Study: devices, diagnostics not driving med inflation

Here's a nice piece of advocacy by the Advanced Medical Technology Association (AdvaMed)--a study concluding that implantable devices and high-tech diagnostics are not, mind you, NOT a major cost-driver in overall medical expenses. According to the AdvaMed study, medical-device pricing rose 1.2 percent between 1989 and 2004, as compared with a 5 percent increase in the medical consumer price index. On the other hand, the authors admitted that overall spending on medical devices increased at 8.1 percent during the same period, while overall national health expenditures increased 7.4 percent.

The thing is, even if the study is actuarially faultless, the real issue is not how fast expenses are growing, it's how much value is being delivered by these options versus other interventions. Ultimately, that's what matters. Wonder why AdvaMed didn't go there?

To learn more about this study:
- see AdvaMed's press release
- read the AdvaMed report (.pdf)

Related Articles:
Spinal treatment costs skyrocket, to little effect. Report
Nerve testing device stirs controversy. Report