A letter to the editor that expresses what many people think:

Too many politicians promise government programs to take care of our needs in order to get elected, so we think: Why take on the responsibility ourselves since the government will do it for us? I'll buy another big-screen TV instead of health insurance. Forget car insurance, the inevitable accident will be the other guy's fault. Take my driver's license ...

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Both Americans and Canadians are eying each other's health system:

"Canadians traveling to the U.S. for care are doing this because they can't get timely care in Canada and they are concerned about their health risks. They are prepared to pay and the U.S. seems close to home' and has a good clinical reputation,"says Copeman. "On the other hand, individuals leaving the U.S. for health care simply want to save ...

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His tumor was diagnosed by a physician watching him on TV.

GruntDoc PSA

Please don't drink Purell.

A 93 pound ovarian cyst

A woman wondered why she wasn't losing any weight.

More studies of the obvious:

"We documented that on average there are six topics that were discussed, and there is not a lot of time allocated to these topics," said lead study author Ming Tai-Seale, Ph.D.

During the doctor-patient interactions, the topic that received the most talk time was typically discussed for about five minutes. The remaining issues typically received about a minute of discussion each, found the ...

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Healthcare Diseasecare

Precisely the problem today:

Ironically, providers incentives to undertreat due to health plan reimbursement rules and structures coexist with incentives to overtreat, compounding the problems for patient value. Incentives to overtreat have four sources. First, physicians and hospitals get paid to treat, not for keeping patients healthy. Second, when reimbursements are squeezed, the incentive to treat more becomes stronger. Third, the phenomenon of "supply driven demand" (more specialist = ...

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On injuring the common bile duct:

There are two cardinal sins, in my estimation, for the general surgeon. The first, the sine qua non of a surgical screw-up, is injuring the common bile duct. Nailing the bowel with a suture while closing an abdominal incision is the other. Each tends to bespeak carelessness, and I'm sorry to say I've done both. Only once each, thank God, in what I'd ...

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Thanks Graham for pointing out this NY Times article. Academic physicians suggest this tact to better communicate with patients:

Doctors should use plain language, not medical jargon, vague terms and words that may have different meanings to a lay person. They should say . . . "You don't have HIV" instead of "Your HIV test was negative."
Two completely different things. Saying the first can land you ...

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Investor's Business Daily goes against the grain on health care reform:

But is [health care] really a crisis in desperate need of a government solution? The short answer: No.

Unless, of course, you also think that we have a recreation crisis, or a fitness club crisis, or a computer crisis. After all, spending on these and other things went up just as fast, if not faster, than spending on ...

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Follow-up from yesterday's story. You can't argue with the numbers.

"Smokable" medications

A drug company is looking for new ways to absorb medication. First up, "smokable" Compazine for migraines.

Some troubling thoughts for the future of American medicine:

With these decreasing payments and increasing regulation, I think that there will be an increasing number of physicians opting out of Medicare in the next several years. Indeed, it would not surprise me if it becomes difficult to find a decent physician who will be willing to accept any Medicare-eligible patient, even with the world's most generous secondary insurance. This is ...

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Herein lies the fundamental disagreement between lawyers and physicians. 100% certainty is an impossibility in medicine, a concept that the legal community has yet to grasp and continues to exploit through malpractice cases.

Well, don't do what this guy did:

A Chinese man had to have his contact lenses surgically removed after he did not take them out for a year.

Liu, 40, started to wear contact lenses a year ago and never took them out because he found it difficult.

"I only have some eye drops for when they feel uncomfortable," he told Chutian City News.

Liu recently felt ...

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What works for a cold?

A comprehensive chart evaluating all of the common remedies.

It's real.



(via PharmaGossip)

They don't want to discriminate against male GYNs.

A patient goes back to Yugoslavia for a procedure he had to wait for in single-payer Canada:

". . . in a time of need for somebody in my dad's situation, Yugoslavia offered better and faster treatment. They could not understand that they would make you wait that long to treat a disease of such seriousness in a country such as Canada and neither could we."

ER doc to angry patient

The more patients complain, the longer they'll wait:

Yes, we know you have (and are) a pain in the butt. Coming out to the nurse's station every five minutes to yell at the staff does not encourage me to see you any sooner. In fact, the opposite is true. When I noticed that you were able to walk and talk (loudly), I was then able to put you lower ...

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