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Can Transcendental Meditation save Medicare from bankruptcy?
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19 July 2012
Medical researcher Robert Herron thinks the answer to the current health care crisis is something as simple and foundational as Transcendental Meditation. As Dr. Herron states in his recent article in The Huffington Post, ''Because chronic stress is a leading driver of high medical expenses, if Medicare and Medicaid [U.S. government-funded health care for elderly and low-income people] started covering the most effective stress-reduction method, the Transcendental Meditation technique, it may be possible to greatly reduce skyrocketing health care expenditures and rescue these programs without cutting benefits or our raising taxes.''
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Click HERE to read Dr. Herron's full article in The Huffington Post.
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Here are excerpts:
''Medicare and Medicare are unsustainable due to rising medical expenses. Why is this happening? As management expert W. Edwards Deming explained: 'Every system is perfectly designed to achieve the results it gets.' Then, is our medical system 'perfectly designed' to produce the high and rising health care expenditures, variable quality, too many medical errors, and negative medication side effects? How can we change the system to increase efficiency and decrease costs when the legislative branch of the federal government is gridlocked and almost nonfunctional?
''More than 240 articles have been published in peer-reviewed scientific journals showing that the TM technique improves mental and physical health. Many of these studies were randomized clinical trials and meta-analyses. Several randomized clinical trials were funded by the National Institutes of Health to examine the impact of TM on cardiovascular health.
''The largest and quickest reductions in medical costs could be achieved by providing the TM program to consistent high-cost people. The chart below shows a 28 percent reduction in doctors' bills over five years from baseline for persistent high-cost people who practiced the TM technique.
'I conducted the study that was published in the American Journal of Health Promotion (2011; 26(1): 56-60). The results indicated that people with consistently high doctors' bills experienced a 28 percent cumulative decrease in physician fees after an average of five years of TM practice. After the first year of meditation, the TM group's physicians' bills declined 11 percent.
''The distinctive stress-reducing and health-enhancing properties of TM practice have major policy implications. When considering the above study in the context of all the published research on the benefits of TM practice for mental and physical health, it is clear that if the TM program was provided to consistent high-cost people, then it would be possible to leverage great reductions in health care expenditures and thus help save Medicare and Medicaid without the government's cutting benefits, raising taxes, or borrowing money. Just add a TM benefit.''
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Robert E. Herron, Ph.D. is an independent researcher, writer, and consultant on how to reduce rising health care costs. He earned an MBA in 1985 and doctoral degree in management in 1993. Dr. Herron has conducted research to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of various methods of disease prevention and alternative medicine. He also conducted research that led to the development of new methods of analyzing rising health care costs and innovative means for decreasing those expenses. His book on how to decrease medical costs, New Knowledge for New Results, is available at Amazon.com.
1. New study: TM Reduces Health Care Costs by 28%
2. National Institutes of Health spotlights TM research
3. New research: TM Decreases Risk of Heart Disease in Teens
4. 'Half of all Americans will suffer from mental health woes' -CDC Report
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