Home / Healthcare Updates / Healthcare Update — 02-24-2014

Healthcare Update — 02-24-2014

More medical posts from around the web over on my other blog at EPMonthly.com

The Golden Rule shows its face again. Australian government decides to spend $500 million less than it promised to fund public hospitals. As a result, the patients who depend on those medical services have difficulty accessing care. The median wait time (meaning half of patients wait longer, half wait less) was 36 days. More than 18,000 patients waited longer than 12 months for their surgeries.

Doctors find 44 year old fetus inside of woman. Yes, you read that right. 44 years old. Mother got fed up when kid kept kicking her in the kidneys and telling her to drink more coffee.

California is gearing up for a ballot initiative to increase the noneconomic damage limits on medical malpractice cases. The limits are currently at $250,000 and haven’t changed since 1975. In addition, the ballot proposal would also require hospitals to randomly test doctors for drug use and require physicians to check a statewide prescription drug database before prescribing narcotics.
My guess is that those additions are red herrings. The proponents will give in on the drug testing and database check requirements in order to get the damage caps lifted.
Then again, requiring random drug and alcohol testing on every attorney who enters a courthouse … now that’s not such a bad idea. Maybe they could add that to the ballot initiative as well.

More Obamacare Chronicles. Four hospitals in Georgia have closed in the past 2 years due to payment cuts from the Affordable Care Act. Small hospitals in critical access areas, so not a lot of patients affected, but makes one question how much longer the larger hospitals will be able to stay afloat in areas with high uninsured/underinsured populations.

Remember Jahi McMath? The 13 year old girl who went in for tonsil surgery, then had postoperative problems and ended up being declared brain dead? Her mother says that she is “much better physically since she has left Children’s Hospital and I see changes that give me hope.

Intuitive Surgical Inc., the company that makes the da Vinci robot, is doing more advertising to increase the acceptance of a machine that not only doesn’t improve outcomes but that has had significant downsides. Now several surgeons at the University of Illinois are in trouble not only for endorsing a commercial product, which is a violation of the U of I policy, but also for failing to disclose that they were being paid thousands of dollars by the company in consulting fees.

I absolutely love this idea. Illinois Representative Rodney Davis introduced a bill that would require White House meals to follow the same USDA guidelines required for school lunch and breakfast programs. A recent dinner with the French President Francois Hollande topped 2500 calories – which is double the DAILY caloric intake that the First Lady touted in her anti-obesity campaign.
So far the bill has 8 co-sponsors and none of them are Democrats. I can’t understand why.

Also have to love the First Lady’s Twitter photo of the First Dogs sitting at an ornate table wearing diamonds for the dinner with President Hollande.

Want to lose weight? Low fat dairy helps cut calories, but according to multiple studies, people who consume whole milk and butter are less likely to become obese.

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