The grass is always greener on the other side
Fed up with long waits, many patients in European socialized health care systems are shopping on the internet for health procedures. Ironic that many in the United States want to move closer to the European model. No system is perfect.

The Boston Globe paints a grim picture of Medicare
"Certainties about retirement are dissolving as employers abandon secure pensions and insurance to supplement Medicare. This society ought to marshal the resources to keep Medicare a bedrock of affordable protection for its senior population, even if new revenues are required. A tax increase spread throughout the population would safeguard Medicare and spare millions from an old age of increasing hardship."

Noneconomic caps in Nevada have stabilized malpractice rates
Nevada currently has a $350,000 cap on noneconomic damages.

A malpractice reform bill dies in the Wyoming senate

Even when a physician wins a malpractice case, everyone loses
A wonderful, detailed behind-the-scenes look at a frivolous malpractice trial, and the disruption it causes in the physician's life (via Common Good).

Malpractice reform hits my home state
The New Hampshire legislature has to consider 15 different malpractice reform bills. One salient point:

"There is an expectation. We have done pretty well in medicine, perhaps too well," Woods said. "With technology we're going to be able to do a lot more. But society's expectation is that we're perfect, and we're not."
Both the public and the lawyers have to eliminate the expectation ...

Read more...

Medicine copayments continue to rise
"In tier 1, which includes the cheapest generic drugs, average
copayments rose to $10 in 2004 from $7 in 2000. In tier 2, for
brand-name drugs the insurer has designated as the 'preferred' choice,
average copayments rose to $21 from $13 in 2000. And for the brand-name drugs designated by the insurance company as 'nonpreferred' and placed in tier 3, the average copayment nearly doubled, ...

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Teen shares medicine; school pals hospitalized
The medicine was Ativan - a benzodiazepine. I'm not sure that teens appreciate the fact that this can be a fatal medication if not used judiciously.

An essay discussing when a doctor is too old, or too young
"The old doctor stored important details about patients in memory, and nowhere else. The doctor's hesitantly typed notes recording office visits were brief and old-fashioned - a few sentences at most, difficult for anyone else to interpret.

The young doctor remembered little about each patient from visit to visit, but typed volumes, and was a big ...

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Not guilty - the case against Patricia Duletsky comes to an end
This was discussed a few weeks ago. An interesting observation:

Brown argued that by agreeing to treat Martens, Duletsky was held to the same standard of care as an obstetrician or an infectious disease doctor.

Meanwhile, the defense concentrated on showing that as a family practice physician, Duletsky acted as she is trained. She called ...

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medmusings hosts Grand Rounds 20 direct from Singapore
Come get your weekly best of the medical blogosphere.

Michelle Au notes the many differences - and one similarity - between a private practice and a resident's clinic

Fast-food ER service
Seen on MSNBC's Countdown:

"¢ Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in Hamilton, N.J., which won the Baldrige Quality Award last week, promises ER patients will see a nurse within 15 minutes, a doctor within 30 or the room is free.

"¢ CentraState Healthcare in Freehold, N.J., offers the same.

"¢ Central Montgomery Medical Center in Lansdale, Pa., guarantees a nurse will see patients ...

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This man had no idea how a 2-inch rusty nail found its way inside his neck


Coming soon: A reality show about medical care
"One person apprised of the deal said that 'Miracle Worker' would involve no games or other competition, but would instead seek to improve the lot of at least one family each episode. For example, the program's 'dream team' of physicians, who will serve as recurring characters, might arrange a heart procedure for one critically ill family member, while also securing psychological ...

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Battle lines being drawn in the tort reform battle, North Carolina-style
"Doctors also say that high malpractice rates force them to practice what they call "defensive medicine," where they order unnecessary tests to provide a defense if they're sued. Several surveys show that most doctors practice defensive medicine.

Some critics of malpractice reform have suggested that extra tests might be motivated by doctors' interest in earning extra income from ...

Read more...



After two weeks of hype, the big game is finally upon us. Living in New England for the past 13 years, I have been spoiled by our recent sports successes. The current Patriots run truly is something special and may not be duplicated in my lifetime.

Today, they face a strong Philadelphia Eagles squad - clearly the best team in a mediocre NFC conference. They are a ...

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Maine gets onto the tort reform bandwagon

Expect visibility for erectile dysfunction ads to increase



And as you watch the Super Bowl today, remember that erections lasting more than four hours are no joke.

Next up on the horizon? Drugs for premature ejaculation:

The condition: Premature ejaculation The drug: Dapoxetine The time frame: Pending; submitted for FDA approval on Dec. 27. The novelty: Doctors and patients have long known that ...

Read more...

"The thought of Medicare wasting vital resources on performance-enhancing drugs is unconscionable, especially at a time when the focus should be on providing for truly needy seniors."
Not everyone is happy with the news that Medicare is now covering Viagra.

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