I wonder how many patients Elizabeth Agnvall has sent to an early grave today? The latest AARP Bulletin screams the headline- Doctors say: Skip These Tests! “Doctors warn that some of the common medical tests routinely taken by Americans do more harm than good, waste billions of dollars and could endanger your health or even your life…” Are you kidding me?
On page 12 she lists yearly EKG’s, PSA for prostate cancer, yearly medical exams, annual PAP smears, bone density scans before age 65, colonoscopy after age 75 and etc. She puts forth the premise that prostate cancer is slow growing and you would die from something else first. Where did she get her information? Most people will not read the quantifications she puts in her article and will just read the sensationalist headlines. I can just hear it now “But, AARP says I don’t need to do that test now. It’s more harmful than helpful.” Yes, my mother’s voice still plays in my head. My mother got most of her medical information and diagnosis from Readers Digest.
The author of the article did leave out the mammogram controversy and for that I am grateful. At least maybe that will not be affected. However, you need a yearly visit to get your order for the test. Most people don’t need an excuse to NOT see the doctor. My family has lost 3 young individuals to cancer in the last 18 months because they didn’t see the doctor and ignored the symptoms. it is totally irresponsible for AARP to support such a premise. Are we all falling into the theory, becoming more and more prevalent, that if you are over the age of 70 you should be given the boot and make way for those that are younger. More people than ever are living longer and having good quality of life. Technology is providing more and more answers and the average age of our population is moving forward (or is that upward?). Others believe this is a ploy and supported by the insurance companies to lower their costs and increase the profits. I do know that we will have a reckoning in this country when we believe that we can pay for everything that is wrong with the health of this nation with taxpayers dollars. Certainly there are some unnecessary medical tests being ordered and performed. Some physicians are more guilty than others. I heard one physician describe it as a bowl of Jello. You couldn’t get your arms around it. But, advising patients to stay away from the very tests and visits that could save their life is not the right way.
2 thoughts on “AARP Bulletin Advises Members Against Medical Tests”
As long as there is profit to be made from either testing or not testing, whether it is the provider or the insurance company, we will not be able to look our patients in the eye and provide them with good sound medical advise.
Pro active cancer screenings save lives.
Pro active women’s health care saves lives.
For AARP to wade into the murky waters of providing medical advise is not only irresponsible, it is against the law. That is called, practicing medicine without a license. Shame on this organization that so many vulnerable people have come to trust.
AARP also provides health insurance policies…..
so, NOW, we have crossed over into the swamp of conflict of interest.