Another casualty of defensive medicine:

The study's lead researcher believes a fear of malpractice lawsuits causes many doctors to become overcautious and over-diagnose skin cancer.

"We live in a very litigious society with a lot of defensive medicine," said Dr. Ali Hendi, an assistant professor of dermatology at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Fl. "If a pathologist is looking under microscope [with these new guidelines], he is not ...

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No HIPAA in China

A newspaper publishes protected health information without permission:

The girl surnamed Gao from the central province of Henan lost her parents after they contracted AIDS by selling blood.

In the 1980s and 1990s, thousands of Henan farmers contracted HIV from commercial blood stations that often combined the blood of sellers into common vats, separated out the valuable plasma, and then transfused the remaining corpuscles back into sellers, saving ...

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This writer wants to focus efforts on the Pap smear:

An American Cancer Society spokeswoman said that most American women who get cervical cancer these days are women who either had never had a Pap smear or had not followed the follow-up and frequency guidelines. So perhaps we could redirect the public money that would be spent on this vaccine "” one of the most expensive ever, priced at ...

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Two Texas hospitals are taking different approaches to the problem. However, this is the widely-accepted public view:

"We have a lot of United States citizens that need our help in health, and we should pull them up before we pull up someone here illegally," said Tim Gallagher, 45, a software salesman from Plano, north of Dallas, who in an interview expressed views widely shared in the state. Mr. Gallagher ...

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The beeping sponge

Perhaps coming soon to an OR near you:

Doctors at Stanford University School of Medicine who tested sponges embedded with radio frequency identification tags said the system accurately alerted surgeons when they deliberately left a sponge inside a temporarily closed surgical site and waved a detector wand over it.

Can it be so simple?

"It may seem like an oversimplified solution to improving patient satisfaction, but even a couple of minutes can make a significant difference in how patients view their experience," said Dr. Hall. "In addition, our data show that doctors who spend an average of three minutes longer with their patients -- 18 minutes instead of 15 -- can significantly decrease their chances of a malpractice lawsuit." ...

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Not a good idea:

There is a potential risk that the milk may be contaminated with viruses such as HIV or bacteria such as Staphylococcus aureus, which can cause food poisoning. In addition, traces of substances such as prescription and non-prescription drugs can be transmitted through human milk. Improper hygiene when extracting the milk, as well as improper storage and handling, could also cause these products to spoil or be ...

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A disturbing trend from a recent study.

How parking charges adds stress to the chronically ill during hospital visits in the UK.

They have been charged with second-degree murder. (via a reader tip)

And learns something about bedside manner, or the lack thereof:

However, Derm's lack of any appreciable bedside manner has me reevaluating one of my longest-held beliefs, that people don't really care if their doctor has a great bedside manner, but only really want a doctor who is very competent and does the job right.

And, painfully, I have to look hard at myself. I am, occasionally, a touch ...

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All thanks to Medicare Part D:

The windfall, which by some estimates could be $2 billion or more this year, is a result of the transfer of millions of low-income people into the new Medicare Part D drug program that went into effect in January. Under that program, as it turns out, the prices paid by insurers, and eventually the taxpayer, for the medications given to those transferred are ...

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That is something the Florida Supreme Court is considering:

Getting U.S.-quality medical care on a cruise ship can be difficult, according to attorneys who file medical claims for seafarers and cruise passengers. Almost all doctors who work on ships are foreign-trained and reside overseas. That limits the jurisdiction of U.S. courts in cases where something goes wrong. Whether ships have vicarious liability for the actions of doctors arose as a ...

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The Lancet writes about what doctors already know (if someone can e-mail me the full-text article, I'd appreciate it):

The pressure on doctors from the malpractice liability system in the United States, Australia and United Kingdom may be limiting the quality of care they provide.

The common law tort system allows patients to collect when a doctor is careless or causes injury. Daniel P. Kessler, Ph.D., Professor of ...

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How an off-label treatment does as well as a new drug at 1/40th of the cost.

A story of a tragic psychiatric case on the wards:

To simply say this woman is depressed, to attempt to medicalise the enormity of what she is experiencing, is not helpful. How can medicine cure this situation? How is anyone ever going to make this better? For some people, life is just too painful and sometimes there's no simple answer.

First Medpundit, now The Blog That Ate Manhattan returns. Happy days are here.

To so-called "cheapest office in New York":

Although he has been mistaken for a drug dealer, voyeur and even porno-watcher on wheels, Sweidan told the newspaper he prefers his rolling office to his conventional digs.

Apparently the American Society of Anesthesiologists has advised doctors not to participate:

Gaitan, who was appointed by President George H.W. Bush, told state officials that, among other things, a board-certified anesthesiologist had to ensure that inmates were sedated enough during execution that they would not feel unnecessary pain . . .

. . . Missouri officials sent letters to 298 board-certified anesthesiologists in Missouri and southern Illinois "inquiring of ...

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The NY Times looks further:

Zidane was tired and frustrated, and Materazzi'’s words -— no one is saying precisely what they were, though Zidane said his mother and sister were mentioned -— proved too much.

"You're talking about a situation of absolute intense pressure,"” Mr. Sagal said. “And you are talking about a player in particular who is unparalleled in his ability to stay narrowly focused. What ...

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