UnitedHealth Cleans Up

Great news for UnitedHealth!  They are making some serious cash: Shares rose 2.3% as the company raised its annual revenue and profit outlook. It now expects revenue of about $200 billion, compared with $197 billion to $199 billion previously. It also raised its forecast for adjusted earnings per share to $9.65 to $9.85, up from…

Wasting Doctors’ Time

In a new study in Health Affairs it was found that physicians log “an average of 3.08 hours on office visits and 3.17 hours on desktop medicine each day”.  So, to summarize, MORE time is spend on the damn EMR!!  Now the authors of the study did make a bold prediction that there is “potential for physician…

Breaches in Patient Information

HHS data shows 1800 large data breaches since 2009.  This from the Health Data Management site: The health care sector experienced almost 1,800 large data breaches involving patient information between Oct. 21, 2009, and Dec. 31, 2016, with health care organizations reporting more than 1,200 of the incidents, according to an analysis of HHS data…

And Then You Have This…

Once again I am bothered about this.  This is ALL about creating confusion for the patient.  It is a concerted effort by the lobbying groups behind the NPs.  It devalues me and my education. It confuses the patient.  And it is not good for our healthcare system. So, to summarize, first you have this: And…

Answer This Simple Question by Pat Conrad MD

Before we move on…We all had an interesting exchange last week about the curious rise of “nurse doctors”, wherein one respondent referred to them as part of “your supporting and collaborative team.”  That rhetoric is in line with this “5 Reasons to Get a Doctorate Degree in Nursing,” which apparently include research, access to better faculty posts, leadership blah-blah,…

Doctor Dragged Off Plane

Okay, we all have heard the screams and seen the video.  The passenger being dragged off happened to be a physician and was being “re-accomodated”, which is totally garbage.  United will get sued and the doctor will make some money.  End of story. That being said, I could not help having some PTSD from this video.  Why?  Let me list the reasons:

  1. There was a time that I would gladly take the offer to be “re-accomodated” so I didn’t have to go to work.
  2. There was a time where I almost needed to be dragged off screaming in order TO GO to work.  Yes, I was was at a point where I easily could visualize myself as that dude screaming and fighting as someone dragged me into an exam room.
  3. There was a time that I felt bloodied and beat up at the end of my day just like this doctor was after security was done with him.  That was a normal occurrence and it was every day.

Thank goodness things have changed….for me.  How many other doctors out there are still screaming and feel beat up every day? This United Airlines video is a metaphor for our lives.  Now, close your eyes, picture your staff telling you that Mrs. Jones with 12 chronic problems is in room 3 and listen to the screaming again.  That screaming is you. Hits home, right?

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Not My Job by Pat Conrad MD

A couple decades ago in med school, I passed a girl in the hall wearing a sweatshirt that proclaimed “Global Warming!” which I thought was hilarious because of, y’know, the irony. The latest Family Practice News reminds me of that girl, and of how much contempt I have for so much that falls under the…