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Letters |

Cost of Health Care and the Role of Physicians—Reply

James R. Webster, MD, MS
JAMA. 2012;307(12):1253. doi:10.1001/jama.2012.355.
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In Reply: Dr Baral is correct in her assessment that many improved technologies and medicines, although costly, are effective. However, the key is to use them at the right time, in the right way, and for the right patient. To use the example she cites, for patients with acute ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction, angioplasties are lifesaving, preserve heart muscle, and thus reduce the risk of future congestive heart failure, and are almost always considered appropriate.1 However, only 50% of non–acute percutaneous coronary interventions are clearly appropriate,1 representing a costly misuse of medical resources.

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March 28, 2007
Dario Giugliano, MD, PhD; Katherine Esposito, MD, PhD
JAMA. 2007;297(12):1315-1317. doi:10.1001/jama.297.12.1315.
March 28, 2012
Irene Baral, MD, MBA
JAMA. 2012;307(12):1253. doi:10.1001/jama.2012.354.
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The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
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