Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Archive for October, 2012

“There isn’t a single honest health economist out there who agrees with…”

There has been much discussion over whether the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) created by the Affordable Care Act (i.e., Obamacare), can ration care.  Mitt Romney claims “an unelected board that’s going to tell people ultimately what kind of treatments they can have,” whereas President Obama notes that no provision in the law that empowers […]

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Nobel Prize in Medicine, 2012

When cells become specialized cells (e.g., blood cells, bone cells, sex cells), are these cells fixed and immutable?  In the past, researchers though the answer was yes.  It turns out, that cells can draw on their DNA to become amazingly flexible.  This breakthrough is due in large part for this year’s Nobel Prize winners, Sir […]

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How does gaining Medicare coverage affect healthcare utlization?

According to an article by Decker, Doshi, Knaup and Polsky (2012), the answer is that Medicare health insurance increases utilization among the uninsured, but the utilization of medical services does not rise to the same level as those who previously had insurance. “Although we do not find statistically significant differences in Medicare expenditures or in […]

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Health care and the September Jobs Report

The unemployment rate declined by 0.3 percentage point to 7.8 percent in September. Although employment rose and the unemployment rate fell, the main reason for the rise in employment was an increase in part time jobs. How does healthcare relate to the changes in employment in the September jobs report? Let’s think about this question, […]

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The Truth is much too Complicated to Allow Anything but Approximations

I think that it is a relatively good approximation to truth — which is much too complicated to allow anything but approximations — that mathematical ideas originate in empirics.  But, once they are conceived, the subject begins to live a peculiar life of its own and is … governed by almost entirely aesthetical motivations. In […]

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Is there a Conservative Case for Obamacare?

Yes and no: The conservative case for Obamacare. There is no conservative case for Obamacare. Other interesting reads for your Thursday morning. How Salma Hayek can help you pick the President. “The worst case of hyping cancer cures I’ve ever seen” Variation in hospital use of intensive care. What share of Americans has less than […]

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Cavalcade of Risk #167 is up

Russell Hutchinson has posted the latest edition of the Cavalcade of Risk on Chatswood Consulting’s moneyblog.

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Top Healthcare Topics for 2012 Presidential Debates

Source: MedScape. Also useful: How to Prime Your BS Detection Skills Before the Presidential Debates.  

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For-profits dominate the Hospital landscape in France?

“European healthcare systems…are always presented [in the media] as public sector nirvanas. The Guardian in the UK, for instance, can write po-faced articles praising the French system without acknowledging, for a single moment, that private-for-profit hospitals make up a larger percentage of sales in France than they do in the USA. Or that home care […]

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How much does a hospital stay cost?

A paper by Geue et al. (2012) attempts to answer this question by examining five different methods of estimating the cost of a continuous hospital stay (CIS). Each method is discussed below in more detail. Costing Methods

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