Is Ebola back?

Troubling news from Liberia. The BBC reports: A second case of Ebola has been confirmed in Liberia, following the death of a teenager from the virus on Sunday, officials say. The country had been declared Ebola-free more than seven weeks ago. The new case was in Nedowein, the same village where the boy died, the…

Health in Baltimore

Baltimore is in the news, and not for the best reasons.  The arrest and eventual death of Freddie Gray have unleashed a series of protests and riots.  One conference where the Healthcare Economist had a poster presentation–the American Heart Association (AHA) Quality of Care and Outcomes Research (QCOR) Scientific Sessions (conference) was cancelled this week due…

Top Health Industries Issues for 2015

What are the top health industry issues for 2015?  A PwC report believes the following 10 issues should top the list: HRI’s top 10 issues for the health industry in the year ahead: Do-it-yourself healthcare. U.S. physicians and consumers are ready to embrace a dramatic expansion of the high-tech, personal medical kit. Wearable technology, smartphone-linked devices…

Health care cost rising by almost 10%

Many times I have been asked whether the Affordable Care Act is a good thing.  The 1 sentence answer is: “Yes, because it expands health insurance coverage to more Americans, but no because it adds many layers of regulation and does little to slow cost growth.”  This last point is rearing its ugly head.  Sally Pipes…

Does Health Insurance Matter?

In this case, the answer is yes: “[Dr. David] Dupree said she sought medical help on June 4, just days after her 65th birthday, when she would qualify for Medicare, the U.S. healthcare program for seniors. ‘The reason she didn’t go earlier was because she had no insurance,’ he said. By now, she weighed more…