Reimbursement

I read this really cool opinion sent in by a physician to Medical Economics.   I had never thought about it buy he is 100% on the money: Reimbursement is wrong term Let’s stop using the term reimbursement. It is jargon promulgated by the payers. Why do we use this terminology when it’s clearly designed…

Big Data

The title of the article in the WSJ was Researchers Mine Data From Clinic, Big Insurer and when I saw it I was immediately suspicious.   It started out nice enough: The new effort, dubbed Optum Labs, will be part of UnitedHealth’s Optum health-services arm. UnitedHealth Group Chief Executive Stephen J. Hemsley said the company viewed…

Divided Loyalty

I remember the hospital CEO sending out his email complaining that the hospital is low on admissions and that is was becoming a major problem.   This was about seven years ago.  I immediately “replied to all” asking why keeping patients healthy and out of the hospitals wasn’t a good thing?  Immediately he responded that…

Quote of the Week

We cannot change the world by a new plan, project or idea. We cannot even change other people by our convictions, stories, advice and proposals, but we can offer a space where people are encouraged to disarm themselves, to lay aside their occupations and preoccupations and to listen with attention and care to the voices…

LA’s Pain Med Problem

LA is now coming clean about their prescription drug overdose problem.   In a recent Huffington Post report, they point out some amazing statistics: In 2009, there were 5,382 emergency room visits and 3,048 hospitalizations for prescription drug overdose. More than 60 percent of drug-related deaths in the city between 2000 and 2009 were caused by prescription…

Lance

So Lance Armstrong took PEDs?  No sh%t.  I remember reading an article about Greg Lemond about five years ago.  Here is one passage: The uproar began immediately. Armstrong called LeMond a few days after the 2001 Tour ended. “You’re telling me you’ve never done EPO?” LeMond alleges Armstrong said, referring to the blood-boosting drug erythropoietin.…

Mandatory Flu Shots (Survey)

The Rhode Island Dept. of Health has made it mandatory for all health workers to get a flu shot.    One union is suing over this.   This is interesting stuff. The health department states it “has a legitimate interest in preventing the spread of influenza through health care workers with direct patient contact at licensed health care facilities”.  Agreed.  I mean we healthcare workers are right in the line of fire and we see a ton of patients who come through.   By the time our symptoms appear we have already infected a bunch of people.   Besides, most docs will work through their illness.  So should we be forced to get immunized?  I, personally, know so many doctors who won’t.   On the other end, the SEIU Healthcare Employees Union also has a point.  They support voluntary flu shots for health care employees but workers should not be forced to take the vaccine. “The single principle of medicine is that you don’t force people to take medicine,” a union spokesperson said.  So does freedom override this epidemic issue?  Most of you are in the healthcare field, answer the question below to tell me what you think:

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Elderly Driving

One of the hardest thing to do is take away a patient’s license.  Sometimes, it is a person’s only lifeline to society.  Even if the patient has supportive family members it can create isolation and depression.  That being said, we have all seen some major horror stories of old people who should have not been…

Marriage Extends Life

A new study in the  Annals of Behavioral Medicine shows that being people “entering midlife single face more than twice the risk of dying early than those who are part of a permanent partnership.”  In other words, married people live longer.    On a side note, the  majority of subjects in the study who were married…

Whose Fault?

Americans are far more unhealthy than people in 16 other developed countries, and it’s probably our own fault, experts reported on Wednesday. We die younger from diseases such as obesity and heart disease, and we are far more likely to be murdered and die in car accidents, the researchers at the National Academy of Sciences found.…