Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Archive for March, 2016

Friday Links

Brand drugs cut prices more than generics? Understanding Health Care’s Short-Termism Problem. Effects of cost sharing on mammography rates. Freedom is more than small government. Positive immigration to Red Lake County, MN. Do early Presidential polls predict anything?

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Is Finland ending welfare?

Maybe yes.  According to City Journal: This year, the Finnish government hopes to begin granting every adult citizen a monthly allowance of €800 (roughly $900). Whether rich or poor, each citizen will be free to use the money as he or she sees fit. The idea is that people are responsible for their actions. If […]

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How does cost sharing affect drug utilization?

Any economist knows that if you raise the price of a good, demand goes down.  Thus, one should not be surprised to find numerous studies that show that increased cost sharing decreases drug utilization.  But how does drug utilzation decrease?  Is it along the extensive margin (i.e., the decision to initiate the drug) or along the intensive margin […]

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Is evidence-based policymaking in crisis?

A thought-provoking article from The Long+Short, make some interesting point on this topic: …the problem seems to be caused by the use of the treatment-response model, in a context where the choice of how to analyse the data is made after collecting it. As Gelman details, if this is what you do, then it is very […]

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Friday Links

Are drug ads on TV a good thing? OOP cost matters The leader of the moonshot Winning the battle against rheumatoid arthritis? “Go corporate or go home”? The Wire conference

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HWR is up

Charles Gaba makes his debut as host with a freshly posted Health Wonk Review: ACA Anniversary Edition! at ACASignups.net. Check it out.

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Temptation Goods

Your annual salary clearly affects how much you spend on different goods and services.  However, does the frequency with which you are paid affect the composition of goods you purchase?  For instance, do individuals paid on a weekly basis differ than those paid on a monthly basis? If people are perfectly rational–ignoring any small differences due […]

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Precision acquires ACT Oncology

My employer, the Precision Medicine Group, recently made a new acquisition.  Details are in this press release and the excerpt below. Precision for Medicine, part of the Precision Medicine Group, announced today that it has executed a binding agreement to acquire ACT Oncology, the leading contract research organization (CRO) specializing exclusively in the field of oncology. ACT […]

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Effect of publicly reported surgical quality measures and outcomes

There has been a shift towards making quality data publicly available for patients to examine when choosing physicians.  A commentary by Burns et al. (2016) finds that there is mixed evidence regarding whether making surgery-related mortality data publicly available improves patient outcomes (see table below). Article Time Period Country Participants Key Findings Hannan 1994 1989-1992 US NY State cardiac […]

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Orphan Drugs

How can policymakers incentivize innovators to invest in new treatments for rare diseases? One solution policymakers invoked was enacting the Orphan Drug Act of 1983 which provided a number of benefits–including lower tax rates–for innovators who created drugs to treat rare diseases. Was it effective? According to a paper by Miller and Lanthier (2016), the […]

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