I speak to people in the pharmaceutical industry much more than folks who develop medical devices. I know how pharma researchers spend years and hundreds of millions of dollars trying to develop a useful, safe new drug that the FDA will approve for marketing. Certainly there are big payoffs, but the road is filled with potholes and trapdoors and the analysis by the FDA is rigorous.
But for years we’ve been hearing that it is much less rigorous when it comes to medical devices. Artificial hip joints and stents to open blocked arteries fall into this category. And recently, the less stringent review process has been highlighted in the news. Metal-on-metal hip joints are being removed from patients who had them implanted. They thought Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Andrew's Blog*
ACP Internist continues its look at subjects important to internal medicine. Today, we follow the money.
The U.S. could save one-third of the $15 billion spent on stents annually if all doctors followed COURAGE trial conclusions and used generic drugs first, and stents only if pain persists. William Boden, FACP, headed that trial, and now says that reimbursement drives clinical practice. Dartmouth’s Elliott Fisher, MD, says this “perverse incentive” doesn’t improve health care. (Wall Street Journal, CNN)
Physician reimbursement reform
Following the Food and Drug Administration’s record-breaking budget allocation, seven former agency commissioners and interest groups are still saying it’s not enough to make up for years of underfunding. Even regulated industries want more funding to boost the public perception of product safety. (ACP Internist, Los Angeles Times)
*This blog post was originally published at ACP Internist*
February is National Heart Disease Awareness Month, and so I invited Dr. Bill Kussmaul to make me aware of some of the hottest controversies in cardiology. His tips and insights are invaluable to busy primary care physicians looking for the bottom line on thorny issues. Dr. Kussmaul is the Associate Director of the Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory at Hahneman Hospital in Philadelphia and an Associate Editor of the Annals of Internal Medicine. You can listen to our conversation or read my transcript below:
Controversy #1: Cholesterol and Statin Therapy
Dr. Val: Who should receive high-dose statin therapy? Read more »