Brainstorm Health: Drug Company Profits, Vaccine Skeptics, Pharma Price Fixing

Brainstorm Health: Drug Company Profits, Vaccine Skeptics, Pharma Price Fixing

Hello and happy Monday, readers. I hope you enjoyed your weekend. Another week, another dire report from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) on the historic measles outbreak winding through America. As of May 10, 839 measles cases have been confirmedacross 23 states, a hike of 75 cases in the past week alone, according to the agency. There are now more than ten times as many confirmed measles cases in 2019 as there were in 2010, when the highly infectious disease had nearly been wiped out in the United States. We’ve…

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Brainstorm Health: Health Policy Valentine’s, NantHealth and Baxter, Cancer Deaths

Brainstorm Health: Health Policy Valentine’s, NantHealth and Baxter, Cancer Deaths

A happy Valentine’s Day to those of you who celebrate! I know, I know… Valentine’s can be a sore subject for some, whether for the inevitable singles-shaming, the overt money-grab nature of the whole affair, etc. But there’s a bright spot in all this for the health care nerds out there – and it’s called #HealthPolicyValentines. This is one of my favorite little social media events. Basically, a bunch of Very Online dorks get together and share lame (but brilliant!) puns that relate to health policy. I invite you to look…

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Brainstorm Health: Antibiotic Resistance, Stem Cell Skin Regeneration, Postpartum Depression Drug

Brainstorm Health: Antibiotic Resistance, Stem Cell Skin Regeneration, Postpartum Depression Drug

That’s where we come in. We mortals help push that fast evolutionary process into warp speed in at least two ways. First, we do it through our long practice of overprescribing and inappropriately prescribing antibiotics to patients. These ineffective treatments often leave in their wake surviving microbes that develop resistance to the drugs used and then pass along those adaptations to subsequent generations. As the saying goes: “Whatever doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger.” (To see how feverishly fast resistant strains can emerge, see this scary timeline.) Secondly, we egg on evolution through another insidious…

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