare’s past to help us have a better understanding of the various connections among doctors, hospitals, and private equity. He exposes the truth behind the complicated system and practices of medical groups, hospitals, and urgent care centers, and untangles the financial web, from how doctors are paid to the hospital billing procedures.
In our podcast interview, Etan breaks down how his book adds value to the healthcare ecosystem.
“First and foremost, it allows people who are engaging with health care to feel a little bit more comforted on why things are happening, educating themselves on health care, how the doctor’s office is working, who’s providing our care, who is managing the people we’re providing our care, allows you to be an informed consumer,” Etan shared.
As healthcare consumers, the more informed we are, the better our healthcare decisions. It means giving a patient clear information about their condition, the possible benefits, and risks of different tests and treatments. It also means better price transparency. Healthcare providers and insurance companies should disclose the costs of medical services.
Unfortunately, the concept of price transparency is still a struggle for many healthcare providers, so while there are already hospitals divulging their rates for common services, many healthcare facilities still do not.
The second advantage of Etan’s book is it helps us to understand the changes we’ve made in the past.
“Secondarily, as we look at the things that are coming down the pipe around health care and understanding that the wholesale changes that we have made in the past aren’t necessarily the ones that we want to have happened again. We need to make some incremental changes to allow us to understand how things work for us to be able to understand which big changes we should be making,” he explains.
Taking a step back into history allows us to identify the changes we’ve made and their impact on the system. Careful monitoring of small changes helps us to learn what big changes we should be making.
It’s not just economics and finances that shape healthcare. According to Etan, politics also play a role in understanding the industry.
One good example is what happened a few days ago when Pres. Biden signed an Executive Order that promotes competition in the economy, especially in key markets like healthcare. The Executive Order cracks down on hospitals and health insurance consolidations and directs the Department of Health and Human Services to support hospital price transparency rules.
This move from the government will significantly impact the healthcare landscape. Consolidation is a common practice in the healthcare industry, where hospitals merge with large practices or large practices acquire physician-owned practices. The pharma industry will be affected as the order directed the FDA to safely import prescription drugs from Canada.
“I think that we need some baseline understanding of where we are in health care and how decisions that were made in previous administrations, whether it be meaningful use or others, have affected us negatively over and over again,” said Etan.
The Megafactory of Healthcare: Retooling the Machine to Create a Healthier World sheds light on the answers to many health care questions. It is a great tool that benefits both medical professionals and regular people.
Etan is well-placed to talk about the system, having a wealth of experience in the industry. His experiences offer him a perspective known only to those who have handled the clinical delivery, operations, and technology.
He is a dynamic and innovative executive who has sat on the board of three different healthcare startups, published blogs on healthcare topics, and gained many awards during this career. He was recognized in Long Island Business News as one of the “40 Under 40” to watch in 2016. Currently, he is one of the Principals of Strong Walls Consulting and the COO at Onsite Medical Solutions.
The Megafactory of Healthcare was published on March 1, 2021, and has received nothing but great reviews so far.
One review called it the ‘nitty-gritty guide to promote people over profits in the healthcare world’. Another review said ‘it is a very important read, more so than ever, and wished he knew the information sooner’.
If you want to understand healthcare better, if you want to break free of the healthcare maze, or you just need help understanding all the paperwork that comes after a doctor’s visit, “The Megafactory of Healthcare” is what you are looking for.
To learn more about Etan and to listen to our podcast, please visit https://outcomesrocket.health/onsite-medical-solutions/2021/05/.
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