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Showing posts from January, 2010

Feb 2, 2010 Healthcare Reform Discussion Materials

Presenter: KaLynne Harris
For those of you who don't know me, I am a dermatology resident physician at the University of Utah with an interest in healthcare reform. Thanks for the invitation to discuss one of my interests. I am looking forward to the discussion!

Now for the discussion:

The U.S. House and Senate are currently in the midst of formulating a final healthcare bill intended to "reform" an industry that makes up nearly 20% of the national economy.

The readings/viewings below are meant to serve as a primer for a provocative discussion. I hope the discussion will examine 1) what are the problems with the current system, 2) what are the solutions being proposed by Congress, 3) what are other possible solutions and 4) how much will legislative process influence the final reform effort?

Please feel free to review as much or as little of the information below as you wish. If time is limited, I'd recommend reviewing the first three documents first.


1. Basic overview…

February 2nd: Healthcare Reform: What's Wrong and Where do We Go from Here?

As I mentioned tonight, I understand that someone named Kalynne will be leading next month's discussion on Healthcare Reform, but until she provides us with some materials, I wanted to share some of my recent favorite articles on the topic, starting with one entitled, "How American Health Care Killed My Father" from the Atlantic, which does a great job of exploring and explaining one the big reasons that I believe we have so many problems in our healthcare system: Patients are not the customers of healthcare. Patients buy insurance, and insurance companies and increasingly more often the federal government are the true customers of healthcare. Neither patients nor doctors often know the costs (or prices) of the services being delivered. The costs are hidden from us and we are led to believe that someone else is paying. The truth is that we all pay. It's a long article, but, for me at least, a fascinating read, so I wanted to post it now and give you all plent…

January 5, 2010: Poverty

Welcome to 2010 - the dawn of a new year and a new decade full of hope, possibility, and the opportunity to confront big questions anew. From poverty to humor to healthcare, divorce, and doubt - the year for our group is promising (see sidebar for the topic schedule).
We start with poverty - a problem that feels so pervasive, so systemic that it is hard to know where to start. In fact, when our topic host, John Hoffmire, suggested this subject, one of his questions was: "Why do so many of us feel that poverty will never go away?"
We will ask that big question, and dig into some strategies to address poverty both internationally and domestically.
John will give a brief presentation and then lead the discussion. John is the Director of the Center on Business and Poverty at the University of Wisconsin. Please peruse the web site to familiarize yourself with the Center's work. In particular, read through the research questions they are addressing.