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Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Holiday Wish List Part 2

You know Santa, there are several things we need that I don't really need to explain why. These are: universal health care coverage, better education systems, better libraries, more family time, less violence against each other, an end to telemarketing, a cure for all viruses transmitted through genital fun time, renewable alternatives to fossil fuel energy, cost effective stylish transportation, responsible personal spending and savings, and better entertainment programming.

I would also be forever indebted to you if you grant me one wish.....that someone of such great intelligence that I feel like I only had a 3rd grade education comes up with a definitive and infallible way to measure and treat pain. I vision a neuro scan that can locate the area of origin of the pain signals and the intensity at which the brain translates this signal into "pain." This would allow us to effectively treat pain while avoiding drug seekers who pretend to be in pain so they can get "high."

If that is too complicated then maybe you could grant me a drug or implant that deadens the receptors that contribute to addiction. Our current treatments for addiction all focus on weaning the patient off the addictive substance by using a different addictive substance. It almost always fails. I have seen so many people go into rehab programs only to be right back on the addict wagon a few months later. It is sad and terrible because these are the people who are "f*cked up" all the time and cause fatal auto accidents that kill the innocent and destroy the lives of their surviving relatives. There needs to be a change made.

I also want people to take a look at themselves and see that there is more to life than being stuck with a loser. Why are some people so mentally damaged and devalue themselves to the point where they feel the need to stick by a total douche bag instead of finding someone that truly cares about them? Please give them the strength to take a look in the mirror and like the character Stuart Smalley realize that "I'm good enough, I'm smart enough, and gosh darn it, people like me." I can't stand it when a woman is beaten and stays with the man and tells lies to cover up the cuts and bruises. I tell those people that the beatings will never stop unless they walk away. There are shelters specifically for this purpose if a person is unwilling to ask their family for help. There are counseling programs to help work through the feelings that keep them in danger and help them to become whole again. It scares me to think that so many of these women and gays (yes it happens to some of them also) do not reach out for help. That is no way to live...please help them to overcome the fear and escape for a chance to start over.

Santa, I need to ask that you inspire prescribers to minimize the amount of drugs used to treat any one disease state with maximum results. For example, I see hundreds of patients who take more than 5 drugs for blood pressure and heart problems. There is no need for all of that. With combination drugs on the market and several drugs used for blood pressure that do other things like regulate heart rhythm and conduction that there is always a better choice for each patient's problems.

I try to tell doctors that "new" does not mean "better." Why risk your patient's life on a drug that has not been out in the market enough to know all the bad things it can do and not have a proven track record? How many patients suffered from all of the drugs that were pulled off market less than 5 years out of the gate? Why would you base treatment on what a drug "salesman" tells you or what money the drug company is giving you under the table than on a person's health and well-being?

Maybe it would just take prescribers to remember that these are real people with real lives and real problems, not just cattle to be penned in a waiting room for 4 hours while you get schmoozed by drug reps, only to get 5 minutes of face time with your P.A. and none or almost none with you so the dollar signs in their bank account get bigger and patients get piss poor health care. I hate that. I really hate that. It makes American modern medicine a bigger joke than the "war" in Iraq that was supposed to be an "occupation" to restore a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. You need at least an hour per patient to really address all issues and questions a patient has. I am sorry that you may not be able to afford the gold swimming pool you wanted to put behind your McMansion but it is about the patient's health not your wallet. The guilty ones know who they are...

Ugh, I guess that one is a losing battle until medicine gets "socialized." So I will ask for one last wish. Santa, this is a very very important wish. It is an easy one to fulfill and could actually be done by almost every person alive today. Instead of wallowing in the gluttony of commercial expenditures this holiday, I want everyone to celebrate the greatest gifts of all, life and love. These are things that go beyond religious barriers and petty disputes.

I want children and animals to be adopted. What better way to celebrate than to open you heart and home to a new child or a new pet. I want everyone to celebrate life not stuff because at the end of the day the most precious thing we have is life. In the words of John Lennon "All you need is love." and that is how I intend to celebrate the holidays. Won't everyone celebrate with me????

Thanks Santa!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

(smile) (a little wistful)