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Physicians And Open Source Health Advice

Last week someone posted on Twitter that they had swallowed a plastic toothpick. What to do? So they turned to the hive for help. “What should I do?” I thought as I read my Twitter feed. I was paralyzed in a way. I wanted to share my experience with hundreds of patients had swallowed pins, toothpicks and other pointy things. I specialize in just this sort of thing. But short of a random comment about gastric emptying, I kept to myself. Why? Because once I lend a hand I’m all in.

The simple offer of patient-specific advice constitutes a relationship in the eyes of the law. Once involved, I potentially share responsibility in whatever happens to someone. Crazy but true. It’s just a matter of time before slip-and-fall lawyers hold physicians accountable for helping out in the social sphere.

Doctors aren’t the only ones wearing targets. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at 33 Charts*

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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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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