Monday, August 30, 2010

"Trouble Coming Every Day" as Discussed by our Fellow Health Care Skeptics

With apologies to the late Frank Zappa... even though we are going through the dog days of summer, the parade of health care troubles in the news is never ending, so I thought I would recap some of the more interesting issues discussed by some of my fellow health care skeptic bloggers.

We have discussed the ongoing decline of primary care. On DB's Medical Rants, Dr Robert Centor takes on the topic: "The system has, without consciously meaning to, held primary care in contempt." The result is a "quiet rebellion: of primary doctors.

We have discussed whether the currently fashionable idea of "accountable care organizations" (ACOs) might turn out to be a cover for health care oligopolies. See what Paul Levy, CEO of the Beth Israel/ Deaconess Medical Center said about them in his blog, Running a Hospital.

We frequently talk about the manipulation or suppression of clinical research studies by those with vested interests in the results pointing in a particular direction. On the Hooked: Ethics, Medicine and Pharma blog, Dr Howard Brody wondered why the FDA will not even reveal the identities of the clinical researchers who did the studies on which it based its decision to approve the Infuse bone growth enhancement device.

Prof Carl Elliott has done an outstanding job investigating commercially funded and implemented clinical research. Dr Brody reviewed his new book, White Coat, Black Hat.  In the Carlat Psychiatry Blog, Dr Daniel Carlat reviewed Prof Elliott's new article in Mother Jones on how a pharmaceutical company sponsored drug trial went badly awry.

We asked whether the former CEO of a for-profit hospital chain who resigned after the company paid a > $1.7 billion penalty to settle charges of fraud would be a proper candidate to be governor of Florida. After Rick Scott won the Florida Republican primary, Maggie Maher, writing in the Health Beat blog, took on Scott's dubious past as prologue to a worrisome future.

Well I'm about to get sick
From watchin' my TV
Been checkin' out the news
Until my eyeballs fail to see
I mean to say that every day
Is just another rotten mess
And when it's gonna change, my friend
Is anybody's guess

So I'm watchin' and I'm waitin'
Hopin' for the best
Even think I'll go to prayin'
Every time I hear 'em sayin'
That there's no way to delay
That trouble comin' every day
No way to delay
That trouble comin' every day
- Frank Zappa


Anonymous said...

Part of the scheme concocted by the large business interests to dominate the 15% of the GNP. Doctors are now cleaning the floors of the food chain.

Marc said...

Frank Zappa had it right back in the 1960s with the Mothers of Invention. Now we are faced with the mothers of prevention with the GOP.