Friday, August 18, 2006
It's a good time to be in cardiology
Two items from the print press, courtesy of Modern Healthcare
's "Daily Dose":
- In Philadelphia, heart-transplant centers abound (Philadelphia Inquirer)
After a massive heart attack last year, doctors told David Kaminstein that he needed a transplant. He had the choice of five hospitals in the Philadelphia area that could do the complicated operation. That's a lot of choices -- some say too many. With the launch of two new heart-transplant centers in recent years, this region has the same number of programs as Los Angeles, though just half the population. Last year, only the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania -- with 49 transplants -- performed more than 13 of the operations. Most healthcare experts say that the more patients a transplant team treats, the better the results.
- Angioplasty rates off the charts in Ohio city (New York Times)
People with blocked coronary arteries can typically choose among drugs, bypass surgery and vessel-clearing procedures like angioplasty. But in Elyria, a small, aging industrial city in northeast Ohio, doctors are much more likely than those anywhere else in the country to steer patients toward angioplasty. No one has accused the doctors involved of any wrongdoing. But the statistics are so far off the charts -- Medicare patients in Elyria receive angioplasties at a rate nearly four times the national average -- that Medicare and at least one commercial insurer are starting to ask questions. And the hospital where most of the procedures take place says it plans to conduct an independent review.
posted by tommayo, 3:45 PM
Health care law (including public health law, medical ethics, and life sciences), with digressions into constitutional law, poetry, and other things that matter