Ethical Considerations in Healthcare Business: Balancing Profitability and Patient Welfare

The healthcare industry in America is a very unique one, and there are many considerations to be made, according to Dr. Gregory Duhon, MD. As the Kaiser Family Foundation reports, nearly one-quarter of all hospitals are for-profit entities in the U.S., a much higher rate than some other countries.

In many ways, the status of the country’s healthcare system directly leads to a careful balancing act that leaders must perform—one where patient welfare is at the forefront but profitability must not be ignored.

Healthcare facilities are faced with many ethical considerations in regard to this balance, which will be discussed in more detail below.

Core Ethics

All healthcare systems should have at their core one distinct ethical obligation — to do everything they can to care for their patients. In the simplest terms, this means providers are supposed to do whatever they can to prioritize their patients’ needs above all else.

In modern American medicine, ethical dilemmas will pop up. Doctors may have a choice on which medications to prescribe, for instance, and the brand they choose could have significant effects on the patient’s health, finances, and the healthcare facility.

One way to deal with these potential conflicts is to employ a patient-centric approach to health care. When practitioners put the patient’s well-being ahead of everything else, the best decisions will naturally come from that — regardless of what the effect on the financial bottom line might be.


One of the biggest challenges medical practitioners face today is a lack of trust and transparency among patients, even if it is just a perception. Patients are guided on their medical options by a provider in a room, go through the suggested treatment and then get billed for it later.

Today’s Healthcare practices can overcome the ethical challenges associated with profitability and patient welfare by being open, upfront and honest with patients about the financial aspects of their care.

They won’t have full insight into the economics, of course — as insurance plays a large part — but providers can discuss the potential costs of different treatment options just like they do potential outcomes.

What this does is involve the patient in the decision-making process about their own health. That, in turn, creates trust and respect, which oftentimes leads to a more well-rounded decision-making process.

Cost Reduction

Dr. Gregory Duhon, MD, says that healthcare facilities can help to ease the pressure of ethical considerations in the healthcare business by working hard to reduce their own operating costs.

Today, this can include adopting emerging technologies to help automate mundane tasks, streamlining operations and supply chain management, and eliminating waste wherever possible. Healthcare businesses can realize tremendous cost savings this way, which will help ease the pressure of generating greater and greater revenue.

At the same time, doctors should again focus on what makes the most sense for the patient. This includes avoiding any unnecessary services, treatments or testing — all of which can drive up costs for the patient when they aren’t needed.

About Dr. Gregory Duhon, MD

Dr. Gregory Duhon, MD, is the driving force behind American Consulting Physicians, a trailblazing telemedicine venture. As an accomplished Internal Medicine Physician and Hospitalist with a profound grasp of ICU, emergency room, and crisis/pandemic management, Dr. Duhon is leveraging his expertise to provide acute and chronic medical care services remotely across 15 states including Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, and more.

His specialization in complex conditions and willingness to extend patient consultations underscore his commitment to elevating healthcare. Beyond his business pursuits, Dr. Duhon’s diverse interests encompass Ironman training, culinary exploration, passion fruit cultivation, and a dedication to advancing accessible and exceptional medical care

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