Archive for March, 2012

The Long-Term Effect of Premier Pay for Performance on Patient Outcomes

March 31, 2012 Comments off
Source:  New England Journal of Medicine
Pay for performance has become a central strategy in the drive to improve health care. We assessed the long-term effect of the Medicare Premier Hospital Quality Incentive Demonstration (HQID) on patient outcomes.
We found no evidence that the largest hospital-based pay-for-performance program led to a decrease in 30-day mortality. Expectations of improved outcomes for programs modeled after Premier HQID should therefore remain modest.

The mystery of Japan’s missing centenarians explained

March 31, 2012 Comments off
Source:  Demographic Research
This report elucidates the issue of Japan’s missing centenarians, which was uncovered in 2010. We provide the latest figures from verification efforts, discuss sources of centenarian information in Japan, examine possible causes, and evaluate the effect of the missing centenarians on official statistics. In Japan 234,354 people registered before 1910 remained on the family registers in 2010, without being crossed out. They would have been 100 years old at least and represent 0.5% of the births recorded between 1872 and 1910. The impact of this group on life expectancy statistics, however, is effectively nil.

Full Report (PDF)

Veteran-owned Businesses and their Owners—Data from the Census Bureau’s Survey of Business Owners

March 31, 2012 Comments off
Source:  U.S. Small Business Administration
Veteran-owned businesses in general. Census estimated that in 2007:
• There were 2.45 million businesses with majority ownership by veterans.
• 491,000 of these firms were employers, and 1.956 million were non-employers.
• These veteran-owned firms had sales/receipts of $1.220 trillion, 5.793 million employees, and an annual payroll of $210 billion.
• Veteran-owned firms represented 9.0 percent of all U.S. firms.
• 12.2 percent of all owners of SBO-respondent firms were veterans.
• 8.3 percent of all respondent veteran owners had service-connected disabilities.

FBI Releases Bank Crime Statistics for Third Quarter of 2011

March 31, 2012 Comments off

FBI Releases Bank Crime Statistics for Third Quarter of 2011
Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation

During the third quarter of 2011, there were 1,094 reported violations of the Federal Bank Robbery and Incidental Crimes Statue, a decrease from the 1,325 reported violations in the same quarter of 2010.1 According to statistics released today by the FBI, there were 1,081 robberies, 11 burglaries, two larcenies, and one extortion of a financial institution2 reported between July 1, 2011 and September 30, 2011.

Highlights of the report include:

  • Loot was taken in 89 percent of the incidents, totaling more than $9.3 million.
  • Of the loot taken, 25 percent of it, or more than $1.9 million, was recovered and returned to financial institutions.
  • Bank crimes most frequently occurred on Friday. Regardless of the day, the time frame when bank crimes occurred most frequently was between 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.
  • Acts of violence were committed in 5 percent of the incidents, resulting in 18 injuries, three deaths, and four persons taken hostage.3
  • Demand notes4 were the most common modus operandi used.
  • Most violations occurred in the Western region of the U.S., with 375 reported incidents.

+ Full Report

Money Across Generations II study

March 31, 2012 Comments off

Money Across Generations II study
Source: Ameriprise

Our new study reveals that families today are as uncomfortable talking about finances, healthcare and retirement as they are talking about family issues, religion and politics.

+ Full Report (PDF)

Some related “Conversation Guides” are also available for download here (PDFs).

IPCC releases full report on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (SREX)

March 30, 2012 Comments off

IPCC releases full report on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (SREX) (PDF)
Source: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

Evidence suggests that climate change has led to changes in climate extremes such as heat waves, record high temperatures and, in many regions, heavy precipitation in the past half century, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change said today. Climate extremes, or even a series of non-extreme events, in combination with social vulnerabilities and exposure to risks can produce climate-related disasters, the IPCC said in its Special Report on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (SREX).

While some extreme weather and climate events lead to disasters, others do not. Policies to avoid, prepare for, respond to and recover from the risks of disaster can reduce the impact of these events and increase the resilience of people exposed to extreme events, the IPCC shows in the report, published on Wednesday.

At the same time, as the IPCC notes in the report, limits to resilience are faced when thresholds or tipping points associated with social and/or natural systems are exceeded, posing severe challenges for adaptation.

“The main message from the report is that we know enough to make good decisions about managing the risks of climate-related disasters. Sometimes we take advantage of this knowledge, but many times we do not,” said Chris Field, Co-Chair of IPCC’s Working Group II, which together with Working Group I produced the report. “The challenge for the future has one dimension focused on improving the knowledge base and one on empowering good decisions, even for those situations where there is lots of uncertainty,” he said.

+ Full Report (PDF)

Risks and Rewards of Public-Private Partnerships for Highways

March 30, 2012 Comments off

Risks and Rewards of Public-Private Partnerships for Highways
Source: Reason Foundation

Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) for infrastructure are contracts between public and private entities for the provision of facilities in areas such as power, water, transportation, education and health. Well-written PPP agreements specify the allocation of risk, which should create incentives for the private provider to deliver more efficiently and in a timelier manner than would be the case if the project were undertaken by a state-controlled entity. States are increasingly using PPPs to deliver new transportation capacity, thereby improving road access without unduly increasing the burden on taxpayers. PPPs come in many forms, including both development of new infrastructure (“greenfield” projects) and maintenance and improvement of existing infrastructure.

+ Full Document (PDF)