A new approach for controlling the skyrocketing cost of health care

A potentially powerful new approach for limiting health care costs—which account for almost $1 out of every $5 spent in the U.S. each year—is the topic of the feature story in this week's edition of Chemical & Enginering News (C&EN), the weekly news magazine of the American Chemical Society (ACS), the world's largest scientific society.

C&EN Senior Correspondent Marc S. Reisch explains that one until-now neglected way to reign in spending involves providing patients and doctors with better diagnostic tests. Such tests could save money by providing greater certainty that patients get the right treatment from Day One, reducing the use of unnecessary procedures, prescriptions and hospital stays.

Reisch describes how scientific instrument makers, which for years have enabled research on new drugs, increasingly see a role for themselves in diagnostics used by physicians to help decide which drugs to prescribe to patients. Instrument makers like Thermo Fisher Scientific, Agilent Technologies and Life Technologies have spent more than $14 billion over the last year buying diagnostics makers. Reisch reports that these next-generation diagnostic tests can identify a specific disease or indicate whether a chemotherapy regimen is working. That information can help doctors make better decisions about how to treat a patient.

More information: "Diagnosing Opportunity", cen.acs.org/articles/90/i35/Diagnosing-Opportunity.html

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Research boom on ingredients for 'enhanced cosmetics'

May 16, 2012

Growing demand among baby boomers and others for "enhanced cosmetics" that marry cosmetics and active ingredients to smooth wrinkled skin and otherwise improve appearance is fostering research on micro-capsules and other ...

Recommended for you

Suddenly health insurance is not for sale

Apr 18, 2014

(HealthDay)— Darlene Tucker, an independent insurance broker in Scotts Hill, Tenn., says health insurers in her area aren't selling policies year-round anymore.

Study: Half of jailed NYC youths have brain injury (Update)

Apr 18, 2014

About half of all 16- to 18-year-olds coming into New York City's jails say they had a traumatic brain injury before being incarcerated, most caused by assaults, according to a new study that's the latest in a growing body ...

Autonomy and relationships among 'good life' goals

Apr 18, 2014

Young adults with Down syndrome have a strong desire to be self-sufficient by living independently and having a job, according to a study into the meaning of wellbeing among young people affected by the disorder.

User comments