An excerpt from Pet Goats and Pap Smears. Joy is a vibrant twenty-six-year-old woman who comes in for a physical. On her exam, she shows me a worrisome mole on her left shoulder. I recommend she return for removal. After the excision, I call her back to my office for results. “You have a melanoma. We got it just in time, but I’m sending you to a dermatologist who ...

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When Dr. Timothy Malia of Fairport, New York, runs behind schedule, he passes out five-dollar bills to everyone in the waiting room. And when Dr. Cyrus Peikari of Dallas, Texas canceled his appointments for a family emergency, he gave each patient 50 bucks for the inconvenience. Most doctors apologize. Few offer cash. Others get creative: Dr. Gwen Hanson of Bellevue, Washington gives out Starbucks cards; Dr. Sharon McCoy George of Irvine, ...

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Could a complete stranger receive your echocardiogram results in the mail? Could a homeless guy in Boston end up with your labs in his shopping cart? Is it possible that your medical records were sold on eBay? Yes. Yes. And yes. On February 24, 2011, Massachusetts General Hospital  was fined $1 million dollars by the federal government when an employee inadvertently left a stack of papers on the subway. These documents contained the ...

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shutterstock_207940108 Meet Elaine. We lost touch for a while, but caught up with each other recently. Like most girlfriends, we shared adventures of love, travel, and work. I told Elaine that I left assembly-line medicine. Now I  host town hall meetings-inspiring citizens nationwide to design ideal clinics and hospitals. Elaine shared: "If I’m kept waiting, I bill the doctor. At the twenty-minute mark, I politely tell ...

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Enjoy year-round sunshine with a month paid vacation. Earn 300k plus production bonus. No state tax! No call! Daily I’m bombarded with glossy postcards promising the good life. With so many options, why are physicians fleeing medicine? Some leave for teaching, waitressing, even homemaking. Others escape into administration, insurance or pharmaceutical positions. Many simply retire in despair. Robert Centor, MD, writes about our quiet rebellion: “This rebellion has no Glenn ...

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Americans typically rely on elected officials to uphold the will of the people. Now physicians—traditionally confined to exam rooms—are taking direct action to fulfill community needs. In 2004 I decided to meet face to face with citizens in my hometown. I thought, "Why wait for legislation? I'm a board-certified physician. What's stopping me from serving the public?" So I led town hall meetings and invited ordinary citizens to create the clinic of ...

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