Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Archive for June, 2017

Will Better Care deliver better care?

The Senate’s new health care bill, the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017, proposes a number of changes to the Affordable Care Act.  The Kaiser Family Foundation has a detailed breakdown of the bill and compares it with the Affordable Care Act that President Obama passed and the American Health Care Act that was proposed […]

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Health Wonk Review is up

Joe Paduda has posted  this week’s version of the Health Wonk Review (HWR) – The double edition at Managed Care Matters.  Check it out. I also found this very honest discussions of effects of concussions in the NFL from former player and Hall of Famer Warren Sapp.  The video is below and the article here.

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Mid-week Links

U.S. ranks poorly in differences in self-reported health by income. FDA pulls opioid off the market. Medicaid reform. Follow the money. Value frameworks and IVI Insurers now joining Obamacare?

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Can physician quality be captured by a single composite measure?

Value-based payment for providers is often predicated on being able to measure physician quality with a single composite measures.  For instance, Medicare’ s Value-Based Payment Modifier (Value Modifier) combines a variety of individual quality metrics across domains to create a single quality score.  Payment to physicians is adjusted based on a combination of physician quality […]

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The Future of Oncology Treatment and Value Assessment

Value frameworks are all the rage of late.  But are payers really using them? According to my colleague Jeremy Schafer, the answer is yes.  From an article in Drug Topics: “Value assessment may become more important as the health-care market shifts to outcomes and value-based reimbursement models,” said Jeremy Schafer, PharmD, MBA, Senior Vice President […]

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Does more spending improve outcomes?

A number of studies have claimed that increased health expenditures may result in no better, or even worse outcomes.  For instance, a paper by Fisher et al. (2003) looking at patients with acute myocardial infarction, colorectal cancer, or hip fracture finds that “Quality of care in higher-spending regions was no better on most measures and […]

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Quotation of the day: Health as capital

The thought that health is a form of capital goes way back to the 19th century.  Max von Pettenkofer compares health and economics and health states with capital in the following quotation: Just as the effort to obtain greater profits, an not merely fear of losses, is the driving force in economics, so too it […]

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Can financial incentives increase the effectiveness of weight loss programs?

As an economist, I would say “of course”!  Increasing the price (the reward for weight loss) generally leads to an increase in supply (of efforts to lose weight).  However, there is evidence that in some cases, adding a financial incentive can actually reduce effort.  For instance, Uri Gneezy and Aldo Rustichini (2000) found that adding […]

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Mid-week Links

ACA and healthcare spending. Risk adjustment and the ACA. Value framework harmonization? Is value-based pricing coming for drugs? “…it also caused mutations to more than a thousand other unintended genes“

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What can you learn from quality or cost outliers?

Many researchers have pointed to (positive) cost or quality outliers and made the claims that if only all physicians, or hospitals, or regions could be like these high quality or low cost providers/regions, then the health care system would be much more efficient.  Research teams such as the Dartmouth Atlas are famous for finding these conclusions.  […]

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