How will you use the information?
Home genetic testing kits have been available for several years now.
With a drop of spit and a couple hundred bucks, you can learn a lot about your genetic ancestry and your risk for developing certain diseases.
Although I’d accept without question a report that told me which continent my ancestors hailed from, I’d be much less willing to make decisions about …
read on More tests = more money
Anyone who has read my blog over the years knows this is a subject I come back to again and again: the overuse of screening and diagnostic tests.
It’s a problem in our healthcare system for a couple of reasons.
First, the majority of healthcare providers are paid based on volume. In other words, the more patients they see, the more tests they run, the …
read on Don’t get health advice from commercials!
While nursing my cold last weekend, I was watching TV and one prescription drug commercial caught my eye. (One of oh so many. FTC—
please make these go away!)
Actually, the ad didn’t mention any drug by name, but it was sponsored by Gilead Sciences, the makers of the new hepatitis C drug, Harvoni.
The commercial was
aimed at baby boomers, who were advised … read on My goal for 2017? Use as little healthcare as possible
How will healthcare change under a new president and political party?
That’s a question I can’t answer. As
both candidates had multiple-point plans to tweak/improve/repeal/replace the Affordable Care Act, aka the ACA or Obamacare. I wrote in my last post,
But I don’t know what will change or when.
What I know for sure is that for 2017 my …
I’m going with an overdiagnosis theme this week.
Here’s the latest healthcare parody video from pharmacy professor James McCormack, as he continues his much-appreciated effort to raise awareness of overscreening, overdiagnosis, and overtreatment in this country.
As usual, this video is full of supporting statistics and excerpts from leading healthcare journals, so take time to pause the video and really understand the information being shared.
I’m all about high-value, evidence-based healthcare.
I’ve written a lot of posts about the problems, including high costs, of overscreening and overtreating. (We spend hundreds of billions of dollars every year on unnecessary healthcare!)
So I love this video by Andrew Lazris, MD, and Erik Rifkin, PhD. They use the visual of 1000 women sitting in a theater to illustrate why screening mammograms are not the life savers many women …
read on I first posted about Life Line screenings two years ago. I’m re-posting today as this post still gets a lot of traffic and I wanted to reopen the comments. Overtreating, overspending
I just received an invitation in the mail!
Not to a party or a wedding or anything fun, but to a Life Line Screening event being held at a local church. The letter says they’re holding a spot for …
Last week I posted that you should
always ask for a copy of your medical reports.
One of the downsides, of course, is that those reports are often written in medical language that can be confusing or alarming.
But in response to a more savvy patient population, the College of American Pathologists has made a video to explain how the system works and to encourage patients to be involved …
read on An error of omission
A few weeks ago there was a lot of news about how
medical mistakes are the third leading cause of death in the US, behind heart disease and cancer.
A medical error is defined as
“an unintended act (either of omission or commission) or one that does not achieve its intended outcome.”
a Philadelphia paper is highlighting one very common mistake: when you … read on
I’ve been a fan of Peggy Girshman’s science and healthcare writing for a long time, so it was with great sadness that I read about her death in March at the young age of 61.
But in tribute to her award-winning journalism career, which included long stints at both
NPR and Kaiser Health News, she actually wrote her own eulogy!
She wanted to share a few simple lessons …