Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Archive for July, 2017

Pandemic Bonds

The World Bank is trying to insure against one of the worst crises in the world: a pandemic.  The Economist reports that the World Bank: …has issued $425m in pandemic bonds to support its new Pandemic Emergency Financing Facility (PEF), which is intended to channel funding to countries facing a deadly disease.  The bonds cover […]

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Links

Does anyone look at physician quality data? Healthcare CEO pay. The skinny on skinny repeal. NHS: Smokers and obese must wait for surgery 35 best health and science summer books

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Amazon to dive into health care?

The answer is yes according to CNBC. Amazon has started a secret skunkworks lab dedicated to opportunities in health care, including new areas such as electronic medical records and telemedicine. Amazon has dubbed this stealth team 1492… Amazon has become increasingly interested in exploring new business in healthcare. For example, Amazon has another unit exploring […]

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Appropriate Use Criteria, or how I learned to love CMS telling doctors what to do

As part of Section 218(b) of the Protecting Access to Medicare Act, CMS instituted the appropriate use criteria (AUC) for the use of advanced diagnostic imaging.  In order to be reimbursed for these diagnostic imaging services, physicians must consult with and document that they used AUC software before recommending advanced diagnostic imaging.  Failing to document use […]

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Innovation in small markets

The introduction of new treatment technologies typically occurs where there is a large market.  A lot of innovations are developed to treat disease that affect a large number of people in the developed world because the financial returns are large.  It is less likely to observe innovation in the treatment of rare diseases or diseases […]

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HWR is up

Steve Anderson has posted  Health Wonk Review: Are We There Yet? Edition at medicareresources.org. Check it out.

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It’s Okay to Be a Coward about Cancer

That is the title of an interesting Time article from cancer surviver Josh Friedman. Friedman is a well-known screenwriter whose work includes credits for such franchises as Terminator, Avatar and War of the Worlds. The article was prompted in part by John McCain’s recent brain cancer diagnosis (glioblastoma to be specific). One excerpt is especially […]

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Universal Basic Income

Universal basic income is the idea that all individuals in a society should be guaranteed a minimum income.  The logic behind this approach is one of equity.  Many members of society feel that all individuals are entitled to some basic level of financial well-being regardless of their skills, ability or willingness to work. Current government […]

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Atul Gawande on AI

Tyler Cowen has one of his “Conversations” with Atul Gawande.  The interview is interesting throughout.  Below is an excerpt from their discussion on artificial intelligence. TYLER COWEN: …How far are we from having an AI that is capable of actually doing diagnosis to people? That is, they might speak into a Skype connection, something like Watson would […]

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Economic Burden of ACPA+ patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis

That is the topic of my most recent article in the Journal of Managed Care & Specialty Pharmacy along with co-authors Mahlet Gizaw Tebeka, Kwanza Price, Chad Patel, and Kaleb Michaud.  The abstract of the article–titled “The Economic Burden of ACPA-Positive Status Among Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis“–is below. BACKGROUND: Anticitrullinated protein antibodies (ACPAs) are serological […]

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