Aetna is unhappy: it received high bills from providers and paid them, and now it’s suing. “Aetna Inc. (AET) is suing six New Jersey doctors over medical bills it calls ‘unconscionable,’ including $56,980 for a bedside consultation and $59,490 for an ultrasound that typically costs $74,” Peter Waldman wrote on Bloomberg News on March 24. […]
It seems sometimes that the medical system is a collection of people telling whoppers to each other. Health-care providers tell the insurance company that a procedure or a thing costs a bunch of money. The insurance company tells the consumer that the price is something completely different. The doctor tells the patient that she doesn’t […]
There’s an app for that: “Picture it: Your doctor tells you that you need an MRI. Okeydoke, you say, pulling out your smartphone and typing in your zipcode. Up pop the 20 closest high-quality imaging centers, and you choose the most convenient. That’s my visualization based on a casual mention that Blue Cross Blue Shield chief Andrew Dreyfus made last week of a new app now in development. ‘We’re pretty close to delivering this,’ he told a health reform forum at Suffolk.” Carey Goldberg, CommonHealth blogger at WBUR. More.
Arguments for and against transparency in health-care pricing are featured in a New England Journal of Medicine piece published March 10, 2011. An excerpt: “It is difficult to defend the obscuring of health care prices. The challenges associated with leveraging price transparency to moderate overall health care spending, however, may explain the limited role that […]
One of the reasons health-care costs are so high is executive pay. Of the nation’s top 100 highest-paid CEO’s, 19 are from the health-care field, starting out with Fred Hassan at Merck, who earned $49,653,063 in 2009, according to the top 100 database the AFL-CIO has collected via salary.com and posted on its Web site. […]
The business of the U.S. Government is mostly insurance and the military, writes Ezra Klein in the Washington Post, with a truly alarming chart. More. Dozens of recent medical studies show that Medicaid patients suffer for having it. In some cases, they’d do just as well without health insurance. Scott Gottlieb, The Wall Street Journal. […]
Groupons for Health Care Services: “We’ve all bought Groupons for a wide variety of goods and services — dinner at a new restaurant, a periodical subscription, clothing, a hot air balloon ride — but most of us have not bought a Groupon for health care services. Thus far, the health care offerings via Groupon seem to […]
“Everyone involved [in health care in the U.S.] is preparing for an uncertain future by attempting to maximize their advantage at the start, a strategy that pushes everything up. All seem to have absorbed the unspoken central message that the reformed system aims to reduce consumption.” –Jim Jaffe from centeredpolitics.com on one unintended effect of […]