Category Archives: Uncategorized

The Surprising Truth About The Rising Price Of Generic Medications

In recent years, it feels like we’ve been inundated by stories of greedy pharmaceutical companies jacking up the price of important generic medications. In 2015, “Pharma Bro” Martin Shkreli, recognized that no other generic companies were manufacturing Daraprim, a drug … Continue reading

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Want to Reduce Opiate Overdoses? Legalize Medical Marijuana

I have written about medical marijuana before, relaying research findings showing that the legalization of medical marijuana is associated with a reduction in use of pain medications. Here’s another piece of evidence leading to a similar conclusion, from a study … Continue reading

Posted in Health Policy, Uncategorized

Insurers Are Not Paying Enough For HPV Vaccines – And Our Kids Are Paying The Price

The HPV vaccine saves lives. It does so by reducing a person’s chance of being infected by the human papilloma virus, a virus that causes a whole range of cancers including, most importantly, cervical cancer. Vaccinate your teenage daughter against … Continue reading

Posted in Health & Well-being, Health Policy, Uncategorized

How Hospitals Turn Charity Care Into Profits — At Taxpayers’ Expense

Sometimes it is hard for hospitals to provide expensive care to poor patients. When a low-income patient needs $20,000 of chemotherapy, a hospital loses money if that patient cannot pay for the medicine, or pays through Medicaid, with its relatively … Continue reading

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Why You Might Get Kidney Cancer If You Move To Florida

About one in fifty people reading this essay will be diagnosed with kidney cancer at some time in their life. In fact, one out of one people writing this essay has already been diagnosed with kidney cancer. (I had a small tumor … Continue reading

Posted in Critical Decisions, Health Policy, Uncategorized

How Suntanning Both Increases And Reduces Your Chance Of Dying From Melanoma — A Mystery Solved

Quick quiz question: two people are diagnosed with melanoma – Sarah Sunburn, an adamant sun-worshipper, and Paula Pale-All-The-Time, a fanatical sun-avoider. Who is more likely to die of the disease? The answer is pale-faced Paula. Surprised? Let me unpack this … Continue reading

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Obamacare: Death By A Thousand Advertising Cuts

Obamacare is still the law of the land, but the Trump administration and Republicans in Congress are determined to undermine the law in the hope it will cease to function. One of the strategies is to cut advertising funding for … Continue reading

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Medical Bankruptcy Is Much Less Common Than Elizabeth Warren Tells You

Elizabeth Warren describes medical bills as “the leading cause of personal bankruptcy” in the United States. She bases that opinion in part on her own research, in which she and her collaborators surveyed people who had experienced personal bankruptcy, asked them whether they’d … Continue reading

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A Patient Complained about the Cost of Her Medical Care. Here’s How Her Doctor Responded.

The oncologist had prescribed Xgeva hoping it would strengthen her bones while also delaying the progression of Angela Kahn’s breast cancer. But Kahn (a pseudonym) couldn’t get over the price of the drug. Before the oncologist had a chance to … Continue reading

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How Doctors Turn Patients into Lobbyists

I recently spoke with a Washington Post reporter about a troubling practice. Physicians convince their patients to sign letters to influence public policies the patients often don’t understand. Here is the beginning of that piece. Check it out: A proposal … Continue reading

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