Physicians on the Front Lines: Where Technology Can Help to Make the Clean Hand the Winning Hand

Whether in a personal or professional setting, very few of us find ourselves wanting to be apart from our smart phones. They keep us connected to just about everything these days.

In healthcare, electronic devices are permeating both the hospital and consumer/patient settings with everything from electronic health records to wearable devices and countless apps for monitoring everything from diabetes to calorie intake and physical activity.

As a physician, technology geek and mother, I find it perplexing that one area of healthcare that has not yet been penetrated by electronic devices is hand hygiene. Especially today, when it seems every few months a new virus is being combatted such as the enterovirus, currently spreading in schools. Not to mention the recent Ebola virus threat.

The stats are clear and unquestioned when it comes to the current issue of hospital acquired infections: In the U.S. alone,
• In the U.S. alone, 1 in 20 patients get an infection,
• resulting in 1.7 million infections per year and,
• causing 99,000 deaths at a cost of $45 billion —> Read More Here

Legalizing ivory Trade: Taking to New Heights a Dangerous Policy Proposal

By Alejandro Nadal and Francisco Aguayo

In a recent essay, Dan Stiles tries to explain why he thinks legalizing international ivory trade would help elephants’ conservation. “With a legal raw ivory trade, elephants can thrive”, he says. If legal raw ivory can be provided in sufficient quantity at predictable times and an acceptable price, the incentive to buy high-risk illegal ivory will evaporate, concludes Mr. Stiles.

Debate around the policy response to the current poaching crisis has been polarized around the issue of market-based instruments, and as a result a lot of attention has focused on some form of regulated legal trade. Stiles’s newest proposal is yet another example of how market-based policies are recommended without any economic analysis.

We examine first the new version of Stiles’s proposal for legalizing international trade and establishing a high-end market model in China as a means to reduce illegal trade. Second, we analyze his assertion that speculative stockpiling is the core driver of elephant poaching.

I: Naivete of a Market-Based Narrative

The traditional storyline of pro-trade advocates for ivory has been that consumer prices will be pushed downward by a cheaper supply of legal raw ivory and that these low prices will depress profits, thereby eliminating the —> Read More Here

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