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Brian Reid

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MiniAdam at #JPM15
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I'm not posting to Google Plus much lately, but the reality is that Google takes this seriously when it comes to search results. So, Google: next time someone searches for "Food Babe" or, please take them to this NPR link:
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Yesterday, KevinMD published this piece that I wrote based on my firm's analysis of the Medicare data dump. Jonathan Bliss, on Twitter, double-checked my math and asked an obvious question.

To paraphrase: it looks like the rate of tweeting docs in the top 1,000 billers is about 1.3 percent, but the rate of tweeting docs in the whole dataset is closer to 1 percent. So isn't it possible that tweeting is associated with higher billing (which is pretty much the opposite of what I posited). 

There are a handful of defenses. 

The first is that the top 1,000 (or whatever) is an arbitrary cutpoint among an outlier population. The numbers are small enough that you could certainly move it around to get a number of less than 1.3 percent. 

The second defense is that, in a lot of other "outlier" sets of physicians (such as FDA advisory panelists), Twitter uses are over-represented by a lot more than 0.3 percentage points. The fact that the Medicare data doesn't have Twitter uses (substantially) over-represented may be (depending on your expectation) be a surprise.

Third, "Twitter user" is a rough term. Today's Twitter news was that a huge percentage of users have never actually tweeted, and our findings was that the doctors on Twitter who make the Top 1,000 list had meager followings and generally lacked activity. When you took into account followers (particular followers who are doctors), there was a modestly negative slope.

Finally, the notable lack of any outcry lent support to my theory that tweeting docs were more fundamentally OK with the data release. MedPage ran a series of stories, with different specialists all complaining about the data dump, while the docs actually on Twitter were -- if anything -- curious and supportive.

Does all that make it an open-and-shut case? Nope. Not even close. Too much muddy data. That's why I enjoyed the question from Jonathan, and why we're so committed to learning more about digital doctors.
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The Unofficial J.P. Morgan Drinking Game

By this time at #JPM14  , there's been something like 200 presentations, and certain patterns are emerging. And though so many of the buzzwords are recycled, I want to make sure the remainder of the conference is interesting. We need a drinking game. Take a sip if you hear:

"Strategic partnership" [Take an extra sip]
"Innovative, strategic partnership" [Finish the glass]
"Unmet need"
"Unmet need in this competitive space" [Finish the bottle]
"We're returning cash to shareholders" 
"We have transformed our company for growth" (h/t to Chris Morrison)
"Skate to where the puck is going to be"
"Emerging markets"
"Treatment pathways"
"The breadth of our portfolio"
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10 Reasons +Luke Timmerman  Is Wrong About #JPM14  

Last month, Xconomy's Luke Timmerman posted 10 practical tips for surviving the JP Morgan Healthcare Conference that kicks off next week in San Francisco. You can read it here:

Except Luke is dead wrong. Here's all 10 of his errors. 

Luke says: "Don’t get overscheduled. "
In reality: If you're not scheduled, you're roadkill. Want to have lunch on Monday with someone? Sorry. they're already booked. Plans can be soft, but they have to be planned. 

Luke says: "Get some exercise"
In reality: San Francisco has plenty of hills. Walk around. If you go to bed an hour early so you you wake up early to use the Stairmaster, you're doing JPM wrong. 

Luke says: "Don’t eat a fancy, sit-down lunch"
In reality: Having a quick, oft-interrupted coffee or beer is not a way to really connect with someone. Want to go deep? You need an hour. You also need to eat. Lunch should be the Cadillac of meetings. Don't pass it up. 

Luke says: "Get some sleep"
In reality: Unless you're operating heavy machinery, most adults can take a couple of short nights. This is JPM. Live it up.

Luke says: "Don’t drink alcohol"
In reality: I can only assume Luke is being sarcastic. 

Luke says: "Wear comfortable shoes"
In reality: Luke aims this at heel-wearing women, and it's hard to argue. The rest of you: suck it up. 

Luke says: "Don’t forget your device chargers"
In reality: If there was ever a time to leave your friggin' devices at home, this is it. If you're interacting with the meeting through a screen, you're going to be sorely disappointed when you get home. 

Luke says: "Go grocery shopping Sunday night"
In reality: People who eat lunch don't have to scarf down Clif bars. Just sayin'. 

Luke says: "Meet some new people, some old people, some random people doing cool stuff you know little about"
In reality: OK. Hard to poke fun at this one. 

Luke says: "Don’t get so focused on one thing you lose sight of the big picture."
In reality: I want to find the coolest rabbit hole and go as deep down it as possible. The bigger the picture, the less colorful it is. If I have to listen to a monologue about "the outlook for biotech in 2014," I'm probably going to pass out. 

After all, I'll be hung over, sleep-deprived and hungry.
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The third of three posts on what the anecdotes collected by the New York Times say about bullying. This time: the generational difference in bullying. 
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New post: Saturday is International Survivors of Suicide Day, a time to consider the broad impacts of suicide. 
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New post on the wonderfully vexing question of whether it's OK (or helpful) to look over the shoulder of your kid as she works on her college essay. 
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New post on the most popular social platforms for teens. Scary to me: the number of those platforms I know zero about. 
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