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THCB Reader - Issue #61: New Normal in Health Care, For-Profit Critics, & the 2020 COVID19 Election

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THCB Reader

May 28 · Issue #61 · View online
Everything you always wanted to know about the health care system. But were afraid to ask.

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On today’s edition of the THCB Reader: Hans Duvefelt observes that the pandemic has brought forth self-reliance in people and how this attribute can be applied to new ways of preventive and restorative health care; Anish Koka questions the attachment of politics to schools of public health, arguing that most look down on a for-profit enterprise, then when for-profit experts critique scientific literature, their voices are silenced; and Kim Bellard argues that the 2020 election is not just between red and blue states, but also about who is dying the most in each state and which groups have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19. On Episode 125 of Health in 2 Point 00, Jess asks me about Amwell raising $194M although they haven’t gone public yet, Mindstrong getting $100M, Big Sky Health landing $8M, and much more. Also, remember to tune in LIVE today for THCB Gang Episode 11 at 1PM/4PM ET! Joining me today are our regulars: Michael Millenson, Kim Bellard, Ian Morrison and two new guests MD turned consultant Maggi Cary & digital health advisor Steven Wardell. Enjoy! – Matthew Holt

May 22, Hans Duvefelt
With COVID-19, the social experiment we stumbled into has already demonstrated the value of self-sufficiency and it has started to shake the notion that our society can continue to rely on the medical system to fix just about any medical problem we might develop. Imagine how our newfound sense of self-reliance can create a new view of preventive and restorative healthcare. It is time to reimagine what kind of healthcare system we really need. One which shores up a society with less chronic disease, more able-bodied workers, a working public health system and doctors with more time to help patients avoid ill health. 

May 25, Anish Koka
It’s well known that schools of public health have a certain politics attached to them that overwhelmingly favor a progressive ideology. The bias, in this case, is an outgrowth of a strongly held public health belief that health care as a for-profit enterprise is a problem to be rectified. So when experts in the for-profit space begin critiquing scientific literature (namely, a recent JAMA article which has since been retracted), Anish questions: shouldn’t bias from ideologically diverse voices be welcome in research? Ideally, public policy research would be a self-correcting enterprise where ideological diversity combined with subject matter expertise allowed for robust critique and analysis.  

May 27, Kim Bellard 
Beyond perception, beyond ideology, there are starkly different realities for red and blue America right now. It is not just that Democrats and Republicans disagree on how to reopen businesses, schools and the country as a whole, and it’s not only about red states versus blue states; it is also about who is dying in each. People of color have been impacted much more, whether that’s in terms of fatalities or the economic toll. A disease like COVID-19 that disproportionately impacts minorities hurts Democrats more than Republicans, whether outright through fatality or just in reducing turnout.
Livongo is working to #SilenceNoisyHealthcare. Visit for more details.
Livongo is working to #SilenceNoisyHealthcare. Visit for more details.
THCB Gang, Episode 11 LIVE 1PM PT/4 PM ET 5/28 – The Health Care Blog
Health in 2 Point 00, Episode 125 | Amwell, Mindstrong, Big Sky Health, Medwing
Health in 2 Point 00, Episode 125 | Amwell, Mindstrong, Big Sky Health, Medwing
The Health Data Goldilocks Dilemma: Sharing? Privacy? Both? – The Health Care Blog
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