Hospital treatment cost -v- mortality rate

Welcome to the blog Mrs Price, a graph for you:


Hospital treatment cost v Mortality rate


The Source is a paper based upon data collected over the past two centuries on mortality and costs incurred at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH).

Broadly speaking one can describe three periods:

  • Until 1910, there were flat costs with year-to-year variation in inpatient mortality determined more by world events and epidemics than by the quality of care.
  • Then until 1960 or so value increased modestly with the introduction of novel high-impact therapies, such as penicillin and other antibiotics.
  • For the rest of the 20th century research became industrialized, with complex diagnostics and therapeutics to address an expanding array of diseases discovered and introduced: it now became worthwhile to spend more on health care. In this period, each extra $1,000/patient (2010 dollars) spent on hospital treatment led to 2.4 extra patients being discharged alive for every 1,000 admitted (~$400k to save a life).

Here’s an earlier article looking at health care costs compared to live expectancy which suggest the US health care system is less efficient than that of other countries.


Expensive browsing

A few links have come my way recently on using internet browsers to price discriminate.

Via Cheap Talk, from the WSJ:

Orbitz Worldwide Inc. has found that people who use Apple Inc.’s Mac computers spend as much as 30% more a night on hotels, so the online travel agency is starting to show them different, and sometimes costlier, travel options than Windows visitors see. Orbitz executives confirmed that the company is experimenting with showing different hotel offers to Mac and PC visitors, but said the company isn’t showing the same room to different users at different prices.


Via Marginal Revolution, from this blog, interest rates from Capital One if using Chrome:

But if using Internet Explorer, you’ll be left wondering what’s left in your wallet:


And a story here this retailer explicitly charging users more for using older versions of web browsers:



Along with the story that “Users of the most popular web browser, Internet Explorer, tend to have lower-than-average IQ, according to a survey of online habits”, reported across much of the mainstream press last year, that was subsequently shown to be a hoax.