meus intuitus

broadening medical practice

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It is too easy and common for physicians to be resentful of the poor—especially in America.  The poor have poor eating habits, are less adherent to treatment plans, and compensate poorly (medicaid vs private insurance rates).  However, despite appearances these frustrations are not the fault of the patients.  In our practices, we must remember,  “physicians are the natural attorneys of the poor” [Mountains Beyond Mountains].  If the treatment of a disease is structural rather than pharmaceutical (as it most often is), then physicians must raise their voices in advocation.  If treatment adherence requires more attentive follow up, it is the responsibility of the physician to initiate it.

We need a broader definition of medicine—one that includes therapeutic interventions that are, unfortunately, not compensated for.  Medicine is more than throwing pills and orders at patients.  Medicine is about healing.  If the scripts aren’t working, then there is no healing, and it is the duty of physicians to find out why.  Our curiosity needs to extend beyond the scientific.  We need to be investigative, not just of the pathologic, but also of the sociologic, psychologic, and economic.  Systemic barriers, misunderstandings, and financial barriers are not the fault of our patients—they are the responsibilities of the informed.

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Written by meusintuitus

July 2, 2012 at 6:37 pm

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