Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Archive for June, 2016

Friday Links

Uber for MDs? Value-based drug pricing at Harvard. Cost of living. Your data or your funding. Powerball. Dr. Google.

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After 190 failed tries…

Why are pharmaceuticals so expensive?  One reasons is that there is a lot of research that goes into developing a drug.  Most of that research results in drugs that don’t work.  One example is the search for Alzheimer’s treatment.  As Bloomberg reports: Drug companies have long focused on a different protein called amyloid that clumps in […]

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Measuring Quality in Cancer Care

Identifying high-quality, cancer care is a laudable goal.  However, a recent article by Alvarnas (2016) says the way many are trying to measure quality of cancer care currently is inadequate.  Specifically: Quality and value are multidimensional, but the narrow focus of many quality measures undermines their effectiveness and meaningfulness. (Porter 2010) Quality and value measures are all […]

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Brexit = upheaval for drug makers

Will the European Medicines Agency (EMA) need to re-located after Brexit? According to a Reuters story, the answer is yes. The EMA is a London-based organization that approves treatments for all EU countries. As the UK leaves the EU, however, EMA is expected to have to relocate. 600 individuals work for EMA. More important is […]

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Doctors with Borders

Although I believe that a lot of the pundits claims of economic downturns due to the Brexit are overblown, there are clearly many uncertainties to resolve.  The Telegraph reports on how Brexit will affect doctors working in the UK. As a result of the country’s decision to leave the EU, health regulators may have to change the […]

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Links

U.S. health system as experienced through a colonoscopy. NNT. Treating breast cancer before it starts. How will CRISPR affect interest rates? Contagious cancer. Everything causes cancer?

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Prioritizing vaccine development

For which diseases should vaccines be developed?  Although ideally the answer is “all of them”, given that there are limited resources in the world, which diseases should be prioritized?  The Institute of Medicine’s Strategic Multi-Attribute Ranking Tool for Vaccines (SMART Vaccines) tool is one effort to make such prioritization explicit based on fixed attributes.   The attributes are […]

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John Oliver on Retirement Plans

Enjoy  

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ICER and drug prices

The Institute for Clinical and Economic Research aims to measure the value of drugs and aims to reduce the price of treatments that they deem to be low-value.  Is this simply an academic exercises, or are payers paying attention?  An article in CNBC sheds some light on the topic: Asked about that analysis, Miller said: “We […]

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Does defensive medicine work?

According to a paper by Jena, Schoemaker, Bhattacharya, and Seabury (2015), the answer is yes. Across specialties, greater average spending by physicians was associated with reduced risk of incurring a malpractice claim. For example, among internists, the probability of experiencing an alleged malpractice incident in the following year ranged from 1.5% (95% confidence interval 1.2% […]

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