Source: Incentive Magazine, January 17, 2012 Kevin Volpp’s HRA lottery incentive study is highlighted to show that wellness programs are effective in boosting employee performance. He notes that the most important finding in the study is that the design of an incentive program makes a really big difference on how effective that program is.
Sources: Los Angeles Times, Booster Shots Blog, December 27, 2011; The Atlantic, December 29, 2011; MedPage Today, December 28, 2011 Scott Halpern wrote in his JAMA editorial that, while patient perspectives on intensity of ICU treatment have long been considered, European research on the views of clinicians delivering the care is important to the conversation. As Halpern noted in his editorial, “What this study shows is that a striking number of ICU physicians and nurses on any given day are providing care they perceive to be inappropriate,” and, as he went on to he comment to the media, “What it doesn’t tell us…
Source: Forbes, December 19, 2011 Judd Kessler was selected by Forbes as one of 30 under 30-year-olds who are making their mark in the world of law and policy. Forbes chose Dr. Kessler for his work as an economist who studies how to get people to donate organs and give money to charity, work cited by Freakonomics in August, 2011.
Source: Philadelphia Inquirer, December 29, 2011 Every two weeks or so, a group of Penn Medical students, including CHIBE Trainee Kenji Taylor, who is mentored by CHIBE faculty member and Roybal Investigator Alison Buttenheim, head out to barbershops frequented by African American men to perform simple, but potentially life-saving, health screenings.
Source: LDI Health Economist, December 2011 Investigators from the Roybal Center gathered to discuss behavioral economics and health among aging populations. Featured guest Heather Schofield, from of the Harvard School of Pubic Health, talked about online games and promoting mental acuity. Roybal investigators Jeffery Kullgren, Jason Karlawish, and others presented their research and Kevin Volpp announced an upcoming innovation tournament.
Source: Association for Psychological Science: Full Frontal Psychology Blog, November 29, 2011 Adam Grant and colleagues found that using patient-centered signs about the perils of poor hand hygiene inspired more hand washing among hospital staff than signs that used personal consequences to prompt the behavior. At least in regard to hand washing among hospital staff, “…it appears that altruism is a better motivator than self-interest.”
Source: Philadelphia Inquirer, November 21, 2011 Joshua Metlay and colleague Jane S. Jue, a former Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar at Penn, examined a representative sample of 426 websites designed to provide health information to college and university students. They found that less than 10 percent of the sites provided information about tobacco use, nutrition, and exercise. This dearth of information is a missed opportunity, given rising obesity rates and the health consequences of smoking, and the fact that smoking and obesity are preventable.
Source: New York Times, November 16, 2011 Two recent surveys show that an increasing number of employers—including major US employers such as Home Depot, Walmart, and PepsiCo– are raising health insurance premiums for employees who smoke, are overweight, or otherwise fail to meet certain health criteria. Kevin Volpp noted that such penalties could have harmful unintended consequences. For example, as others noted, those who have to pay a higher premium may forgo health insurance altogether.
Source: Vitals on MSNBC.com, November 8, 2011 Kevin Volpp noted that humans seek immediate gratification, which is what makes long-term goals involving delayed satisfaction, such as losing weight, difficult. Programs that offer financial incentives for losing weight can meet the human need for gratification and help people reach their weight loss goals.