California need to direct on wellness technological know-how evaluation

California need to direct on wellness technological know-how evaluation

In summary

An institute of overall health know-how evaluation could measure the value of clinical treatments to eliminate wasteful shelling out.

By Darius Lakdawalla

Darius Lakdawalla is the director of investigation at the USC Schaeffer Center for Wellbeing Coverage & Economics. 

Dana Goldman, Special to CalMatters

Dana Goldman is dean of the USC Selling price Faculty of Community Plan and co-director of the Schaeffer Heart.

How substantially cash is California wasting each year in Medi-Cal, the $112 billion well being insurance policy plan at present serving a person-third of the state’s inhabitants?   Or how about in CalPERS, the point out personnel pension and health plan, which spends additional than $9 billion to order well being added benefits for its 1.5 million users?

Wide estimates propose we could lessen investing by about $30 billion each year devoid of harming people’s health. But we seriously never know where to cut. We really do not even know how to discover out, simply because California does not overview which treatment options are worthy of the income and which are not.  

A superior location to start off monitoring down this waste is by systematically assessing the effectiveness and benefit of gadgets, medications, treatments and other merchandise that the point out is covering. An unbiased California Institute of Well being Technological innovation Evaluation could be set up with out direct regulatory authority but with the knowledge that could impact decisions across a wide array of technologies and well being care providers. 

Photograph an business office stocked with researchers, economists, doctors and other wellness treatment industry experts who would suggest Medi-Cal and CalPERS on what to cover and how much to pay out. For illustration, must the state agree to shell out for back again functions that help only a fraction of clients? On the other hand, is a refusal to obtain an expensive capsule shortsighted if it can remedy a high-priced long-term ailment? 

Proper now, payment selections revolve generally around the rebates that the condition negotiates with drug and machine makers. These rebates often bear no romance to what the prescription drugs and equipment do.  

A California Institute of Well being Technology Assessment would level out which technologies have decreased efficacy, and hence really should rebate a lot more to the point out, and which ones are offering extra benefit, and would be qualified to pay out decreased rebates.  This type of facts could gain privately insured Californians much too, since health and fitness care vendors, insurers, employers, overall health treatment innovators and many others all obtain from recognizing which solutions do the job very best for which individuals.

In a excellent earth, the federal governing administration would do this type of health technological innovation assessment. In the absence of action in Washington, California could consider the direct on the long-sought go toward benefit-dependent pricing of well being technological know-how.  Just as it did with stem cell investigation, California is in placement to believe …

Read More

New laptop or computer system rapidly detects homes, structures weakened by California wildfires

New laptop or computer system rapidly detects homes, structures weakened by California wildfires

By McKenzie Prillaman, Correspondent

A new laptop program driven by artificial intelligence normally takes mere minutes to figure out no matter if houses and properties have been ruined by wildfires once the smoke has cleared.

Produced by researchers at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo and Stanford University, DamageMap evaluates the destruction by scrutinizing publish-wildfire aerial and satellite images.

People of the Santa Cruz Mountains who ended up evacuated during the CZU Lightning Advanced fireplace in the summer season of 2020 say that getting this kind of a plan would have relieved them of a great deal of anxiety and anguish.

“I invested times wondering, ‘My dwelling could be burning ideal now,’” mentioned Lisa Smith Beasley, a Boulder Creek resident who was purchased to depart her property all through the devastating event.

Beasley’s residence survived the flames. But she and other inhabitants of the increased Bay Area normally waited weeks to listen to from authorities whether or not their households had made it.

Andrew Fricker, a spatial ecologist at Cal Poly who co-made DamageMap, explained the software really should significantly minimize that ready time period. Once thoroughly developed, it would be available no cost to the public and crisis responders.

“There are so lots of people in California who are impacted by this every single one fireplace season,” Fricker explained. “And it’s only heading to get worse.”

Fricker and his colleagues at Cal Poly and Stanford printed their peer-reviewed operate on the plan in the November difficulty of the International Journal of Disaster Chance Reduction.

Personal computer plans that detect problems from organic disasters from aerial and satellite pics have been in advancement for a quarter-century. But most of them require that just before-and-right after images be taken with equivalent angles, lighting and picture good quality, an imperfect technique that necessitates a expensive and constantly current catalog of photos.

