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Archive: September, 2011

Health Insurance Premiums Skyrocketed Last Year – Who’s to Blame?

Thursday, September 29, 2011, 9:07 PM
We’re paying more and getting less when it comes to health insurance. A survey by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that premiums for employer-sponsored coverage jumped by 9% for families and 8% for individuals this year. Last year, family premiums rose by only 3%, and over the past few years... Read more

Lurie foundation gives Children's Hospital $2.5 million

Wednesday, September 28, 2011, 7:12 PM
The Lurie Family Foundation on Wednesday announced a $2.5 million gift to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia for autism studies. Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie has an autistic brother, and the family has given a total of nearly $4.5 million to the hospital’s Center for Autism Research in... Read more

Can Pharma Thrive With a Plutonomy Strategy?

Wednesday, September 28, 2011, 6:00 AM
It's widely known that the top 1% of US households own more than half the nation’s equities and control more wealth than the bottom 90%. Five years ago a group of analysts at Citibank prepared a report for their wealthiest clients that sought to base an investment strategy on the premise that... Read more

Catching post-discharge medication errors can reduce hospital readmissions

Monday, September 26, 2011, 6:00 AM
If you or a family member has been hospitalized, the first few days after returning home can be confusing. In fact, let’s use the word “risky” when it comes to medication use. One study showed that about 20% of patients experience adverse events within 3 weeks of discharge, with... Read more

Is Medicare Getting Too Complicated?

Friday, September 23, 2011, 6:00 AM
If you’re over 65, there’s a good chance you find your Medicare coverage confusing. In a recent survey by the National Council on Aging, only half of seniors said that they understand how it works. The survey found large gaps in knowledge about Medicare’s basic structure. Only 36%... Read more

Caution on How You Get Rid of Bed Bugs

Thursday, September 22, 2011, 3:07 PM
Bed bugs are unpleasant in the extreme, but taking shortcuts to get rid of them can be worse: Federal investigators combing a database that includes just 12 states found 111 cases of acute illness due to bed bug pesticides between 2003 and 2010, mostly in the last few years. Nearly 40 percent of the... Read more

If Pharma Has a Better Way to Play the Villain, Let's Hear It

Wednesday, September 21, 2011, 6:00 AM
A posting here in May discussed Congressman Paul Ryan's soak-the-middle-class proposal to cripple Medicare by turning it into a program that would give people vouchers to buy inadequate, private health insurance. The thrust of the article was a suggestion that pharma could elevate its poor image among... Read more

How an acid wart remover can still wind up in your eyes

Monday, September 19, 2011, 6:00 AM
Durezol is a steroid eye drop prescribed to reduce swelling and pain after eye surgery. Unbelievably, there’s a wart remover with a very similar name called Durasal. The wart remover is a strong salicylic acid (26%) solution. Both products come in small applicator bottles. You can guess what... Read more

Pennsylvania Patients Will Soon Get to See Their Own Lab Results

Friday, September 16, 2011, 6:00 AM
How soon do you want to know the results when your doctor orders blood work? In all but 13 states, you can get them straight from the lab. Unfortunately, Pennsylvania is not one of them – until now. The Obama administration announced a proposed new rule to give patients everywhere in the country... Read more

Children's Hospital is Closing its McDonald's Restaurant

Friday, September 16, 2011, 5:59 PM
The McDonald’s Restaurant in Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia will close at midnight Monday after 34 years, but it’s not about the food. Indeed, the hospital is adding milkshakes to its food court menu to make up for the loss. The hospital needed space for a growing outpatient... Read more
About this blog

Check Up is a blog for savvy health consumers, covering the latest developments, discoveries, and debates from the Philadelphia area and beyond.

Portions of this blog may also be found in the Inquirer's Sunday Health Section.

Charlotte Sutton Health and Science Editor, Philadelphia Inquirer
Tom Avril Inquirer Staff Writer, heart health and general science
Stacey Burling Inquirer Staff Writer, neuroscience and aging
Marie McCullough Inquirer Staff Writer, cancer and women's health
Don Sapatkin Inquirer Staff Writer, public health
David Becker, M.D. Board certified cardiologist, Chestnut Hill Temple Cardiology
Michael R. Cohen, R.Ph. President, Institute for Safe Medication Practices
Daniel R. Hoffman, Ph.D. President, Pharmaceutical Business Research Associates
Hooman Noorchashm, M.D., Ph.D. Cardiothoracic surgeon in the Philadelphia area
Amy J. Reed, M.D., Ph.D. Anesthesiologist and Surgical Intensivist in the Philadelphia Area
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