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Up Front: Chief Medical Editor's Page | Jul 2010


Appropriate Testing
The following letter refers to the article titled “The Case for Fee-Based Diagnostic Testing” by Daniel S. Durrie, MD, that appeared in our May 2010 edition.
In his article, Dr. Durrie presents a very troubling concept. His office offers “hightechnology comprehensive examinations” called advanced ocular analysis. Available for a premium are photographic, ultrasonic, topographic services packaged to cover the fullest extent of our prized instrumentation capabilities making sure to get the most use of these devices. He offers the irresistible and entrepreneurial “state of the art” technology. What customer can not be impressed with such advanced medical care and documentation?

Indiscriminate data gathering where you measure everything and send nice pictures to patients is not good medicine, even if the doctor feels his patients “seem happy” to pay the extra premium. Testing and documentation should be tailored specifically to the patient’s needs and only done when the gathered information is needed for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes as judged by the physician—and no more.

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