Individual responsibility for health care

Individual responsibility for health care

‘”The internet has changed people’s relationships with information,” writes the invaluable Susannah Fox at the Pew Internet and American Life Project, in a new report about the social life of health information. ‘Our data consistently show that doctors, nurses, and other health professionals continue to be the first choice for most people with health concerns, […]

Morning Meds

Morning Meds

I’m new here to ClearHealthCosts, and jumping right into the pharmacy beat. I’m looking forward to it–even for those of us who rarely darken the door of a local hospital may have longtime prescriptions that need to be filled. And like nearly everything in the health care world, figuring out how to get the most […]

Remember the uninsured?

Remember the uninsured?

The continued stream of dispiriting news about rising health costs sometimes threatens to overwhelm us. Uninsured people are able to pay for about 12 percent of their hospitalization bills, according to a report released yesterday by the Department of Health and Human Services. The bills that go unpaid are then passed on to people who […]

The poor pay more for health care

The poor pay more for health care

Part of what we do here at ClearHealthCosts is use a reporter’s eye to help clarify the perplexing world of health care. What we see often makes little sense, which is exactly how we felt when we came across 2008 report [PDF] from the New York State attorney general’s office. The report has to do […]

The Day: Billing Errors, Dollars to Docs, Legislative Update

News of the day: Ways to save money, a pair of stories from ProPublica (with graphics and charts) about where the money goes in medicine, and more! How to Spot and Fight  Medical Billing Errors mint.com Financial Ties Bind Medical Societies To Drug and Device Makers – ProPublica. With USA Today Medical Groups Shy About […]

Rising health costs: A Harvard analysis

Rising health costs: A Harvard analysis

This is kind of wonky, but here goes. One of the links posted earlier this week was to a Harvard School of Public Health slide series on managing health care costs. It’s a great analysis from a medical and business perspective on why things cost so much and what actions might be taken to effect […]

Why do hospital costs vary so much?

Why do hospital costs vary so much?

Hospital costs vary widely. The reasons are often in dispute. The value of analysis, though, is clear. “[N]early 30 percent of Medicare‟s costs could be saved without negatively affecting health outcomes if spending in high- and medium-cost areas could be reduced to the level in low-cost areas—and those estimates could probably be extrapolated to the […]

The roundup: Health reform, journalism, costs and hospital safety

A British View of the US Health Reform and US Health Journalism | Reporting on Health. The Annenberg School for Communications at the University of Southern California Harvard School of Public Health analysis (in slides) of the health-care crisis HSPH Hundreds of thousands of 20-somethings join parents’ health-care plans under new health law Kaiser Health […]

Paul Krugman: Partially right

Paul Krugman: Partially right

I hate to disagree with Paul Krugman, the stellar New York Times economist, but I must. In a column a few days ago, he wrote that it is wrong to refer to medical patients as consumers, and that the giving and getting of medical care “can be reduced to money” is “sickening.” While I generally […]

Roundup: Insurance, Medicaid, technology, house calls

Illinois Insurance Chief (Soon to Head U.S. Insurance Office) Sees Market Becoming More Concentrated  —   Kaiser Health News “Are you hearing anecdotal stories from consumers? “We sure are. People in the pre-Medicare age have a lot of trouble receiving individual and family coverage. Historically someone in that group would receive an offer of coverage […]