Page 2- The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, October 29, 1986
Service aims to keep medical costs low
By ELLEN FIEDELHOLTZ
M-Care Inc., a division of the
University, has been granted a
license to operate a health
maintenance organization (HMO)
available to all workers in
But although HMOs, the latest
trend in health care, promise full
coverage of medical problems,
some doctors insist the care they
provide must be carefully monitored
to insure quality.
THE NEWLY formed M-Care
HMO combines resources from the
University Medical Center with
services from local doctors and
community hospitals. As a result
of the state's approval, the HMO
will be available to the general
public and to University employees
in addition to M-Care Major
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Medical, the University's current
The organizations, which focus
on curtailing medical costs, have
become a familiar part of the
medical community. The M-Care
HMO offers a range of medical
programs in addition to routine
hospitalization and emergency
services: consultations, pediatric
examinations, immunizations, X-
rays, and general office visits.
Members of the M-Care HMO
select a personal physician from the
pool of participating doctors. Their
personal physician coordinates all
of the member's health care needs,
including referral to other
ALL M-CARE members have
access to the University medical
centers and additional outpatient
services at M-Care health service
centers in Plymouth, Brighton, and
Chelsea. Additional centers have
recently opened near Briarwood
Mall and in Northville.
M-Care members who need
medical attention outside the area
may present an identification card at
the nearest hospital. In those cases,
billing has to be authorized through
the 24-hour CARE-line,
To join an HMO, individuals or
their employers pay an annual fee,
and the money is pooled and used to
cover all the members' medical
expenses. This system differs
greatly from the fee-for-service
medicine that most people use.
Under that system, patients are
assessed fees which reflect services
DR. JOHN Scheagren, a
professor of ethics at the Medical
-School, says some private
practitioners administer unnecessary
care. HMOs, on the other hand, are
designed to avoid unnecessary"
"There is no question that some
doctors might keep giving more and
more marginal care in order to make
a profit," he said. "Doctors can
certainly cut back substantially and
still give quality care."
But Scheagren also warns that
the type of care administered by
HMOs must be closely monitored.
He pointed to a hospital-run HMO
in Florida where the quality of care
administered suffered greatly.
"IN THIS particular situation
the press revealed that doctors cut
corners in order to save money,''
Most doctors affiliated with
HMOs work on a straight salary,
plus incentives. According to
Scheagren, some HMOs provide
"negative incentives". Doctors may
receive a bonus if they treat fewer
patients than their quotas allow.
"HMOs reflect a definite change
in medical philosophy. They don't
want to deliver medical care unless
it is absolutely necessary. HMOs
are businesses like anything
else-they have stockholders and
profit is a major concern,"
"THERE IS an interesting
paradox operating at the University
Hospital. Fee-for-service patients
will be lying in the same beds as
HMO patients and will be receiving
care from the same pool of
physicians. The educational
environment and high standards of
care will not allow two standards of
care to be administered," Scheagren
said. "An automatic self-check
device exists within the hospital-
M-Care President Sandy
Billingslea says the emergence of a
hospital-affiliated HMO is a
"reflection of a basic medical trend."
SHE ATTRIBUTES HMO
popularity to a change in medical
attitudes. "HMOs try to control
health care costs while providing
extensive medical services. People
have the opportunity to choose
from a large number of doctors and
Medical students at the
University are becoming
increasingly aware of the changes in
medicine and of the presence of
health maintenance organizations.
"The trend is towards HMOs, which
are heavily marketed in today's
world," said Tony Burke, president
of the medical student council.
"Students are told that the
possibility of going into private
practice upon graduation from
medical school is increasingly rare
and that the probability of
working for a salaried, health care
organization is more and more
likely," Burke said.
Actually, we offer a choice ofjobs. Eight different special-
ties, each providing rewarding career opportunities as a
professional legal assistant.
After four months of intensive study, you'll receive a
certificate from the nation's most widely-acclaimed insti-
tution of higher education for legal assistants. And, you'll
be interviewing for positions with leading law firms and
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We receive twice as many requests for our graduates
than we have graduates. In fact, we offer a tuition refund
if you are not offered a position.
The happy ending is a new beginning. A job. The start of
a career. Now isn't that the reason you went to school in
the first place?
