The pandemic continues to make life seem like a lemon for millions of Americans and others across the world. But this week, lemonade was made from some of the lemons. According to three studies released today, vaccine boosters provide robust protection against severe disease from the omicron variant. Also this week, a new study lays to rest the question of the vaccine and fertility. The vaccines don’t affect fertility in either men or women, new research shows, but coronavirus infection could cause short-term fertility problems in men.
The pandemic has soured the economy and pushed U.S. inflation to 7% in December, the largest 12-month increase since1982. Americans are facing higher prices for food, gasoline, and other necessities that are not offset by increased wages. Supply changes have resulted in shortages of not only consumer goods but critical business and manufacturing supplies. The frustration from the pandemic that seems to never end has resulted in another shortage – civility.
This Weekend Reading series begins with Footing the Bill, with articles on plan sponsors’ cost drivers such as Ivermectin and surgical infections, as well as plan design benchmarks. Next check out In a Pinch, which looks at some of the problems caused by our fragmented health care delivery system and lack of universal health care coverage. In Civility Costs Nothing, explore articles on how civility, or the lack of it, impacts physical and mental health. Finally, do not miss the Dollars & Donuts – and my person favorite – What’s Up With the Pairing of Chili and Cinnamon Rolls?
I hope you enjoy the following:
1. Footing the Bill
- University of Michigan Health: Ivermectin Rx for COVID-19: Insurance coverage doesn’t match evidence. Study shows health plans paid most of the cost of ivermectin, despite drug’s lack of effect on COVID-19.
- The Commonwealth Fund: State Trends in Employer Premiums and Deductibles, 2010–2020
- The Commonwealth Fund: Trends in Employer Insurance Costs, 2010–20: Michigan
- Yale School of Medicine: Surgeries Fall Short of Infectious Diseases Society Guidelines One Third of the Time, Study Finds
- Becker’s Hospital Review: 20 hospitals, health systems that provide the most ‘unnecessary’ care: Johns Hopkins
2. In a Pinch
- NPR: Essential workers face a tough choice: Find a test or miss work
- Kaiser Health News: App Attempts to Break Barriers to Bankruptcy for Those in Medical Debt
- AMA Journal of Ethics: Time for Dental Care to Be Considered Essential in US Health Care Policy
- PR Newswire: Aflac launches initiative to help close the gap for millions of Americans facing medical debt
3. Civility Costs Nothing
- Ornish Lifestyle Medicine: Why Civility Makes Us Healthier
- The Big Think: Don’t be rude to your doctor. It might kill you. Dealing with rudeness can nudge you toward cognitive errors
- Cleveland Clinic: 8 Signs of a Toxic Work Environment. A hostile work environment can be harmful to your health and wellness
- New York Times: A Nation on Hold Wants to Speak With a Manager. In our anger-filled age, when people need to shop or travel or cope with mild disappointment, they’re “devolving into children.”
4. Dollars & Donuts
- ChatterSource: Why Getting A Bigger Pizza Is Always A Better Value
- Omni Calculator: Pizza Size Calculator
- 24/7 Wall St: The Best Donut Shop in Every State
- Smithsonian Magazine: What’s Up With the Pairing of Chili and Cinnamon Rolls? Why kids across the western United States came to find the unlikely combination in their school lunches
Enjoy your weekend!
Suzanne Daniels, Ph.D.
P.O. Box 1416
Birmingham, MI 48012
Office: (248) 792-2187
Email: [email protected]