I recently read an article in the New York Times titled "When Doctors ‘Google’ Their Patients," which details one physician’s thoughts on whether or not doctors should look up their patients on the Internet. What struck me was the fact that despite growing up with the Internet and being able to find information about practically anyone using Facebook, LinkedIn, Google, or Instagram,  I have never once been tempted to find out ...

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Obamacare has promised to provide all of us with quality medical care that is affordable and accessible. The very name of the law is the Affordable Care Act, which I have maintained will be short on both affordability and quality care. Most of the country agrees with me. The postponement for a year of the corporate mandate to provide insurance in businesses with at least 50 full time employees was a ...

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During the four weeks of my ICU rotation, I came to know Mr. S well. I was the medical student on the intensive care team, managing patients alongside the primary surgeon. Mr. S was on the road to recovery when I started to follow his hospital course. Every morning we rounded, one more of the numerous tubes attached to his body were removed. He grew stronger, gradually able to speak clearly ...

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Several years ago, a young woman I’d been seeing in clinic weekly for about a month to initiate treatment for depression called late Friday afternoon to cancel an upcoming appointment for the following Monday and did not reschedule. The receptionist sent me a message as is our policy for patients who cancel and do not reschedule. It gave me a bad feeling that she was not following through on her treatment plan and ...

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acp-logoA guest column by the American College of Physicians, exclusive to KevinMD.com. A few months ago, I attended a social event and ran into a few colleagues whom I had not seen in a long time. In the interest of privacy, I won’t reveal their specialties but I will note that I was the only primary care specialist in the group. As ...

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Donald is large. Very large. At more than 600 pounds, he is a mountain of flesh with a small opening at the top through which he speaks. "My stomach hurts," he says, his voice surprisingly high and childlike. It is 10:00pm in the emergency room, and I am already swamped with patients I'm trying to move through the ER before my shift is over. Asked if he's ever felt this kind of pain before, ...

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A recent research article in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, and the gap between its findings and the real world, helps point up the usefulness and limitations of research. The article, by Susan H. McDaniel, PhD, and coauthors, set out to determine how often doctors speak about their colleagues in supportive or critical ways. Their method is one widely used in the field: simulated patients, actors, were prepared with lifelike stories ...

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Months before my life was upended, a doctor friend tried to explain my forthcoming role in terms I'd understand. "Imagine being on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week," he said. "You're in charge of a single patient, but she is needy as hell." Medical training prepared me for motherhood in some ways (the assortment of facts blurrily retained from my pediatrics rotation in medical school; the skill, or 
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I recently went to a visitation at a funeral home for my friend’s daughter. She was 24. She had had developmental delays and multiple medical issues, but this was not expected and the cause is not known. My friend is a doctor. A really good one. One with fiercely loyal patients because she is a fierce advocate for them. She is one of those doctors with phenomenal interpersonal insight on top of ...

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The infant mortality statistics are out again. This always depresses me because: 1) The rates are atrociously high, and, 2) There is so much legislation passed to restrict abortion in the name of “life,” but politicians and judges seems awfully silent on infant mortality. In the United States 6.4 infants out of every 1,000 born will not reach their first birthday. This is more than 24,000 infant deaths a year. The United States is also the leader ...

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