COMPILED FROM ASSOCIATED PRESS REPORTS
U.S. to propose arms limit
WASHINGTON-A sweeping U.S. proposal to reduce superpower.
strategic nuclear weapons by 50 percent in five years and to rid Europe of
all intermediate-range weapons will be submitted to the Soviet Union at
the Geneva arms talks later this week, an administration official said
The proposal, which also sets as a goal eliminating all ballistic
nuclear missiles in 10 years, was approved at a White House meeting of
Presidnt Reagan and a planning group of the National Secruity Council
on Monday, said the official, who demanded anonymity.
The decision carries out the thrust of Reagan's discussions at the
Iceland summit with Mikhail Gorbachev, the Soviet leader.
The Soviets have insisted that Reagan went further at Reykjavik,
suggesting the United States and the Soviet Union work to ban all
strategic nuclear weapons by 1996, not just ballistic missiles.
One official, who said U.S. records for the conversations between
Reagan and Gorbachev had not yet been prepared, acknowledged the
president "may have said that at one point."
Bombs blast two U.S. armed
forces offices in Puerto Rico
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico-Bombs went off today at two U.S. armed
forces facilities, wounding one person, police said. Bombs were found at-
five other U.S. facilities, but were defused.
The extent of the damage was not immediately known.
The Macheteros, a group seeking Puerto Rican independence, claimed
responsibility for the blasts. The group has used violence in the past to
draw attention to its political demands.
A telephone caller who said he spoke on behalf of the group told The
Associated Press the attacks were to protest reported plans to train
Nicaraguan rebels in Puerto Rico.
Sources in the Reagan administration said Monday the Pentagon is
developing plans to train the rebels, known as Contras, in the United
States and that Puerto Rico was one of three sites being considered.
Cancer deaths may be halved
WASHINGTON-The National Cancer Institute said yesterday that
the aggressive use of existing knowledge could cut the annual cancer
death rate in half by the year 2000.
The institute released a plan, combining cancer prevention, screening,
early detection and treatment, that it said could produce dramatic results
by the turn of the century if it were adopted as a national goal.
"Knowledge gained over the years can be used to control a significant
portion of the disease which was responsible for an estimated 462,000
deaths in 1985," said Dr. Vincent DeVita, director of the institute.
Detailed in a new report entitled "Cancer Control Objectives for the
Nation: 1985-2000," the plan calls for stepped-up efforts against
cigarette smoking and poor diet and earlier use of the latest diagnostic and
The national mortality rate from cancer in 1980, based on the latest
available data, was 183 deaths per 100,000 persons annually. This figure
could be cut by as much as 50 percent in 15 years by using the
prevention and treatment knowledge already available, NCI officials said.
GM donates. to black schools
WASHINGTON-General Motors Corp., working to fulfill a 1983
agreement to settle job discrimination charges, has presented checks for
$200,000 to each of four historically black universities.
The endowments presented Monday went to Fisk University in
Nashville, Tenn.; Wilberforce University iin Ohio; Xavier University in
New Orleans; and Savannah State College in Georgia.
They are part of a five-year program launched by GM in 1983 to settle
discrimination charges filed 10 years earlier by the Equal Employment
The latest payments bring to 32 the number of colleges and
universities that have received $200,000 endowments, with each school
expected to receive another $50,000 next fall.
According to a 1983 EEOC complaint, GM'allegedly failed to hire
blacks, Hispanics, other minorities and women and was biased in their
training and promotions.
Congressman asks Upjohn,
Kellogg to leave South Africa
KALAMAZOO-The Upjohn Co. and Kellogg Co. should dispose of
their operations in South Africa, U.S. Congressman Howard Wolpe said
Wolpe, (D-Lansing), said Upjohn and Kellogg should follow the
examples of other U.S. corporations and pull out of the racially
Upjohn, the pharmaceutical giant based in Kalamazoo, and Battle
Creek-based Kellogg, the world's largest producer of ready-to-eat breakfast
foods, both are headquartered in Wolpe's 3rd District.
Wolpe, chairman of the Africa subcommittee of the House Foreign
Affairs Committee, said he has told officers of both companies that "it
might be wise for them to be ahead of the curve (and withdraw) because
the situation is deteriorating so rapidly."
Upjohn and Kellogg spokesmen said their companies believe their
presences in South Africa cap help bring peaceful changes in the system
Vol. XCVII - No. 40
The Michigan Daily (ISSN 0745-967 X) is published Monday
through Friday during the fall and winter terms. Subscription rates:
September through April-$18 in Ann Arbor; $35 outside the city.
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