Thursday, February 28, 2008

Health Care and the Gathering Storm

Here are two very interesting and frightening charts that my good friend Warren Brennan, the CEO of SMA Informatics in Richmond, passed along this AM, with this question, aimed at the CFOs of hospitals and other health care organizations:
What do these mean for bad debt and for the health care sector's future financial performance?
Here's the text that accompanied the chart on wages:
This chart, from the NYT, shows annual growth in real wages. What that means is that workers today are earning significantly less, in real terms, than they were a year ago: their January 2008 earnings were down 19 cents per hour or $8.31 per week from January 2007.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Cognitive Dissonance and HHS' Position on Medicare Physician Data

Just as it launches a new program aimed at allowing local organization access to physician profiling information, HHS has blocked access to that same information by a national consumer group.

Here's a really classical example of a federal regulatory agency holding fast to two opposing ideas at the same time. I wonder what it means?

Last week HHS posted 
an interesting notice announcing a new program that recognizes 14 (presumably) forward-thinking health care coalitions of providers, employers, insurers and consumers, which it refers to Chartered Value Exchanges, or CVEs. (Who comes up with these names?!)