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Healthcare Update – 12-14-2015

A Kaiser poll shows that 63% of Kentucky residents are in favor of expanding the Medicaid program in Kentucky. That same poll (Figure 12) shows that 65% of Kentucky residents are either on Medicaid or knows an adult benefiting from Medicaid. Won’t anyone who receives something for free be in favor of receiving more of that thing for free?
Oh and don’t be bothered by the fact that a third of doctors won’t see new Medicaid patients. Everyone is getting INSURANCE!

Garbage in, garbage out. Feds try to trash doctors the way that they trash hospitals by comparing “quality” metrics, but data incomplete, misleading, and suffers from “widespread accuracy issues.” Ya don’t say! AMA response here.
Does anyone else find it odd that the federal government doesn’t have a “legislator compare” or a “federal department compare” web site?

If a doctor or pharmacist sold drugs to a patient knowing that the drugs were of no clinical benefit, they’d be thrown in prison. When drug companies do it and the FDA allows it … meh. Business as usual. Novartis gets repeated approval from the FDA for its cancer drug Afinitor – despite serious side effects in 30% of patients and potentially fatal lung condition in 20% of patients. Oh, and patients taking the drug don’t live any longer than patients who don’t take the drug. Living out your remaining years paying $450/pill for something that causes “mouth sores, infections, fatigue, diarrhea, abdominal pain, fever, cough, headache and decreased appetite” with no improvement in survival. What a deal! To paraphrase Leona Helmsley, only the “little people” are subject to the laws around here.

Tomorrow may be the sign up deadline for Obamacare, but for some people there may be another option – join a health care ministry. Look into it. It could save you a lot of money.

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