Development history of world medicine

Meta: Medicine is a field of applied science related to the art of healing, encompassing many methods of health care to maintain and restore the body from prevention and healing. Until now, many researchers believe that the history of medicine may have been born along with the history of disease arose and the history of the physician. In the cave of the Three Brothers (La Grotte des Trois Frères) people have found a painting about 17 thousand years ago depicting a retired witch in treatment.

Sapo: Medicine develops over the years and by regions, quickly or slowly depending on the development of culture, economy, civilization and characteristics of each ethnic group. There are many ways to analyze the medical history of the world, analysis by region, analysis by time, analysis based on the advancement of medical approaches and research and development. This last method is simpler and clearer. According to this method of analysis, researchers analyze the history of world medicine into four stages. They are

Spiritism Medicine

In the early Roman times, the ancient Greeks believed that sickness was “a punishment of the gods” and that healing was a “gift from the gods”. It was realized that the mind playing a role is important in healing, and it can also be the sole that cause the disease. In that ancient period, Roman medicine had many mythological properties. Whenever sick, the Romans went to the temple to pray to the gods Minerva, Diana, Hygiea …

Spiritual Medicine (VHW) is a healing phenomenon based on mystical powers. During this period it was believed that illness was caused by divine rebuke. When sick, people rely on “teacher Mo”, “priest” to pray to the gods for recovery.

The history of medicine in this period is recorded very little and ambiguous. Medical advances during this period developed in isolated aregions. Due to the lack of information exchange and no medical schools, progress is not much and asynchronous for a long time.

Spiritual healing with super powers

Today there are still many places in the world where this medical phase exists, including Vietnam. Medicine in this period is ineffective because it is based on superstition, so there has been no significant progress in the long term. Gradually it has been replaced by more progressive, more effective medicine, the Experimental Medicine Stage. This substitution took place on separate regions and thanks to a number of outstanding, spontaneous characters in each place.

Empiric Medicine

This is the period when the brilliant, intelligent physicians scattered in many parts of the world accumulate their own experiences, bring them into the examination and treatment to make treatment more effective. They observe, accumulate experience and heal based on personal experience or passed down. This period developed strongly in Central – India.

In this stage people rely solely on experience for diagnosis and treatment. The physicians noted people with liver pain have jaundice. When you have jaundice (liver pain), the pill ‘A’ will decrease. Physicians could not explain why liver pain was jaundice, or some doctors tried to explain according to their own thoughts (not sure if it was correct or not). Besides, this is just personal experience in some cases, so it is easy to be subjective and misleading.

Experienced medicine has long been recorded in many ancient civilizations such as India, Egypt, Greece or China.

Scientific Medicine or Experimental Medicine

Hyppocrate (460-377 BC) is considered to be the ancestor of medicine that is inherited today as Western medicine. He is one of the most medically valuable and arguably the founder of experimental medicine. He is also credited as the first to found the medical school, as well as the maker of the Hippocrates oath (later added by Celsus). Galen laid the groundwork for medical reasoning. After the fall of the Roman empire and the beginning of the Middle Ages, the healers in the Muslim world took over and made a great breakthrough for the medical profession. Thanks to the support from an Arabic translation of works by Hippocrates and Galen.

During this period, physicians researched and explained medical phenomena according to science. People answer the questions why patients with liver pain have jaundice? How does a medicine work? Physicians are also scientists who discover and prove pathogens, mechanisms of disease and process therapeutic drugs that have a real effect on the physiological transformation of the disease for more effective healing. From that background, scientists learn more and more deeply the sources of disease and develop suitable treatments.

Modern Medicine Stage

Modern medicine is a new trend that aims to establish the most effective diagnostic and treatment process by using statistical “systematic review” and “meta-analysis”. It develops the advancement of modern information science, which collects and analyzes vast amounts of data, huge normative evidence and then disseminates it to healthcare providers or clinicians. One problem with this “optimal” approach is that it can be seen as a dramatic approach, meaning it will make many different assessments. The ‘Cochrane Collaboration’ Program report on this opinion movement in 2001 stated that out of 160 copies of “systematic reviews” by Cochrane, based on at least two reviews, 21.3% equal the control was incomplete, 20% was ineffective, and 22.55% evidence was positive.

