Fun tidbits, health-related and otherwise, from around the ‘tubes:
- Edwin Leap discusses one of the frequently ignored drivers of Emergency Department use: other physicians. To be fair, most of those other physicians would probably cite liability concerns, and most of those could do so legitimately. Still, it’s something to keep in mind when looking at ED utilization patterns.
- Megan McArdle and the WSJ Health Blog discuss the recent moves by some health insurers to reclassify expenses to satisfy new rules requiring minimum medical-loss ratios. In my view, things like nursing hotlines and wellness programs are “medical” expenses moreso than “administrative,” but reasonable people disagree.
- John Tierney gives us “7 New Rules to Live By” for Earth Day, demolishing pervasive myths about organic food, GMOs, and nuclear power. I’ve been harping on about these for the last couple of years (especially the first two) to anyone who would listen, so it’s gratifying to see that my views on the issues aren’t completely crazy.
- Coyote brings us an example of a proponent for creating another of my least favourite types of “rights:” positive rights to someone else’s goods or labour. In this case, the “right” being bandied about is an alleged “positive right to travel.” The comment was made at a conference with no direct policy implications, but the existence of that thought at the higher levels of EU is terrifying (but unsurprising).
Also of note is the addition of Bittersweet Medicine, a relatively new addition to the mediverse, to the list of blogs that I follow and to the links over to your right. Of immediate interest is the series on overrated medications (for instance, statins). Hopefully there will be more of those in the future!