Hundreds of women were not notified of their abnormal PAP results
"The failure by Jacobi Medical Center to notify hundreds of women about the results of their cancer-screening tests stemmed from a decision made 16 months ago to place a single clerk in charge of scheduling appointments and notifying thousands of at-risk patients of their test results, city officials said yesterday."

Another failure in notification - similar to ...

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''We're sued for charging too much and blamed for not collecting bad debt."
Bad debt at hospitals is a sensitive issue. But folks, the money has to come from somewhere, or else the hospital will go out of business - and everyone will then lose.

News flash: The US has the highest per-capita use of CT and MR studies
No surprise, considering that the state of Massachusetts has the same amount of MRIs as all of Canada. No doubt, defensive medicine plays a role in the increased amount of high-end radiology use.

Lack of follow-up again leads to a lawsuit
"A Shaler woman participating in a federal study on early detection of cancers was not told of abnormal chest X-ray findings, possibly delaying her diagnosis and treatment for lung cancer by years . . .

. . . Grace Isherwood, now 77, had an X-ray in April 2000 that indicated an abnormality in her upper right lung.

The results were ...

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A doctor was punched by a corpse in the morgue
"I woke up and had no idea where I was, I looked to the left and to the right and saw dead women on either side of me, and then I saw this man coming towards me in a white coat."

Some priceless nuggets from the NEJM on needless words in medicine
"The presentation began. She described a 62-year-old male with a UGIB whose history included CAD S/P CABG x 2, NAFLD, DM, HT, PUD, and BPH. I looked around as the barrage mounted. Four residents and two students were right on track. Clearly, I was the only one struggling to assimilate the letter collage into a portrayal of a ...

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American Medical News will soon cease to be free to the general public
"AMA News is a publication of news and opinions of the AMA related to public policy issues. To find out why the decision was made, our very own Dr. O, member of the AMA, contacted Linda Smith, a senior service representative in the Department of Member Relations of the AMA. During the prolonged discussion, Mrs. Smith informed ...

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A "difficult patient" starts a blog
"I believe that there is a huge disconnect in the communication between doctors and their patients largely due to liability issues, managed care, etc. Well, duh. I realize that I just stated the obvious, but somehow there needs to be a remedy. Doctors fear being sued. Patients fear . . .well we all have our issues . . ."

An oral surgeon settles a suit he feels was motivated by a financial dispute
"Mills has a congenital deformity of her right ear. According to her complaint, Israelsen removed her ear remnant and put three titanium implants into her skull to hold a silicone ear that would match her other ear. An infection developed and bone grew around the implants, she said in the suit.

Israelsen countered that the ...

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A community in rural Canada has decided it needs a doctor so badly it is willing to pay to train one
"Residents in the town of Deloraine, near Brandon, have launched a Be-a-Med-Friend campaign to fund a scholarship for an aspiring doctor.

They hope to persuade 125 people to donate $10 a month to give a medical student up to $15,000 a year for four years.

In exchange, ...

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"Time is not money. Time is medicine."
"In our economy, productivity is often measured in units of time. Time is then converted to money. We hire architects, lawyers, plumbers and piano teachers, and we pay them by the hour.

The current medical reimbursement system pays by the job performed, not by the time spent.

Your appendectomy is charged on a flat rate, like a brake job. The surgeon ...

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A man in Boston is acting as his own lawyer arguing a malpractice suit
"He has accused Brigham and Women's Hospital physicians Dr. John Ready and Dr. Thomas Simopoulos of going ahead with hip surgery on his 62-year-old mother, Leona, after her blood pressure dropped to a dangerously low point on Jan. 14, 2000. Leona Trabucco died on the operating table after efforts to resuscitate her failed . . .

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Who's your daddy? Medical journals are drug companies' whipping boys
"Medical journals are an extension of the marketing arms of drug firms, says an ex-British Medical Journal editor.

Dr Richard Smith, who edited the BMJ for 13 years, criticised the journals' reliance on drug company advertising.

Writing in Public Library of Science Medicine, he also said journals were undermined by relying on clinical trials funded by ...

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Galen hosts Grand Rounds this week
Come take a trip around Blogger General Hospital.

Some surgeons in India are performing coronary bypass surgeries while the patient remains awake
"In the awake coronary artery bypass (ACAB) surgery, an epidural anesthesia is applied to the patient at a point at the top of the spine. 'The area below the neck becomes numb. It is not paralyzed as the patient continues to breathe normally,' Dr Honnekeri explains.

As a result of the type of anesthesia, the ...

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The neurologist whose drug cocktail brought a patient out of a coma is in demand
"'Why don't you just tell me the medications?' Ahmed recalls one woman demanding. ''You just tell me the name of the medications, and I'm not going to be calling you again.'

Ahmed, who has been asked by Herbert's family not to identify the drugs, has returned a few phone calls, explaining his medication strategy ...

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Are CT Angiograms Overused?
"The number of CT angiograms (CTAs) has gone up substantially, but the number of pulmonary emboli found has not, leading some researchers to question the utilization of this procedure.

Researchers reviewed 1,384 records of patient who underwent a CTA for suspected pulmonary embolism during a seven-month period (March-September) in 2002, 2003 and 2004. 'The total number of CTAs performed during the study interval in 2004 ...

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Hospitals may become criminally liable for MRSA infection
"UK Health Secretary, Patricia Hewitt, says UK hospitals should face the same strict hygiene regulations that factories do - hospital managers should have a legal duty to protect patients from MRSA.

If the Labour government's plans materialise, hospitals may become criminally liable for MRSA infection.

Patricia Hewitt would like to make it easier for patients to sue for medical negligence. ...

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Consumer Reports releases their recommendations for ace inhibitors
I've always liked their summaries since they tend to focus on generic medications - which never gets enough press.

Also see their recently released report on beta blockers.

A $20 co-pay can buy OxyContin that brings as much as $3,000 on the street
"Theodore's patients were allegedly charged $400 to $500 for an office visit at Advanced Pain & Weight Management, at 1787 E. Fort Union Blvd., then given a prescription for OxyContin. After the prescription was filled under the patient's insurance, a recruiter allegedly would buy part or all of it from them, re-selling the pills at ...

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