We should care a great deal about the Ebola outbreak, but not for the reasons propagated by cable news. We should care about Ebola for what it says about the current state of the health care system in resource-limited settings around the globe.
The American College of Physicians has issued a controversial new guideline recommending against performing the annual pelvic exam in non-pregnant women who have no gynecological symptoms that may require medical attention. Is it time to celebrate and cross that dreaded exam off your to-do list?
In medicine, our goal is health, to make everything better. But sometimes we can't. Driving home from Mr. Johnson's funeral, I remembered our last conversation. What had he really wanted me to know? What could I learn as my lesson from his life?
Human activities are causing increased opportunities for known and novel pathogen transmission, as well as their spread.
When Ebola drugs and vaccines become available, trust -- engendered best by knowledgeable local leaders - may be the vital ingredient in ensuring that drugs are distributed most quickly to those in need.
The ACA is doing a tremendous amount of good, getting insurance to millions of people who otherwise would be uninsured, and lowering costs for many more -- but the use of these skinny networks threatens to undermine all the progress we've made if it's left unchecked. Here are some of the biggest problems that skinny networks can cause -- problems that are already affecting many patients.
Humanity has lived with, and died from, tuberculosis since recorded history began. The last century brought the hope of ending that tragedy, but success has remained elusive. It's time to make it a reality.
Not only do they fund ADHD research and professional education, they market to doctors, teachers, parents, and, ultimately, even the children of this country.
An anti-drug PSA is pretty useless without any actual facts or lifesaving advice. Scare tactics and over-the-top drug PSAs geared at teens and 20-somethings incite apathy at best and mockery at worst.
Breakthrough drugs are widely covered in the media. After hearing about these new drugs, patients and their families are always asking me how they can get access to the new medicine or participate in a clinical trial of the new drug. Let's look at a current example.
When someone like Robin Williams takes his own life, it's a stunning reminder of how powerful emotional anguish can be. It's a reminder that profound emotional pain can occur in the talented, the successful, the admired, the well-loved. And it's a reminder of how difficult it can be to reach someone struggling with depression -- especially someone who thinks you don't want to hear about it.
Why is mental illness such a stigmatized condition? As an addictions therapist, I have never understood that. The way I see it, mental illness is exactly the same as physical illness -- it is, in fact, physical illness just like any affliction having to do with the body.
It's true that the number of doctors per capita in the U.S. likely will continue to decrease, especially in rural areas. But even though an estimated 13 million Americans have become newly insured since the first of this year, the predictions of the gloom-and-doomers have not panned out.
But without a cure for Alzheimer's disease, we can only take productive aging so far. We can create opportunities for seniors, prevent heart disease and strokes and keep people physically healthy -- but if we cannot keep people from losing their minds we cannot ensure long, productive lives.
Is it possible that the mere prospect of terrifying battle experiences is enough to traumatize soldiers before they actually deploy?
The nutritional fable goes something like this: Rather than criticize industry for its questionable practices, health organizations should "sit at the table" with industry leaders and see what compromises can be reached. This all sounds wonderfully cooperative and democratic, but it also ignores some stark realities.
By growing food locally and giving underserved urban neighborhoods access to fresh produce, jobs are created, local economies are strengthened by circulating dollars within the community, the harmful effects of food deserts are reduced, and consumers become engaged in learning how food is grown.
It is becoming clear that researchers working on these pathogens don't agree on how best to study these particularly dangerous viruses and two groups have now emerged with different views.