This is the time of year for making predictions. And to help start off the New Year, I would like to share five of the worst healthcare predictions over the past 20 years. Primary care practitioners recently shared their insights about these woefully misguided predictions on Medscape, the online medical journal founded by my friend Dr. George Lundberg.
No. 1: We’ll have an “oversupply” of physicians
In the 1970s and 1980s, new medical schools rushed to open their doors, and many expanded their classes, to meet the needs of a physician “shortage.” But by the 1990s, medical schools started to worry we’d have an oversupply. So they cut back on the number of slots for training. For example, the University of Toronto cut medical school admissions by a drastic 44 percent.
They may have based their reduction on other predictions that high-tech medicine would somehow hugely extend longevity of practicing physicians, but they neglected to consider the fact that physicians would retire. In fact, many retired early because of interference by third party insurers and government bureaucrats in the practice of medicine — doing bureaucratic planning and making predictions.
So, now in 2016 we face a looming shortage of physicians.
Along these same lines, someone forgot to predict the American population would age, so we now also face a shortage of geriatric physicians who specialize in taking care of older people.
No. 2: Electronic medical records will revolutionize health care
Electronic medical records were supposed to improve medical care, increase efficiency, reduce costs, and basically save the world, according to President Obama.
But health information technology has done none of the above, according to primary care physicians on the front lines. Instead billions of dollars went down the drain on this fruitless pursuit. Plus, “tech” companies run by people close to the White House made fortunes.
No 3: Glasses will go by the wayside
Twenty years ago, many experts predicted wearing eyeglasses would turn obsolete. Everyone would get LASIK surgery and see clearly without the use of eyeglasses. The marketing efforts behind this technique were legendary. But the technique wasn’t nearly so good or universally applicable as to put the opticians out of business — just causing another kind of near-sightedness
No. 4: Low-fat diets will yield a healthier population
Up until this year, government health “experts” advised Americans to follow a low-fat diet. But they reversed their stance earlier this year since, apparently, they could no longer ignore the mounds of evidence showing the dangers of a low-fat diet.
“What a terrible, terrible health policy disaster,” wrote one physician on Medscape. “It is causing millions of cases of cancer, diabetes, heart disease and mood disorders.”
“Simple sugars and carbs have ruined the health of our society,” wrote another primary care doctor. Instead, “we threw out cheese, eggs and meats,” among the healthiest, most nutritious foods on the planet.
As I often report, government research agencies — including the Food and Nutrition Board (of the National Academy of Sciences) and the National Institutes of Health, where I worked — gave sugar and carbs in the 1980s a complete free pass.
No. 5: We’ll cure cancer & Alzheimer’s with a lot more funding
We’ve been hearing that cancer would be cured in the next decade, every decade since the 1970s. (The prediction to put a man on the moon came true within one decade.)
Clearly, the cancer cure hasn’t failed to materialize because of lack of funding. In fact, the cancer research industry grew as big and bloated in the research world as did cancer prevention screenings and treatments in the healthcare industry. One hospital doctor commented, “As long as cancer is so profitable, we won’t have a cure.”
Along those same lines, the government twice promised to cure Alzheimer’s disease in 10 years. And now Hillary Clinton has promised us a cure as well. But after two costly “decades of the brain,” we still don’t have a cure — or even an effective mainstream treatment — for this dreaded disease.
However, the good news is, real cures for reversing dementia and Alzheimer’s using natural approaches have been hiding in plain sight. I will tell you more about these natural approaches in the upcoming February issue of my Insiders’ Cures newsletter. (So if you’re not already a subscriber, now is the perfect time to become one. This is historic breakthrough information you won’t want to miss.)
Tragically, each of these predictions gave false hope. They also cost taxpayers billions of dollars in funding of government research agencies and private investor funding of biotech firms.
These bad predictions also illustrate that plans made by the ivory tower and the government “experts” — whose only real concern about the future is keeping their funding and cushy jobs throughout their comfortable careers — are often counter-productive…and wrong! As judged by primary doctors on the front lines.
Fortunately, we still have many good, common sense doctors who care for real patients and exercise good judgment despite all the parasitical prophesiers who come to us and them claiming, “I’m from the government and I’m here to help you.”