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Market-Based Solutions to Vital Economc Issues

Healthcare

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How have AstraZeneca's recent missteps in reporting COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial results affected the public's trust, and what's next on the road to FDA approval? Hear from Emmes Chief Business Officer Lynn Lewis.

The coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic has brought into focus the limits on flexibility and innovation associated with market consolidation in care delivery. While anecdotes about the ossification in care delivery predominate, broader economic indicators point to the negative outcomes of consolidation.

The factors that determine our health go far beyond what happens in the doctor’s office. In this Kenan Insight, we explore how the physical well-being of many Americans has been placed in jeopardy by upstream social and economic factors such as racism, food and job insecurity, and a lack of community and social support systems.

People of color are overrepresented relative to their shares of the total population in coronavirus infections, hospitalizations, and deaths. The same is true for people living in over-crowded multigenerational households. Because people of color are more likely to live in multigenerational households than are Whites, the pandemic is having a double whammy effect in communities of color throughout the U.S.

There are bipartisan Medicare payment proposals that would reduce Medicare payments included in previous Obama and Trump budgets that could go a long way to filling the budget shortfall. While previous policy proposals either proposed new revenue sources or payment reductions, recent policies are pragmatic in nature and attempt to modify either beneficiary or provider behavior.

Considerable scholarly analysis and media attention has documented the racially disparate impact of coronavirus infections, hospitalizations, and deaths. Constituting 13 percent of the general population, Blacks reportedly account for 25 percent of those that have tested positive and 39 percent of the COVID-related deaths in the United States.

The nursing profession in the United States was experiencing a labor shortage and facing diversity and inclusion challenges prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. Magnifying these problems was a shift in the nation’s population, both geographically and demographically. The result was changes in both where nurses are needed in the healthcare system and the nursing skill set required to address healthcare needs of a far more diverse clientele of patients—in terms of race, ethnicity, sex, gender identity, age, living arrangements, socioeconomic status and primary language.

Background: Influenza imposes heavy societal costs through healthcare expenditures, missed days of work, and numerous hospitalizations each year. Considering these costs, the healthcare and behavioral science literature offers suggestions on increasing demand for flu vaccinations. And yet, the adult flu vaccination rate fluctuated between 37% and 46% between 2010 and 2019.

Aim: Although a demand-side approach represents one viable strategy, an operations management approach would also highlight the need to consider a supply-side approach. In this paper, we investigate how to improve clinic vaccination rates by altering provider behavior.

We specify and estimate a time-varying Markov model of COVID-19 cases for the US in 2020. We find that the estimated level of undetected infections spiked in March and remained elevated through May. However, since late April estimated undetected infections have generally declined though it was not until June or July that detected cases exceeded the estimated number of undetected cases. 

LabCorp Executive Vice President & President of Diagnostics Brian Caveney joined UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School Associate Dean of MBA Programs & Faculty Director of the Center for the Business of Health Brad Staats on Friday, Nov. 13 for an exclusive conversation as part of the 10th Annual Business of Healthcare Conference. This virtual fireside chat was part of the Dean’s Speaker Series, hosted by Kenan-Flagler Business School Dean Doug Shackelford.

Join the Center for the Business of Health virtually as they discuss the complexity of the healthcare ecosystem and how innovation and interconnectivity are necessary to build a more robust and flexible system.

Please join us for an exclusive conversation with LabCorp Executive Vice President & President of Diagnostics Brian Caveney on Friday, Nov. 13. This virtual fireside chat is part of the Dean’s Speaker Series, hosted by Kenan-Flagler Business School Dean Doug Shackelford. The discussion will be led by Brad Staats, Associate Dean of MBA Programs, Professor of Operations, Sarah Graham Kenan Scholar & Faculty Director of the Center for the Business of Health.

Our Healthcare Experts

Steve Sloate

Associate Faculty Director, Center for the Business of Health; Assistant Professor, Health Policy and Management, Gillings School of Global Public Health

Bradley Staats

Professor of Operations, Faculty Director of the Center for the Business of Health, UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School

Centers & Initiatives

Center for the Business of Health

Bringing together expertise from across UNC to create knowledge, prepare business leaders, and to convene important conversations around the business of healthcare.