Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Archive for July, 2009

Lessons from high school: How to steal drugs from a hospital

The Denver Post has an interesting article about employee theft of drugs from hospitals. Stealing from a hospital is not easy: “Hospitals guard drugs carefully, requiring staffers to use individual codes or even fingerprints to unlock cabinets where drugs are stored. At Rose [Medical Center], an electronic system tracks narcotics from the time they arrive […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Universal Coverage in Thailand

Puenpatom and Rosenman (2008) examine universal health coverage in Thailand: “In 2001 Thailand became the first developing country to introduce universal health insurance coverage (UC). Six of 76 provinces adopted UC in April 2001, while the remaining provinces implemented UC in October of that year. One of the key elements of the program is capitated-based […]

Read the rest of this entry »

How to pay for health reform: Taxes

The New York Times is reporting that “to pay for a sweeping overhaul of the health care system, House Democrats will propose a surtax on individuals earning $280,000 and up and couples earning more than $350,000.”  Now, taxes in and of themselves need not be distortionary.  Let us assume that your employer takes $10,000 from […]

Read the rest of this entry »

As if yoga classes aren’t expensive enough…

State Governments want to mandate that yoga instructors get licensed.

Read the rest of this entry »

Job Stretch

In this blog, I have frequently discussed the concept of Job Lock.  Job Lock occurs when you don’t leave a job that you wish to leave (either because it is low paying or you do not like the work) simply because you do not want to lose your health insurance.  Leaving your current job for […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Modelling Shocks from extreme events in finance

Many people model trend in the stock market using either Autoregressive (AR), Moving Average (MA) or Autoregressive Moving Average (ARMA). In these models, shocks to the stock price in prior periods help to determine the price in the current period. Shocks in the more distant past are generally assumed to have less influence on current […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Health Wonk Review: Crunch Time For Health Reform

Ken Terry of BNET Healthcare Blog has posted a “Crunch Time for Health Reform” edition of this week’s Health Wonk Review.

Read the rest of this entry »

Seattle doctors try flat-rate no-limit primary care

Primary care doctors in Seattle are looking to eliminate insurers from the medical care process.  “Qliance customers pay $99 to join, then a flat monthly rate of $39 to $119, depending on age and level of service. Patients can quit without notice and no one is rejected for pre-existing conditions…Co-founder Norm Wu said per-patient revenue […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Marginal Revolution on Medicare Administrative Costs

On the need to count the deadweight loss from additional taxation as part of Medicare’s administrative cost. Are arguments for Medicare’s lower administrative costs the same ones used to justify socialism? Would efficiency improve if Medicare administrative costs were higher?

Read the rest of this entry »

Health Care Efficiency: Academic vs. Vendor Measures

Measuring efficiency in health care is extremely difficult.  If there was an accurate scientific measure of patient health (e.g., a 1-100 scale) before and after treatment.  That way, one could measure changes in health before and after treatment per every dollar spent.  However, measuring health outcomes is very difficult.  In the academic literature, hospital efficiency most commonly […]

Read the rest of this entry »