Pulse


The Evolution of Peru’s Multidimensional Challenges, Part II: Transnational Organized Crime

Peru’s crisis of politics and governability has reinforced economic and fiscal pressures from the COVID-19 pandemic and increased in food and fuel prices due to the ongoing war in Ukraine, to greatly complicate grave challenges from transnational organized crime and terrorism in the country. Those crises have also undermined the resources available to the country to effectively respond through investing in the modernization, adaptation, and strengthening of its security institutions, and other parts of its whole-of-government response.

Japan’s Vulnerability If There’s A New Recession

How will Japan fare if rising interest rates and the war in Ukraine send the US and Europe into a new recession? Not well, if history is any guide. It all depends on the length and depth of any recession—that is, if one even occurs. But the record shows that Japan’s economy is very susceptible to outsized reactions to economic shocks, including downturns originating elsewhere.

Separate And Unequal (Part 2): Overcoming Healthcare’s Profound Facilities Maldistribution

In Part 1 of “Separate and Unequal,” I took the Biden Administration to task for its proposed 2022 regulatory initiatives to advance health equity and improve maternal-health outcomes. These initiatives include five new reporting measures for hospitals and a new “birthing-friendly  hospital” designation. My complaint is that they add to hospitals’ regulatory burden without improving health access and service provision for people living in low-income communities.

We May Not Have a Recession

The media’s view of the economy has turned dark. The Washington Post instructs, “How to Recession-Proof Your Life,” ABC News counsels, “How to Prepare for a Possible Recession,” and Bloomberg says, “U.S. Recession Is Now More Likely Than Not.” These doomsday reports are reliable clickbait, and faltering consumer confidence suggests that many people believe them. Yet they fail to consider what’s happening in business investment, employment, corporate profits, and consumer spending. 

That Giant Sucking Sound: Lost Patient Volume

As health systems report their earnings for the first quarter of 2022, the red ink is flowing in torrents. This is mostly due to financial losses on investment portfolios. More concerning, however, are hospitals’ substantial operating losses.

During a Fitch Ratings webinar on the mounting pressures confronting not-for-profit providers, Senior Director Kevin Halloran described health systems’ current financial performance as follows,

No matter how you look at it, the first quarter of 2022 will be one of the worst on record for most providers.

The Truth About Today’s Inflation

The conventional wisdom about inflation needs a course correction.  Here’s why:

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the wages and total compensation of Americans working full-time at least kept pace with inflation from January through March.  Based on what people tell government surveyors, median weekly earnings after inflation stabilized in the first quarter of 2022 after falling steadily through 2021.

Overcoming Medical Orthodoxy (Part 3): Forces Disrupting “Old Medicine”

This is the third article in a four-part series on reimagining American medical education and ongoing clinician training. 

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