What is the link, if any, between socio-economic status, health behaviors and health status? Researchers have theorized and pondered whether there is correlation or causation and in which direction. A new study from England provides some additional thoughts on the topic.
The Massachusetts Attorney General’s final report on what is driving health care cost increases in Massachusetts confirms the preliminary version’s finding that most of the spending rise is due to nothing more than application of raw provider market power to extract high prices from private payers. Another report also examines hospitals’ pricing practices.
Health Affairs publishes a study with a creative approach to understanding hospital costs, hospital pricing, Medicare payments and market power. The authors’ conclusion is that profitable hospitals have higher expenses because they have more money to spend, and those higher expenses may make them look unprofitable in regard to Medicare payments.
To the delight of some and the dismay of many, the health “reform” bill has passed and been signed. Very few Americans, or Congresspeople, understand what is in the bill and they are going to be very unpleasantly surprised by the taxes, the continued rapid growth in both health costs and insurance premiums and the severe negative consequences for our national finances.
MedPAC had outside researchers look at the effects of paying all physician services in the United States under the Medicare fee schedule. Changes in that schedule were supposed to be creating more equal pay between primary care and specialist physicians, but that does not appear to have happened.
Many telehealth, ehealth, mhealth, etc. product companies have assumed that their products and services will move easily through the FDA or that they don’t even need to interact with the agency. Recent statements by agency personnel, and handling of certain filings, should be warning that dealing with FDA regulations is not that simple.