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Archive for July, 2005

Sunday, July 31st 2005

House Passes Malpractice Bill

The House has passed a $250,000 cap on non-punitive awards…for the third time. Let’s see if the Senate will take action this time around.

A story can be found on CNN.com.

Sunday, July 31st 2005

It's a Crazy, Crazy, Crazy…


I start on Monday with a clinical skills/ethics class and then gross. I read through the first part of my syllabi for this ethics course and have become very enticed by ethics, which I have certainly not studied prior.

Consider the following quotes from the syllabi and the notes I’ve written in the margin.

  • “In return for their committment and service, health professionals receive certain benefits from society.” — Do we truly recieve such benefits because of our committment and service? I find it extremely hard to believe that physician’s are allowed the privilige of self-regulation as a reward for their committment to society.
  • “…not to have compassion is to treat the patient as an object, as simply a particular instance of a disease process. The patient is divested of the rich particulars of age, gender, race, values, occupation — of those particulars that define us as persons and give us identity.” — And so? There’s a case that completely divested interest makes a physician more objective and better in curing the patient. It seems incredibly new age to think that a physician must cure a patient’s spirit along with his or her body. If I had to make a choice between a skilled procedural clinician or one who treated me with compassion…uh…I’d take the skilled physician any day of the week.
  • “Conflicts of conscience sometimes emerge in healthcare because people regard as unethical some role obligation or official order that descends from a hierarchical structure of authority. In cases of refusal, the individual need not rebuke others or obstruct them from performing an act, but only say, ‘Not through me’.” — I’m confused by this. There will certainly be an ethical argument later in this course that there is no distinction between a sin of omission and one of comission. Where however is the line drawn? It is unethical to watch someone get mugged and not call for help but it’s okay, if I am opposed to it, to sit around and watch another doctor take out a comatose patient’s feeding tube as long as I don’t do it myself. That seems a little off base…

I’ll post Monday after my first day of class.

Monday, July 25th 2005

It Begins

I had my white coat ceremony on Sunday and my first day of orientation today. Unfortunately, I’m heading out to meet more of my classmates. More posts on my moving white coat ceremony pending.

Saturday, July 23rd 2005

MCAT Gets Digital

The MCAT will be taken entirely on a computer.

Seems like a good idea which will improve test security and integrity, as well as speed up the test day and the turn around time for students and medical schools to get the test scores.

Saturday, July 23rd 2005

Can America Compete With China?

Fortune asks and answers whether a new ‘crisis of confidence’ is different than America’s fear of a growing Japanese economy in the 1980s.

I think a decline in quality of life, wealth, and loss of American political influence abroad is inevitable before my retirement age if America can’t change it’s economic relationship with the developing world.

Saturday, July 23rd 2005

Seattle and Mt. Ranier

Thursday, July 21st 2005


I’ve been woefully away from my computer. I have no news topics to write about.

I will share with the world however that I met and went out with about 30 of my future classmates last night. Amazing time. I love some of these guys already…they all seem great.

I’ll be back over the weekend to discuss Judge John Roberts, Jr. (hooray for no filibuster!), electronic health records as Kevin, M.D. has here, and on how a brain dead woman’s fetus could possibly survive.

I’ll post before the big day — my White Coat Ceremony — on Sunday.

Saturday, July 16th 2005

Texas Tort Reform

Here’s a blip in Internal Medicine on tort reform success in Texas. It’s a fluff piece, but at least provides some quotes on the necessity of tort reform.

H/T to Kevin, M.D.

Saturday, July 16th 2005


I got my orientation schedule today, online, even though I’m in Seattle.

It’s an all day thing Monday – Wendesday, however after that I’m a little bit concerned. I want to be sociable and continue to meet my new classmates, but there’s little reason for me to be on campus Thursday or Friday for very long. A single “optional workshop” relates to me seeing as I have no kids, am not married, am not gay, etc.
As well, since I already live near my medical school, I’ve taken the time to do things like get my ID badge and parking permit which the orientation schedule actually have booked out.

In any case, I can’t believe how quickly it is coming up.

Thursday, July 14th 2005


8 Days & I’ve taken a couple days off work to experience at least a little bit of summer vacation. I’ll post before my white coat ceremony however.