popular saying goes: "Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant."

Good profit and good patient care are, in some ways, contradictory philosophies, and yet they are sold under the same banner by healthcare entities. "Cost containment” and “utilization review” are in the vernacular of every hospital I have observed.

Healthcare executives are often faced with the dilemma of having to balance their ledgers against the needs of the sick, and because of this, there is a certain axiom I see accepted by profitable medical entities: Allowing more morbidity and mortality is reasonable up to a point.

According to a recent Harvard-based study published in the February 8th edition of the Journal of Internal Medicine85% of hospital board members are non-physicians.

Should the cost of an unusual or new drug determine whether someone gets it or not? Or a preventative procedure or screening test? Or age?

In many instances, I see doctors as no longer healers but “providers.” Physician-extenders are not being added to the team for better medicine but so that more medicine can be practiced more cheaply.

Fortunately, there remain realistic solutions to halt or even reverse this trend. Put medicine back in medicine.

To me, the first and foremost step to remedying this situation would be to put doctors in charge of all medical decisions exclusively. I think it is reasonable to wonder if the persons who are experts in the practice of medicine shouldn’t be the ones who are in charge of it.

While we cannot disengage financial institutions from the business of medicine, at the least, we can ban them from the boardrooms of medical decision making. When it is time to decide what protocol to follow for a cancer or what algorithm to implement for a screening test, I think we should only include those with an MD next to their name. Such stipulations would keep doctors' decisions independent and help prevent nondoctors from prioritizing profits over their duties to patients.

Simply stated, a doctor—an expert in the practice of medicine—should be the one in charge of all healthcare decisions. Not just financial decision makers.

Another inclusion criterion, albeit contradictory to what I am preaching here, would be to include people or entities with a proven track record of philanthropy in decision-making. The key word is "proven." The onus falls on medical leaders to pick people that truly put human suffering above their ledgers.

Read the full article about reimagining healthcare by Shakeel Ahmed at Forbes.