Category Archives: Healthcare

Quotes on the Importance Of Medical Research: Elie Hirschfeld, Carl Atkins & More…

Dr-Gil-Lederman

Research is paramount in the medical field, and every respected doctor knows this. Research is what benchmarks Doctors and helps propel their strategies to the next level. I have compiled some of my favorite quotes on Medical Research to help serve as inspiration for anyone who is hesitant about the deep importance of Research.

  • “In every world, perhaps medical more than any other world, research matters.” Gil Lederman
  • “Medical journals help to shape our medical knowledge by supporting a theory, by challenging a theory with facts, or by deliberately pointing to new theories.” Jan P Vandenbroucke
  • “General medical journals should carry both original research, so that practitioners in the relevant fields can update their skills and knowledge along the lines of the latest international thinking, and clinical studies, so that clinicians can exchange experiences.” Joseph Ana
  • “A journal can play a very important role for airing ideas at the fringes of what is known.” David Gorski
  • “Although the Internet will undermine the news function of journals, it will greatly enhance their importance as vehicles for peer-review. As the Ingelfinger rule is relaxed and new sources of medical information appear on-line, we will be confronted with masses of medical content of unclear provenance and quality.” Elizabeth Leef Jacobson, MD
  • “Journals serve an important role as repositories of medical information. The aggregate of biomedical journals can be viewed as the accumulated knowledge of the field, more complete than any collection of textbooks and more up-to-date.” Michael Jacobson, MD
  • “A brief glance through almost any recently published medical journal will show that statistical methods are playing an increasingly visible role in modern medical research.” Dr. Jayadevan Sreedharan
  • “Print journals continue to be the most important information sources to physicians, according to the Sources & Interactions Study, September 2013: Medical/Surgical Edition.” Jaime Brewster
  • “Scientific journals play a central role in the dissemination of research results; at the same time, the importance of scientific publication in advancing the careers of research scientists has given them.” Hooman Momen
  • “Medical journals aspire to select, through peer review, the highest quality science. To achieve this, the entire peer review and publication process must be thorough, objective, and fair.” Ethics Committee of WAME
  • “Medical journals and their editorial staffs are important components of the medical profession’s infra-structure. In order to advance in academia, publication is crucial.” Elizabeth Leef Jacobson, MD
  • “The current system of journal publication has a number of advantages. Subjecting manuscripts to peer review, for all its faults, does tend to weed out reports and reviews that are flawed or weak so that publications in peer-reviewed journals are for the most part relevant, scientific­ally sound, and credible.” Timothy C. Rowe
  • “The journal receives the majority of its submissions from developing-country authors and tries, within its resources, to stimulate publication by these authors without creating double standards.” Hooman Momen
  • “Journal clubs are a good way of introducing students to science as a dynamic experimental subject and to illustrate scientific reasoning.” Eugene Lloyd
  • “Research is paramount, but in medicine – it’s vital.” Elie Hirschfeld
  • “Journal clubs are also an accessible way of supporting lifelong learning. They help you to keep up to date with relevant literature and give you the confidence to formulate your own opinion on topics through critical analysis of the literature.” Charlotte Hellmich
  • “General medical journals have been instrumental in making medicine and medical research accept medical ethics and medical ethics committees, if only by stating that they would no longer publish experiments on human beings unless they had been approved by an ethics committee.” Jan P Vandenbroucke
  • “Consumers doing homework rely upon medical reports.”  Eric Vainer
  • “Keeping a medical journal or log is an important step to  being a pro-active participant in your own health care or  that of your family members.” Venky Kulkarni
  • “The role of journals as elements of the medical hierarchy will depend on their ultimate place in the medical information marketplace. The Internet magnifies the leverage that can be gained by having the right information at the right time.” Elizabeth Leef Jacobson, MD
  • “Institutions rely on publications in peer-reviewed journals when making decisions about appointments, promotions, and accreditation, and it would be hard to find a reliable substitute.” Timothy C. Rowe
  • “The main target audience of general medical journals is practitioners and the ultimate aim is to improve patient care.” Khalid S. Khan
  • “I read journals partly to learn, but also because I enjoy reading about my field of interest and being stimulated by new ideas. Physicians need editors to keep us reading.” Carl D Atkins

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How does being a Good Communicator help you as a Doctor?

gil-lederman-drWhen a doctor is a good communicator, three things are achieved: they improve the interpersonal relationship with the patient,they improve the quality of the information relayed to the patient and they include the patient in the decision-making process.

