Category Archives: Uncategorized

Emergency Room Prices: They Are Outrageous, But I Am Not Blaming ER Clinicians

Shutterstock Recently I posted a piece, describing research out of Johns Hopkins, showing that when patients come to ERs – either with no insurance or insurance that is out-of-network – they often face charges that are four, six, or even ten-fold greater … Continue reading

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More Young People Die in America than in Other Rich Countries (Two Pictures Explain Why)

Shutterstock The average life expectancy of American men is almost four years less than men in Switzerland. In fact, among 17 high income countries, U.S. men ranked 17th in life expectancy. American women die young, too, with a life expectancy five years … Continue reading

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Think Fast and You’ll Lose Money Quickly (A Behavioral Economics Explanation of Irrational Gambling)

Shutterstock I have just given you $78. (I’m a generous guy.) Now I’m giving you a choice: you can enter a lottery where you have a 75% chance of losing that $78 and a 25% of keeping it, or you … Continue reading

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The Most Potent Prescription Ever: Take Time for Yourself, As Directed by Your Doctor

Dr. Norah Neylon was caring for a 50-year-old woman who was overwhelmed with care-giving responsibilities of her own. The woman’s mother was experiencing early signs of dementia. Five of her relatives had died in the past three years. She frequently … Continue reading

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Obamacare Is Experimenting on Us (Does That Make Us Frankenstein or Fusilli?)

(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images) Obamacare is a large, unwieldy law. Despite its complexity, most people are familiar with its most important elements. They know it created a marketplace where people can shop for healthcare insurance; many are even aware … Continue reading

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Frank Thomas – Baseball’s ‘Big Hurt’ – Hurts People by Promoting Harmful Supplements

(AP Photo/Kathy Willens) Frank Thomas is a 6 foot 5 inch hulk of a man, the 7th player in MLB history to retire with a batting average greater than .300 and more than 500 home runs. He was also thought of … Continue reading

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Mass Shootings: Tragic for Victims, Great for Gun Manufacturers

In the aftermath of the Parkland High School shooting, we are having lots of debates about the role of the NRA in shaping gun legislation. Politicians who take money from the NRA are said to be in the organization’s pockets. … Continue reading

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The U.S. Healthcare System Is Back to Its High-Spending Ways

Shutterstock For a few years, U.S. healthcare spending seemed to be under control, rising no faster than the economy as a whole. The proportion of our GDP spent on healthcare was flatter than a Nebraska cornfield in November. Here’s how … Continue reading

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A Drug to Treat Cancer and Heart Disease (Miracle Cure or Media Hype?)

In a recent New York Times article, physician-author Siddhartha Mukherjee wrote about a clinical trial that he characterized as “beautiful,” for potentially illuminating a surprising connection between heart disease and cancer. Mukherjee is a justifiably acclaimed writer, who publishes regularly in The New Yorkerand The New … Continue reading

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Want to Avoid Unnecessary Antibiotics? Be Careful What Time of Day You See Your Doctor

Shutterstock Too often, people with viral illness leave the doctor’s office with prescriptions for antibiotics. That’s a real problem. Antibiotics don’t treat viruses, often cause side effects, and when taken too often, lead to drug resistance. So when you have … Continue reading

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