Monday, February 10, 2014

2159 Med Files

I enjoy reading little factoids about stuff. Tiny appetizers of news filed with the big news outlets.  Well, maybe not appetizers, since they rarely make you hungry for more, and often make you sick.

Especially when the factoids filed are about the health industry. Med Files as it were.

Case in point. A recent survey in the Journal of Patient Safety concluded that about 440,000 people die as a result of preventable error in U.S. hospitals every year. 

If you don't like to do voluntary math, that means that one out of six deaths in the whole nation can be attributed to mistakes in hospitals. That makes them the third leading cause of death. 


Still, how many of those people would have died if they didn't go to the hospital in the first place? Surgery is always risky and, you  know, mistakes are made. Scalpels are sharp and arteries slippery and  tiny. Even the finest chefs nick off a thumb tip every now and then.

Which is where the insurance industry comes in. They realize there are laws of averages to be played and money to be made. And they are pumped about the new Affordable Care Act, thanks to the insurance exchanges, where people can shop for coverage and they can cut some deals.

Another factoid reported health insurers expect to spend over $500 million on advertising in 2014, more than double what they spent last year. The article said that one company alone, Wellpoint, expects to spend $100 million. 

Healthcare, good or bad, seems to be good for business. And it looks like the people that are going to end up the healthiest are the folks in the business of advertising. 

The Affordable Care Act ---ACA--- AKA backdoor stimulus. File that.

America, ya gotta love it. 

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