Improve interpersonal relationship

Good communication helps to ensure that the patient has a better understanding of the medical information that the doctor is revealing to the patient. The doctor can identify the real needs of the patient including their expectations and perceptions. The patient’s ability to share pertinent information with the doctor helps to improve the accuracy of the diagnosis. The patient is more inclined to follow the doctor’s advice and treatment when the interpersonal relationship is strong.

Improves the Quality of Information

When the patient fully understands and agrees with the diagnosis and treatment and the follow-up prescribed, the ability to recover is improved. According to the National Institute of Health, studies have shown that the patient has a sense of control when communication is good. Their recovery, ability to perform daily life functions and ability to tolerate discomfort and pain is greatly enhanced. Doctors who communicate effectively are considered by patients to have a good “bedside manner” which causes them to conclude that the doctor is very competent.

Share Decision-Making

Doctors were reluctant to reveal upsetting news to patients from the 1950s to the 1970s when informing the patient of a cancer diagnosis was considered inhumane. A paternalistic medical model was followed at that time. Communication and information exchange is now the medical model that is embraced by the medical community because of the health consumer movement that demands patient-centered care. Patient-centered care was first practiced in the ancient Greek school of Cos.

When the patient and doctor communicate well, they exchange, discuss and negotiate treatment options. Treatment is more tailored to the patient instead of applying a standard treatment plan. The decision allows the patient to have more realistic expectations of the outcome and to accept a greater level of risk and greater acceptance of the medical costs.

Studies have shown a reduction in the length of time the patient stays in the hospital which in turn decreases medical costs. Satisfied patients help doctors feel more rewarded by their job, feel less stress and less tendency to burn out. There is less likelihood for a patient to file malpractice claims when the doctor is a good communicator.

New York based, Dr. Gil Lederman is a world renowned doctor, specializing in radiosurgery. He was trained at Harvard University.

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The French Way of Cancer Treatment

healthcare-prAlthough healthcare is provided for everyone in the United States, the system has problems that must be addressed for it to function better. The French system and the French way of cancer treatment in particular, are being widely publicized by organizations including the World Health Organization which has ranked the French system as the best in the world. This widespread acclaim is a big win for the French Healthcare Public Relations image.

How France and the French Deal with Cancer

For comparison purposes, a patient with pancreatic cancer from New York initially began treatment at a NYC hospital. In New York, most of the day is spent in waiting for test results which is a strain on both the patient and the family. The patient must have appointments with different doctors throughout the city. The patient who is French, chooses to go to Paris for treatment in a public hospital. In Paris, a nurse comes to his home to draw blood two days before his chemo treatment so he doesn’t have to spend hours at the lab.

Doctors in France take a team approach to treating cancer patients. Rather than having to go to various appointments, the oncologist, general practitioner, pharmacist, and nutritionist meet with the patient in his hospital room while he’s having treatment. This makes the patient more comfortable and causes less stress.

Services that are available to patients in public hospitals in France free of charge, are meals when they spend several hours in a hospital room during treatment. Transportation to and from the hospital for treatment is provided. Services that aren’t covered in the United States may be provided. When cancer patients families consult with the doctors, they meet with them as along as necessary and there’s no billing department.

