Massachusetts’ Connector, operational since 2006, is the prototype for PPACA’s insurance exchanges. Connector boosters have claimed it is a vital and successful part of Massachusetts’ health care reform; its critics have noted its failure to influence either benefit or administrative costs or to attract significant enrollment. However, whether success or failure, the Connector offers lessons for other states. Low enrollment means failure As Massachusetts discovered, it’s impossible for the exchange to influence ...

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If I was Surgeon General, I would follow the lead of our country's first Mom. This is serious folks. We, as an American society, need to solve the obesity crisis.  Not just for our physical health, but for our country's financial stability. Reducing the spiraling costs of health care is wanted by all.  So far, prevention of the diseases which contribute most to our health care costs, (heart disease, cancer and orthopedic issues, ...

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As the saying goes, when you’ve got a hammer, everything looks like a nail. Send a patient to a surgeon, and he very well might get surgery. Send a patient to a psychiatrist, and he very well may end up on psychotropic medication. As physicians, we need to take responsibility for our own actions. We should not prescribe or perform procedures unnecessarily. However, even if we are responsible for our own ...

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by Kal Shah Kal Shah, a first year medical student at the University of California Irvine who recieved his undergraduate degree from UC Berkeley in Bioengineering, has given iMedicalApps the scoop on how the iPad is being used by himself and classmates. He highlights how medical textbooks are being utilized, along with an app he feels is better at note taking than the popular iAnnotate. ...

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In a report from the Archives of Internal Medicine, it was reported that most hospitalized patients (82%) could not accurately name the physician responsible for their care and almost half of the patients did not even know their diagnosis or why they were admitted.  Of the physicians, 67% thought the patients knew their name and 77% of doctors thought the patients "understood their diagnoses at least somewhat well". ...

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by Lucas Restrepo, MD There is only one fundamental problem with American medicine: its progressive commercialization. Every other problem derives from it centrifugally. Medicine, wrote William Osler, is “a calling, not a business.” Patients are not clients, nor physicians businessmen. People do not spend over a decade studying medicine ―living years in poverty or overburdened with debt― merely hoping to get rich. While it is perfectly ...

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Advocates of alternative health attribute all sorts of fantastical properties to the human body. The body supposedly "knows" how to live a long healthy life; the body is supposedly "designed" to work perfectly. The tenets of natural childbirth philosophy also invoke these fantastical properties. The body "knows" how to give birth; a woman's body is "designed" to give birth. On their face these claims are obviously false. The body doesn't "know" ...

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Recently, I had my first visit with my new primary care doctor. I picked him based on recommendations (plus he’s one of the few that accepts my insurance), and also because he seemed to be an eager adopter of electronic medical records (EMR). On his website, there was a portal for making appointments on-line, asking questions of the doctor and staff by e-mail and once a registered patient, I could also ...

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Here are the top posts from this past week, based on the number of times they were viewed. 1. Obesity patients are not victims. Call it the McVictim syndrome. Too many pundits, public health experts and politicians are working overtime to find scapegoats for America’s obesity epidemic. 2. Favorite ER superstitions. ER docs and nurses (and paramedics) are a superstitious lot. I thought it might be interesting for those ...

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Med­i­cine used to be different. Doc­tors couldn’t do too much for you. They didn’t get paid very much and they were focused more on helping than on managing a business. Hospitals were community-based not-for-profit or public entities. Drugs and devices were not as sophisticated or expensive, and they weren’t marketed directly to consumers. Well Toto, we’re not in Kansas any­more. After witnessing our “health­care reform” process you must have seen that almost ...

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