Sometimes, physicians' words have lasting impact on patients.

It's already been done, with the Bristol-Myers Squibb Children's Hospital in New Jersey. With the increased scrutiny of pharma's relationship with physicians, could this happen today? Roy Poses comments further:

The decision to name the hospital also took place in 2001, before the pervasive nature of conflicts of interest in health care started receiving some attention. I wonder how many other glaring examples of such conflicts ...

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Debunking some Sicko myths. (via Catron)

Physician reporting

"Garbage in, garbage out," says Dr. Wes.

A vicious op-ed in the Washington Post slams the AMA. No doubt, many physicians may feel the same way:

You might expect that the AMA would fight the insurers, hospitals, government bureaucrats and ivory tower academics who have diminished physicians' incomes, besmirched their ethical reputations and compromised their professionalism -- but you would be wrong. No, instead, at its annual meeting last month, the AMA declared war on retail ...

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The topic of whether a non-teaching service adversely affects medication education was brought up recently. Robert Centor with his thoughts on the mattter:

Dr. Wes is correct that some hospitals would rather have private hospitalists care for patients. Program directors and chairs of medicine must fight that trend . . .

. . . I know that it can be done right, because I see it being ...

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A NEJM study says that close friends may be associated with one's obesity:

The answer, the researchers report, was that people were most likely to become obese when a friend became obese. That increased a person's chances of becoming obese by 57 percent. There was no effect when a neighbor gained or lost weight, however, and family members had less influence than friends.

A geneticist fails to diagnose Smith-Lemli-Opitz syndrome. The jury awards a $23.5 million verdict, but the couple now needs to lobby the government:

A jury determined Monday that the University of South Florida was 90 percent at fault for the "wrongful birth" of their child, Caleb, who has a genetic disorder and will require constant care for the rest of his life. The school, therefore, should pay the bulk ...

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Fascinating interview of a surgeon and the issues she faces.

What was practicing general surgery like?

Horrible!! Absolutely horrible. The ER would call with "this old lady has non-specific belly pain...I'd like you to come lay hands on her?" As if my hands are magical. As if I can really tell what the hell's going on. The ER doc is just trying to cover his ass ...

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Go to Cuba!

Dr. RW points to some links on the verdict clearing Weis' physicians of malpractice.

Plaintiff attorney Eric Turkewitz comments:

Nationwide, approximately 2/3 of all malpractice verdicts favor the defendants. This occurs because, generally speaking, it is usually the most difficult of cases that go to verdict, and due to juries favoring physicians over patients according to a recent Michigan Law Review study.
That doesn't take into account ...

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More ER stories. A patient demands Zithromax for post-traumatic stress. Shadowfax comments on this post: ". . . if they're 4+ crazy, then a Z-pack is a small price to pay for a smooth discharge."

A common occurrence, and harder to detect:

Make no mistake: we certainly see drug seekers in the office. Many of them are charming and have extremely legitimate-sounding stories. Over the years, though, I've discovered something in my own thought processes that flags them unerringly: in the course of the history and exam, in which the long-suffering patient is telling a tale of such woe, such suffering, such angst, the ...

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The Angry Pharmacist has his thoughts, and doesn't hold back:

Now I'm not siding with Purdue one bit, but I think the doctors themselves are partially to blame. Purdue got dinged because they were "claiming to doctors that OxyContin was less addictive and less subject to abuse than other pain medications."

One question. If that was the case, why is it a C2 and not a C3 or ...

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Taking exception to faulty computerized physician rating systems:

After 26 years of a successful medical practice, Alan Berkenwald took for granted that he had a good reputation. But last month he was told he didn't measure up -- by a new computerized rating system.

A patient said an insurance company had added $10 to the cost of seeing Berkenwald instead of other physicians in his western Massachusetts town ...

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The trend is moving in the wrong direction, stifling any useful attempts at universal coverage:

"Supply and demand are both going in the wrong direction," Dr. B. Dale Magee, the society's president, said in an interview. "With the new healthcare reform law, we anticipate that the demand for physician services is going to increase, not only across the board, but especially for primary care physicians."

An op-ed in the Boston Globe - "It's too expensive to be a primary care doctor":

Under the current care model, doctors are attracted to better-compensated medical specialties so they can deal with rising medical-school debts, inequities in reimbursement, and increasing malpractice insurance costs. Even though patients receive 95 percent of their healthcare outside of a hospital, it's just too expensive to be a primary-care doctor in America today.

A simple panel used by an ER physician to rule out the diseases that may come back to bite you if you miss them:

I have devised a simple, cheap and quick "reassurance work-up" for these folks which consists of:
an ECG, an i-Stat, a D-dimer, and a troponin. Sometimes I add a chest x-ray if it seems helpful.
PCPs I talk to are ordering more D-dimers as ...

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The right thing was done:

A grand jury Tuesday declined to indict Dr. Anna Pou, the surgeon accused of killing four seriously ill patients in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
Hopefully this saga has come to an end. Read more for extensive debate on the Anna Pou story.

Some blogosphere reactions -

PEU Report:
"The bad news is the grand jury declined to indict the ...

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Dr. Wes writes on hospitalist-run non-teaching services, and how they threaten medical education:

I see many, many more patients shunted to in-hospital hospitalist services that are productivity-driven. These eager inpatient attendants to health care are a formidable challenge to managing inpatient teaching services: patients are seen quickly, decisions expedited, and lengths of stay minimized, making a powerful inducement for hospital systems to employ these services. Teaching services are rarely ...

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