A $217 million (!) verdict, but of course, "This isn't about money, this was about the quest for justice."

Some choice quotes from the plaintiff lawyer:

Family attorney Steve Yerrid said he'll pursue damages from the insurance company, which is now claiming in a lawsuit that it has no duty to defend Austin because the doctor breached his contract.

"We're coming after them next," vowed Yerrid, who was ...

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Ban the medical slang

A patient advocate wants to strike the term "frequent-flyer", amongst others:

Mr Cayton, the national director for patients and the public, said of the term frequent flyers: "It implies that somehow these people want regular trips to hospital, that they are collecting points, that they enjoy the health and life-threatening roundabout of continual admission, treatment and discharge."

Other phrases, such as bed-blockers, shifted the blame from the NHS ...

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Some education is clearly needed here:

"It is a real indictment of our education that teenagers are so fearful that they are prepared to do something that is enormously damaging to themselves and and their babies because they think there might be an outside chance it might make their labour easier. Which is largely a myth."

One more reason why UnitedHealth is the most physician-hostile insurer:

The doctors originally sued all four large insurers in our area, saying they price-fixed the fees at such a low rate, some doctors were leaving town.

Three of the companies, Aetna, Humana and Anthem, settled the case, agreeing to pay doctors more by hundreds of millions of dollars.

United Healthcare decided to fight. It argued that the doctors shouldn't ...

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An internist disagrees with an ID specialist about Lyme disease treatment. A complaint to the state medical board is subsequently filed.

This grudge apparently affected her decision making her high school rival coded:

"I think that it's a rogue nurse on her own wild mustang riding through the West, you know, shooting whoever she wants," he said. "This is way out of what we would ever expect or think anybody would do."

I didn't realize that closing a hospital was so expensive.

#1 Dinosaur says no, and gives a pep talk.

As part of a Medscape roundtable discussion.

Less malpractice:

Nearly half of medical school students nationwide are now female, and as they enter the profession, they are making patient care friendlier and therefore may be less likely to get sued than male physicians.
Possibly exacerbating the physician shortage:
For the typical patient, having a woman physician means longer office visits. They typically spend more time talking with and counseling patients, according to a 2002 analysis in ...

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So that he can train and live in a high-altitude environment.

Maybe Florida can learn something:

Texas today is licensing an average of 400 more doctors per year than before reform. The Texas Medical Board expects a record 4,100 new applications for physician licenses this year -- 38 percent more than last year, which was the previous record!

The number of medical specialists is growing rapidly. Since reform, Texas has gained 146 obstetricians, 127 orthopaedic surgeons and ...

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Sounds great in theory, but it seems that many of the suggestions requires a fundamental change in reimbursement philosophy to be instituted.

. . . or why medical students shun primary care:

While a family practice doctor often works long days and endures crammed waiting rooms for $155,000 a year, dermatologists average $197,000 -- and many don't work even five days a week.

Dermatologists, who treat diseases of the skin, hair and nails, also tend to draw more insured patients who can afford to pay for their care. As a result, ...

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Fat doctors under fire

The headline speaks for itself.

Seems like the suggested solution is a continued low threshold for ordering tests:

While researchers acknowledged that most claims involved several factors, they said major ones included mistakes by doctors: failure to order appropriate diagnostic tests . . .

. . . Doctors not involved with the study said the findings highlight the fact that physicians - and patients - need to err on the side of caution when ...

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The bizarre medical mystery of a 12-year old girl who literally is stuck as a 9-month old baby:

For 12 years the family has changed her nappies, rocked her to sleep and taken turns to give her cuddles. On school days, she is carried gently into a yellow bus and taken to a special school for handicapped children. Her condition has no name and doctors are unaware of any other ...

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Going the extra mile:

When leukemia patient Brandon Meyer asked his doctor for permission to go skydiving, he was surprised by the response.

"I jokingly said that he could go when he got through his more intensive chemotherapy, but only if he brought me," said Dr. Steve Ambrusko, a hematology/oncology fellow at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh. "Lo and behold, he called me on that."

Sad but true. With so many patients on multiple-drug regimens, some medications will be more important than others.

A responsible narcotic-using pain patient writes:

I no longer go to emergency rooms for help with any pain. They might fix my broken bone but then ask, "How many hospitals do you go to to try to get extra drugs?" One ER doctor told me to "go home and play your little drug games."
Problem is, for every responsible narcotic user, you have another hundred who play the drug ...

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