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Latest Posts

Is Your Job Good For The Heart?

What would you be if life gave you a do-over, and stipulated you couldn’t be what you are now?

It’s true, I’m a dreamer. I cried during “Stand and Deliver.” A believer in the power of passionate leadership am I.

Finally, this Saturday morning, I was able to drink coffee, eat bagels and read the paper. Ah, it felt so good. And in doing so I was moved by the WSJ piece on Teachers for America, an organization that allows recent Ivy league graduates to try their hand at being “Kimo-sabes.”

As a dreamer, I often find myself thinking of what I would be after finishing a stint as a doctor, or even more dreamer-esque, what would I be if I wasn’t a doctor. For me, an equally-attractive job to doctoring would have to entail contributing something positive to humanity.

One of the coolest things about being a doctor is asking patients what they do. Not just to find out how much one’s occupation contributes to the inflammatory soup of life, but also to feed a dreamer’s visions. Few patient occupations pique my interest more than teaching. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Dr John M*

Medicine Is A Human Thing

If there is a central theme to this blog, it is this: Medicine is a human thing.

On the Facebook page of my podcast, I recently asked for readers to tell me some of the “war stories” they have from the doctor’s office. What are some of the bad things doctors do wrong? I quickly followed this with the flip side, asking readers to comment on the best interactions that they’ve had with their doctors.

The response was overwhelming, and equally quick to both rant and rave. They told stories about doctors who didn’t listen, explain, or even talk with them. They told about arrogance and disconnectedness from the people from whom they were seeking help. They also told about doctors who took extra effort to listen and to reach out in communication. They talked about doctors who genuinely seemed to value them as humans. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Musings of a Distractible Mind*

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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