Gatelynomics 101

New vid up:


Hi Shawn,

I’ve always enjoyed your blogs, in the past I’ve occasionally been put off by the economics stuff but I have to say the Gatelynomics series is really interesting.

In the past I’ve had the same issue as your Wife, Kidney Stones. About 8 years ago I had my first that was around 1.5cm across as well, interestingly enough in the uk they seem to favour Lithotripsy to deal with all but emergency cases. Basically a large machine pressed against your side with ultrasound gel between you and it, “pounds” you with ultra sonic waves that cause the stone to break up. You actually get to see it happening on the little monitor which is basically like a video game of asteroids with the operator targeting the stones.

It works well for some stones, not for others, luckily for me it was very successfully, although it took 7 treatments that time to fully remove the stone.

More recently I’ve had a few cases but the newer machines tend to deal with it in a few visits.

To parallel the Private/Public medical costs debate, in the uk as you are probably aware we have a totally free and good quality health service, however via Work I have a medical insurance (free as part of my work package but I do get taxed on it (which is interesting because effectively I’m being taxed on a benefit that actually removes cost from the public health service)).

So, in effect I can go “private” for a max fee of £100 per year regardless of number of “issues” (a sort of insurance excess) or I can go public.

Ironically the Lithotripsy machines are so specialist the private hospitals don’t have them, so you actually get treated at the NHS hospital, by the same staff, on the same machine, the difference, 0 wait time, although the wait times on the NHS are low (<3 months for non-urgent stones, and instant for emergencies)

In general I tend to go Private as it costs me very little, and I think the money the NHS are able to charge the insurance company helps them fund the machines for other users.

Anyway thanks for the Gatelynomics series and other videos, finding them very interesting, I’ve just started my own company (part-time) providing wargaming basing materials ( , on Youtube as well ) and any tips you have would be appreciated.





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