Hypothetical Mean

Commentary from an Actuarial and Economic Perspective

Archive for the ‘Blogging’ Category

Things on the Horizon

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Obama’s set to announce his healthcare reform plans this week.  When he does, my blogging activity will surely pickup.

My year-end real life responsibilities are getting wrapped up.  With that the 60 hour work weeks will soon be over.  I wonder how skewed our worldview is because of self-censoring: those of us with real jobs and real families are surely less likely to contribute to the cacaphony.

Tomorrow I travel to meet with some actuaries modeling healthcare reform.  I’ll be back by Thursday when I hope to establish a much more regular posting pattern.

Written by Victor

February 23, 2009 at 4:32 am

Posted in Blogging, personal

My Actuarial Exams are History

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I’ll never have to sit for another actuarial exam. My name is on this list. The pass rate was almost 50%, making it one of the “easier” fellowship exams in the history of the Society.

No matter, done is done is done. My remaining tasks to attain Fellowship in the Society of Actuaries are few. I have a “capstone module” experience and I need to sit for the Fellowship admissions course. If all goes as planned, I’ll be a Fellow on December 12.

It took an embarrassingly long time for me to complete all the examinations; I’m now entering my sixth year since I started. I lost some motivation during the “exam transition”. I also got married, bought a house, had a kid, am awaiting another kid, ran the Pike’s Peak Marathon twice, resumed my piano playing, and gained about 20 pounds of flab around my middle (after the aforementioned Pike’s Peak Marathons).

Been a busy six years. And fun … aside from studying periodically.

A public thanks to my beautiful and talented wife (BTW) for putting up with me. I’ll now have to find a new excuse to avoid chores. Let’s try one … “honey, I can’t change Charlie’s diaper because I’m writing a blog post” … think that will work?

Written by Victor

July 20, 2008 at 6:58 pm

Posted in Blogging, personal

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2008 Health Spring Meeting

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Next month I will blog on the upcoming Society of Actuaries’ 2008 Health Spring Meeting .  The actuarial role in healthcare financing is often overlooked.  I’ll have commentary on the some of the health policy issues addressed in this conference.  Len Nichols from the New America Foundation and Lawrence Gostin from Georgetown University will be two of the keynote speakers, talking about domestic and global healthcare reform efforts, respectively.

For those of an actuarial mindset, I’ll also be attending two of the valuation sessions, but will likely eschew blogging on them.  For work-related reasons, I’ll also be at the Pandemic Flu session and the Disease Management Outcome measurement session.

It will be a post-event blogging exercise since I’ll be at the conference with my family.  The Beautiful and Talented Wife (BTW) and I will be road-tripping it from Little Rock to Los Angeles, hitting various Route 66 venues along the way.  The Hyper and Hilarious Son (HHS) is our main concern, so we will be taking it slowly both “there and back again”.

Written by Victor

May 20, 2008 at 3:35 pm

Posted in Blogging

Check out the Health Beat Blog

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Blogging will continue to be light here until early November.  Until then, I recommend checking out Health Beat Blog. I don’t endorse their prescriptions for US healthcare reform. But I’ve found many of the posts to be informative and well-reasoned. They are worth reading if you agree, because they’ll shore up your knowledge base. And they are worth reading if you disagree, because you’ll see what you are up against. And you just might change your mind in the process.

A few recent posts I found especially interesting.

We Can’t Fund SCHIP, but we can save Merck … contrasts our willingness to buy into the Gardasil vaccine, while not coincidentally saving Merck, and (so far) choosing not to fully fund general coverage for the poor via SCHIP.

Universal Coverage – Why Massachusetts is the Last Place to Begin the Experiment This post cuts to the heart of healthcare costs and disparities. It also brings illuminating evidence regarding cultural and behavioral differences in healthcare consumption, worldwide. And it is tied all back to the universal coverage experiment going on in the state that hosts the Red Sox.

The Dangers of a “Zagat Guide” to Physicians. How do future patients ascertain the “quality” of their doctor? Choose which doctor to go to? This post addressed a specific effort by WellPoint to help provide information on these questions. Niko Karvounis nicely articulates an alternative viewpoint.  Food for thought.

Now that I’ve steered my 2.6 readers to those interesting tidbits, I’ll get back to work.

Written by Victor

October 25, 2007 at 2:04 pm

A new blog

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I used to blog over at the Dead Parrot Society, but ran into time difficulties. This is an experiment.  If I can get back on a blogging roll, I’ll move this to a permanent domain.

Written by Victor

July 31, 2007 at 10:19 pm

Posted in Blogging