Twelve years ago on August 29th, Hurricane Katrina ruined our childhood home in New Orleans. My parents evacuated last minute and were not allowed back for an entire month while standing water remained in our house, rotting away all our childhood memories. They rebuilt, sold the house and eventually moved to Texas. This year on August 27th, Hurricane Harvey destroyed my husband and our young girls’ family home and cars and ...

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Angela Cooper arrived home from work to discover her daughter’s temperature had spiked to 102 degrees — a sign that the teenager, who has cancer, had a potentially deadly bloodstream infection. As Cooper rushed her daughter to the hospital, her mind raced: Had she done something to cause the infection? Cooper, who works at a Chevy dealership in Iowa, has no medical background. She is one of thousands of parents who ...

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A dear friend who is many years my senior recently remarked that he has stopped watching television. “I’m tired of seeing all the bad s%&t that’s happening in the world.  I know it’s happening, but I can’t do much about it, and it makes me depressed. I want to hear some good news stories.” He is correct, of course. we all could use a good news story or two. To be sure, our news media has evolved ...

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We as women have to stop saying "I’m sorry" for things out of our control. When we apologize for things we are not responsible for, we take a step backwards in the advancement of women in the workplace. I am a cardiac anesthesiologist, which means I care for patients who are undergoing open-heart surgery. I work in an academic medical center and train doctors to become anesthesiologists. The operating room (OR) can ...

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A surgical resident is suing St. Louis University, its surgical residency program director, and its trauma service chief for what she claims is an unjustified decision requiring her to repeat her fourth year of training. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch article about this has a link to a 42-page PDF describing the details of the suit. Because I suspect you won’t read that PDF and maybe not even the article, I ...

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The debate about the future of health care rages stronger than ever. As someone who grew up and trained in a country with probably the most centrally controlled medical system in the world—the United Kingdom with her NHS—my views have admittedly done a 180 over the last decade. I am no longer as strong a believer in socialized health care as I once was, and actually believe the future for ...

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As I sit in the exam room waiting for my first patient of the afternoon, the phone rings. It rings four more times before I realize that Amanda Ringwald, our eighty-year-old receptionist, hasn't come back from taking a rare lunch break. I pick up the phone and say, "VA Hospital. Marianna Crane." Oops, I'm not back at the VA anymore. "Senior Clinic," I quickly add. "Hello, my friend." The familiar voice makes my ...

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Saturday nights on my couch are usually late and peaceful. But my old friend, civil unrest, crept into my reprieve. Do I do one more "to-do task?" Or do I or continue my aimless net surfing? But it's not exactly aimless now. I'd just stumbled across an online article: "When You are the Friend of a Physician Suicide." The physician-author's narrative about his friend's death and the reader's posts, mostly from ...

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It’s that time of year again, the dreaded, yet exciting, residency application season. Year after year, we have learned that securing a residency position extends beyond competitive scores. It involves planning, networking and putting your best foot forward to prove you are the perfect “match” for a program. To avoid having shock and stress of an unexpected scramble, we wanted to share five tips, which extend beyond some of the ...

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There is a 4,300-strong grassroots movement known as “Save Our Hospital” gaining notoriety in Albert Lea, Minnesota. This story is symptomatic of the fact that hospital consolidation has slowly become a national pastime. With declining revenue under the Affordable Care Act, mergers increased by 70 percent, leaving small communities scrambling for health care access. The latest casualty in the “hospital-consolidation-for-sport” trend is Albert Lea, a small ...

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