Could a greater miracle take place than for us to look through each other’s eyes for an instant? -Henry David Thoreau It is almost 7:00am I carry my briefcase and lunch bag from the car to my office. I nod to some of the night shift employees heading home. Another day has begun. I type my password and check the computer, reminding myself of the twenty patients I am scheduled to see today ...

Read more...

american society of anesthesiologistsA guest column by the American Society of Anesthesiologists, exclusive to KevinMD.com. Recently, discussion about health care has reached a fever pitch, between changes in policy, adjustments to scope of practice and a multitude of other medical issues. As health care providers, it is our duty to provide the highest level of medical care to all patients to ...

Read more...

I almost fell off my chair.  It was bad enough that he showed up to the ER.  But what happened next really blew my mind.  He fell and bruised a rib.  The pain in his left chest had obvious enough origins.  But triage had put in for an electrocardiogram and the interpretation apparently scared the resident.  The attending took a look, and shook his head. "Left bundle branch block.  Better call ...

Read more...

I used to be a stickler for time. One of my first blog posts was about how it felt to go to work without my wristwatch. I also used to be very particular about knowing the purpose of each visit, partly to help me manage my time, and partly to help me feel prepared and in control of the visit. I often questioned why my colleagues’ patients would sometimes end up in ...

Read more...

This is a topic that comes up from time to time for often spirited discussion. The most recent example comes in a a couple of articles in the New England Journal of Medicine. One was a research paper; the other was a pro and con discussion. The research paper studied cardiac arrests that happened outside the hospital. The authors tested the premise that allowing families to watch the efforts of ...

Read more...

Experts, most recently former CMS administrator Don Berwick, tell us that no less than 20% – 30% of medical care is waste. At the very least, waste is harmful to all those who pay for Medicare. But often it’s directly harmful to the patient as well. I recently saw a friend at a party. Since we’d last seen each other my friend’s spouse had died. (I’m deliberately avoiding gendered pronouns and ...

Read more...

oliver I remember going to see the movie “Oliver” in the theater when I was a kid.  Since this was my first movie in a theater, my mom made me a treat: a bag full of raisins and chocolate chips (Raisinets for Dutch people) and sent me there with my sister.  It was a fine film, with Oliver getting kicked out of the ...

Read more...

Of all the different criteria people use when deciding for whom to vote in presidential elections, I’ve never heard anyone talk about the importance of a background in clinical psychology—but it’s always struck me as important for a president to have as for a clinical psychologist. Certainly, foreign policy experience, a firm grasp of the principles of economics, a bold and confident leadership style, and the ability to get people ...

Read more...

In the wake of the Newtown shootings, as a country we are all taking a step back, looking at our laws and our policies and thinking about what we can do to prevent unspeakable tragedies like the deaths of those children from happening again. I am not a gun owner and never will be, but I am not advocating getting rid of all the guns. I totally get that there are ...

Read more...

I recently blogged about the question of what the difference is between a doctor and a nurse, now that advanced practice nurses can do so many of the same things physicians do.  As both a nurse and a doctor I thought maybe I could wade into that quagmire.  In that post I suggested that the real difference is one of ultimate responsibility.  A reader pointed out that this ...

Read more...

Most Popular