I put Middle Earth Journal in hiatus in May of 2008 and moved to Newshoggers.
I temporarily reopened Middle Earth Journal when Newshoggers shut it's doors but I was invited to Participate at The Moderate Voice so Middle Earth Journal is once again in hiatus.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Sales Pitch for Health Wonk Review

When I began blogging years ago I discovered groups of bloggers taking turns hosting "carnivals" of others in their subject areas. The rise of social media has taken a toll on blogging in general but a the health care people have kept in touch by taking turns hosting Health Wonk Reviews. These usually bi-weekly summaries have been going on for years and show no sign of slowing down. The subjects are varied and the links are not intended for lay people, but since this is the Web anyone can read what is being discussed. Whoever is playing host tries to be as polite as possible when linking another place with whom he or she does not agree. But in the same way that we all know when to hold our tongues around certain neighbors of family members, professional protocols are generally respected.

All that is by way of introduction to a string of questions posed by Maggie Mahar promoting the current Health Wonk Review.  I'm linking this for that tiny subset of readers whose curiosity may lead them down the professional health care trail. I have been following the subject since well before PPACA was ever conceived and I can assure anyone that I am still more ignorant than informed about many topics. But I have learned enough to know how ignorant most critics of Obamacare really are -- including many professionals --  and how transparent that ignorance seems to many other professionals. I, by the way, am not a professional but I am in solid agreement with that first camp.

Here are Maggie's questions which are addressed in the current Health Wonk Review.
  • Did the LA Times Sensationalize Blue Cross of California’s rate increases?
  • Why doesn’t President Obama require that CMS negotiate for drug discounts –a move that would take us $200 billion closer to a cliff-avoiding deal?
  • How do commercial insurers evaluate physician quality?
  • How can President Obama best address the Newtown shooting?
  • Pfizer’s 13th Legal Settlement –Will it be Enough to End the Impunity?
  • Is the conventional wisdom that “Less Than One Percent of Pain Suffers Become Addicted” True?
  • Why Does the Cost of a Doctor’s Visit Rise When Hospitals Buy Physician’s Offices?
  • What Should Health Insurance Cover? Why Do We Need Co-Pays and Deductibles?
  • How Will the New Federal Guidance on Medicaid Expansion Help Some States Move Forward Quickly?
  • What Did Don Berwick and Clifford Marks Take Away From a Recent Conference on Transforming Health Care?
  • Why Is Care for Patients Suffering From Depression Still Inadequate?
  • What Are The Best and the Brightest Social Media Writers and Users Thinking?
  • How Will Medicare’s New Free Annual Wellness Visit Improve Care and Save Money?
  • How Can the Administration Persuade Reluctant Governors to Expand Medicaid? Can the National Governor’s Association Help?
  • What Can We Do About the Growing Threat of Hackers, Healthcare Data and Medical ID Theft?
Readers interested in any of these questions now have a place to dig around for an answer from outside your gossip circle who is likely a professional.

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