Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Archive for April, 2008

Sick Around the World: PBS

The PBS program Frontline has focusing its show on the topic “Sick Around the World.”  The show airs on Tuesday, April 15 and may be of interest to Healthcare Economist readers.  From the Frontline publicist: “To examine the question of universal health care coverage, FRONTLINE teams up with T.R. Reid, a veteran foreign correspondent for […]

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94% of College Professors are above average

The average person believes that they are above average in almost all respects. This phenomenon is often called the Lake Wobegon effect after Garrison Keillor’s fictitious town in which all people are above average. A paper by Dunning, Heath and Suls (2004) gives some great examples of Lake Wobegon in action. “Motorcyclists believe they are […]

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Serious Economics

For all my economist peers who are sick and tired of monetary policy, financial option valuations, and esoteric econometric specifications, it may be time for a change. The American Association of Wine Economists (AAWE) is holding their second annual conference August 14-16 in Portland, Oregon. The AAWE also publishes the Journal of Wine Economics. I […]

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Using the Hawthorne Effect to explain Patient Satisfaction and Quality:

“When regulators or policy makers succeed in improving the quality of care provided by some doctors, do patients even notice and/or care?” This is the question which Kenneth L. Leonard attempts to answer. Davies and Ware (1988) do state that patient satisfaction is correlated with average quality levels. One problem with most studies is that […]

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Cavalcade of Risk #49

The latest edition of the Cavalcade of Risk is up at Early Retirement Extreme.

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Do hosiptal CEOs make too much money?

Paul Levy, the president and CEO of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston made about $1 million dollars in 2005. Of this, $650,000 was base salary, $195,000 was made up of incentive bonus, and the balance was composed of compensation for health insurance, life insurance, and retirement. How do I know these figures? Paul […]

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Physicians on National Health Insurance

An Annals of Internal Medicine survey sheds some light on physicians opinions regarding universal health care. Overall 59% of physicians support national health insurance and 32% oppose it. Support for national health insurance increased 10 percentage points since 2002 (49%). Unsurprisingly, surgical subspecialties, anesthesiologists, and radiologists, were the only specialities where more than half of […]

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Blogging may be hazardous to your health

The N.Y. Times reports (“…24/7 Stress…“) that blogging may be hazardous to your health.

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De gustibus non est disputandum

Eric Crampton argues against the paternalistic view some economists have taken in a recent editorial in Health Economics. Here’s an excerpt: “Of course, most economists would disagree vehemently [that taxing unhealthy behaviors is a good thing]. Raising taxes does tend to reduce consumption and, where consumption generates large negative externalities (costs borne by uninvolved parties) […]

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Health Economics advocates paternalism

“‘Libertarian paternalism’, ‘optimal paternalism’ and ‘cautious paternalism’ have been promulgated by prominent economists.” A recent Health Economics editorial by Jody L. Sindelar contradicts the economist conventional wisdom that correcting externalities, providing information and protecting youths are the only role for the government in the health policy arena. I agree with Sindelar that making general economic […]

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