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Musculoskeletal Disorders Essay

677 words - 3 pages

Musculoskeletal Disorders
Musculoskeletal disorder (MSD) is a major health problem for many Canadians, and it gets worse as people age, causing it to be costly for the Canadian health care system. Although all Canadians have access to healthcare insurance, and the majority of physicians bill the plans for their services, only one diagnostic code is required for billing the insurance plans. This is where the problem begins, as the physicians see a patient for various reasons during one visit and only list a diagnostic code which may or may not be related to MSD, and the code used is usually nonspecific. Therefore, the billing is inaccurate, research is hard to conduct, funding issues occur, and the doctor is also undercharging for his services, which must play a role in how MSD impacts the costs in the Canadian health care system. According to the article written by Nigel Flook (2006), MSD is responsible for more costs than any other medical condition outside of heart disease, and it is the second most common reason a person visits a primary care doctor. However, “only 8% of primary care services are dedicated to their management” (p. 4). Flook also states (2006), “Nearly one-quarter of adult Canadians attended a physician for MSD each year” (p. 4). These statements tell me that patients are either being seen for MSD and not being treated or that the MSD cases being treated are grossly underbilled. It also tells me that out of the 25% who saw a physician for MSD each year that some of them saw a specialist. Possibly many who have such problems as osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis are self-medicating with OTC pain relievers such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin) and are dealing with the situation in their own way. At any rate, if patients are not getting the care they need in the beginning, their health will continue to get worse, eventually causing them to become disabled, affecting other parts of the body, costing more money to the system for surgery and more eventual extensive treatment.
The article suggests that multidisciplinary assessment teams are an...

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