TeleHealth bust or the future?

  • 82 percent of U.S. consumers do not use telehealth.
  • In 2016, researchers posing as patients turned to 16 different telemedicine apps to diagnose skin issues. The results? Some of the online doctors misdiagnosed conditions like syphilis, others prescribed unnecessary meds, and two of the sites used doctors who aren’t licensed to practice in the state the patient was located.
  • Even in the digital age, a lot of people simply want to see their doctor in person. They’re not Luddites. But sick, vulnerable people often need in-person reassurance from another human being in the room. A smartphone app simply won’t cut it.
  • Still telehealth is going to find a niche.

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Let’s blame drug companies for OUR poor health

  • Physical inactivity is a primary cause of most chronic diseases.
  • Population levels of physical activity, inadequate to meet current guidelines can place a health burden on the U.S. population that results in higher health care expenditures.
  • Regular physical activity is associated with important health benefits, including reduced risk for premature death, cardiovas­cular disease, ischemic stroke, type 2 diabetes, colon and breast cancers, and depression.
  • A study of one million people has found that physical inactivity costs the global economy $67.5 billion a year in healthcare and productivity losses, but an hour a day of exercise could eliminate most of that.
  • Just 23% of US adults get enough exercise, CDC reports

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The public is not informed about drug pricing

  • On May 11, 2018, President Trump announced his plan titled, “American Patients First,” an effort aimed at lowering the price of prescription drugs.
  • One key element of this plan is to require drug manufacturers to publish list prices for their prescription drugs in television advertisements.
  • Three-fourths (76 percent) of the public favor the federal government requiring prescription drug advertisements to include a statement about how much the drug costs.
  • In a rare instance of bipartisanship, this policy proposal is supported by a majority of Democrats (83 percent), independents (73 percent) and Republicans (72 percent)

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Will the FDA ever get DTC guidelines right?

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Media sensationalism and pharma

  • Today the media attracts readers with sensational headlines,but rarely researches data in-depth to provide readers with unbiased content.
  • Stories attacking drug prices continue to ignore the real problem with healthcare costs such as the costs of preventable health problems and rising costs of a hospital stay.
  • Pharma tries to fight back via PhRMA, but because they are the lobbying arm of the pharmaceutical industry their credibility is very low.
  • The only way to win the hearts and minds of people is by a “human” approach to drug marketing and putting a personality on big drug companies.

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Consumers happy with insurance coverage

Across all demographics, consumers report relatively high satisfaction with health insurance companies, with insurers earning an average rating of 4 out of 5 stars by survey respondents.

Respondents participating in Medicare or Medicaid plans, as well as those in the 73+ age group, consistently rated their health insurer satisfaction higher than all other ages and insurance type.

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