by Child of the Ocean I recently came across an interesting article titled “Conscientious Objection Gone Awry — Restoring Selfless Professionalism in Medicine” by Julie D. Cantor, M.D., J.D., in the New England Journal of Medicine. This article argues against a rule, the Provider Refusal Rule, from the United States Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) that legally protects health care professionals who act based on ...

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A recent article by Pauline Chen features a group of primary care physicians at Tufts Medical Center in Boston, who have created a concierge practice that funnels income into the traditional general medical practice that sees less-advantaged patients. Surveys (performed by the medical center itself) found that patients rated the quality of interactions with their doctors similarly regardless of their affiliation. The only significant differences in responses had to ...

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I really don’t want my children to be overweight. I know this because I see the consequences every day in my practice, consequences like high blood pressure, impending diabetes, or poor self-esteem. At the same time, I really, really don’t want my children to have an eating disorder. I know this because I had one. In college, I suffered from anorexia nervosa. I’m a little more than 5 feet 9 inches tall, ...

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heart attack symptoms in women Having a heart attack felt nothing like I thought it would feel.   For one thing, unlike sudden cardiac arrrest, in which the heart stops beating and you stop breathing, during my heart attack (myocardial infarction), my heart continued beating, and I was conscious throughout despite horrific symptoms – so how could I possibly be having a heart ...

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An excerpt from More Health Less Care: How to Take Charge of Your Medical Care and Write Your Own Personal Prescription for Lifelong Health. Bob Baker is a patient of Dr. Lisa Martin. Bob works as an engineer for a Fortune 500 company that holds major commercial and Department of Defense contracts. He’s 45 years old and happily married with two college-age children. Bob’s lifestyle is stressful. He travels ...

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I used to practice pediatrics. It has been several years since I decided to leave medicine, but people still ask me about it, and I find myself offering neat explanations between gulps of coffee. Of course, the full truth is much more complicated. The full truth has as much to do with our health care system and our culture as it does with me. My journey in pediatrics was not entirely ...

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Chaperones are increasingly recommended for routine use in Western medicine.  There are semi-official recommendations in both the UK and USA.   The AMA has long had this. The rationale for using chaperones is twofold.  In theory their primary purpose is to protect, comfort and assist the patient.  In reality though, the usual purpose is to protect the physician against claims of sexual assault or harassment. Preferably, chaperones should be real professionals, ideally ...

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At the risk of dating myself, I recall a time when “The Three Rs” summed up American education. In case you aren’t familiar with this phrase, it stands for "Reading, ‘Riting, and ‘Rithmetic." I think it’s high time we develop “Three Rs” for patients. Right now, Patient World is ruled by “E” words such as “empowered” and “engaged,” with “empowered” the big one. I think “empowered” is turning into a label, ...

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When I realized that I would be moving to a different county within Southern California and would have to change jobs, I knew it would be inevitable that I would have to say goodbye to my patients. I was dreading this. I mean, really dreading it. I don’t like goodbyes.  I feel as though I am breaking up, and in a way I am. Like any other relationship, my patient-physician relationships ...

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If I was Surgeon General, I would follow the lead of our country's first Mom. This is serious folks. We, as an American society, need to solve the obesity crisis.  Not just for our physical health, but for our country's financial stability. Reducing the spiraling costs of health care is wanted by all.  So far, prevention of the diseases which contribute most to our health care costs, (heart disease, cancer and ...

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