Thursday, October 30, 2008

Can Health Plans Explain Why They Aren't Re-Empowering Primary Care?

Brian Klepper and David Kibbe offer a post today on the issue of primary care and the role they believe health plans should be taking to encourage greater involvement with PCPs. They ask why health plans are not being more proactive in partnering with PCPs to control costs.Can Health Plans Explain Why They Aren't Re-Empowering Primary Care?By Brian Klepper & David KibbeSometimes a whisper is more

Health Wonk Review is UP!

David Harlow hosts this week's edition of Health Wonk Review over at his, "HealthBlawg."It is a very comprehensive sample of some of the best recent posts from the world of health blogs.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

The McCain Health Plan's Good Idea for Health Care Reform--Likely Going Down With the Candidate

John McCain would reform the American health care system by providing big tax incentives for it to transition from being employer-based to one built on a system of individual responsibility. He would do this by eliminating the longtime personal tax exemption on employer-provided health insurance and replacing it with a $2,500 individual, and $5,000 family, tax credit for those who have health

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Coventry Health Care Stock Down 48%--"Sort of" No Surprise

Readers of this blog will not be surprised to see Coventry Health Care's stock down 48% this afternoon after its earnings call this morning.That is a 77% drop from their 52-week high.Last July I commented on their earnings call where senior management used the precise financial term "sort of" 63 times to explain their then earnings and operations situation: Required Reading for Health Care

What Impact Do Medical Costs Have on Home Mortgage Foreclosures?

That is the subject of a recent paper by Christopher T. Robertson, Richard Egelhof, & Michael Hoke.The authors studied homeowners going through foreclosure in four states and found a big impact on their being able to stay in their house because of the health care cost issues these families had to deal with.Here is an excerpt from their work:"This preliminary study reveals that the standard

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Demystifying U.S. Health Care Spending--Some Surprising Information

Paul Ginsburg, of the Center for Studying Health System Change, has just authored a new report, "High and Rising Health Care Costs: Demystifying U.S. Health Care Spending." The report is part of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Synthesis Project.This paper reviews existing literature in search of a more clear understanding of U.S. health care costs, the drivers, and the trends.It is an

Friday, October 10, 2008


I have seen an advance copy of this very comprehensive report on the growth in health care spending. If you are in DC next week, I highly recommend this event to you:HIGH AND RISING COSTS: DEMYSTIFYING U.S. HEALTH CARE SPENDINGNew Report Synthesizes the Literature on the Growth of Health Care SpendingConcern about high and rising health care costs in the United States has increased sharply in

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Time to Get Real--On the Economy and Health Care Reform

I just got a call from a reporter at one of the major news organizations to talk about the chances for health care reform.We both commented on the almost surreal environment we are all in. I'm not sure if my friends and neighbors are in denial or just numbed by the recent cascade of events in the financial world. Up on the Hill and in the presidential campaigns it's business as usual when it

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The Big Elephant in the Room During the Presidential Debate

Last night Tom Brokaw asked Barack Obama and John McCain to prioritize health care, Medicare/Social Security, and energy. Neither of them backed down from their promises to deal with all of them.When Jim Lehrer tried to challenge them at the last debate on their ability to do all of the expensive things they want to do he got pretty much the same answer.About the only two people in America that