Tuesday, December 20, 2011

What have we become?

A physician receives a slap on the wrist from the state medical board despite a pattern of inappropriately implanting 20 or more stents within a given patient.

A dermatology practice advertises "holiday savings on body contouring," including "CoolSculpting," "SmartLipo," and "Thermage."

Following a life-saving procedure on a patient with an impending heart attack, the attending physician is required to speak with a cardiologist in another state who is unfamiliar with the case but is employed by the insurance company solely to determine, after the fact, whether the procedure will be covered.

A large radiology practice places an account in collections although the unpaid balance is only $69 and the responsible party, who was never contacted regarding payment, is himself a physician. 

An oncologist warns one of his patients that, as a consequence of "Obamacare," he may not be able to complete his course of chemotherapy. 

Over two thousand years ago Hippocrates admonished future generations of physicians to do no harm, to refrain from "cutting for stone," and to treat fellow practitioners and their family members as their own.  Centuries later Maimonides wrote, "Let not the desire to amass wealth blind [us] from seeing truth."
The truth is that health care does need to be reformed.  And we as a profession need to take a very hard look at what we have become.

December has been a disappointing month for training, which is why I have not been posting my workouts lately.  Although I have been swimming consistently, I have been consistently slower.  I am realizing that the viral infection I suffered last month depleted me more than I had initially thought.  I definitely do not feel overtrained; one indication is that my HR remains in the moderate (En2) range (150) during most sets.  I lifted weights last night and swam at Nitro this morning with Tom, David, Steve, and Jeff.  Jordan coached.

200 swim/kick/pull
4 x 200 reverse IM @ 3:00, averaged 2:55 (ouch)
4 x 75 kick @ 1:30
4 x 200 Indiana IM @ 3:00, averaged 2:49
4 x 125 @ 2:00 pull; I swam these and held 1:27 (1000 race pace, surprisingly)
100 easy

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