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Fixin' Healthcare

Sunday, November 17, 2013

A Sense Of Time

A sense of time, as well as the certainty or the lack thereof for the future, influences our decisions. All actions take time and represent investments. Attempting to assure the future is a common activity that reaches a fever pitch as uncertainty increases. People may fail to invest in health and seek assurance that medical care can cure health problems. Prevention and/or response to natural disasters and national security are examples. More often than not the 21st century presents the trade off between rewards in the present or survival in the future. Some people think they can have it all. How to do that occupies a lot of time, attention and resources. What is lacking is a common sense of purpose.     

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Air Pollution

Air pollution contributes to the cause of cardiovascular disease and cancer. Add it to the list of preventable causes of poor health, disease and death that are best managed by public health. The next, most effective and most efficient phase of health care is public (population) health.

Thursday, November 14, 2013


To a hammer the world is a nail. Should we be surprised cardiologists recommend increased utilization of statin drugs? I think not. It is what they do. For prevention physicians think in terms of sickness. But good health is not just a byproduct, it must be pursued with dedication and vigor and a sickness mind-set obstructs the pathway. Meanwhile, the public is only too willing to go along. They have been conditioned to think in terms of medical care and taking a drug is so much easier than ceasing to smoke, exercise more and eat vegetables. The fact that drugs don't deliver as promised is something they discover too late. Science has not eliminated mysticism from medical care, it has become its own brand of mysticism.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Rules and Exceptions

Health is about the rules and medicine is about the exceptions. More often than we would like the exceptions become the rules. Nowhere is there a better example than obstetrics. Normal delivery at full term, not too early or too late, is best for baby and mother. Knowing when to intervene takes a lot of experience and judgement. Medical care pays more for the intervention than the experience and judgement, and convenience comes down more on the side of intervention. But take care when messing with Mother Nature. She knows the rules.

Sunday, November 10, 2013


Lifestyles come in many forms but living on a farm has its advantages. The farm life results in less allergy. This may be explained by constant, long-term exposure to some bacteria that protect against allergies. The pasture may seem like a pleasant setting but keep in mind it is associated with hard work.

Saturday, November 09, 2013

Bacteria In The Gut

The study of gut bacteria and their relation to health is an exciting new field with promise of fresh insights. It does have a genetic component but I suspect it will provide more useful information sooner than genetic medicine.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Mediterranean Diet

Strong evidence continues to mount that the Mediterranean Diet is beneficial for the health of body and mind. Sad to say the typical diet in America often functions in the opposite direction. It doesn't take much imagination to see the plus of changing. Feeling better and longer life without chronic health problems should be appealing.

War On Cancer

The War On Cancer has been prolonged and somewhat disappointing. Recent findings offer some encouragement but this too will require time and lead to some blind alleys. Meanwhile a healthy lifestyle can help with prevention.

Bacterial Contamination Of Chicken

Contamination of chicken with antibiotic resistant E. coli is common regardless how the chicken is raised and processed. That makes it important how the chicken is handled and cooked in your kitchen.

Monday, November 04, 2013

Herbal Supplements

Herbal supplements are not what they are supposed to be but it is a thriving business. Is it possible that making money and taking pills describe America?