Monday, December 5, 2011

Monday Musings Already?

Monday already? Oh, boy -- another long and busy week ahead. But first, the news:

Congrats to our friend Mike McCready for running the Las Vegas half marathon to benefit Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis.

On his way out of office (see Friday's post), Don Berwick said 20 to 30 percent of health spending is wasteful. We have to find a way to get that under control.

Rumor has it that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will announce a compromise on the payroll tax cut extension today that will pay for the tax "in a serious way," whatever that means. John Boehner may make his own proposal -- and there may be a package that includes extending unemployment and further delaying the huge cut to physician reimbursement rates under Medicare.

A health reform lawsuit plaintiff has her case mooted out, meaning she's no longer a small business owner and instead, she'd be eligible for subsidies to help her pay for health insurance, thereby negating her claim that she'd somehow be harmed by the law.

Juan Williams says neither Mitt nor Newt can get away with claiming they were against a health insurance mandate. It would be interesting if we had a GOP presidential candidate who favored the mandate, no?

HHS did not change the medical loss ratio (percentage of premium dollars spent on health care) despite the National Association of Insurance Commissioners' vote to shift agents/brokers to the health care side instead of administration. This is great news. The final rule also requires public disclosure of how health care dollars are spent.

Can strep cause an illness characterized by tics and obsessive-compulsive disorder, called PANDAS? I have 3 insurance appeals pending involving PANDAS, so I say yes.

Cancer patients who are obese or have type 2 diabetes have a worse prognosis than others.

More exercise means better sleep.

Med students wash their hands, but the habit decreases as they get more experience.

A patient safety expert has his own brush with the medical establishment -- and was pleased.

And that's it for today -- a light start to the news week. Have a great day. Jennifer

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