Monday, January 29, 2007

Health Care for the 21st Century: a call to action Does anyone know what John Kitzhaber's been up to since he stopped being governor of Oregon? The Archimedes Movement. Check it out.

Monday, January 15, 2007

AHLA's Health Lawyers Weekly (12 Jan 07)

From the January 12 issue of Health Lawyers Weekly (reprinted with AHLA's permission):Top StoriesHouse Passes Bill Requiring Medicare Prescription Drug Price Negotiation; Bush Threatens VetoPresident George W. Bush has threatened to veto a bipartisan bill that would require the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to negotiate for lower prescription drug prices on

Sunday, January 14, 2007

GAO reports from November

Last week the Government Accountability Office listed its November 2006 health-related reports:End-Stage Renal Disease: Bundling Medicare's Payment for drugs with Payment for All ESRD Services Would Promote Efficiency and Clinical Flexibility. GAO-07-77, November 13, 2006 (35 pages). Renal Disease: Medicare Payments for All ESRD

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Health Affairs' 25 most-read articles of 2006

Here's an offer that's too good to pass up:Health Affairs’ 25 Most-Read Articles From 2006To celebrate the start of Health Affairs’ 25th anniversary year, we list here the 25 most frequently viewed articles published in 2006. In 2006, Health Affairs’’ Web readership grew to 12 million pageviews.The paper on nurse staffing in hospitals by Jack Needleman and colleagues took the top spot for a paper

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

AHLA's Health Lawyers News (5 January 2007)

From the January 5 issue of Health Lawyers Weekly (reprinted with AHLA's permission):Top StoriesMedicaid Commission Issues Final Report On Medicaid ReformThe Medicaid Commission said "fundamental reform" is needed to shore up the long term sustainability of the federal-state Medicaid program in a final report issued December 29 that details its recommendations for achieving that end. Full Story

Monday, January 8, 2007

Another angle on middlemen

As noted here before (and before), middlemen have the potential to increase the efficiency of the health care system, but they can also be a drag on the system. Paul Krugman last week* noted that the privatization of Medicare, including (but not limited to) the use of pharmacy benefits managers in the Part D pharmaceutical benefit, has not worked out so well. As an example, he notes that the

Tuesday, January 2, 2007

HIPAA privacy rule: Is it time for (re)reform?

Kaiser's Health Policy Daily has a nice summary of a Wall Street Journal article (link good for 7 days) on HIPAA's privacy loopholes that appeared the day after Christmas:"[I]ncreasingly complex confidentiality issues" in federal medical privacy rules "are affecting patients and their insurance coverage," the Wall Street Journal reports. According to the Journal, complaints of privacy violations

Monday, January 1, 2007

Krugman touts single-payer system

This is definitely a dog-bites-man story, but it's a new year, so I suppose it's appropriate that Paul Krugman should start 2007 with a theme that was one of his favorites in 2006 [link; it's a TimesSelect item, so unfortunately it's available only for subscribers):The U.S. health care system is a scandal and a disgrace. But maybe, just maybe, 2007 will be the year we start the move toward