The harms of overtreatment

Reporter Jeanne Lenzer investigates overtreatment at the heart of healthcare.

Overly aggressive treatment is estimated to cause 30 000 deaths among Medicare recipients alone each year. Overall, unnecessary interventions are estimated to account for 10-30% of spending on healthcare in the US, or $250bn-800bn (£154bn-490bn; €190bn-610bn) annually.

This video features Shannon Brownlee, acting director of the New America Health Policy Program and author of Overtreated: How Too Much Medicine is Making Us Sicker and Poorer, David Himmelstein, professor at the City University of New York School of Public Health, and Vikas Saini, a Harvard cardiologist and president of the Lown Cardiovascular Research Foundation.

Read more about the problems of overtreatment in Jeanne Lenzer's feature: , "Unnecessary care: are doctors in denial and is profit driven healthcare to blame?."

BMJ video