Even more than blowing the whistle on the very stable geniuses in the wellness industry, I love catching people doing something right, partly because it is so rare. This is one of those moments.
Two books that would seem to have little in common are Unaccountable: What Hospitals Won’t Tell You and How Transparency Can Revolutionize Healthcare, by Marty Makery and rEvolution: Turn Crisis into Clarity and Ignite Growth, by Tim Leman, CEO of Gibson, northern Indiana’s largest insurance brokerage. Dr. Makery has never set foot inside an insurance brokerage while Mr. Leman has never set foot inside an OR. (He may or may not have been wheeled in at one point or another but I don’t know. If I did know, HIPAA rules are quite clear: if I told ya, I’d have to kill ya.) And yet these books have share a common thread.
Coincidentally, and why I am writing today about both books, Unaccountable is back in the news because Fox made a very watchable drama out of it, called The Resident. And rEvolution is in the news — my news, at least, because I have been blown away by what I have seen of Gibson’s competence and professionalism.
First, a brief word on The Resident. It is a highly watchable medical drama that got a notch-less-than-great reviews only because, unlike in every other medical drama, reviewers didn’t appreciate that the characters are based on real people. There really was a surgeon at Dr. Makery’s hospital known as “Dr. Death” because of his high failure rate, and yet patients loved him because of his bedside manner. And admittedly the show goes over the top:
- While hospitals upcode all the time, vendors of these coding tools don’t distribute brochures titled The Art of Upcoding.
- Revenue-maximization consultants don’t watch patients get MRIs.
- Hospital CEOs don’t have conference calls like baseball’s winter meetings where they propose swapping patients with each other.
- No federal ICE agent has ever dragged an undocumented immigrant out of an intensive care unit. (Not that I want to put ideas in their head.)