To ascertain which constructions have burned, DamageMap relies solely on post-wildfire illustrations or photos and a digital databases showing the areas of households and buildings.

About the previous 4 decades, the selection of burned acres and households all through the West has developed significantly, fueled in element by climate change.

California’s deadliest and most harmful wildfire — the 2018 Camp Fireplace in Butte County — motivated the development of DamageMap.

The inferno seriously ruined Fricker’s childhood home in Chico, exactly where his mom and dad had been nonetheless residing, but luckily for us the wildfire didn’t burn up the house to the ground.

Throughout the evacuation, Fricker struggled to locate out if the residence was even now standing. “I was frantically trying to down load any satellite illustrations or photos that I could get, making an attempt to get facts for myself and our neighbors,” he recalled.

Seeking to spare many others the exact same distress, Fricker collected aerial illustrations or photos of the Camp Fire’s destruction and Cal Fire’s door-to-door construction destruction assessments. With this info, he and a crew of Cal Poly undergraduates made a rudimentary prototype of DamageMap.

Read More

Apple-1 computer, ‘holy grail’ of vintage tech, to be auctioned off in Southern California

Apple-1 computer, ‘holy grail’ of vintage tech, to be auctioned off in Southern California

Apple’s new-model, top rated-of-the-line MacBook Pro laptop computer computer could set you again almost $4,000 in advance of taxes.

But that will seem like a Black Friday steal when a 45-calendar year-outdated Apple pc goes on sale this 7 days in Monrovia, where it may possibly fetch 6 figures or extra, even with out a 16-inch, superior-definition monitor and the latest microprocessors.

On Tuesday, John Moran Auctioneers will auction off a operating Apple-1 personal computer hand-developed by Steve Wozniak, Steve Work and some others in a Los Altos, Calif., garage in 1976. The system was the rock upon which the trillion-dollar Apple empire was developed.

In his 2011 biography “Steve Jobs,” Walter Isaacson offers Wozniak as indicating of the Apple-1: “We ended up collaborating in the largest revolution that had ever took place, I imagined. I was so content to be a aspect of it.”

Hand-built Apple-1 at John Moran Auctioneers.

The hand-developed Apple-1 is exhibited at John Moran Auctioneers on Saturday. It was hand-designed by Steve Wozniak, Steve Work and other people in a Los Altos, Calif., garage in 1976.

(Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Instances)

The device is dubbed the “Chaffey School Apple-1″ simply because its initially proprietor was recognized as a Chaffey professor. It was unearthed from the Rancho Cucamonga residence of a previous Chaffey student who had obtained it from the professor for $650 in 1977.

The student, who wishes to keep on being nameless right until after the sale, held on to the computer for the subsequent four many years.

The investment could pay off as auction dwelling and Apple-1 experts assume the unit to provide for shut to $500,000, if not additional. The estimates are not unfounded an operational unit was sold for $905,000 by Bonhams auction residence in 2014.

“This is form of the holy grail for classic electronics and computer tech collectors,” reported Corey Cohen, an Apple-1 pro. “That actually will make it exciting for a lot of persons.”

Cohen has built a occupation of examining, authenticating and refurbishing Apple-1 units for auction houses and other individuals and was identified as in by John Moran to do the exact same.

About 200 Apple-1 units had been assembled by Wozniak, Work and other individuals, 175 of which were being bought. About 60 Apple-1 units nonetheless exist, Cohen explained, with only about 20, together with the Chaffey unit, able of functioning.

Cohen stated the unit was not in “bad condition” when he examined it, while the keyboard necessary total rebuilding.

But the Chaffey unit is built unique, and maybe a lot more useful, by its koa wood case, its equipment and its provenance, Cohen said.

Apple-1s, as assembled by Wozniak and Employment, were bought generally as bare-bones boards and did not involve screens, keyboards or circumstances, much from the polished metal-and-glass Apple products and solutions bought nowadays.

The Byte Store, a Bay Area laptop or computer store, commissioned the nascent business to make 50 Apple-1 units, and on shipping the owner was “a little bit taken aback,” Isaacson wrote.


Read More