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California wants to cap the amount of money dialysis companies can make off of patients, but Big Dialysis ain’t going down without a fight. The Hustle What has 2 kidneys and generates $4B in profit? Dialysis patients The US’ two...
By: Wes Schlagenhauf
November 1, 2018
California wants to cap the amount of money dialysis companies can make off of patients, but Big Dialysis ain’t going down without a fight.
What has 2 kidneys and generates $4B in profit? Dialysis patients
The US’ two biggest dialysis companies profited $4B on the blood filtration procedure last year. But now, California is moving to cap the amount of green dialysis companies can make off patients and their insurance companies -- and Big Dialysis ain’t filtering themselves anymore.
The Interceptreports that, in CA, the dialysis industry spent a record $111m to oppose Proposition 8, which would cap what outpatient clinics can charge patients.
(The previous $110m record was set by the pharmaceutical industry in 2016 to oppose a CA prop to limit the price of prescription drugs for state agencies.)
What’s more, $101m came from just 2 companies, Fresenius and DaVita, which serve 75% of the US dialysis patients between them.
Why do they care so much?
See aforementioned profit margin.
Dialysis, a process that externally filters a patient’s blood when their kidneys aren’t functioning, can run as high as $88k a year -- and projections peg the global dialysis market to hit nearly $118B by 2023.
Luckily, a 1972 law required the US gov to pay for all dialysis treatment through Medicare regardless of age -- but for patients with private insurance, commercial insurance providers still have to cover the first 30 months of treatment.
The Intercept points out that nearly all Big Dialysis’ profits come from the premiums it charges commercial providers.
Prop 8 would limit the surcharge to private insurers to 15% premium over cost of care -- with extra profits to be funneled back to patients or toward care improvements. But, the industry warns that the cap would lead to closures of many dialysis clinics, which they claim are understaffed as is.
‘So… how ‘bout using some of that $111m on staffing?’ -- The world
Critics are having a hard time swallowing the idea that dialysis clinics are up against the ropes when they have $111m to toss into marketing campaigns.
Either way, Fresenius and DaVita aren’t going down without a fight -- and if their campaigning is any indication, these guys are one ice bath away from taking matters into their own hands.
2 tickets to Kidneys On Ice
Room raiders: Google partners with Roomba to map your house
Big tech darling iRobot (maker of Roomba) is now working with Google to make smart homes smarter using iRobot’s floor-mapping data.
The goal: Have smart assistants differentiate between devices in different parts of the house, so you can tell Google devices of the future to turn on the kitchen lights or flip your laundry.
iRobot’s been in the tech game since before (some of) you were born
Founded in 1990 by MIT robotics engineers, iRobot actually started by building bomb disposal robots for the US Army.
But, since launching their first Roomba in 2002, they’ve grown to acquire 88% of the “robovac” market and dropped their bomb division as consumer applications accounted for 99% of their $660m revenue.
Now, their biggest advantage over smart vacuum competitors is its mapping tech -- and companies like SoftBank, Amazon, and Google are interested.
iRobot holds the map to corporate hearts aplenty
Last year, SoftBank acquired a small stake in the company, and iRobot has reportedly considered selling its mapping data to Apple, Amazon, and Google (it’s not clear whether Google’s partnership is exclusive, or if we can expect contracts from other big players to follow).
iRobot’s CEO stresses that the company’s mapping data won’t be used in other Google services like their ad-target business, but consumers are still wary of getting profiled by the layout of their houses, or worse… what they keep under their beds.
People be freelancin’: A new report shows that more than 1 in 3 workers are freelance
If you’ve never heard of the gig-economy, mad respect -- because a new report says 56.7m Americans worked as freelancers in the last year.
Holy side-hustle! That’s more than 1 out of 3 in the entire labor force. And, those numbers continue to grow, which means, now more than ever, gig-employers are being held to the fire.
