It’s the Insurance Companies, Stupid

I want the free market to transform healthcare.  Direct Primary Care is part of it.  And I believe prices will come down….to a certain point.   You see, there is one elephant in the room that needs to be exposed, the good old insurance companies. As this article in Bloomberg points out: But the thing…

And It’s Back to Straight Salary

The huge Geisinger Health System has announced that they did away with physician bonuses altogether this summer and put all of its 1,600 employed doctors on a straight salary. They are going to pay each physician at or above the national average whether in primary care or a specialty. So what happens to some of these things? Alternative…

Ridiculous Study of the Week II: Medicine as a Calling

A Mayo Clinic Proceedings study concluded that “physicians who experience more burnout are less likely to identify with medicine as a calling. Erosion of the sense that medicine is a calling may have adverse consequences for physicians as well as those for whom they care.” Does anyone else see this conclusion as astoundingly obvious?  If the…

Ridiculous Study of the Week: Medications Work When Taken

It turns out that blood pressure meds don’t work if they aren’t taken.  In a recent study, only 20 percent of patients seeking care for stubborn high blood pressure take all the medicine they’re supposed to and another 20 percent are not taking any of their blood pressure medications.  Many of these patients are seeing specialists…

Uh…Dig In? by Pat Conrad MD

Speaker Paul Ryan and the GOP fulfilled the script this past week when they threw the white pigeon that is the American Health Care Act up in front of a crowd of shotguns. The liberals are screaming about how this will hurt the poor, the elderly, the young, the reproductive, the trans-, the immigrants, the…and…

Smart Phones Are A Right!

House Oversight Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz is in hot water for his suggestion that low-income Americans may have to prioritize purchasing health care coverage over gadgets such as iPhones under Republicans’ Obamacare replacement plan.  Here is what he said: “Americans have choices, and they’ve got to make a choice. So rather than getting that new iPhone that…

What’s a Deductible?

What happens when you have a society that was trained to believe that when you have health insurance that everything is covered?  Chaos.  Duke University Health System is fielding 1,500 patient calls a day, most of them asking why they got a bill since they’re insured. Really? Duke has “also seen patient interest-free payment plans rise from…

Getting Paid for a Unicorn

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is giving out millions of dollars to help small practices succeed in the QPP.  What is the  QPP?  Well, it’s the Quality Payment Program, silly, and it is more elusive than the unicorn or Bigfoot.  Here is the plan: These groups will provide hands-on training to help…