Tag Archives: doctor waits

Weekly Links #3

It’s Thursday. And I’m actually doing my weekly links on time! So we’re going to celebrate with a long one. Of course, I’m behind on all my other posts for this week (they’re coming, I promise!). Didn’t have internet for awhile with the move.

So, I feel like I haven’t yet explained why I’m doing links every Thursday. Or more importantly, why a lot of them have to do with public health stuff. Part of it is that I’m very interested in public health and thinking about getting my MPH while I’m at med school. The other side of it is that public health ideas can have an influence on your life–by changing views, helping to understand how things work, or just for the general advice. Anyways, on to the articles!

1. “Why is it so Difficult for Doctors to Stay on Time?” A couple of weeks ago in my links, I posted an article talking about doctors running behind and what the patient can do about it. This is a great follow-up piece from a doctor’s perspective. I like how it shows the tension between trying to stay on time and giving each patient as much time as they need. I definitely saw this issue at the community health center where I spent some time. We were always behind, and it was solely due to making sure each patient had their questions or concerns satisfied (within reason).

2. “Do Calories Really Count?” Loved this article. And it certainly fits in with the Michael Pollan school of thinking on food. I think the best takeaway from this article is the statement about the body being a chemistry lab instead of a bank. All calories are not equal. Sound advice.

3. “New Drug Could Cure Nearly Any Viral Infection” This is just pretty cool. I’m interested to see what this could lead to.

4. “A Prescription for Fear” Fantastic article comparing WebMD and Mayo Clinics websites. I’ve thought for a long time that WebMD might be doing more harm than good (saving the explanation for a longer post in the future), but this article from the NY Times exposes just what’s wrong with it–namely, pharmaceutical backing. Something to keep in mind next time you’re checking stuff out online about your health.

5. “Just 15 Minutes of Exercise a Day Could Add Years to Your Life” Just doing anything can help! No excuses about not having enough time.

6. “Will a Healthy Lifestyle Prevent Illness” This is an article that is kind of against what I’m about. It’s not off-base, but I think it goes too far. Yes, auto-immune disorders and a number of other health problems ignores a healthy lifestyle. But just because there is no guarantees that a healthy lifestyle will improve many things doesn’t mean that it’s not worth it (which the article doesn’t claim, but argues strongly enough that I would consider it implied). Yes, ancestry and luck are a factor. But it is foolish to undercut the way a person lives as a factor. It might not be guaranteed, but I can guarantee that the risks are high without a healthy lifestyle.

7. “Genetics and Obesity” I’ll let this article finish off my argument. I love the end. “Genetics is Not Destiny”. Thank you! I also really enjoy the line about dealing with the genetic hand you are dealt.

If you find any interesting articles or suggestions, please(!) send them to me!

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Weekly Links #1 — Long Waits and the Primary Care Shortage

Long Waits and the Primary Care Shortage

So every Thursday, I’m going to try to post links to articles I’ve found interesting over the week with the occasional thoughts. (I know it’s already Saturday this week, running a little behind already). So here we go.

1. “How to Head Off Long Waits for the Doctor” I spent some time shadowing at a community health center, doing family medicine. One of the thing that really stood out to me was that we always seemed to be running behind. Appointments were set up in either 10 or 20 minute blocks but I rarely felt like we met either of them. I think there is a tension between keeping appointments close to on time and giving patients as much time as they need. The doctor I was with definitely fell on the side of giving patients as much time as they needed (within reason). Anyways, the article makes some suggestions for dealing with it from the patient side, but they don’t seem like solutions that would accomplish a whole lot. I don’t have any solutions, myself, but the article is an interesting look at a problem facing patients and doctors.

2. “Why Medical School Should Be Free” This is an interesting op-ed piece linking medical school debt to the shortage of primary care physicians. As someone who has a lot of debt already, and so much more to come with medical school, I definitely understand its point. There is certainly pressure to pursue higher-paying specialties when it can mean paying off student loans years earlier.

3. “Medical school debt only partially explains the primary care shortage” Kevinmd.com posted this response to #2. It recognizes Dr. Chen’s argument, but proposes that a larger part of the primary care shortage is caused by high tuition costs deterring underrepresented minorities and students from lower socioeconomic statuses. A very interesting complement to #2.

4. “When specialists try to practice primary care” Following the primary care them, this is another kevinmd.com piece. It makes a nice argument for placing greater value on generalism.

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