Today is ‘give your Lyft driver a hug day’… wait, no, don’t
While most full-time employees enjoy a slew of protections to ensure they get paid, aren’t discriminated against, and get some wisp of a severance upon getting canned, most freelancers don’t.
The study found that about 70% of ‘lancers have struggled to collect payment for work they’d completed -- a large reason the “Freelance Isn’t Free Act” was passed by the New York City Council last year.
Under the act, businesses hiring freelancers are required to pay up no later than 30 days after service… or else.
As freelancing becomes the future, the legal gap is starting to close
With the help of budding organizations like the Freelancers Union (who led the charge on the “Freelance Isn’t Free Act”), and legal tech startups that found a market in providing affordable contract services for freelancers, the disparity between staffers and giggers is starting to close.
And it couldn’t come at a more pertinent time. The study also found, that at the rate it’s growing, we can expect the majority of the US workforce to freelance within the decade.
Some surgeons believe that students’ fingers can’t hack it because of phones
Professor of surgical education at Imperial College in London and proprietor of the best doctor name of all time, Dr. Roger Kneebone, told The BBC he is concerned with the decline in dexterity of his students’ fingers over the past decade… because of smartphones.
“A lot of things are reduced to swiping on two-dimensional flat screens,” which he argues takes away the experience of developing physical skills.
But, Dr. Kneebone believes it’s proof of a bigger issue at play: the medical curriculum’s failure to adapt to the times.
How recovering from a gnarly knee surgery sparked a bone broth revolution
When Nick Mares was on the mend from a torn ACL, his brother Justin stumbled on the health benefits of bone broth. Being a good friend (and relative), he tried to order him some.
Problem is, they could only find non-organic, shipped-in-nasty-styrofoam options. So, they did what any pair of entrepreneurial siblings would do: They started making their own: Kettle & Fire.
Dogs chew on bones. Humans drink ‘em
At least, that’s what the brotherly duo at Kettle & Fire want, which is why they’re making it simple to score as much top-quality, eco-friendly bone broth as your diet can handle.
Kettle & Fire’s liquid gold is a great source of natural collagen, nutrients, and amino acids. And because it’s vacuum sealed fresh, Kettle & Fire bone broth retains its full nutritional goodness for up to 2 years.
But most of all, bone broth straight up tastes good, like a warm Thanksgiving dinner lovingly jammed into a soup. Cook it in 5 minutes and get your meal on.
FAIL: 12 times then start a multi-million dollar bathroom behemoth, Free read
At least, that’s what Suzy Batiz, the Founder & CEO of Poo~Pourri did. Throughout her career, she’s started 12 businesses and went bankrupt twice. But that didn’t stop her. Now, she runs a company that snagged over $1m in sales in its 1st year. Oh, and she’s speaking at Hustle Con East.
For too long, we’ve limited our passive-aggressive thoughts to emails and Slack messages… but not anymore. These hats from Intentionally Blank say everything you want, announced loud and proud via the billboard that is your head. We’re already planning our group order for the office (dibs on “Per My Last Email”).
CRUISE: The town via Uber with no price surprises, $14.99/mo
Launching in 5 U.S. cities, Uber Ride Pass lets you pay a monthly fee to lock in consistently low ride prices, no matter the time of day. That means no more paying double for your commute home from work. If the benefits aren’t tangible enough, they show you how much moolah you’ve saved right in the app.
MULTIPLY: Your CC rewards with the best card for startups, Free to apply
The first corporate card for startups is not playing around. With 50% more rewards value than standards cards, $25K+ in signup bonus deals, plus enough perks to fill a Thunderdome (auto receipt capture, virtual cards, and more), Brex means business. Get waived card fees with promo code HUSTLE.
POP: The cork on wines you know and actually want to drink, 30-70% off
The guys who founded Last Bottle Wines want only one thing in this world: For everybody to get a taste of the same amazing wines they do. Last Bottle Wines cuts out the middlemen and connects you to the best vino in the world at a crazy affordable price. Drink up.