Tag: "health care quality"

Headlines I Wish I Hadn’t Seen

iStock_000008945197XSmallSome hospices decline to treat the dying.

Paper: 90,000 Nevada residents could lose health insurance due to ObamaCare

Polio is spreading again.

72 percent of physicians say their peers order at least one unnecessary test per week.

U.S. is one of only eight countries where maternal deaths in childbirth rose, 2003-2013.

Massachusetts is ditching its ObamaCare exchange, replacement to cost $100 million.

Headlines I Wish I Hadn’t Seen

Stethoscope9 out of 10 doctors are unwilling to recommend health care as a profession.

Drug cost-sharing in the ObamaCare exchanges is 34 percent higher than in policies prior to the law.

One physical therapist billed Medicare $12 million in 2012: He treated 21 patients per hour, every working hour.

Pension and health care costs at DOD: “If we allow the current trend to continue, we’re going to turn the Department of Defense into a benefits company that occasionally kills a terrorist.”

Headlines I Wish I Hadn’t Seen

doctor-technologyHealthCare.gov is still missing massive, critical pieces…the system’s “back end” is a tangle of technical workarounds moving billions of taxpayer dollars and consumer-paid premiums between the government and insurers.

Measles making a comeback: Anti-vaccine activism to blame.

Panel: Federal policies to reward high-quality health care are unfairly penalizing doctors and hospitals that treat large numbers of poor people.

Only 77,000 families and individuals have requested exemptions from the ObamaCare individual mandate. That means millions will owe a fine next year.

We’re Looking More and More like Canada

doctor-mom-and-sonPatients — and physicians — say they feel the time crunch as never before as doctors rush through appointments as if on roller skates to see more patients and perform more procedures to make up for flat or declining reimbursements. It’s not unusual for primary care doctors’ appointments to be scheduled at 15-minute intervals. Some physicians who work for hospitals say they’ve been asked to see patients every 11 minutes. And the problem may worsen as millions of consumers who gained health coverage through the Affordable Care Act begin to seek care — some of whom may have seen doctors rarely, if at all, and have a slew of untreated problems.  (KHN)

What Are the Mortality Risks of Being Uninsured?

This is from Chris Conover:

Since the evidence is equivocal at best, let us — for purposes of discussion — average the point estimates from 4 studies…and compare this relative mortality risk (1.22) to other factors that elevate the annual probability of death.

546

Headlines I Wish I Hadn’t Seen

Blue Cross: 15% to 20% of enrollees aren’t paying premiums.

EPA tested deadly pollutants on humans.

Long-term antibiotics apparently work for lyme disease patients; but many doctors are afraid to prescribe them.

Hits and Misses

Laptop and StethoscopeFederal government has seven different definitions of “health information technology“.

More evidence that medical homes don’t work.

A $295 spoon can detect and counter tremors in patients with Parkinson’s disease.

$175 million worth of worker output lost during first two days of college hoops’ “March Madness“.

Hospital Safety Matters

Patients who are hospitalized for pneumonia at a low-scoring facility were 67 percent more likely to die within 30 days of admission than pneumonia patients at a top-scoring hospital, according to the Consumer Reports analysis. Of 1,000 surgical patients who develop a serious surgical complication in a top-rated hospital, 87 or fewer die, compared to more than 132 in a low-rated one — a 52 percent higher fatality risk. (Reuters)

Hint: Don’t get care at Bolivar Medical Center in Cleveland, Mississippi.

What Happens After Surgeons Take a Break?

We find that a surgeon’s additional day away from the operating room raised patients’ inpatient mortality risk by up to 0.067 percentage points (2.4% relative effect) but reduced total hospitalization costs by up to 0.59 percentage points…Our findings are consistent with the hypothesis that after returning from temporal breaks surgeons may be less likely to recognize and address life-threatening complications, in turn reducing resource use. (NBER Working Paper)

Is ObamaCare Discriminating Against the Disabled?

This is Gov. Bobby Jindal:

The federal government provides funds to states matching their Medicaid contributions. But ObamaCare includes a twist: The law provides a richer federal match for states’ coverage of childless adults than Medicaid programs receive for covering individuals with disabilities. I’ll say that again: ObamaCare prioritizes Medicaid coverage of childless adults over care for persons with disabilities. That’s a case of skewed priorities if I ever heard of one.

…[M]y proposed budget for this year directs $26 million in new funding to home and community-based services for elderly individuals and persons with disabilities. We’re focused on improving the quality of care, and giving individuals with disabilities more choices. We’ve already increased the number of individuals receiving home and community-based care by 5,000, and this year’s funding increase will ultimately reduce our waiting list for services by over 4,000.

But while we’re focused on improving the quality of care provided and reducing waiting lists for persons with disabilities, Liberals would rather our state use those resources to participate in ObamaCare’s Medicaid expansion. Liberal groups like MoveOn.org won’t say one word about caring for individuals with disabilities, or how ObamaCare prioritizes coverage of childless adults ahead of the most vulnerable — they just want to intimidate states into accepting ObamaCare’s massive new spending programs.