I knew the patient was fuming mad and I could hardly blame him. His symptoms were debilitating and the battle to get a diagnostic test authorized by his insurance company set him over the edge. My staff fought a hard war convincing the insurance company that the patient needed the test and lost. As the patient sat in front of me yelling practically in my face, I felt like the ...

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The patient was in pain and had been for over a year. And it was getting worse, not better. Exhausting all avenues of treatment, I decided it was time to refer him to a pain management doctor. Because of the injury to his back, the patient lost his job and his health care coverage. With no alternative for health care coverage, he ended up covered by Medicaid. While health care ...

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The Internet revolutionized the way we search for information as well as how we conduct business in our everyday lives. Everything can be purchased online: cars, clothes, groceries, vacation packages. Just about anything. Most people now research products before committing to them, and that now includes health care. It is estimated that 87 percent of adults in the U.S. use the Internet. Approximately 72 percent of Internet users seek health ...

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The patient looked angry and I felt his frustration. His voice was rising, “Why is the chart 54 pages long? My son has only been here five times!” In the olden, pre-electronic health record days, chances are the chart would most likely have been less than 10 pages. However, since the government takeover of medical records, this is no longer the case. When the government rolled out its meaningful use ...

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While health care was a hot topic during previous presidential races, not much attention was paid to it in our current one. For the most part, many people think that Obamacare cannot continue as is: It costs too much, only a few insurances are now participating eliminating the market competition and laden with poor coverage with high deductibles. The world watched with bated breath as Donald Trump surprisingly won the ...

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In her home country, everything is free. However, there is a catch -- certain services are only available to those who pay for private insurance. Those who are on the “free plan” sometimes must wait months for procedures. My patient said she knew many people who died on the list waiting for procedures. So, which is better: Free rationed care where people may suffer consequences waiting in line or overpriced care ...

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In our current health care system, doctors should get to decide what medication is prescribed. Typically, the patient and doctor decide what is the best, then the prescription gets sent off to the pharmacy. When the patient goes to pick up the prescription, often they find a different one instead or are told that their health insurance coverage is not covering that prescription. Instead of receiving the best medication for ...

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Someone told me that the reason certain others don’t respect my advocacy on behalf of physicians more is simply that I am a woman. I am seeing this the more I speak up on issues facing doctors these days. It is now the 21st century, and there are a large number of women practicing medicine. In fact, the number of men and women entering medical school these days is nearly ...

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As with most everyone else, I am watching the presidential race with something akin to amusement and horror alike. And as with many people, I feel that the U.S., as a nation, failed to find a suitable candidate for this presidential election. While there does need to be some test for fitness for office, I remain aghast at the medical speculations and facts being leaked about the presidential candidates. Reading this ...

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I recently spent a week with the Floating Doctors in Bocas del Toro providing medical care to the Ngabe people in western Panama. In the jungle, there is little concern about prior authorizations or deductibles. There is also a critical lack of access to services that we have available in the U.S. The Ngabe people do not own much. In fact, some kids do not even have names. In the Ngabe ...

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