The most common dividing lines in the national discourse on health care reform simply miss the mark. If one looks beyond the partisan posturing, each side has valid points, but also glaring weaknesses. We may need to work together to get health care right. I was recently invited to a political gathering to discuss health care reform. The room quickly divided along traditional lines. From left of the political spectrum, there were ...

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There is a movement afoot. I can feel it. I can see it. Women in medicine are no longer going to tolerate the subtle and not so subtle discrimination that has stymied their career growth. They are not going to be complacent while their male colleagues are paid higher salaries, offered speaking engagements and research opportunities and promoted at a greater rate. Women in medicine are pulling together in an ...

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When interviewing for my book, I asked about insurance, but the topic came up even when I didn't specifically ask about it. It was never positive in relation to practice. A doctor said, "I expected to be around tough and hard cases. I expected it to be hard. I did not expect to have to think if the insurance company will not pay for it."Another one said, "This completely changes the ...

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This summer, a controversial memo written by a Google employee was leaked to the public. Within the memo, the author James Damo, details how the biology of men produces “a higher drive in status.” Google quickly condemned the statements and fired Damo, citing their pledge to standup diversity within their company. And similarly, Denise Young Smith, Apple’s vice-president of diversity and inclusion, ...

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Mark Kelley wrote a clear piece explaining that friends and providers are still patient’s most trusted medical referral resources in a piece titled, "Why quality reports for hospitals and doctors are interesting but flawed." Mr. Kelley cited unsynchronized, inconsistent systems as a source of frustration rather than insight for patients. The most common online referral database for patients? Yelp. We are living in a health care crisis. Health ...

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Exactly a year ago, on the day of the election, I wrote a piece that touched upon humankind’s turbulent history, basic traits and inevitable propensity for division and conflict based upon an amazing book I read: “A Little History of the World.” I related it to the election that was taking place on that day. A year on, it seems like our country is no less politically ...

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If all politics is local, then Washington’s health care debacle has brought politics to the front stoop of every health care provider in America. There is no escaping it – debates taking place on Capitol Hill are set to affect the very survival of our patients. Irrespective of political leanings, doctors, nurses and providers of all stripes have ethical and professional obligations to speak up and become engaged in order ...

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Yet another round of attempted health care reform has come and gone, and once again, failed. And so, the traditional open enrollment season for health insurance is upon us, and as usual, many Americans are facing outlandish increases in premiums, skyrocketing deductible amounts, and shrinking coverage. Americans are increasingly enslaved and endangered by the rising costs and the growing dysfunction. Fixing things is, to put things in the proper perspective, ...

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In these tumultuous political and cultural times, it’s easy to presume the future is bleak. However, after attending a conference centered around medicine, public health, and medical science innovation, replete with remarkable stories of human perseverance, resilience, and courage, I felt humbled, inspired, and hopeful. In that order. Who cannot be awed listening to the one physician who kept treating desperately ill patients when the entire rest of the medical staff ...

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Eat what you kill. Sounds like a mantra from a survival reality show, right? Akin to “eat or be eaten,” “kill or be killed.” It’s also a common reference to the prevailing business model in our American scarcity-minded, competition-driven, fee-for-service health care culture. How ironic, the application of these words to this profession. It was explained to me essentially as: “Every man for himself, and you’re a minion. You are expected ...

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