On Kaiser Health News, Barbara Levy MD, the Chair of the AMA’s Relative Value Scale Update Committee (or RUC), published a glowing defense of the RUC’s activities. Her article extols the work of the 29 physician volunteers who, "at no cost to taxpayers ... generously volunteer their time, supported by advisers and staff from more than 100 national medical specialty societies and health care professional organizations." She fails to mention that the ...

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by Jeffrey L. Cohen Patient centeredness, fragmentation and value based purchasing are just a few of the terms that are peppered throughout the newly proposed regulations for accountable care organizations (ACOs). The healthcare reform law established the Medicare Shared Savings Program for Read more...

Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) have received considerable attention recently, and are the new "hot topic" in healthcare delivery policy circles. They are the latest response to the need to do something to stem the runaway inflation of healthcare costs, while maintaining or improving measurable health care quality. According to a ...

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I read an article in the New York Times that underscores my argument that health care insurance does not and never will equal health care access. Our federal and state governments are being crushed by debt. There are many reasons for that debt, and addressing the reasons for the debt are a necessary aspect of decreasing the debt. For example, if a family household had overdrawn its checking account by ...

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by Jeffrey L. Cohen Healthcare reform used to imply just regulatory change. As time marches on, it also implies market change. Most pundits agree that, whatever happens to the healthcare reform law, whether or not it is found to be unconstitutional, the healthcare business community is unleashed. Change is afoot! If you follow my nahsaying on the ...

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by Chris Chen Recently, I stood in the back of a boisterous, packed auditorium as each of our school’s fourth-years received their match letters and proudly announced in front of friends, family, and classmates where they would be headed for residency. As peers enthusiastically cheered each other, significant ...

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There is a lot of buzz over the creation of Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). An ACO is a network of health care providers and hospitals that collaboratively manage patient care and prospective budgets. Perhaps the biggest draw of ACOs is the potential to create innovative ways to improve quality and decrease costs. To ...

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Health insurance companies seem to be pretty happy with the Affordable Care Act.  And why not?  Health reform has left the private insurance industry in place, albeit with stricter regulations. Family physician and editor of Placebo Journal Doug Farrago, profiled last year in the New York Times, gives his take on the situation, with his regularly scheduled Placebo Television's Medical Minute.