Your Doctor Is Like A Mechanic : Planet Money On today's Planet Money, a look at one of the biggest challenges in health care: most of us patients are like drivers going to a mechanic. We don't know enough to know what we don't know, so we have to rely on someone else's judgment.
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Your Doctor Is Like A Mechanic

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Your Doctor Is Like A Mechanic

Your Doctor Is Like A Mechanic

And imagine this here is your spleen, see. Douglas Grundy/Three Lions/Getty Images hide caption

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Douglas Grundy/Three Lions/Getty Images

Your Doctor Is Like A Mechanic

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On today's Planet Money:

Imagine two identical hospitals, side by side. One charges patients a little, and the other piles on the bills. Where do patients get better care? Researchers at Dartmouth say that, overall, there's no connection between the intensity, quality or cost of treatment and how well patients fare.

That's one of the biggest challenges in fixing health care — patients, doctors and insurance companies aren't all playing with the same information. As patients visiting a doctor, most of us are like drivers taking a car to the mechanic. If we had the know-how, we'd fix it ourselves, but we don't and so we have to rely on someone else's judgment.

With appearances by Deborah Kimbell of the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice, Chana Joffe-Walt's mom, a sunglasses vendor in Manhattan, and mechanic Ari Cohen.

Bonus: After the jump, David Kestenbaum impersonates Kanye West.

Download the podcast; or subscribe. Intro music: The Ramones' "I Wanna Be Sedated." Find us: Twitter/ Facebook/ Flickr.

Now if only we could hear Mr. Kestenbaum singing. hide caption

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Now if only we could hear Mr. Kestenbaum singing.