Tag: healthcare costs

Blog Posts (11)

January 5, 2015

The True Cost Of Low Drug Prices

India is not, yet, a wealthy country. Nevertheless its people experience many of the same expensive-to-treat illnesses as wealthier populations in the U.S. and Europe. Therefore the country has made a series of policy decisions designed to lower the cost … Continue reading
October 16, 2014

The Best-Selling Biologic Drugs

Biologic drugs are a big deal for the pharmaceutical industry right now. Blockbuster chemicals for common conditions like diabetes and hypertension are largely things of the past. We’re getting pretty good at controlling those conditions, and few people expect a … Continue reading
October 10, 2014

Racial Disparities in Outcomes after Heart Attack Were Eliminated by Free Prescriptions

High costs make it hard for many patients to afford their medications. That’s why some medical experts believe we should give important medications to patients for free, to see if that improves their health outcomes. One famous example of this … Continue reading
September 12, 2014

Healthcare Versus Other Social Spending

Here is another great picture from the people at Vox. It shows the United States in the middle of OECD countries, when it comes to spending on social services, like healthcare, unemployment, and the like. Despite being in the middle, … Continue reading
September 10, 2014

Are Some Life Saving Treatments Overkill?

Thanks to the popularity of medical television shows, most people have witnessed hundreds of fictional cardiac arrests in their lifetime. In most of these scenes, the patient loses consciousness, and the medical team rushes to the bedside: “He’s in V-fib.” … Continue reading
August 20, 2014

Price Transparency Thoughts from a Thought Leader (And Former Student)

Here is a great piece on my former student, Jessica Harris, who now works in health care price transparency at Aetna. She visited my class this summer, and here are some of the things she taught them: The evolution of … Continue reading
June 17, 2014

If Costs Are Unknown, Can Doctors Still Talk About Them?

I have been writing a bit lately on the need for healthcare providers to talk with their patients about healthcare costs, if for no other reason than to enable patients to determine whether they can afford to pay for the healthcare that … Continue reading
May 20, 2014

Are Bundled Payments the Future of US Healthcare?

I spoke recently with a reporter from the USA Today, who ended up writing a nice article on bundled payments in healthcare. I promise to return to this topic on future posts. But for now, let me whet your appetite … Continue reading
May 14, 2014

A Simple Way to Save Billions of Dollars on Emergency Care

“If you insure them, they will come.” Those words might as well be the mantra of hospitals across the country, because they can expect an onslaught of customers thanks to the expansion of health insurance under Obamacare. A recent study … Continue reading
April 30, 2014

Can Behavioral Economics Lower Healthcare Costs?

Insurers can use behavioral economics, which examines why people make certain decisions and then determines how to influence said decisions, to compel members to improve their health, according to research from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. “I don’t think there’s … Continue reading

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News (7)

June 19, 2013 3:08 pm

The Experts: How Should Physician Pay Be Changed?

Unfortunately, limited by many factors, our health-care system has suffered from insufficient experimentation and a lack of innovation in approaches to physician and nonphysician provider compensation.

May 21, 2012 4:55 pm

What could revolutionize health care? This database. (Washington Post)

Think of it as a health policy wonk’s dream: Football stadium after
One insurance company’s data could fill 60 million of these. (bigstockphoto) football stadium packed to the brim with…health insurance claims data. An odd dream, to be sure. But health insurance data is crucial to understand how health care dollars get spent. It shows how people use health care, what’s changing and, in some cases, why. Health insurers, however, have tended to keep that data private, as it could tip competitors off to how they handle business.

May 20, 2012 1:37 pm

Genetic Testing May Not Drive Up Health Costs (MedPage Today)

Having the results of a personalized genetic test did not drive patients to utilize potentially costly follow-up healthcare services, a study from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) found. In the past five years, there have been many new tests marketed to consumers who want to know whether they are genetically susceptible to a range of health conditions and traits, including diabetes and certain types of cancers. The tests, known as multiplex assays when they test for a variety of genetic variations, are marketed by a number of for-profit companies.

May 14, 2012 10:14 am

In health care, cheaper can mean better (The Boston Globe)

An Irish adage says: “When you come to a wall that is too high to climb, throw your hat over the wall, and then go get your hat.” That’s what Massachusetts started with its 2006 law requiring just about everyone to get coverage and arranging to make that coverage affordable. Now, it’s time to get the hat.

April 30, 2012 10:37 am

Care That's Just Right (Wall Street Journal)

Worried that questioning your doctor will damage your relationship or make for an awkward office visit? Time to untie your tongue. Asking a few key questions at your next appointment could save you both money and exposure to medical risks. Meanwhile, more doctors are volunteering to help the conversation along and prescribe evidence-based conservative measures first.

April 12, 2012 11:39 pm

States Seek Curb on Patient Bills for Costly Drugs (New York Times)

Spurred by patients and patient advocates like Ms. Kuhn, lawmakers in at least 20 states, from Maine to Hawaii, have introduced bills that would limit out-of-pocket payments by consumers for expensive drugs used to treat diseases like cancer,rheumatoid arthritismultiple sclerosis and inherited disorders.

April 5, 2012 12:57 pm

The New Face of Health Care: Why Nurses Are in Such High Demand (The Atlantic)

The national conversation about health care reform focuses relentlessly on cost reduction. While bending the cost curve is extremely important, improving quality is also essential — but sometimes downplayed — in today’s reform equation. Grappling with quality challenges has attracted a new breed of health care leaders: physician and nurse executives.