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Physicians’ Donations To Political Parties: You Get What You Give

Why don’t docs get more of what they want in DC?  There’s a quite instructive graph in a blog post from NRO last week (talking about Union campaign donations), but I found this one to be very instructive, and have added labels so the point cannot be missed:

In politics, generally what you give is what you get. I’ve taken to giving more to the PACs that represent me.

As an aside, it’s political malpractice to give only to one party (Teachers). Eventually that one party will be on the outs, and then where are you?

*This blog post was originally published at GruntDoc*

Psychiatrist Reviews “Crazy” Book: Finds Some Genuineness Behind Author’s Bravado

Rob Dobrenski, PhD. is a psychologist who blogs over on ShrinkTalk.net.  He’s written a book about what it’s like to be a psychology graduate student, a psychotherapy patient, and a psychologist.  Oh, we like the folks who go from Shrink blog to Shrink book — it somehow feels familiar — and so I agreed to read his book: Crazy: Tales on and Off the Couch.

So bear with me while I tell you that the book rubbed me wrong at the outset.  Dr. Dobrenski begins by saying something to the effect that he describes things that all shrinks feel, and if they say they don’t, they aren’t being honest.  I really hate it when people tell me what I feel.  It’s like saying that Prozac made your depression better and if it didn’t, then you just didn’t recognize it.  And then the book gets off on a provocative start — Rob discovers that many people in his life, from a patient, to a colleague, to himself — are “f***ing crazy.” The asterisks are mine. Dr. Dobrenski had no trouble using the word — I counted 19 times in the 39 pages, including in direct quotes of discussions he has with both a patient and one of his supervisors.  Not in a million years.  I wasn’t sure what the point was.  To let people know he knows obscene words?  To be Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Shrink Rap*

The Power of “M.D.”

MD InitialsBy Dr. ClinkShrink

I took my car in to the shop last week to visit his Car Momma. I’ve been going to this garage for years and I know most of the mechanics. I’ve run into Car Momma at the hair salon with her head wrapped in a towel. I’ve heard about her son, his school activities and her home renovation projects. She’s heard about my vacations and seen my climbing pictures. I’ve always been on a first name basis with the people I know there.

This time, I had to leave the car and get a rental. I left a voice message with the rental desk and when the rental guy called me back at work I answered the phone with my usual “Dr. ClinkShrink.” Now, my garage knows what I do for a living, and it’s just never been an issue or really even a topic of conversation once the novelty wore off. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Shrink Rap*

Confidence And Doubt: The Language Of Clinician Versus Researcher

There’s an adage I often think about: “A physician’s job requires the expression of confidence. The researcher’s role is to express doubt.”

This was never more apparent than when I transitioned from the research environment into the clerkships of medical school. The language of decision-making had abruptly changed — in the lab, a year’s worth of experiments is summarized with “seems” and “suggests,” and every assertion is carefully calibrated to acknowledge uncertainty and a high standard for proof.

As a student on clerkships, I couldn’t quite wrap my head around the residents’ ambitious plans for patients: Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Blogborygmi*

The Nursing Profession: Absolutely Nuts Or Totally Unique?

Nursing is an extremely interesting profession. It’s either absolutely off the deep end or it’s totally unique. From the entry levels of practice to the terminal degrees available, nursing doesn’t look like, act like or educate like any other profession.

And it shouldn’t. Because nursing isn’t like any other profession.

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Let’s take entry level into practice. How’s that for jumping into the frying pan?

You can start nursing with an AA degree that should be two years but can’t really be done in two years so it’s actually more like three years with all the pre-requisites done first.

Whew!

Or…you can go for a BS degree which takes four years and can actually be done in four years unless you have to go a summer session (like my daughter), which really makes it over four years. This is supposed to be the desired entry level for practice. HOLD YOUR FIRE, I SAID “SUPPOSED TO BE”!

Or…

If you already have a BS or a BA degree, you can go into an entry level Master’s Degree program because it is really dumb to go back and get an AA degree because you already have a BS degree and you really don’t need one of those again, right, and the MS degree program is only 12 – 18 months.

And somehow through all this, you have become an RN.

Congratulations!

But…now you are wondering if you should go for a higher degree….

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So…

If you have an AA and you want to get your BSN you can go back to school either on campus or online, for which you will pay a lot of money as there are a lot of RN-to-BSN programs out there to help you if you think maybe you should do it as the BSN is SUPPOSED to be the desired degree and you feel as though it is your professional duty to do it, but you won’t get any more money for it or anything, but you will have BSN after your name which, if you are like me, is worth every penny and every bead of sweat….

Sorry, I digress…

Or, if you want to do something other that bedside nursing you can take that BSN and get your BSN-to-MSN either on campus or online or if you are really ambitions you can go right for the RN-to-MSN programs since you have an AA degree under your belt and now you can be a manager or a nursing instructor or work in public health and make approximately 50% less than you did as a staff nurse, but hey, you are willing to sacrifice for your profession.

Right?

But it gets better!

You can take that BSN or MSN and head for a doctoral program if you really want to do research and teach, that would be a PhD, or wait!, you want to be an advanced practice nurse or nurse practitioner as they are called and now you have to have your doctoral degree when you only used to need an MSN but they changed the rules and now to do that you need a doctoral degree called the DNP, which is different from the PhD because it is a practice doctorate as opposed to a research doctorate…..

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No wonder folks outside the profession think we’re off-the-wall.

But we aren’t.

We’re unique.

Our profession is flexible.

In spite of the light-hearted take on the educational opportunities, if you read between the lines what you see is that there is an entry level into nursing for everyone at any stage of their lives who are willing to work for that “RN” after their names.

What you see is an unbelievable number of opportunities to advance your education in a variety of ways. If you want it, it is available.  No four-year-undergrad-followed-by-three-years-graduate school, like lawyers. Unless that is what you want to do.  We have options. In that, we are unique.

What you see is a profession that has two terminal degrees in the PhD and DNP. Now, I’ve heard there is some controversy about this, having two doctoral pathways in nursing. I see it as flexibility in being able to receive a higher education that will take your career where you want it – to the classroom/research or to an increased responsibility for patient care.

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Nursing does not have a lockstep education pattern. We don’t have a “one size fits all” education system because we don’t have “one size fits all” nursing opportunities.

And we most definitely don’t have “one size fits all” nursing personalities.

Think about it. Nursing allows changes in specialties. Unlike law or medicine, we can change our focus and switch our area of specialty long after we’ve entered the profession.

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Sure, we argue and debate amongst ourselves. All the way from the best way to become a nurse down to whether or not we have one or two terminal degree options.

But folks, we’re all nurses. We are more alike than different and at our core we are solid.

So maybe we need to come together (Beatles reference!) and realize that all the different factions of nursing need to embrace the fact that we are nurses.

We can do that, I’m sure of it.

Because nursing is unique.

And that’s why we do what we do.

**The post was originally published at Kim McAllister’s blog: Emergiblog.com**

Latest Interviews

IDEA Labs: Medical Students Take The Lead In Healthcare Innovation

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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

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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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