Rationing of Health Care in the United States An Inevitable Consequence of Increasing Health Care Costs

Rationing of Health Care in the United States An Inevitable Consequence of Increasing Health Care Costs

“The modern era of medicine began in the 1960s. Health care coverage expanded with the passage of Medicare and Medicaid and the increasing availability of employee-based health insurance. Scientific and clinical advances began to occur at a far more rapid pace. Physicians became more specialized and began to focus on acute care dominated by cardiovascular […]

Must read: Wendell Potter at Tarbell.org

Must read: Wendell Potter at Tarbell.org

If you’re interested in health care, you must read Wendell Potter over at Tarbell.org. Potter is a former health care industry public relations executive; he left the industry and has started Tarbell.org, an investigative news site. Here’s one example of Wendell’s work: “How corporate health interests, nervous about their profits, are trying to scare you.” […]

The price of childbirth: If you don’t pay our global billing deposit, we won’t treat you

The price of childbirth: If you don’t pay our global billing deposit, we won’t treat you

A friend writes: Here is my situation. I have a high deductible health plan with Cigna that doesn’t pick up until I meet the deductible. That deductible in any year is $3,000. Right now none of my prenatal care is covered because I have not met my deductible. It’s all out of pocket but everything […]

‘Hospitals’ confusing online price lists give patients a headache’: Us, on CBS News

‘Hospitals’ confusing online price lists give patients a headache’: Us, on CBS News

We were featured on CBS Evening News on Jan. 21, 2019, talking about the new Medicare ruling that hospitals need to publicize their list prices starting Jan. 1, 2019. Here’s the CBS Evening News version, “Hospitals’ confusing online price lists give patients a headache,” with correspondent Anna Werner. Here’s the CBS This Morning version, “Are […]

Medicare head asks Twitter to help enforce price transparency policy

Medicare head asks Twitter to help enforce price transparency policy

Seema Verma, the head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid services, called on Twitter a few days ago to help her enforce a new rule on health price transparency. The rule requires hospitals to post their list prices online. It went into effect on Jan. 1, and there was scant information about how it […]

Privatizing the Veterans Administration — along with Medicare and Medicaid

Privatizing the Veterans Administration — along with Medicare and Medicaid

The Trump Administration seems to be working toward privatization of the Veterans Administration. As this article from The New York Times says, “The Department of Veterans Affairs is preparing to shift billions of dollars from government-run veterans’ hospitals to private health care providers, setting the stage for the biggest transformation of the veterans’ medical system in […]

The transparency conversation over hospital price lists: Scorn and more scorn

The transparency conversation over hospital price lists: Scorn and more scorn

The newly released hospital price lists have been kicking up a lot of commentary on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. The lists, as we’ve been discussing, are being made public in compliance with a new Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services rule that hospitals have to post all their list prices online as of Jan. 1. […]

Taking surprise medical bills to court: The New York Times

Taking surprise medical bills to court: The New York Times

“Joaquin Lopez had emergency gallbladder surgery after rushing to an emergency room last year. He has been haggling with Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis over what he owes ever since,” Julie Appleby writes over at The New York Times. “The 37-year-old college professor was hit with a nearly $8,000 bill from the out-of-network hospital — […]

Hospitals’ national TV ads build brands for high-priced services: STAT

Hospitals’ national TV ads build brands for high-priced services: STAT

“The scene is shadowy, and the background music foreboding,” Shefali Luthra writes over at Kaiser Health News for STAT. “On the TV screen, a stream of beleaguered people stand in an unending line. ‘If you’re waiting patiently for a liver transplant, it could cost you your life,’ warns the narrator. One man pulls another out […]

U.S. first in health spending and worst on major health indicators: JAMA Network

U.S. first in health spending and worst on major health indicators: JAMA Network

The United States ranks first in spending and worst in obesity, life expectancy and infant mortality, compared to other high-income countries, according to a March 2018 article in JAMA Network by Irene Papanicolas, PhD; Liana R. Woskie, MSc1; and Ashish K. Jha, MD, MPH1. Here are the findings: “In 2016, the US spent 17.8% of […]