Economics 2.0: Are more experienced Heart Surgeons better?

According Economics 2.0’s review of Huckman and Pisano (2006): WIth each additional operation the surgeon preforms in a clinic, the mortality factor of his or her patients there drops by 0.018 percentage points.  When that doctor performs an operation in another clinic during the same three-month period, patients’ death rates decline by only 0.001.   Few heart surgeons are…

Cavalcade of Risk #76

The latest edition of the Cavalcade of Risk is up at My Wealth Builder.  My favorites are: InsureBlog: Will DNA tests replace the Pap smear?  A Bill and Melinda Gates study shows that a DNA test for cervical cancer outpreforms all other tests including the Pap smear.  Colorado Health Insurance Insider: Discusses the risk involved…

Economics 2.0: Status matters more than money

Here’s another excerpt from the Economics 2.0 book. “Scientists Sara Solnick and David Hemenway…questioned students in what kind of world they would rather live–one where they earned $50,000 and everyone else half as much, or alternatively, $100,000 while everybody else would make twice as much.  The majority chose the first option, even though they would…

…paved with Green intentions

Biofuels may not be all they are cracked up to be.  The Economist reports (“Biofools“) that biofuels may actually hurt the environment more than traditional energy sources.    The International Council for Science (ICSU)…report concludes that, so far, the production of biofuels has aggravated rather than ameliorated global warming. In particular, it supports some controversial…

Nature vs. Nuture: Yemeni edition

Experiment: Airlift 50,000 Yemini Jews to Israel and randomly place them with Israeli families. Finding: Nuture matters.  “We find that children who were placed in a good environment (a home with good sanitary conditions, in a city, and outside of an ethnic enclave) were more likely to achieve positive long-term outcomes. They were more likely to…

Physician Prescribing Behavior for NSAIDs

What determines which NSAIDs physicians prescribe? According to the Naik et al. (2009) the following six factors are the most important: Direct Marketing by Pharmaceutical Reps. Patient requests for medication, often driven by direct-to-consumer pharmaceutical advertising. Habits formed during medical school. Often, these habits are influenced by drug rep visits while the physician was in…

Assorted Links

The latest edition of the Health Wonk Review is up at Pizaazz. Regina Herzlinger likes the Swiss health care system.  Maggie Mahar doesn’t. One reason personal health records may fail: “If you know anything about how doctors bill, we use all kinds of codes and associations for those codes that can easily be misinterpreted by…