Partners shows up for insurance cost hearing

The Globe reports that a rep from Partners Health Care -- which includes MGH, the Brigham and several suburban hospitals -- showed up on Monday for the state hearing on health care costs. (A lot of hospitals have blown off the hearings.) Partners blamed what is known as the "cost shift" for their high prices. … Continue reading Partners shows up for insurance cost hearing


Radio Boston: The Influence of Pharma on Docs

WBUR's Radio Boston takes on the ever-present issue of the influence of drug makers on docs. Listen on their web site or today at 3. Guests include: Jerry Avorn, M.D., PChief of the Division of Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmacoeconomics in the Department of Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and author of Powerful Medicines: The Benefits, Risks and … Continue reading Radio Boston: The Influence of Pharma on Docs

Not much good news in slowed growth of health spending

A funny thing happens when the feds try to reform the health care system. Take a  quick look at the chart on the NYTimes story. All of the "drops" -- they reflected smaller increase, not lower prices -- correlate with cost control efforts. The '80s brought limits on Medicare payments -- which many hospitals and … Continue reading Not much good news in slowed growth of health spending

Health bill a go, but no Snowe

The NYTime has a package on the the likelihood that the Senate will pass a striped down reform bill. But, without the support of the senator from Maine. Senator Olympia J. Snowe, a Maine Republican who had been considered a possible Democratic ally, said she would oppose the measure because it was being rushed. “It … Continue reading Health bill a go, but no Snowe

Dean, Snowe, Sanders and Lieberman

Health reform appears to be crumbling under a conservative assault and the inability of most people to understand what is at stake and how to fix it. New England pols and Senator have starring roles. First, Kaiser Health News has the latest round-ups.   Up for a rant? Try Bob Cesca on Huff Po. He's pissed. Now, … Continue reading Dean, Snowe, Sanders and Lieberman

Health plans milk college students

The state has issued a new report documenting yet another way college students get nickle and dimed -- on health insurance. The message here -- stay on your parents plan. Here a link to a PPT on the actual study.   This from the Globe story: Insurance companies rack up much higher profits on health coverage sold to … Continue reading Health plans milk college students

Health Wonk Review: Killer viruses and the undead public option

Killer viruses, computers that see all, and the undead public option. (Or, as Jon Stewart said last night --"It's alive!") Welcome to the haunted edition of the Health Wonk Review --  the  floating digest of posts from the health policy blogosphere. This week, we put the death back into death panels.  The health care system is an … Continue reading Health Wonk Review: Killer viruses and the undead public option

Screening for Cancer Questioned

BHN thinks this it is huge that the American Cancer Society finally admitted that cancer screening sometimes leads to overdiagnosis. Or did they? This blog item from the Associations of Health Care Journalists notes that ACS backpedaled a day after the NYTimes reported on the society's change of heart. Check out their links too.   (Times writer Gina) Kolata’s story … Continue reading Screening for Cancer Questioned

Snowe is a go

The big action was at today's Senate Finance Commitee, where Maine's Senator Olympia Snowe was the only Republican to vote yes on the Baucus plan. The NYTimes ran with reaction just to Snowe's role.  The NYTimes blogged from the meeting. After a five-hour hearing, the Senate Finance Committee voted, 14-9, in favor of a bill overhauling the health … Continue reading Snowe is a go

H1N1 Vaccine arrives in Mass

Update 10/15 The Globe reports on a hectic scence at one clinic. Patients swarmed a flu shot clinic yesterday at a Jamaica Plain pediatric office, overwhelming medical officials providing H1N1 and seasonal flu vaccines for children. This from the state DPH:  Although the H1N1 vaccine became available (and orders were placed) only late last week, … Continue reading H1N1 Vaccine arrives in Mass