How will telehealth impact health equity?

Will telehealth widen or reduce health disparities? Telehealth may make it easier for individuals who lack transportation to get access to medical care; on the other hand, those without high-speed internet or good cell phone connections could be disadvantaged. In a recent report, NCQA examined the future of telehealth and examined how to make sure…

Opioid use and disability

How is opioid use trending over time? Among individuals who filed for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), a paper by Maestas et al. (2022) finds that: …the prevalence of opioid use among SSDI applicants declined from 33 percent in 2013 to 24 percent in 2018. By contrast, the share of applicants reporting musculoskeletal impairments, which…

IVI Model highlights ACR Conference

As reported in a Academy of Managed Care & Specialty Pharmacy newsletter, titled “Mathematical Model Aims to Improve Cost-Effectiveness of Rheumatology Treatment“, the Innovation and Value Initiative’s is highlighted from the American College of Rheumatology conference.  Here is an excerpt: Biological therapies for moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis have significantly improved treatment and prognosis. However,…

Quality of Life and Prospect Theory

Prospect theory states that individuals view transactions relative to a fixed reference point.  Individuals are risk averse for gains (i.e., they would prefer $10 for sure over a 50/50 of winning $0 or $20) but risk loving over losses (i.e., they would prefer a 50/50 ‘lottery’ of losing $0 or $20 over a sure loss of $10.…

Alzheimer’s Awareness Month

This month is Alzheimer’s awareness month. To draw attention to the burden of irreversible, progressive brain disorder, today the Healthcare Economist is providing some facts about the disease, courtesy of the CDC, the Mayo Clinic, NIH Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive disease that destroys memory and other important mental functions. It’s the most common cause of dementia — a…