Labor shortage at hospital emergency rooms

Hospital emergency rooms across the U.S. are increasingly unable to find on-call specialists to treat seriously injured and ill patients. The shortage is most acute for neurosurgeons, orthopedic surgeons and obstetrician/gynecologists. Causes: Fear of malpractice lawsuits; a reluctance to go without pay when seeing uninsured patients; unwillingness to disrupt their private lives and private practices. Some hospitals are paying certain specialists stipends to be on-call. Others use telemedicine as a workaround. — The Washington Post (21 December 2007)

Top five political issues in the U.S., 2007

Top five political issues in the U.S. (November 2007)

Issues cited as either a first or second priority, by all polled adults (regardless of political party)

  1. Iraq (46%)
  2. Health care (34%)
  3. Jobs/economic growth (27%)
  4. Illegal immigration (24%)
  5. Terrorism (23%)

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Source: Wall Street Journal / NBC News telephone poll of 1,509 adults, conducted in early November (reported 19 November 2007). Note: The margin of error is +/- 2.5 percentage points, so the difference between Nos. 4 and 5 is negligible.

Related: Poll: Americans are gloomy about the future

Intelligence Briefs

Craigslist meets YouTube: Realpeoplerealstuff.com lets individuals post homemade video commercials to sell goods & services. — Springwise.com

Tree-Nation is an ecological project with a focused objective: to plant 8 million trees in the Sahara to fight desertification. — Marcus P. Zillman

Tipping point: U.S. corporate spending on wireless voice & mobile data services will exceed business spending on all wireline voice & data services by 2010. — In-Stat / Computerworld.com

India is one of the fastest-growing markets for the pharmaceutical industry, with huge potential. Several factors, including the acceptance of intellectual property rights, a robust economy and the country’s burgeoning health care needs, have contributed to accelerated growth in that country. — IMS Health

Competitive intelligence for law firms: A new version of the atVantage software has features intended to help law firms analyze growth opportunities, identify trends and evaluate competing firms. The “Firm Trends” feature gives users the ability to assess and track their market share of litigation for a particular client, market or industry. — LexisNexis