Home > Medical/Health Commentary, Miscellany > Around the Mediverse: April 28, 2010

Around the Mediverse: April 28, 2010

Fun tidbits, health-related and otherwise, from around the ‘tubes:

  • Going back to the subject of Congressional hearings, two bloggers at the Economist explain why Goldman Sachs and the financial services industry generally aren’t as evil as people seem to want them to be.
  • There’s been a lot of talk about reforming physician pay and medical organization, but not a lot of emphasis on new and innovative models of health insurance provision.  (As I discuss in this post, the PPACA will probably do more to ossify the present state of health insurance than anything else)  That’s why this post from the Health Business Blog, highlighting a value-based, market-oriented, real insurance offering in Fresno, CA is so heartening.
  • WhiteCoat brings us the story of a case in which a physician was sued, and settled, for malpractice.  It sounds pretty vanilla until you read that the physician was out of the country at the time the alleged malpractice was committed by a supervisee midwife who failed to contact the physician covering for the one who got sued.  Malpractice affects physician behaviour through fear more than it does through changing actual risk.  With stories like these, is it any wonder that the fear is still there?  Also on the subject of lawsuits is this post by Amy Tuteur that suggests liability concerns as a major driver of increases in C-section rates.
  • Scott Greenfield at Simple Justice is probably my favourite lawyer I’ve never met.  Two of his posts from this past month, taken together, explain the reasons for my own discomfort with the way the victims’ rights movement is playing out in the US and Canada.
  • Jason Shafrin at Healthcare Economist has made some pretty pie charts detailing the breakdown of Medicare and Medicaid expenditures on categories such as physicians, hospitals, drugs, etc.  While I knew intuitively that physicians constitute a small piece of the pie, it was still surprising to see it represented visually.  It also suggests a way to win over skeptics of various payment reforms:  if, as it seems, much of the cost of certain types of physician care is incurred downstream (as opposed to fees paid to the physician), then payment reform that seeks to lower overall costs by changing incentives should also be able to guarantee higher income for those types of physicians.  Call it gainsharing, maybe?

You’ll also notice that A Cartoon Guide to Becoming a Doctor has been added to my blogroll and to the links on the sidebar.  If you’re looking for more visual stimulation from your medblog collection, that’s a fantastic place to get it!

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