In an era of increasing transparency in medicine, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has been publishing data annually on payments to individual physicians since 2014. The database, officially called the Medicare Provider Utilization and Payment Data: Physician and Other Supplier Public Use File, has been a window (albeit a cracked and opaque window) into the practice patterns and reimbursement of individual physicians. It includes most payments for services ...

Read more...

Medical and surgical research is breaking boundaries at an astounding pace. From genetic modification and stem cell therapy to robotic and 3-D printing technology, scientific advancement is finding novel, unique and unprecedented solutions to complex, challenging diseases. Indeed, such is the rate of change that I am certain the last eight years of my surgical training in the UK will likely be rendered obsolete within the next twenty years of ...

Read more...

I am a child psychiatrist who is also a patient, a mother of patients and the wife of a patient. I have lived all sides of health care and appreciate the complexity that is our American health care system. After a recent move to a different part of town, we decided to find a new pediatrician for our daughters. I knew that we had several good options near our home. When ...

Read more...

I've had some of the most wonderful experiences of my entire medical training working with kids and their families. And this, to me, is not surprising. After all, I envisioned myself as a pediatrician long before I ever entered medical school. However, I remember that more frequent news of declining vaccination rates at one point temporarily gave me pause: What would it be like to take on the tremendous responsibility of ...

Read more...

Last night, my son was reading a book that was required summer reading for 6th grade. This book was published over 30 years ago. When he got to a sentence that used the word “retard,” he stopped and innocently asked, “Mom, what does that word mean?” At first, I was shocked that he did not know the meaning, but as I thought about it more, I realized this term was no ...

Read more...

At the beginning of this year, I bought a ukulele. I started intern year at a sprint, like anyone does, arms full of hope which was quickly extinguished, lost in an atmosphere so devoid of hope that all of it flew out of my arms to settle into places so far in between it might as well have been floating in the vacuum of space. The cloak of physicianship burdens upon ...

Read more...

The rise of the Internet has changed many things in the world of the customer.  Now, in the age of the online consumer, a person can search for not only the exact item or service he or she wants, but read hundreds of reviews on that particular item or service.  Thanks to Yelp and a host of other online rating sites, a person can find a reputable painter or contractor ...

Read more...

I had the pleasure of traveling to Rochester, Minnesota for a wedding this summer.  Minnesota is home to more people from Somalia than any other state. My home of Columbus, Ohio is also a hub for people from Somalia.  As a pediatric resident, I take care of Somali-American children and work with Somali American healthcare providers every day. It was surreal, then, to set foot in a state recovering from a ...

Read more...

Charlie Gard was a one-year-old boy who had a rare genetic disease leaving him blind, comatose, and unable to breathe on his own. This metabolic disorder can be fatal and has no known cure. Charlie’s parents wanted him treated with experimental drugs in the hope that a miracle would happen. As reported in the press, the British medical and legal community considered this care futile and blocked ...

Read more...

When I was a medical student, trying to forge my path on the clinical wards as a third year, there was a lot to turn me off the idea of a career in medicine entirely -- sleep deprivation, early mornings, late nights, standing for hours on rounds, subsisting on diets of hospital graham crackers and off-brand peanut butter. However, what frosted me the most was constantly playing 6 degrees of ...

Read more...

As you look at the above image, please let me ask you a simple question: “What do you see?” Do you see a sick man lying on a bed with a friendly looking doctor standing by his bedside? Do you see only men in the picture and wonder, “Why not women?” Do you see a clinical setting of an engaging sketch of a doctor and ...

Read more...

We sat in the office of the intensive care unit under fluorescent lights, both staring at computer screens covered in vital signs and labs. It was the summer of my second year of residency, and I spent it entirely in the intensive care unit. There were two of us on call at night. Half the nights we would spend shooting the shit about life, and the other half we spent ...

Read more...

There is a lot of talk on the web about having an emergency fund. Typically this is three to six months of expenses. Some would argue to keep three to six times bare bones expenses, and others would argue to keep three to six times the average amount you spend on expenses. Having an emergency fund makes sense to cover life’s unexpected occurrences. What could these be? Well, the biggest ...

Read more...

Test your medicine knowledge with the MKSAP challenge, in partnership with the American College of Physicians. A 36-year-old man is evaluated for a 1-year history of fatigue, intermittent headaches, sore throat, and joint and muscle pain. He reports no difficulties falling asleep and gets 10 hours of uninterrupted but nonrestorative sleep each night. He has seen several physicians over the past year. Evaluation ...

Read more...

The National Academy of Medicine has launched an Action Collaborative on Clinician Well-Being and Resilience, but there is one missing stakeholder. On July 14th, NAM hosted its first public meeting on establishing clinician well-being as a national priority. The inaugural sponsors include nearly many medical specialty societies, the major insurance companies, the American Associations for hospitals, nurses, physicians and medical colleges, Johns Hopkins, Mass General and ...

Read more...

A colleague said earlier this week, as he bravely disclosed his journey with anxiety and depression that he had “become excellent at hiding [his] depression, especially as an extrovert.” My colleague brings others along into a wake of happiness he trails but is also able to sit knee-to-knee with the parents of dying patients and empathize in their suffering — to truly let a small part of their pain sit and ...

Read more...

As every physician practicing today knows, health care is in a constant state of flux. The latest news from Washington creates even more uncertainty. What we do know is that, for the foreseeable future, there will be an emphasis on team care, coordination, technology and, of course, meeting the requirements of the ever-expanding alphabet soup of acronyms, from MACRA to MIPS and beyond. As I think about all the changes of ...

Read more...

On a daily basis, I am introduced to new people from all walks of life. Some sit on the board of directors, some are CEOs, some are presidents, some are middle managers and other administrators, some are investors, others are entrepreneurs, and some are physicians, nurses, case managers and even patients. I listen to people talk about the big challenges in health care. It costs too much, we have a shortage ...

Read more...

Just as summer is in full swing, the back-to-school advertisements are running. This time of year can be exciting for many — the first day of elementary school, high school or college. For the rest of us, we try to be lifelong learners: learning from our successes and failures, learning from others and if we are lucky learning by reading. Reading is a skill learned in the early school years. Children ...

Read more...

“He is the best physician who is the most ingenious inspirer of hope.” - Samuel Taylor Coleridge I was a third-year medical student on a Sunday morning when the reality of what I had chosen as my life career truly hit me in the gut. At that moment, I realized how intimate the practice of medicine was and that I would have to bring not only my brain and skills to work ...

Read more...

1399 Pages

Most Popular