Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Archive for February, 2010

When is closing a hospital a good idea?

Typically when a business closes, it is a sad event, but one business’s demise often makes way for more efficient competitors to gain market share. This is rarely, how hospital closures are seen, however. In the press, a hospital closure is met with fears of decreased health care access and quality for the local community. […]

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Italy: Online Censorship through Red Tape

A concerning development in Italy: The decree mandates vetting of [online] video content to ensure it isn’t considered pornographic or harmful to national security. Violators face fines of up to more than $200,000. It would create an administrative authority that will decide what can go online and what can’t. Media freedom advocates call it the […]

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Midweek Links

How many dollars are wasted on physical therapy? Creating an electrical battery powered by bacteria. Upset by my alma matter. Push to restore the Office of Technology Assessment. More comments on Anthem Blue Cross’s rate hikes. Get cashback on drugs not covered by insurance. Each FDA Failure used to augment the Agency’s Powers. When is obesity good for your […]

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Cost of drug development: $1 billion

A paper by DiMasi et al. (2003) found that the cost of drug development was $802 million.  This is a highly contentious number.  Drug companies have used this number to lobby regulators to loosen the FDA approval process.  The data used in the study, however, was confidential and could not be replicated by other authors. […]

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Did pay-for-performance work in the UK?

A paper by Sutton, Elder Guthrie and Watt (2010) describes the UK’s National Health Service’s (NHS) adoption of the Quality and Outcomes Framework (QOF) in April 2004. In general, P4P programs can have positive or negative spillovers.  An example of a positive spillover would be the adoption of EMR to comply with certain P4P initiatives, […]

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Follow me on Forbes’ The Science Business Blog

You can also follow my posts on Forbes’ The Science Business Blog. My first post is on the CBO’s analysis of the healthcare-related budget problems titled “CBO’s Budget Outlook: Not Good.”

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World War I’s Greatest Killer

“It is sometimes called the Great Swine Flu epidemic and sometimes the Great Spanish Flu epidemic, but in either case it was ferocious.  World War I killed twenty-one million people in four years; swine flu did the same in its first four months.  Almost 80 percent of American causalities in the First World War came […]

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Links

Why is public spending overtaking private? Maybe a 39% increase in premiums would explain it.  Here’s some more detail on that and other stories of interest this week. Will government spending on health care overtake private spending in the U.S.? Government Stimulus: China vs. U.S. (in pictures) Odds of Obamacare becoming law. How economic theory is […]

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Cavalcade of Risk is up

The latest edition of the Cavalcade of Risk is up at Healthcare Manumission.  The topics range from medical marajuana to ETFs.

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Finding evidence of Adverse Selection

Cohen and Siegelman (2009) document empirical research on adverse selection in 5 markets: i) automobile insurance, ii) annuities and life insurance, iii) long term care, iv) crop insurance, and v) health insurance.  The presence of adverse selection varies not only across markets, but also within markets depending on the product sold and the type of […]

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