Report: Doctors Shortchange Patients

August 1, 2003

Americans are getting barely half of the appropriate medical care they should be getting - that's the analysis of a study released recently in the New England Journal of Medicine. Through patient interviews and reviews of medical records of 30 medical conditions for thousands of patients in 12 metropolitan centers around the country, researchers determined that patients get the appropriate care just 54 percent of the time. That percentage can vary from 40 percent for alcohol dependency to 78 percent for senile cataracts.