Modern medicine develops constantly

The development history of World Medicine from ancient times up to now has gone through many stages of development. The development of Medicine is influenced by many factors like regional customs, national mind – physiology, political regime, historical changes, economics, development of science and public Technology … Some historical researchers divide the history of medicine by regions such as Greek – Roman – Egyptian medicine, Chinese – Near Eastern medicine, Oriental medicine, Western medicine or by time, Ancient medicine Modern Medicine, Medieval Medicine, Modern Medicine …

Medicare and Medicaid fraud: a proper understanding

Meta: When it comes to fraud, many people may immediately think about economic. However, we have to accept that fraud exists in many different aspects, including the health sector. Let’s find out more about Medicare and Medicaid fraud for a proper understanding.

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As relating to people’s health issues, Medicare and Medicaid fraud are considered to be the most unethical forms of fraud. So what it is and what are the common examples of Medicare and Medicaid fraud?

What is Medicare and Medicaid fraud?

Medicare and Medicaid fraud are common in many hospitals. Source: Talkov Law

As defined in Investopedia, Medicare and Medicaid fraud are illegal practices committed by people working in the Medicare industry and aimed at getting unfairly high payouts from government-funded healthcare programs.

Anyone working in the medical industry can commit Medicare and Medicaid fraud. They can be medical professionals, healthcare facilities, patients, program participants and even outside parties pretending to be one of these parties. Their aim, of course, to get profits illegally from some illegal practices. Throughout the history of the health industry, there are many examples of Medicare and Medicaid fraud such as: 

  • Medical staffs can bill for services and products that were not provided to patients. This form of Medicare and Medicaid fraud often comes in the form of phantom billing and upcoding
  • Ping-ponging fraud in which they perform unnecessary  tests or give unnecessary referrals
  • Unbundling: There are many types of services coming as a package; however, they charge each service separately and push the price of each medical service
  • Abusing or mistreating patients: This Medicare and Medicaid fraud often happen, especially to the old or to children who are struggled to raise their voice in such situation
  • Providing medical benefits to patients or participants who are not eligible. This often comes in the form of deception and fraud, for instance, not reporting the right assets, the income of financial information
  • Filling claims for reimbursements while the claimant is not entitled to it legitimately
  • Performing identity theft in order to receive services, for instance, by pretending to be a person who is eligible to receive some specific medical services

Difficulties preventing Medicare and Medicaid fraud

Medicare and Medicaid fraud are considered to be a multibillion-dollar drain on a system. Because human force is necessary for any country to develop, Medicare and Medicaid fraud not only steal advantages from those who are eligible to them but also cause harm to a country in both the short term and long term. In most countries, there are departments that are in charge of supervising the signs of Medicare and Medicaid fraud. External auditors are also a must to investigate suspicious cases to fight Medicare and Medicaid fraud.

The U.S has MFCUs to detect this fraud. Source: American Experiment

In the United States, there are governmental entities that carry out investigations on potential Medicare and Medicaid fraud cases, including the Medicaid Fraud Control Units (known as MFCUs, operating in 50 states), the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands. Normally, those MFCUs work as a part of the Attorney General’s office in each state and have no dependent relationships with the state’s Medicaid office.

Detecting and preventing Medicare and Medicaid fraud is considered one of the most important goals for departments supervising those programs. The medical support should be sent to the patients who are in need instead of pouring to the wallets of those knowing some illegal tactics to seize the illegal assets and money.

The U.S CARES Act of 2020: we should learn

Medicare and Medicaid fraud are so serious in any country, however, detecting them is not an easy task because Medicaid fraudulent activities are much more professional. One of those countries who is actively fighting this fraud is the United States. 

In March 2020, President Trump decided to sign into law a $2 trillion coronavirus emergency stimulus package (CARES – Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security). Not only aiming at solving the medical and economic problems caused by the Covid-19 pandemic but this act also expands Medicare’s ability to cover treatment and services to those affected by this worldwide pandemic.

This Act also helps to prevent Medicare and Medicaid fraud by:

  • Allowing Medicare to cover telehealth services
  • Authorizing Medicare certification for home health services. Those receiving Medicare certification include physician assistants, nurse practitioners and nurse specialists
  • Increasing Medicare payments for COVID-19 related services such as hospital stays and durable medical equipment
  • Clarifying that non-expansion states can use COVID-19 related services for adults who would have eligible to Medicaid but are uninsured

Medicare and Medicaid fraud, like other types of frauds, are harmful to every country. As they are hard to detect, preventing and fighting this fraud would be challenging.