Tag Archives: Medicare

Can’t Afford Medical Care? Welcome to America!

David Blumenthal and colleagues recently wrote a wonderful piece in the New England Journal on the future of Medicare. In it, they present a powerful picture comparing how often people in 11 countries have difficulty accessing medical care because of … Continue reading

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Finally: Something Republicans and Democrats Can Agree On

The United States Medicare program is forbidden, by law, from negotiating with pharmaceutical companies. This was part of a negotiation that was reached at the time that the government, under the leadership of George W. Bush, created Medicare Part D, … Continue reading

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The United States of Short Hospital Stays

We spend more for medical care in the United States than just about anywhere in the world, but it’s not because people in this country get admitted to the hospital and stay for long periods of time. Instead, we have … Continue reading

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Paying for “Patient Satisfaction” Harms Hospitals That Care for Poor People

All else equal, it would be wonderful if hospitals had an incentive to provide high quality care. It does not seem fair to pay the same amount of money to a hospital that does a great job of caring for … Continue reading

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The Future of Disease – in One Picture

Here are some projections on what illnesses Medicare enrollees are experiencing now, and what they will be experiencing 20 years from now, courtesy of the Brookings Institute:

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Are Medicare Prescription Benefits Too Stingy?

The bill she received in the mail revealed a staggering figure — $9,225 for one infusion of Avastin, a chemotherapy drug. And she would need many more such infusions. Fortunately, the dollar amount is what medical experts call a “charge,” … Continue reading

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Medicare, Schmedicare

For more than half a century now, the United States has stood out among its peers in the developed world for having the largest percent of its citizens living without health insurance. But once you turn 65-years-old in America, the … Continue reading

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When It Comes to Controlling Healthcare Costs, the Government Outperforms Private Industry

When I think of the federal government, “efficiency” is rarely the first thing on my mind. But when it comes to controlling healthcare costs, we need to consider the possibility that the federal government is better at this job than … Continue reading

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Bundling Hospital Pay Without Bungling Patient Care

Paying someone to mow your lawn is a pretty straightforward affair. Ryan the lawn guy will look at the lawn size and maybe the hilliness of your yard and you’ll settle on a price for mowing and trimming it. When … Continue reading

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What Happens When We Penalize Hospitals For Harming Patients?

I recently had surgery to relieve an impingement of my left hip. I suffered a complication of the procedure in the hospital where I received the surgery performed follow-up care to treat the complication. As I lay on the table … Continue reading

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