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Latest Posts

Being An Entrepreneur In Health Care: How To Set Yourself Up For Success

What does it mean to be an entrepreneur in health care?

Twice in the last two weeks I had the honor of speaking at Northeastern University’s Health Sciences Entrepreneurs Program. It’s a terrific program, dedicated to fostering the creation of health care businesses by helping the people who build them figure out how to do it. That it exists is a testament to how strong the American spirit of entrepreneurship really is – and how the 21st century economic engine is going to be health care.

But the hundreds of students and alumni who attended the events already knew this. What they wanted to know were the answers to more practical questions – Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at BestDoctors.com: See First Blog*

The New Way To Find A Vein: Vein Lights For IV Access

Here’s how we used to find a difficult vein.  If a floor nurse could not get an IV in, they asked one of their colleagues to try.  If their colleague could not find the impossible-to-locate vein, they contacted an ICU nurse.  If the ICU nurse couldn’t get one, sometimes an ER nurse or a flight nurse would try.  If they still couldn’t get an IV, then I would be paged to ask if they could get an order for an anesthesiologist to try.  And if the anesthesiologist couldn’t figure out how to find a difficult vein, we got a PICC line with the PICC nurse or with the radiologist or I placed a central line if the patient could not wait for a PICC line.
That’s how we used to find a difficult IV.

How do we find one now?  If you’re on the floor, you use one of these cheaper vein lights to find the difficult vein and place your IV.  However, if you work in Happy’s ER, now you have a $6,000 Star Trek looking vein finder for those dehydrated nursing home patients and cracked out meth heads. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at The Happy Hospitalist*

Putting The “Cool” Back Into Buckling Up

I was having fun watching my niece play with dozens of pool inner tubes when another relative shows up. Never one to surprise me, he shows me a fashion statement I’d never seen before. How do you get your kids to wear their seatbelts? 

The key here is repetition. Just like a medical school education, repetition is what makes us experts. Doing the same thing over and over again makes us great at what we do. To get your kids to wear their seatbelt every time, you must make it a part of their daily existence. How do you do that? You buy them a “seatbelt” belts from Honda. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at The Happy Hospitalist*

Latest Interviews

IDEA Labs: Medical Students Take The Lead In Healthcare Innovation

It’s no secret that doctors are disappointed with the way that the U.S. healthcare system is evolving. Most feel helpless about improving their work conditions or solving technical problems in patient care. Fortunately one young medical student was undeterred by the mountain of disappointment carried by his senior clinician mentors…

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How To Be A Successful Patient: Young Doctors Offer Some Advice

I am proud to be a part of the American Resident Project an initiative that promotes the writing of medical students residents and new physicians as they explore ideas for transforming American health care delivery. I recently had the opportunity to interview three of the writing fellows about how to…

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Latest Book Reviews

Book Review: Is Empathy Learned By Faking It Till It’s Real?

I m often asked to do book reviews on my blog and I rarely agree to them. This is because it takes me a long time to read a book and then if I don t enjoy it I figure the author would rather me remain silent than publish my…

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The Spirit Of The Place: Samuel Shem’s New Book May Depress You

When I was in medical school I read Samuel Shem s House Of God as a right of passage. At the time I found it to be a cynical yet eerily accurate portrayal of the underbelly of academic medicine. I gained comfort from its gallows humor and it made me…

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Eat To Save Your Life: Another Half-True Diet Book

I am hesitant to review diet books because they are so often a tangled mess of fact and fiction. Teasing out their truth from falsehood is about as exhausting as delousing a long-haired elementary school student. However after being approached by the authors’ PR agency with the promise of a…

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