Patriots LB Tedy Bruschi is out for the season
A big loss for the Patriots defense, although I think that incoming linebacker Chad Brown will not be a bad replacement. I speculated on a possible PFO last year.

Oregon has passed a bill making cold medicines prescription-only
"Oregon would become the first state in the nation to require a doctor's prescription for many types of cold medicines under a bill overwhelmingly passed Wednesday by the House as part of the Legislature's attack on the methamphetamine scourge." (via Serenade in Blue)

I was interviewed by SoundPractice.net today, talking about the phenomenon of medical blogs. The interview can be found in its entirety under "Featured Podcasts", or can be downloaded as a mp3 file.

Cornell Law Review takes a look at medical malpractice and poor state of health care quality
"The scholars further recommend that physicians who adhere to evidence-based medical standards developed by the profession be immune from malpractice suits. 'If physicians fear malpractice as much as they say they do, the prospect of immunity should be an immediate incentive for the implementation of these standards.'"

That is the smartest suggestion ...

Read more...

Patients couldn't reach their doctors when the answering service was hacked
"The founder of a company that runs answering services for doctors nationwide tried to destroy a rival by hacking into that firm's computer so that patients heard either a busy signal or sexual moaning when they tried to call their doctors."

A grim look inside Iraq's hospitals
"On average we have 28 bodies turning up every day - 90% of them victims of violence."

Sleep aids are about to get into a DTC ad war
"There's no money to be made advertising those simple lifestyle solutions, but there are billions to be made getting patients onto lifelong use of expensive medications."

The need to place blame: The Feds are again fending off parents about the vaccine-autism link
"The government assembled some leading scientists Tuesday to try again to lay to rest public suspicions that a mercury-based preservative once used in childhood vaccines causes autism.

A day before parents who blame the chemical were to complain to Congress, federal health officials stressed that the only childhood vaccines that still contain the ...

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Forbes brings you the Scariest Drug Side Effects [cue music]

High gas prices are pinching home health nurses
"But key to the nurses' home visits, of course, is driving, and the key to driving is gas -- whose price is going up like bad blood pressure . . .

. . . Understandably, when she's paying for it and driving 50 to 80 miles a day. If the reimbursement for mileage didn't go up, Corr and other home care ...

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Talking about the pros and cons of a no-fault malpractice system

Take home screening tests are becoming more popular
One concern is having the consumer interpret their own test, unaware of the false positives and negatives that may be present.

Is the US health care system racist?
"'The health care system as a whole provides vastly unequal access and treatment based on race, language, and ethnicity,' said Will Pittz, an organizer at the Northwest Federation of Community Organizations in Seattle who was lead author of the report. 'Racism within the health system is literally making people of color sick.'"

The Vioxx trial is revealing some aggressive physician marketing strategies by Merck

More on the blind neurosurgeon
Previously discussed here. A hospital in need of a back surgeon is considering hiring him. The state rep, who is a malpractice trial lawyer, is against this:

Faison said the state needs surgeons with two good eyes.

"It's just nutty to have a surgeon without depth perception," he said. "You're just asking for serious problems. We shouldn't have surgeons who are blind ...

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The stress defense: Lawyer says stress of an upcoming trial can kill the defendant physician
"The unrelenting stress that would arise from a year-long criminal trial could threaten the life of the doctor at the centre of the tainted blood disaster that left thousands infected with HIV and hepatitis C, his lawyer argued in court yesterday.

Edward Greenspan said a trial of this magnitude would elevate stress levels for ...

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Medpundit talks about the growing phenomena of cyberchondriacs
"Too many people dismiss the art of diagnosis that is the benefit of going to medical school and assume that they've correctly diagnosed themselves based on their internet reading."

Grand rounds 43 is up
Come get the weekly best of the medical blogosphere.

A bitter doc writes about the liability crisis
"There are two points that must be addressed. First is the 'squeeze.' As the Medicare budget disaster worsens, the government will threaten physicians more and more with penalties for 'over-ordering' and with charges of fraud. Doctors will be caught between threats from the government to order fewer tests, and patient and legal pressures demanding more.

The next point is a ...

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Some think the term DNR is too negative
A new term is suggested: "AND, for Allow Natural Death".

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