This post at KevinMD has blown up and is generating significant interest.
Since writing it I was contacted by CNN, they talked about wanting to do a series on America’s addiction to medications and what sounded to me like the various excesses of drug companies to try to get people to take those medications. They wanted me to comment on the various excesses of Pharma from a physician’s perspective. They were interested in hearing about all the things the drug companies give us, specifically, free stuff, give-aways, trips, golf outings. . . you get the point. I explained that I had no experience with such things, nor did I know of anybody who had, and probably was not the right person to talk to.
I feel like in this discussion, we private practice physicians are guppies in a big ocean. The occasional office lunch amounts to essentially (excuse the pun) small potatoes compared to the influence that pharma has had on the opinion makers, and subsequently, in the drafting of practice guidelines (such as recent lipid guidelines or the use of activated protein C in sepsis). In this, the influence is insidious; it exists largely in rooms that are closed to the rest of us. The influence is not nearly as extroverted and obvious as CNN (and the rest of us) would like to see. However, I agree with many of you that having drug reps bringing lunch into the office at the very least gives the impression of influence, and may not be a practice that we as physicians can defend much longer. In retrospect, I wished I had agreed to the interview with CNN, only for the sweet irony of my interview being followed by a commercial featuring two elderly people sitting in bathtubs on top of a hill. . .
“Holy Profit Medical Center” is a series of fake satirical press releases and news articles from an imaginary hospital. . .
In an effort to do our part during this “Cover the Uninsured Week”, Holy Profit Medical Center has announced a new initiative to vastly improve medical coverage in our community. Continue reading “Holy Profit Medical Center Helps Cover the Uninsured”
It started with The House of Representatives’ symbolic gesture of their disdain of all things Obama-care. It continues with the current bickering over fiscal policy in Washington D.C. Thus goes a debate that is destined to lead the country nowhere because it does not deal with the core of the problem. Continue reading “Healthcare Armageddon 3: Washington Argues Over Grandma’s New Shoes.”
Healthcare Armageddon begins in Arizona
I talked briefly in a previous article about the coming days of reckoning in the health care biz due to the growing gap between ever increasing costs and ever decreasing funds. Among the first victims will be high dollar procedures that benefit a small segment of the population. Consider the following an early mortar shot in this war. . . Continue reading “Apocalypse R’ Us”