WhiteCoat

Healthcare Update — 08-20-2012

Sharks beginning to smell blood in the water. Pradaxa lawsuits piling up and likely will result in giant class action suit. One law firm has 70 employees dedicated to Pradaxa litigation alone and the attorney can’t even remember the name of the client the reporter called to ask him about.

Looks like the yolk’s on you. Widely quoted study on how egg yolks are as dangerous as smoking cigarettes was based on a self-reported lifetime history of smoking and egg-eating. The study didn’t take any other variables into account. A doctor who reviewed the data stated ““This is very poor quality research that should not influence patient’s dietary choices.”

I love reading stories like this. Patient comes back to thank ED staff that saved her life. Brings flowers for nurses and a sheet cake for the staff.

New Jersey hospital in dispute with Aetna over bills for patient services. When Aetna doesn’t pay in full, the hospital sends bills for the difference to the patients. Aetna then turns around and tells patient not to pay the bills. And the bills are expensive.

Girlvet has a good explanation of why the medical home concept won’t work … no skin in the game.

Fear the bad outcome. Death of a beautiful philanthropist sparks lawsuit against psychiatrist for prescribing Seroquel, a medication that plaintiff’s attorney John Harwell claimed caused her “sudden cardiac death” which was “the very kind of consequence warned against by the FDA in its required Black Box Seroquel warnings, the ones Dr. Bystritsky either ignored or of which he was ignorant.”
However the product insert for Seroquel has no “black box” warning for cardiac arrhythmias or sudden cardiac death, only a mention of increased mortality in elderly patients and noting that “the extent to which the findings of increased mortality in observational studies may be attributed to the antipsychotic drug as opposed to some characteristic(s) of the patients is not clear.” In addition, Seroquel “was not associated with persistent” changes conduction of electrical impulses within the heart (QT interval prolongation).
Now what was that about being “ignorant,” counsel?

New medical breakthrough in Missouri. According to what doctors have told Missouri Representative Todd Akin, pregnancy from rape is “really rare.” In “legitimate rapes,” the body “has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.” Because “pretend” rapes fool the body into leaving that whole thing running.
Waiting for follow-up confirmatory article on the topic from Jim Dwyer.
Akin later claimed he “misspoke” after getting blasted on social media, but never stated what he really meant to say.

Which party is really going to kill off Medicare? Democrats or Republicans?

I saw the headline “Officials allege $600M Ponzi scheme …” and thought that the feds were finally going to expose everything that was wrong with Medicare. Then I realized the article was talking about some web site and the scam only involved millions of dollars, not billions of dollars.

7 Responses to “Healthcare Update — 08-20-2012”

  1. Matt says:

    “One law firm has 70 employees dedicated to Pradaxa litigation alone and the attorney can’t even remember the name of the client the reporter called to ask him about.”

    Is this surprising? Class actions contain thousands of people by their nature. They’re designed to resolve similar claims of a large number of people. Why would it be surprising that off the top of their head an attorney can’t remember all of the claimants?

    Nor is it surprising that there will be 70 people working on the case. There will be at least that many from the other side as well. Also, in a class action, if the plaintiffs prevail via trial or settlement, it is the job of the attorneys to set up a mechanism for making payments to all potential class members. I don’t know how many people took this drug, but if it’s very many at all 70 will be a modest number based on the work in processing those claims.

    • Matt says:

      Check that – it’s not a class action. It’s multi-district litigation, which is a different animal, but still designed to streamline similar claims. And still has the expenses and resources that would easily require 70 employees. And that one law firm is one of the leaders in mass tort litigation, used to combating extremely well funded defendants with their own scores of lawyers and staff, not to mention their insurers and their marketing departments.

    • throckmorton says:

      The thing about Pradaxa that I have seen is this. Most of the patients on Coumadin are subtherapeutic and therefore throw more clots, but still tend to have bad bleeding complications. The patients on Pradaxa are therapeutic and throw fewer clots but have more bleeding complications because they are therapeutic.

  2. DataGirl says:

    I guess that pregnancy can now be taken as evidence in court of law that a rape was not legit and therefore the case would be thrown out…

    What an idiot.

  3. CholeraJoe says:

    Haven’t y’all heard that a woman can’t get pregnant unless she has an orgasm? I saw it on the internet. BBRRRApppp!

  4. Nurse K says:

    The mechanism that stops rape victims from becoming pregnant is reporting the rape promptly to the authorities and taking the Plan B pill (given by your friendly local sexual assault nurse examiner) after being raped.

  5. MamaOnABudget says:

    I’m not defending what he said at all, but he has stated that he meant to say “forcible rape” – which is a term that has been used by GOP candidates/politicians in the past and is meant to distinguish between rape from an unknown hostile perpetrator and statutory rape, which is often a couple having consensual sexual relations where one is under the legal age of consent in a given jurisdiction.

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