Tuesday, April 15, 2008
A way with words
I just had the pleasure of being on a panel discussion at U. Mass Boston with three wonderful colleagues: Stephen Crosby, Dean of the McCormack Graduate School of Policy Studies; Jim Sabin, Director of the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Ethics Program; and Marc Roberts, Professor of Political Economy at the Harvard School of Public Health. The topic was "Health Care Rationing: The Elephant in the Room." Of course, the topic eventually swayed over to the improper incentives built into the current health care reimbursement system -- at which point Marc began to discuss the pigs of Provence who use their snouts to root underneath oak trees in search of truffles. The audience was lost for a moment until Marc drew the analogy with me and my fellow hospital administrators, whom he termed "truffle-seeking pigs" rooting through the reimbursement system to focus on those service lines that generate the most margin for our institutions. I am not sure how I feel about the animal he chose, but it was a superb image!
Posted by Paul Levy at 4/15/2008 03:45:00 PM