For those who don't know me, I am an avid table tennis player. So this story caught my eye.

Players often use speed glue to glue their rubber to their paddle, resulting in more elasticity, increasing the speed and the spin. The problem is that the effect wears off after a few hours, so companies have been trying to manufacture longer-lasting speed glue. Unfortunately, ...

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Creators of the poster-child for prescription drug abuse gets their just desserts:

Purdue Pharma L.P., its president, top lawyer and former chief medical officer will pay $634.5 million in fines for claiming the drug was less addictive and less subject to abuse than other pain medications, U.S. Attorney John Brownlee said in a news release.

Purdue learned from focus groups with physicians in 1995 that doctors were worried ...

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ER crisis

It's hard to make noise when the alarms are already ringing. ER physician and Robert Wood Johnson health-policy fellow Arthur Kellerman tries.

Barack Obama gives fatigue as a reason for his "10,000 deaths" slip-up. Volokh says campaigning for President is indeed tiring. But it should be, as Glenn Reynolds points out:

Of course, being president is tiring too, and one of the arguments for a grueling campaign season is that it weeds out people who don't function well when tired.
Makes me wonder what kind of surgeons we're going to ...

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A psychoanalyst laments the disincentives for the next generation to enter medicine:

A smart health care system would offer powerful financial inducements and rewards to those of our children who enter Medicine. Instead, we are conveying the message to our young and future Doctors that they can expect to leave school with loans in the six figures and with increasingly onerous limitations on their ability to do good ...

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It's called the VA:

A shortage of surgeons, nurses and auxiliary staff has created a backlog of 500 patients awaiting orthopedic surgery at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in La Jolla, a surgeon who works at the hospital said Tuesday.

In some cases, those patients must wait as long as a year and a half for their surgeries, orthopedic surgeon Mark Murphy said, in response to questions from the ...

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What health insurers are doing to prepare for the release of Sicko.

I don't think that decision is evidence-based:

David Miller, 46, who is on full disability, said in an interview that his physician at the VA hospital told him last week to go home and pray or meditate in place of using medication to relieve the pain he was experiencing from kidney stones. When Miller complained to VA staffers that his physician suggested he turn to God to treat his medical ...

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A roundup in the NY Times.

David Catron says there is no such thing as a "hospital overcharge":

Fact # 1: Hospitals do not have separate price lists for patients based on insurance coverage or lack thereof.

Fact # 2: Most hospitals write off about 90% of the charges generated by uninsured patients.

Regarding the first fact, all hospitals bill their patients based on a single "charge master." When a patient comes in, her ...

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Dr. Crippen suggests that mothers who freebirth are opening themselves to lawsuits:

The controversial NHS doctor who writes an award-winning blog under the pseudonym "Dr Crippen" has proposed that at some future point women will be sued by their (damaged) offspring for having had a home birth (let alone an unattended one).

John Mack suggests that less may be more in Gardasil's case.

He's live-blogging his malpractice trial. Jury selection is the topic of the day:

Attorney Lunt eliminated six jurors with preemptory challenges. All were men and all were college-educated. We challenged two. Both were women. One sounded like she might accept the "Flea is a blithering idiot" argument. The other suffered from the disease that killed Flea's patient. That left nine women and five men (Flea realizes this sum makes ...

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Insightful analysis linking the Zubillaga scandal and AstraZeneca's purchase of MedImmune.

Blame managed care, says retired doc:

The time and money crunch basically brought about by managed care is a major driver in dwindling trust. Less time with the patient can only be bad. Missed or incorrect diagnoses for the individual patient impacted by it has to be one of the biggest trust busters possible. A hurried encounter with your doc leads only to the impression that he does not ...

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The Cheerful Oncologist talks about a tragic incidence in Canada.

Implementing the Massachusetts'-style individual mandates, or failing that, at least covering the children. Sounds good to me - individual mandates are definitely the way to go.

Wal-Mart clinics

From Wal-Mart's senior director health business development on clinics within the store:

. . . keeping customers out of emergency rooms makes sense for Wal-Mart, whose lower-income shoppers are being squeezed by high gasoline prices and a slowing housing market.

An unexpected emergency room trip could drain a shopper of dollars they would otherwise spend at Wal-Mart, he said.

The BMA says no.

Well, just take a look at what's happening to medicine. Also note how medical costs for pets have remained steady despite similar technological advances:

Pain and suffering awards would also boost malpractice suits against vets, making care more expensive and less accessible, just as big lawsuit awards have done to our own health care. American doctors, burdened by nearly $30 billion a year in malpractice insurance premiums, practice "defensive" ...

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