CHIBE in the News

The Guardian: Study Links Too Much Free Time to Lower Sense of Wellbeing

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From The Guardian:  Researchers have found that while levels of subjective wellbeing initially rise as free time increases, the trend does not necessarily hold for very high levels of leisure. “The sweet spot is a moderate amount of free time,” said Dr Marissa Sharif, a co-author of the study from the University of Pennsylvania. “We found that having too much time was associated with lower subjective wellbeing due to a lacking sense of productivity and purpose.” Writing in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Sharif and colleagues reported how they analysed results from two large-scale surveys, involving a combined…

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FiveThirtyEight: Vaccines Mandates Work, But They’re Messy

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From FiveThirtyEight: In fall 2019, before anyone had ever heard of COVID-19, California legislators were trying to pass a bill aimed at increasing childhood vaccination. Five years previously, someone at Disneyland had set off a measles outbreak that infected more than 100 people, mostly unvaccinated, in the state — as well as in six other states, Canada and Mexico. The incident galvanized legislators and led to a series of laws aimed at curtailing the religious and philosophical exemptions that allowed parents to avoid getting their kids vaccinated before sending them to school. Take the exemptions away, the thinking went, and vaccine rates would…

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CBS: COVID-19 Vaccinations plateau despite incentive programs

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From CBS News: COVID-19 vaccination rates appear to have plateaued again in the U.S. Many communities have created incentive programs offering money, free food, beer and other perks to get more shots in arms, but does that really help? Harsha Thirumurthy, associate director at the Center for Health Incentives and Behavioral Economics at the University of Pennsylvania, joined CBSN to discuss his research on the subject. Read the full story at CBS News. 

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NPR: Climate Change Risks and Insurance Policies

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From NPR: Last week, President Biden scolded insurers after reports surfaced that some providers would not cover the claims of people who chose to evacuate ahead of the storm but were not mandated to do so. The companies changed their tune, but only after being called out by the president. Meanwhile, in California, some property owners are reporting being dropped by their insurance as companies expand the areas they consider too vulnerable to wildfires. We wanted to hear more about the role of insurance companies not just in the aftermath of disasters, but also rebuilding and planning ahead to a…

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Fierce Healthcare: MedPAC considers one-time funding boosts for Medicare in 2023 due to COVID-19 confusion

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From Fierce Healthcare: A key Medicare advisory panel is debating one-time funding boosts to providers for 2023 due to questions on how COVID-19 has permanently impacted the healthcare industry. The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC), which gives Congress advice on Medicare payment issues, discussed during its Thursday meeting how the pandemic will affect payment adequacy in 2023. But members of the panel were concerned about what the healthcare industry will look like that far out, especially for providers. MedPAC will look at healthcare use data from 2020 to help determine payment adequacy, but members were skeptical about what they can…

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Penn Medicine: Choosing Personal Exercise Goals, Then Tackling Them Immediately is Key to Sustaining Change

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From Penn Medicine: PHILADELPHIA— When people set their own exercise goals – and then pursue them immediately – it’s more likely to result in lasting positive changes, according to a new study at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. The results of this research are especially important because they were found among an underserved population that is at particularly high risk of having or developing heart conditions. The study was published in JAMA Cardiology. “Individuals who select their own goals are more likely to be intrinsically motivated to follow through on them,” said Kevin Volpp, MD,…

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The Atlantic: The Wrong Way to Test Yourself for the Coronavirus

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From The Atlantic: As infections skyrocket, many Americans, like Dreifus, are clamoring once again for tests. Over-the-counter, at-home tests in particular have been flying off pharmacy shelves and out of online inventories, as companies scramble to scale up demand. People are turning to these tests when they feel sick, to avoid an onerous trip to a testing site or a doctor’s office or the days-long wait that tends to come with laboratory-based tests. At-home tests are also being heavily marketed as an option for folks who feel healthy to screen themselves before they venture out into the world. But often, that’s…

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WSJ: Fighting Crime with Home Renovations

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From The Wall Street Journal: Published last month in the Journal of the American Medical Association’s Open Network, the study explored the relationship between home improvement grants and street crime in Philadelphia. It found a tight link between municipally funded house repairs and a drop in crime on those blocks with a city-funded overhauled home. The streets of many of Philadelphia’s older neighborhoods are lined with graceful, colorfully painted Victorian row houses. But with more than 23% of the city’s residents living in poverty, many of these architectural gems have been showing the wear-and-tear of neglect for decades. Since 1995…

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Marketplace: Delta Airlines’ $200 charge to unvaccinated employees puts penalty power to the test

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From Marketplace: Delta Air Lines said the average hospital stay for an employee sick with COVID-19 costs the company $50,000. Recovering that cost is part of the reason why the company plans to start charging unvaccinated employees $200 per month if they’re on the company’s insurance. Hitting employees in their paycheck to get them vaccinated? Kevin Volpp with the Penn Center for Health Incentives and Behavioral Economics (CHIBE) said it might work. “We know from a lot of work in behavioral economics that a dollar lost is probably roughly twice that of a dollar gained. So a $200 penalty will have a…

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WHYY: The results of Philadelphia’s COVID-19 vaccine lottery? ‘Discouraging’

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From WHYY: There were more people getting vaccinated in the run-up to the first sweepstakes drawing, but taking all the weeks into consideration, the lottery did not lead to a statistically significant change in the number of people getting vaccinated. The conclusion is that the lottery did not make a significant difference at this point of the pandemic, and that public officials should think about other ways to entice people to get vaccinated. Katy Milkman, a behavioral scientist at the University of Pennsylvania and a co-author of the research, tweeted that the results are “discouraging.” James Garrow, communications director for the Philadelphia Department…

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