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The Transcendental Meditation program: The best way to cut Medicare and Medicaid costs?
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15 June 2012
New long-term study published in medical journal
With Medicare and Medicaid costs soaring, retirees and the elderly in the United States are growing concerned about their long-term economic security and health. The good news: the Transcendental Meditation Technique offers an easy, effective solution, says Robert E. Herron, Ph.D., Director of the Center for Health Systems Analysis in Fairfield, Iowa. In a study recently published in the American Journal of Health Promotion, Dr. Herron demonstrated that people with consistently high medical bills experienced a 28% cumulative decrease in physician fees after an average of five years of TM practice. Dr. Herron describes his research in the following article.
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An Innovative Way to Reduce Medicare
and Medicaid Expenses
Robert E. Herron, Ph.D., Director
Center for Health Systems Analysis ∙ Fairfield, Iowa
''Without health, there is no happiness. An attention to health, then,
should take the place of every other object.''
In their recent report, the trustees who oversee Medicare and Medicaid explained that these programs are unsustainable due to rising medical expenses. In 2009, the Social Security Advisory Board opined, ''We believe that the rising cost of health care represents perhaps the most significant threat to the long-term economic security of workers and retirees.'' Why is this happening? Dr. Edwards Deming explained, ''Every system is perfectly designed to achieve the results it gets.'' Then, is our medical system ''perfectly designed'' to produce high health care expenditures, variable quality, too many medical errors, and negative medication side effects? How can we change the system to increase efficiency and decrease costs?
Chronic Stress Pushes Health Care Costs Higher
Because chronic stress is a leading driver of high medical expenses, if Medicare and Medicaid started covering the most effective stress-reduction method, the Transcendental Meditation (TM®) technique, it would be possible to greatly reduce skyrocketing health care expenditures and rescue these programs without cutting benefits or raising taxes.
Over 240 articles have been published in peer-reviewed scientific journals showing that the TM technique improves mental and physical health. Many of these studies were randomized clinical trials and meta-analyses. Several randomized clinical trials were funded by the National Institutes of Health to examine the impact of the TM program on cardiovascular health.
TM Practice: The Biggest Bang for the Buck
The largest and quickest reductions in medical costs could be achieved by providing the TM program to consistent high-cost people. The chart below shows a 28% reduction in doctors' bills over five years from baseline for persistent high-cost people who practiced the TM technique.
Global Good News will continue to feature Dr. Herron's article.
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Robert E. Herron, Ph.D., Director of the Center for Health Systems Analysis, is an independent researcher, writer, and consultant on how to reduce rising health care costs. He earned an MBA in 1985 and a Ph.D. in Management in 1993 at Maharishi University of Management in Fairfield, Iowa. Dr. Herron has conducted research to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of various methods of disease prevention and alternative medicine. He has also conducted research that led to the development of new methods of analyzing rising health care costs and innovative means for decreasing those expenses. He has written a book on how to decrease medical costs, New Knowledge for New Results.
Dr. Herron can be contacted at email@example.com.
His web site is www.reducemedicalcosts.com.
Source: TM News
© Copyright 2012 Center for Health Systems Analysis
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