donderdag 13 augustus 2009

Low Life Expectancy in the United States: Is the Health Care System at Fault?

Life expectancy in the United States fares poorly in international comparisons, primarily because of high mortality rates above age 50. Its low ranking is often blamed on a poor performance by the health care system rather than on behavioral or social factors. This paper presents evidence on the relative performance of the US health care system using death avoidance as the sole criterion. We find that, by standards of OECD countries, the US does well in terms of screening for cancer, survival rates from cancer, survival rates after heart attacks and strokes, and medication of individuals with high levels of blood pressure or cholesterol. We consider in greater depth mortality from prostate cancer and breast cancer, diseases for which effective methods of identification and treatment have been developed and where behavioral factors do not play a dominant role. We show that the US has had significantly faster declines in mortality from these two diseases than comparison countries. We conclude that the low longevity ranking of the United States is not likely to be a result of a poorly functioning health care system.
Read the full report here.

Technologie en werk!

Health 2.0 could shock the system

The internet is changing people’s expectations of what they have a right to know and say. Doctors are horrified that they could be chosen in the same way someone would choose a restaurant – but why not? asks Esther Dyson.

Read the full article here.

De financiƫle crisis!

Islam and heresy - Where freedom is still at stake

Read the complete opinion article in The Economist here.

Generic drugs and competition - Something rotten

Read the complete opinion article in The Economist here.

Economists, economics, and the crisis

Read the complete column by Luigi Spaventa here.

Simple explanations for global financial instability and the cure: Keep it simple

Why is there so much disagreement about the causes of the crisis? This column says that lax monetary policy and excessive leverage are to blame. It argues that many alleged causes are simply symptoms of these policy errors. If that is correct, then the recommended corrective is remarkably simple – there is no need for intrusive regulatory measures constraining non-bank intermediaries and innovative financial instruments. Read the complete column here.

It's Not a Recession, and It's Not Over

Read Posner's commentary here.

The World Recession is Ending: What Next? Becker

Read Becker's commentary here.

Obesity and Healthcare Costs

Read the complete article here.

Health Reform: Simple or Not?

Contrast the commentary of Paul Krugman and Keith Hennessey here.

Health care reform: a free market perspective

Read the complete paper here.

Cap-and-Trade's Unlikely Critics: Its Creators

Read the complete article in the WSJ here.

Something rotten

Regulators should put a stop to tactics that delay the introduction of generic drugs.
Read this article from The Economist here.

Wonky Talk about Carbon Taxes

Read Greg Mankiw's opinion here.

Will technology make workers obsolete?

Read Krugman's opinion here.

Economists, economics, and the crisis

This column outlines tough questions about economics and economists raised by the global crisis.
Read the full article here.