A hundred bucks doesn’t buy much these days. A crisp Ben Franklin can be exchanged for
- 50 Big Macs
- A Broadway show ticket
- A night in a New York City hotel (just joking)
- A college textbook (paperback)
- Your life
Your life? Yes, 5 crumpled Andy Jacksons can save your life, as was reported earlier this year in a front page article in The Plain Dealer, Cleveland’s only daily newspaper. University Hospital is now offering a $99 spiral computed tomography (CT scans) of the chest in individuals who are at increased risk of developing lung cancer. The rationale is that if cancers can be detected early, then the cure rate for surgical removal is very high.
Gary Schwitzer, medical blogger and press watchdog, tries to bring some balance to the distorted media coverage of CT lung cancer reportage.
The test is Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at MD Whistleblower*
I spoke to a group of academic physicians recently. Afterward I was and asked, “Shouldn’t my hospital be responsible for my digital footprint? I don’t have time to look after that sort of thing. And wouldn’t it make sense for them to promote my research?”
1. Online reputation management of academic physicians should be an individual, not institutional, responsibility. The question reflects a belief that your reputation is the job of “the marketing people.” No institution will ever be as invested in your future as you are. While there are hospitals that do a good job supporting their faculty and staff, you can’t assume it to be the case. No one looks after you like you.
2. Dig your well before you’re thirsty. That’s the name of a brilliant pre-digital book written by Harvey Mackey. He suggested that the time to invest in relationships is before you need them. Medicine is changing fast and you’ll never know how long you’ll be where you’re at. Better yet, you never know what opportunities could come your way when people find you. And if you want to experience the land before time when people used colored pencils, Rolodexes, and rotary phones, read Dig Your Well. Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at 33 Charts*
The discovery of various vitamins – essential micronutrients that cause disease when deficient – was one of the great advances of modern scientific medicine. This knowledge also led to several highly successful public health campaigns, such as vitamin-D supplementation to prevent rickets.
Today vitamins have a deserved reputation for being an important part of overall health. However, their reputation has gone beyond the science and taken on almost mythical proportions. Perhaps it is due to aggressive marketing from the supplement industry, perhaps recent generations have grown up being told by their parents thousands of times how important it is to take their vitamins, or eat vitamin-rich food. Culture also plays a role – Popeye eating spinach to make himself super strong is an example this pervasive message.
Regardless of the cause, the general feeling is that vitamins Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Science-Based Medicine*
I don’t know what I was thinking with my last post about the Health and Human Services’ Million Hearts initiative. I thought the whole point of this program was to save money. At the time, I was less than optimistic that the government could acurately reach their goal given the problems with many of the principles behind their program. For instance, maybe it was just me, but how typing on an electronic medical record system would save those lives was lost on me.
But at the time, I had no idea this whole campaign was based on fear.
Watch this introductory video I found on the brand new Million Hearts website, all paid for (of course) with your tax payer dollars: Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Dr. Wes*
I’m just about through with the magazine Medical Economics. I’ve been a devoted follower ever since residency, when I used to find the occasional dollar bill stuck somewhere in one of the back pages. But now it seems that each issue is just more of the same old stuff.
Take the cover story of the current issue: “Grow Your Practice with Ancillaries,” such as labs, x-rays, behavioral health interventions, cosmetic services, and selling stuff. All the things they suggest fit neatly into one of three categories:
- Things you should already be doing (whether or not you’re getting paid appropriately for them)
- Things you shouldn’t be doing, and
- Things no one should be doing.
The behavioral intervention discussed most often in this context is obesity counseling something all doctors should already be doing. Unsurprisingly, Read more »
*This blog post was originally published at Musings of a Dinosaur*