Let me tell you a story about Francisco, a recent patient under my care in one of New York City’s hardest-hit hospitals. Suffering from severe COVID pneumonia, he gasped for air as I tried to exude empathy underneath the cold appearance of my head-to-toe, blue protective equipment. Carefully placing a breathing tube into his airway, I connected his lungs to a machine by a single plastic lifeline. Hoping also ...

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In the last month, we have seen surgeons and shrinks alike leave the comfort of their suburban perches in order to fight on the front lines of the coronavirus war in America. While it should be inspiring to watch retired physicians return to the field to engage in the battle of their lifetimes, we should be wincing—the odds of suffering severe complications from COVID-19 are demonstrably greater amongst the older ...

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Pain is usually considered a symptom, not a life-threatening medical problem. But for Army veteran Richard Dejarnette, 52, constant excruciating pain in his right leg made his life intolerable, and he believes he wouldn’t be alive today if a physician anesthesiologist at the VA West Los Angeles Medical Center hadn’t been there to help him. On December 14, the Department of Veterans Affairs announced the wise decision to keep physician anesthesiologists ...

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