Medicare price negotiations is the threat. Big Pharma is counting on a presidential veto as it's last line of defense.

Medscape asks a group of neurologists:

The top 5 most bothersome patient behaviors from most to least were the following: no show for appointment, verbally abusive with your staff, poor compliance with medications or treatment, late for appointment, and do not know the medications that they are taking. Of the 30 items, those behaviors as well as answering cell phones during office visits and unnecessary phone calls after hours were ...

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Known as ectopia cordis, an infant successfuly underwent surgery recently.

I thought it was a joke at first too:

An Israeli university is taking the notion that laughter is the best medicine seriously, setting up a Bachelor of Arts degree in medical clowning to help legitimize the profession.

Happy Thanksgiving



Many thanks and much appreciation for your continued readership and support of this blog.

The authors of that now-famous BMJ study worry about the fire they started:

"Some have misinterpreted our paper as advocating the use of Google as a main tool in diagnosis," Tang says.

A quick Google search soon after the release of the study, "Googling for a Diagnosis," in the November online British Medical Journal, shows he may have some cause for concern. Amid growing interest in how physicians ...

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Corruption at UMDNJ

It's claimed the chairman of medicine during this illegal referral investigation:

The plan to pay cardiologists to refer their patients to University Hospital was first reported Nov. 5 in The Sunday Star-Ledger. That story found doctors were paid as much as $150,000 a year for no work with the understanding that they would refer their patients to the surgery program.
Tactics such as these demonstrate how financially desperate hospitals ...

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The patient had a rare congenital condition complicating the picture.

Is the single-payer system to blame?

Liberal Leader Jon Gerrard said both Kryger and Melanson tried to work with the provincial health authorities to get additional resources for their clinics and their departures show they didn't get what they needed.

"I think it is a direct reflection on the poor support by this government," said Gerrard.

The waiting arms race continues. A 30-minute wait is yesterday's news. Now, ERs promise zero-wait. How do they do that? Probably by bringing the patient into the room immediately and having them wait in there instead.

Patchwork cancer care

The uncoordinated nature of cancer care pretty much applies to primary care as well:

While patients may need a wide array of doctors - radiologists, pathologists, radiation oncologists, cancer surgeons, reconstructive surgeons, medical oncologists - each may handle only one aspect of care. Patients often travel to different offices for each specialist or procedure. Sections of their records may be stored at each location.

Yet none of these ...

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As might be expected, opinion runs the gamut.

Health-care despair in China. The USA Today with a nice article:

Ye Yuanxi, a forensic medicine specialist and director of an independent medical institute in Chongqing, fights to expose abuses. His desk is piled high with malpractice complaints, including the case of Huang Tingyu, 4, who broke her thigh bone in a fall in June 2005. The girl's parents were charged $2,500 for her treatment because doctors kept ...

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Many are still willing to pay more for health care choice and access. Good luck selling them on socialized, choice-rationed medical care:

In particular, HMOs have lost ground to a kissing cousin, the preferred provider organization, or PPO.

The least restrictive of managed-care plans, PPOs allow health plan members to go outside of an insurer's list of doctors and services, but at a greater cost to the consumer. ...

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Drinking urine

1 in 4 people in Chinese village do so.

After much analysis, the bottom-line:

As stated in the preceding blockquote, Conservatives in the US do not believe that Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights are really rights. Liberals believe that they are obviously rights, and that Conservatives are just mean and obstructionist.

This is why health care debate goes nowhere - Liberals are honestly trying to meet human rights standards that, by conservative standards, have no philosophical foundation. ...

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Some states are starting the preach saving up for end-of-life care to take the burden off taxpayers.

Despite the tough words from the Democrats, it's unlikely to happen.

Currently there are 28 "never" events where patients will not be charged, which includes surgery performed on the wrong body part; mixing up donor sperm for an artificial insemination; "retention of a foreign object in a patient after surgery"; and patient injury associated with "contaminated drugs, devices or biologics provided by the health care facility."

A government bailout for their health-insurance woes will be akin to rewarding bad management.

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