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THCB Reader - Issue #67

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THCB Reader

July 9 · Issue #67 · 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: Saurabh Jha sits down with John Ioannidis, professor of epidemiology at Stanford University, who questions if the lockdown caused more harm than good in trying to control coronavirus; Michel Accad discusses the relevance of equipoise to the clinical scientist in the age of COVID19; and Ray Constantini calls on Congress to adjust the CARES Act to include all types of telehealth solutions, including asynchronous services & more. On Episode 133 of Health in 2 Point 00, Jess and I discuss Genome Medical raising an additional $14M, the FCC adding $198M to their rural health program, and Anthem’s PBM IngenioRx acquiring pharmacy startup Zipdrug. Remember to join us for #THCBGang Episode 17, LIVE TODAY at 1PM PT/4PM ET. THCB’s EIC, Zoya Khan, will be chatting with our regulars: patient advocate Grace Cordovano, health economist Jane Sarasohn-Kahn, WTF Health Host Jessica DaMassa, and guests: Tina Park, partner at Diagram, & Shannon Brownlee, Senior VP at the Lown Institute. – Matthew Holt

July 9, Saurabh Jha
As the country awoke to an unprecedented economic lockdown in the middle of March, John Ioannidis, professor of epidemiology at Stanford University and one of the most cited physician scientists, questioned the lockdown and wondered if we might cause more harm than good in trying to control coronavirus. What would normally pass for skepticism in the midst of uncertainty of a novel virus became tinder in the social media outrage fire. Saurabh sits down with Dr. Ioannidis to understand the pushback against him—and more broadly, the way academic discourse shapes the public’s perception of policy.

July 8, Michel Accad
Pandemics are not friendly to equipoise. In the age of COVID-19, patients, clinicians, scientists, and even politicians are restless and ready to pounce at the first bit of hopeful news, even if that news is questionable: “We cannot wait for perfect data!” is the motto of the day. There is an inherent tension between doctoring and experimenting. While equipoise is a helpful concept that should not be abandoned, its relevance is to the scientist. The fact that the physician and the clinical scientist share the same playpen, or that one and the same person may have a dual role, should not obscure that they each have a radically different task at hand.

July 3, Ray Constantini
If COVID-19 has a silver lining, it is that forced social distancing has accelerated telehealth adoption by as much as 20 years. That said, in the rush to implement telehealth solutions, CMS and many providers—failed to include asynchronous virtual care as a viable alternative to in-person care. Now is the time for Congress to take action and adjust the CARES Act to include ALL types of telehealth solutions, including virtual care like asynchronous telehealth, and to compensate providers for using it accordingly. These telehealth policy changes should be permanent – our new normal. 
Livongo is working to #SilenceNoisyHealthcare. Visit livongo.com for more details.
Livongo is working to #SilenceNoisyHealthcare. Visit livongo.com for more details.
THCB Gang Episode 17, LIVE 7/9 1PM PT/4PM ET – The Health Care Blog
Health in 2 Point 00, Episode 133 | PBMs galore, Genome Medical, & the FCC’s Rural Health Program
Health in 2 Point 00, Episode 133 | PBMs galore, Genome Medical, & the FCC's Rural Health Program
The Health Data Goldilocks Dilemma: Sharing? Privacy? Both? – The Health Care Blog
We hope you enjoyed the pieces and videos we had for you today. As always, if you have a piece you would like us to consider, please email zoya@thehealthcareblog.com and if you are looking to reach 20K of the smartest people in health care on this newsletter, or 80-100K each month on the site, please think of sending some of your marketing $$$ our way! Here’s our prospectus.

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