In the discussion of cutting health care costs, it's often pointed out that the doctor's pen is the most expensive piece of technology. Hospitalist Bob Wachter talks about the medical profession's zeal to "do everything" as a major driver of health spending. So, how can we stem this tide? Doctors are programmed to advocate passionately for the patient in front of them, with little regard for the macroeconomic impact of their ...

Read more...

by James Matthew Weber Some like to talk about a "free market fix" to health care. However, health care and free markets are a contradiction. A free market is an environment where neither the buyer or the seller is compelled to act. There is also an assumption of some level of transparency within the market. In other words, consumers and sellers know what goods and services cost, and can shop around ...

Read more...

As an outside observer of the American health reform debate, I cannot help but notice the disparity of views, the fractured arguments, the protectionism and desperation. My country is in a similar struggle for health care reform, with the main difference being America is a rich nation, and we are poor by comparison. In both debates, however, I have looked for the humanitarian argument, and in many cases found it ...

Read more...

A poignant, and non-partisan, take on how patients are excluded from the health reform process. width="430" height="412" data="http://www.youtube.com/v/9dXbafOQmDM&hl=en&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash">

The following is part of a series of original guest columns by the American College of Physicians. by Steven Weinberger, MD, FACP The unfettered debate about ideas that characterizes the democratic process in the United States operates best when there is a truthful presentation of the issues, and when the process is civil and respectful. Unfortunately, the debate about health care reform has evolved to the point that it ...

Read more...

by Susan H It seems that health insurers are serving as exchange and clearing firm for "health futures" traders. Traders of "health futures" are potential patients, and health care providers. Patients are synthetic buyers of futures on health care provision, doctors and providers of medical goods and services are short sellers of those futures. The exchange and clearing firm (health insurer) represents that it serves to stand as guarantor in the ...

Read more...

Is health care a public good?

by Jeoffry B. Gordon, MD, MPH The public policy and current political action around changing the system overlooks two important technical fallacies: (1) That health care is most efficiently distributed by a free market mechanism; and, (2) That medical services are an ordinary commodity. The commercial market model is a failing economic and public policy ideology used to rationalize and justify corporate control of the health care system to profit from the enterprise. ...

Read more...

Confused about health care reform? Dan Roam, of Back of the Napkin fame, explains what's going on, in his signature visual style. Good stuff.

Healthcare Napkins All style="margin:0px" width="425" height="355">
View more documents from Dan Roam.

Here are 8 health reform posts recently published on the blog. 1. Do some patients not deserve health care reform? 2. AMA: A look at the facts on health reform 3. KevinMD health reform Virtual Town Hall: Thursday, August 13th at 12:15pm Eastern 4. Countries with worse health care systems than the United States 5. Does cutting health care costs mean spending less on the elderly? 6. Who speaks for ...

Read more...

Today's health care communications lesson is brought to you courtesy of Whole Foods ... I mean John Mackey. John Mackey's stepped in it again. Last week, Mackey, the libertarian CEO of natural-foods behemoth Whole Foods, wrote an op-ed piece on health reform for The Wall Street Journal. But Mackey felt it necessary to republish it on his blog because the Journal editors lightly edited it, Journal headline writers wrote a ...

Read more...

Most Popular

Join 141,000+ subscribers

Get the best of KevinMD in your inbox

Sign me up! It's free. 
close-link
✓ Join 141,000+ subscribers 
✓ Get KevinMD's 5 most popular stories
Subscribe. It's free.
close-image