Three fiscal quarters into my new role at work I am pleasantly surprised to discover that CDHPs have quietly evolved from a disingenuous cost-sharing scheme foisted on workers by employers (see the Pollyannaish video, below) to a proactive, multifaceted approach intended to achieve “a pluralistic system that empowers patients and demands accountability from individuals and the health system, while adequately supporting the needs of the disadvantaged.”
Moreover, the criteria for determining whether or not these lofty goals are met are both simple and progressive:
Granted, the above is only Wye River Group’s take on the matter, but given that it comes directly from their An Employers’ Guide to Healthcare Consumerism which was published in 2006 I am inclined to take them at their word and note this as a sea change in suppliers’ attitudes towards the healthcare crisis in this country.
What Wye River Group refers to as healthcare consumerism is a synthesis of old and new ideas as well as delivery and payment models in the healthcare market. It encompasses consumer-driven health plans, value-based benefit design techniques, and good old-fashioned managed care (as opposed to managed access and/or managed costs).
Despite its name, healthcare consumerism isn’t mutually exclusive of government involvement. Indeed, the techniques it espouses could go a long way towards making the already superior healthcare model in place for US military veterans that much more cost-effective and efficient – not to mention portable to state and local governments and private industry.
There are few people as skeptical of for-profit payers as I am, but in light of this evolution of thought in the consumer-driven healthcare space I am open to – and hopeful at the prospect of being – proven wrong.
Differences both in the brain activity and anatomy were observed in a study involving 90 men and women, including homosexuals and heterosexuals of both genders.While the full implications of the study aren't yet clear, interesting observations were made that would seem to explain the origins of stereotypes about gay men being inherently more creative and "artistic" than their straight counterparts, and gay women so often being "butch:"
The researchers monitored neural activity in the brain by charting blood flow.
The scans were carried out when the volunteers were resting and exposed to no external stimuli.
Researchers focused in particular on the amygdala, an almond-shaped structure inside each brain hemisphere associated with processing and storing emotions.
In homosexuals, brain activity most closely matched that of heterosexuals of the other sex.
Source: Gay Men, Straight Women Have Similar Brains
[T]he study found that straight men and gay women are both wired for a greater "fight or flight" response than gay men or straight women, the team reports this week in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.Of course, these are stereotypes. There are boorish, slovenly, aggressive and abusive gay men (I know, I've dated a couple of them) and there are "lipstick lesbians" who are indistinguishable from heterosexual "babes" except for their taste in men (which is to say, it's completely absent). Still, stereotypes, like myths, often have their basis in fact, however distorted or misunderstood those facts may be.
Also, homosexual men and straight women showed significantly more neural connections across the two brain hemispheres than heterosexual men did.