Aaron Carroll

Just overheard on MSNBC, as Mitt Romney answered a question from Andrea Mitchell about yesterday's "firing" statement: We all want to get rid of our insurance companies. We don’t want Obama to tell us we can’t. Romney likes single-payer -- who knew?! My friends at FireDogLake will be happy. I'm not sure the boys at Club for Growth will feel quite the same way. Of course, I'm taking the quote out of context, as many people have done in the past 24 hours.

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Over the last two decades, the health care sector has been a remarkable engine of job growth in the United States. Even as the economy plods along, health care has been responsible for adding an average of 22,500 jobs per month in 2011 through July. Health care jobs now represent about 11 percent of American employment, as compared to 8 percent in 2001.

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[Guest Post by Darius Tahir] Early this September Stanford Hospital discovered that somebody had posted personal data for nearly 20,000 emergency room patients online, so that anyone who happened across the page could look up everything from the patients’ names to the codes identifying their various diagnoses. Worse still, the data had been online for more than a year. The tale of how the data ended up online involves the sort of slapstick you expect from a bad sitcom.

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&c

-- Jon Cohn celebrates the first anniversary of the Affordable Care Act. -- Aaron Carroll thoroughly dismantles Ron Johnson's WSJ op-ed. -- Newt Gingrich has some trouble picking a position on Libya.

I’ve been saying that the ACA repeal vote now scheduled in the House for next week is basically a symbolic payoff to Tea Partiers and other core Republicans, who the leadership hopes can be bought off with symbols since their real goal—full repeal of ACA—is unrealistic in the current Congress. Note that there was another track Republicans could have taken.

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  Aaron Carroll, of the Incidental Economist, has been dissecting the latest results from the annual Commonwealth Fund survey of health care in economically advanced nations. Among the findings worth noting are the ones that go with the graph above: It’s not just that more people in the US report access issues because of cost than any other country. It’s that even those with “above average” incomes experience these barriers.

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