Thursday, 26 January 2012

Dialysis companies grilled over rising costs

The Oregon Medical Insurance Pool (OMIP) decided that, when its dialysis costs rose from $7 million to $20 million, in a mere three years, it was time to have a word with the two biggest dialysis companies and the American Kidney Fund. After all this represents inflation of around 100% per year! Not quite what the rest of the world is seeing as an inflation rate.

According to an article in Oregon Live, OMIP board members cited figures showing dialysis companies charge OMIP dialysis patients as much as 15 times what they charge Medicare. Dialysis companies said that's because they lose money on Medicare rates, which are set by federal law. But the high rates also means the program's patients can hit their $2 million OMIP coverage limit in a few years, leaving them without health insurance.

Naturally OMIP are concerned about this state of affairs, and are trying to persuade the big two, Fresenius and DaVita, to lower their rates to something comparable with the rates paid by Medicare.

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

KDN's Greatest Hits

As it's January, and due to the way the blog moves posts out of sight (but not site), I thought a review of our most popular posts would be in order. It will also enable you to easily look back at posts you may have missed. (Or why not deliberately look at some of the older posts from the selection in the Blog Archive list on the left?)

By far and away the most popular post is
Cost comparison of peritoneal dialysis vs hemodialysis from December 2010, with twice the number of views of the next most popular post. Clearly something people are very interested in.
Are patients getting treatment dictated by the profit margin or its suitability?

In second place we have
Vitamin E helps fight muscle cramps during dialysis, a post from November 2009. You'd expect some older posts to have generated a fair number of views, but nothing compares to the younger post above.

In third place it's
Implantable Artificial Kidney - coming soon from September 2010. An article like this can be expected to be popular of course, but we have seen similar claims dating back several years as most people would know.

The fourth most popular post is
News Release on Wearable Kidney Belt, from February 2010. The more astute readers might be noticing a trend at this point, and wondering what's coming next.

And the trend spotters would be right, because in fifth place it's
Portable Dialysis Machine, from December 2009.

Finally, as these are more established posts and you'd expect them to have generated more hits over time, what was the most popular post from 2011? You might be able to predict it...
AWAK testing a portable dialysis unit, from August 2011. and this was the ninth most popular post overall. Not bad for such a recent post.
That trend in popularity just continues, doesn't it...

The next most popular post from 2011 wasn't even in the top ten
Diet that reversed kidney failure in diabetic mice, from June 2011. Unfortunately the researchers involved admitted that it was questionable whether the diet model used would be sustainable in humans, even in the short term.

So, an annual list of seven - bet you've read so many top ten lists by now that something different is appreciated. Who will be the winners next year? At this rate the current No. 1 and 2 are likely to stay there, as for the rest - that's up to you.

Happy New Year