A California Lawmaker has written a bill to create a government-appointed commission to price-fix physician fees with the intent to control California healthcare costs, improve quality, and increase equity in California’s healthcare system. All objective evidence and experience suggests that government price-fixing of physician fees will accomplish none of those things. Today, I have healthcare economist and President of Fulcrum Strategies, Ron Howrigon, in the studio to analyze this bill and the unintended, and potentially disastrous, consequences to California’s patients, physicians, and hospitals.
Today I talk with NPR’s distinguished science writer, Richard Harris, about his latest book, “Rigor Mortis: How Sloppy Science Creates Worthless Cures, Crushes Hope and Wastes Billions.” We delve into the specifics about the broken culture that exists in biomedical research: the perverse incentives to publish rubbish, the reproducibility crisis in published research, and the lousy science that is the product of flawed research design and analysis. The most disturbing symptom of this dysfunctional culture is the massive increase in retracted papers and outright fraud. Richard exposes the broken culture in biomedical research, but he also tells us what some of the leaders in that field are doing to fix it.