healthcare

Atul Gawande popularized the concept of medical ‘hot spotting” - originally, hot spotting was the practice of focusing on known crime areas and it became vital for reducing crime in New York City - to health matters in a 2011 article in the New Yorker. Medical hot spotting was using data to identify patterns (models) to identify which groups can be targeted for further intervention pr even prevention. Ben Green, et al., in this week’s JAMA Internal Medicine, extend hot spotting in a new direction, to rampant gun violence in Chicago, so I am wading...

 

Official Health Report for SANTA CLAUS

 

 

 

 

CLAUS, SANTA

One St. Nicholas Icy Drive

North Pole, Arctic

Date of Birth (DOB):  Immortal

Medical Record #:  12-24-0000

This letter reflects the official summary of SANTA CLAUS’ (aka St. Nick) recent health visit to determine medical fitness to serve as himself on Christmas Eve in a global capacity.  As the Director of Medicine and a Board-Certified physician at the American Council on Science and Health (ACSH), I can...

Are you shocked by this news?  Me, not so much.  But, hats off to the Harvard research team and their new approach to tackling gender inequality in medicine by getting back to the basics:  Let the evidence speak for itself.  And, it does (to a certain extent).

Since all most people care about is who lives and dies or patient outcomes, why not study if the physician’s gender plays a critical role in the all-important realm of survival?

Ok, so for full disclosure, this article brings me joy.  For so many reasons.  On so many levels.  Mainly, for the chuckle and laughter I already have enjoyed in response to some reactionary, knee-jerk posts on social media and in person that range from dismissing the publication as another feminist attack that would never be granted in the...

A study by the UK National Cardiac Arrest Audit (NCAA) echoes previous global data that hospital survival is reduced for those admitted on weekends and at night. (1) 

Specifically, it concludes “IHCAs (in-hospital cardiac arrest) attended by the hospital-based resuscitation team during nights and weekends have substantially worse outcomes than during weekday daytimes.  Organizational or care differences at night and weekends, rather than patient case mix, appear to be responsible.”  

Translation:  The skeleton crew available during these shifts is being stretched thin and cardiovascular and alternative monitoring or lack thereof is inconsistent dependent upon location within a facility and between institutions.  Witnessed versus unwitnessed events are directly related to...

If the photo attached to this article does not make you smile, then I question whether you have a soul.  The act alone contributes to such known positive health benefits.  So, take a little look inside and find your joy - whether it is with animals or an activity.  Your world and the one around you will be enhanced.

We always hear that pediatric and veterinary medicine are similar, but is this true?  I often thought there were commonalities, but after becoming a pet parent and experiencing the other side I am certain.  Let’s journey through the lessons I have learned.

I always wanted an English Bulldog.  They made me laugh.  I crossed the street and was perpetually diverted whenever I encountered one.  But, the refrain was always ‘you are in medical school you won’t have...

Grande Place, Grote Markt, Brussels, Belgium

Brussels is now a destination for medical tourism. Unfamiliar with the term? According to the CDC , "medical tourism" refers to foreign travel for the purpose of receiving medical care. It's estimated that up to 750,000 US residents travel abroad for medical care each year....The most common procedures that people undergo on medical tourism trips include cosmetic surgery, dentistry, and heart surgery.”

The London Times reported that French citizens are now traveling to Brussels for one of Belgium’s unique services – euthanasia. In the European Union (EU), there are a range of national health care plans and insurances; but if a service is not available in your home country you can travel to another EU country and get that...

Credit: Shutterstock Credit: Shutterstock

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) defines a pregnancy-related death as follows: The death of a woman while pregnant or within 1 year of pregnancy termination—regardless of the duration or site of the pregnancy—from any cause related to or aggravated by the pregnancy or its management, but not from accidental or incidental causes.

The CDC began national surveillance of the issue in 1986. Since then there has been a steady increase in the...

Credit: Shutterstock Credit: Shutterstock

Withholding a medical intervention because the cost versus benefit or risk versus benefit doesn't match up is understandable. For the experienced physician, it is especially acceptable in cases where the test or intervention is unlikely to aid in a diagnosis or treatment. In these cases, physicians are exercising profound judgment, and likely saving the patient considerable out of pocket costs and easing the weight on an already burdened health care system. However, when it comes to rationing and allocating medical services, is the physician's...

telemedicine via shutterstock telemedicine via shutterstock

With the increasing popularity of consumer-driven medicine comes the increased popularity of telemedicine services. But what exactly is it, and what is the promise of real-time virtual consultations?

In a perspective piece in the New England Journal of Medicine, Traditionally defined, telemedicine is the provision of medical care remotely by means of audiovisual technology, clinicians...

stethoscope-1586565591-190x155In the current New Yorker, Dr. Atul Gawande, well-known expounder of healthcare issues and endocrine surgeon at Harvard, discusses some of the more outrageous exploitations of healthcare economics in his lengthy article, Overkill.

The genesis of this re-exploration of the costs of America s medical care was his 2009 piece in the same journal, The Cost Conundrum, in which he compared two cities in Texas as to their Medicare expenditures. He found, to his expressed amazement,...