When it comes to paying for medications, many do without:

The researchers found that seniors who faced spending caps were more likely to visit the emergency room, be hospitalized and die than seniors who didn't.

"Their blood-pressure levels were worse, their cholesterol levels were worse, their blood-sugar control was worse," said study author Dr. John Hsu, a scientist with Kaiser's Division of Research in Oakland. "It was surprising."
Not.

Dartmouth is at it again with the next in their "more is less" studies:

Medicare spending was 58% higher in areas with the most resources compared with areas with the fewest. The study finds that 50% of physicians in high-intensity health care areas said they were able to obtain elective hospital admissions for their patients, compared with 64% of physicians in low-intensity areas. Doctors in high-intensity areas were less likely ...

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Still want "Medicare for all"? Give me a break:

A new study commissioned by Premera Blue Cross, based in Seattle, has found a rapid acceleration in higher costs to private payers in Washington State, for example, as hospitals and doctors grapple with constraints in the federal health insurance programs.

The study found that in 2004, the most recent year for which full data are available, hospitals ...

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Tragic:

An American family stood vigil for weeks at the hospital bedside of a severely injured woman they thought was their daughter before realising she was really the girl's classmate and that their own child was dead and already buried.

3.7 hours, according the a recent survey.

This may be start of a trend as medical students, heavily in debt, realize that family medicine is a dead end.

The next in a continuing series:

A herniated disc kept Thomas Dobson flat on his back all winter and now he can't find a doctor to sign his application for disability benefits.

"The problem is I need a doctor," said Dobson. "I've called every number in the book."

Dobson had no success because there are no physicians taking new patients and no walk-in clinics in the city.

I wonder if this will catch on:

Tempus uses the satellite technology that operates Virgin Atlantic's onboard telephone system to transmit medical information such as pulse rate and blood pressure readings as well as video images to medical experts at the MedAire Centre in Phoenix, Arizona. The ground-based doctors can then diagnose the problem and advise the crew on the next course of action, enabling crew to use their medical ...

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US poultry experts are using Google Earth:

Since the beginning of the year, experts have also been using Google Earth , which combines satellite imagery, maps and the company's search engine to span the globe. It gives extra details including the location of buildings, schools and roads near large chicken and turkey farms and production facilities.

"Twenty years ago we had to drive around the countryside and find the ...

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The NY Times profiles an unusual case.

Here's one tidbit:

Nearly 60 percent of uninsured hospital stays originated in the emergency department, compared with 31.8 percent for the privately insured and 39.3 percent for Medicaid patients.

The Washington Post looks at disease-mongering:

Shy people have "social phobia," requiring psychotropic drugs. High-strung boys have attention deficit disorder and need amphetamines. Baby boomers with slightly elevated blood pressure have "pre-hypertension" and line up for beta blockers. A few nights of restlessness calls for sleeping pills.

"The ordinary experiences of life become a diagnosis, which makes healthy people feel like they're sick," Schwartz said.

Expect drug companies to adjust pricing as this practice becomes widespread.

ABC News takes a look.

GruntDoc and others can't get their feed published at Medlogs. As it gets fixed, one option to stay up to date would be to use the feeds page here.

I'd like to keep it as updated as possible (i.e. including only regularly updated blogs), since I use it to steal find the links I blog about throughout the day. Contact me if you want your blog ...

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EMRs: Where more is less

Doctor comments on JAMA's recent EMR commentary:

Moreover, EMR encourages everyone to copy-and-paste the notes of everyone else so that notes become the same from author to author as well as from day to day. Even consultants are assimilated into the oneness of the EMR Borg. A cardiology consultant recently copied-and-pasted the intern's note into his own, even including "consult cardiology in AM" in his recommendations. Perhaps he meant ...

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This NY Times article thinks so:

I fear there's something else at work -— a fear borne out by a flier my fifth grader brought home saying that at the monthly pizza hot lunch, no child would be allowed to buy a second slice of pizza. The district says the new ruling is to avoid bad feelings caused by "inequities": if everyone can't have extra helpings, no one can.

From the Singapore Cancer Society.

Welcome to primary care in the USA:

To use the same fast food analogy, imagine a situation where price was no longer an issue (because of insurance) and the hungry masses started demanding the best burgers in the world . . . . but they wanted to wait no longer than they did for the regular "McDonaldized" burger. The problem is that the amount of money that the restaurant gets ...

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On-call, 24-style

Orac takes us through a call night of an academic surgeon.