Where's his cape?

"A member began to experience heart palpitations while on a business trip in China. I called the hospital; arranged for a translator, who was there on arrival; and followed that with faxed medical records within minutes. The patient was seen immediately. His EKG's indicated an acute heart attack. I reviewed faxes of the EKG's with a Chinesespeaking cardiologist at Johns Hopkins University and confirmed ...

Read more...

The wrong physician was named in a lawsuit, and is still dealing with the legal ramifications:

. . . he spent the next year defending himself because plaintiff attorney Charles E. Gibson III of Ridgeland, Miss., failed to drop him from the case voluntarily. Because Dr. Stewart's medical liability insurance policy had a $10,000 deductible, he was forced to pay $6,100 of his own money to cover the cost of ...

Read more...

Medical identity theft

Rising health care costs are fueling this new, growing trend of identity theft:

Escalating health-care costs and the growing ranks of the uninsured are fueling this fast-growing fraud. Before he was caught, Daniel Sullivan, an uninsured Pennsylvanian, racked up more than $144,000 in medical bills at five hospitals posing as an acquaintance whose insurance information he had stolen.

In addition, drug addicts in search of their next high -- ...

Read more...

Lead in lipstick

Is it concerning? Yes, if your child eats 71 tubes of lipstick.

Jay Parkinson

Wondering how this new-style doc is doing? Check out his blog.

Templated charting

One of the biggest EHR perks is templates for charting. It is also a very slippery slope to fraud.

Needless ER visits

How needless ER visits sucks money and time from the health care system.

And you wonder why the field of obstetrics is dying.

People seem to be shocked that insurance premiums for Massachusetts' individual mandate are prohibitively expensive.

Folks, health insurance is expensive because health care is expensive. Deal with it. Nothing is free, and I think it's a positive thing that the public is slowly being acclimated to not taking health-care for granted.

When a procedure goes right.

Battle-SCHIP continues

Eric Novack with his take:

I suspect that most Americans would suddenly be less inclined to support the SCHIP expansion when they see several children negatively affected for every 1 child helped. However, given that most government programs ignore both "the children" and common sense financial planning, we are likely to see the SCHIP debate played out with them tucked away and forgotten.

From his book, Cutting Remarks.

Brilliant op-ed in the Washington Post:

The debate over vaccine litigation has thus shifted from a presumption of innocence to a presumption of guilt. While the number of major studies that have failed to find any substantive link between vaccines and developmental disorders or autism is now in the double-digits (including a September 27th CDC study in the New England Journal), critics are effectively demanding that scientists prove that ...

Read more...

A welcome return.

Scenes from Pri-Med

Some observations from Pri-Med East 2007.

* The pharmaceutical exhibit hall seems toned down this year. No golf, origami, nor sleeping models this year. Still had the magician-drug rep and lots of coffee booths. Nothing gets a physician's attention like caffeine.

* My bathroom handwash was brought to you by Amitiza, a medication for constipation.

* Not sure why some physicians ...

Read more...

Another threat to primary care?

Since the care management outfits are paid by the employer or the insurer (and not the patient), then its chief goal, obviously, is not to improve patient outcomes by making sure that doctors adhere to approved guidelines in all cases, but instead to reduce costs by making sure that doctors adhere to those guidelines that will result in less spending. Guidelines that will result in ...

Read more...

A roundup of the recent web commentary on the controversy.

retired doc on how physician assistants are not dumb enough to go into primary care:

Maybe "mid levels" will be replaced by something like PA assistants (PAAs) or NPAs ( nurse practitioner assistants). The third party payer spin doctors will need a better name than "lower levels" to refer to them, however.

A display at the recent ACEP meeting that 911DOC takes exception to:

Hey ACEP. I'm done. No more dues for you. When you open your convention with a Media personality who cites the Veteran's Administration Health System as a glittering jewel of what can be achieved if we would only get ourselves on board with socialized medicine, when you create rules that take 5 minutes out of every lecture ...

Read more...

Costs or the uninsured?

I think exploding health care costs are by far the more concerning issue, but it seems that whether you agree or not would depend if you are a Democrat or Republican.

Most Popular