The French healthcare system is basically an expanded form of the Medicaid system in the United States, in which everyone has health insurance, but there aren’t issues that people experience with Obamacare. People in France have considerably more choices regarding their primary care doctor and are often approved for medications that aren’t approved for use by the FDA. The satisfaction of patients in France is much higher than in the United States and the system costs much less. The average cost for a family in the U.S. Is $16,351, which isn’t affordable for most families.

Regulating the cost of healthcare in France is considerably different from what it is in the U.S. France has an organization which is known as the CNAMTS. Its function is to monitor spending throughout France. If a particular drug or type of service rises in a certain region, they have the authority to reduce the cost, making it more accessible. France also has a common fee schedule requiring services to have a standard price which the health insurance companies cannot raise. It’s obvious that the most superior healthcare system is the French way.

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Carolinas HealthCare Marries Medicine and Big Data

healthcare-public-relations-firmIt reads rather like a futuristic novel: a patient gets a call from his physician’s office asking him to come in. When he arrives, the stern looking nurse ushers him into an exam room. The doctor arrives and says, “Mr. Smith, it has been reported to me that you have not visited the gym in several weeks. You also have been frequenting a certain sports bar, and buying a lot of pizza. You are on my High Risk list.”

This scenario isn’t science fiction. It’s on the edge of reality for Carolinas HealthCare who has joined the dive into Big Data with a unique aim in mind – and a strong Healthcare PR campaign. By analyzing the credit card purchases of over two million people, Carolinas HealthCare wants to identify those who are practicing personal habits that may make them sick in the future. Doctors can intervene early, perhaps even before the patient gets sick.

The fact that our purchasing habits are grist for analytical data mills is not new, and, oddly enough, most Americans don’t seem too worried about it. But, as Ronn Torossian points out, this use slips into a new realm that may backfire on Carolinas Healthcare’s public image.

Carolinas HealthCare is a southern powerhouse, a vast network of over 900 medical care centers that includes hospitals, doctors’ offices, surgical centers, and nursing homes. It argues that it has taken this step in order to help protect patients’ health. The company claims that by identifying high-risk patients and intervening, lives could be saved.

Ronn Torossian  argues that their PR explanation sounds a little too altruistic to be completely true. They may not realize that this makes them appear as the embodiment of “Big Brother Watching You”. It is one thing when personal data is gathered and fed to companies who analyze it to sell us more products. In some ways, consumers seem to see that as using the Internet to get an edge. But, it is impersonal, and not bothersome.

But, Carolinas HealthCare wants to use this data to profile a person, draw conclusions, and predict possible outcomes. Torrassion is surprised how little they seem to realize that many patients are bound to see this as invasive, and possibly offensive.

The PR backlash has already begun, and Carolinas HealthCare hasn’t responded, yet. This has been called a breach of privacy, and detractors say it could radically change the doctor-patient relationship. Instead of a physician and patient exchanging necessary and pertinent information, the doctor could be placed in the role of Grand Inquisitor, armed with data bought from data collection warehouses.

From a PR standpoint, Carolinas HealthCare is running a great risk by only standing by its ‘we want to help people’ stance. Though it may be partially true, a growing movement doubts this is the only reason. Torossian advises that Carolinas HealthCare would do better to adopt a more transparent approach to its change of policy, especially since it is spearheading a new approach, and the eyes of healthcare providers and patients around the country are watching.

The elephant in the room is Obamacare. It is no coincidence that this move comes now, when the new governmental health regulations provide payment based on how well a hospital heals people vs. services provided. Hospitals can be fined for a variety of faults, including having a patient readmitted too often. Carolinas HealthCare’s move may be seen more as a financial maneuver than an altruistic gesture.

Right now, the southern healthcare company is running the risk of damaging their reputation by not responding directly to questions about their motives, and their stance on possible ethical issues involved in their actions. Ronn Torossian thinks that they need to quickly reconsider their PR strategy in order to prevent themselves from being seen as a mercenary, invasive health corporation. It will be interesting to see how the entire situation develops.

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