Wednesday 29 March 2017

Snake-oil Salesmen. "Quack-quack!"

Snake-oil salesmen (or should I say salespersons ?) continue to thrive in the twenty-first century. It looks to me as though they are more prolific than ever. False claims and false or misleading advertising are greatly facilitated by the internet with its wide dissemination and relative anonymity. In the last week I have had several such communications in my email. Take the one below, for instance:

You will no longer be diabetic, 14 days from now...
Doctors are STUNNED that a new $47 diabetes treatment works so well at lowering blood sugar, controlling insulin, and even helping you drop pounds of fat.
They say this should be -medically impossible"... (sic)
Especially since there are no insulin injections or prescription drugs required.
Theyre even more OUTRAGED that in a just-published report involving thousands of diabetics...
Virtually every participant claimed a dramatic improvement in their diabetes symptoms within 14 days.
Check here to see the inexpensive diabetes treatment thats making some of Americas most highly trained doctors look like fools.
That link will take you to a special video report detailing exactly what this $47 medical protocol is...
And will even show you the specific steps you need to take if you want to try this bizarre diabetes treatment for yourself.
Doctors Baffled By This $47 Diabetes Treatment:

   I tried to follow the trail to find out what this miraculous cure could be and I found that someone calling himself Dr. David Pearson has a downloadable eBook called  Diabetes Free that you can buy on line for $37.  Any attempt to find out more about Dr. Pearson is difficult if not impossible, made even more frustrating by the fact that his name is not uncommon and that there are numerous entries that are not likely this individual.  I couldn't even verify that he has any medical qualification.  Looks like a quack, but I'll keep on looking.

  And then there's the next one It starts off with the remarkable statement:
   "Your doctor is wrong, Alzheimer's can be reversed!"
    The reader is then directed to a video presented by the alleged husband of an Alzheimer's patient, who makes the claim that Alzheimers is "100% curable".  He himself, (not a physician or a scientist) decided he would have to research this matter himself because none of the physicians or specialists could cure it. It took him two years to come up with the cure! This is achieved by using 'natural products' that the diabolical drug companies want to keep secret so that it would not impact upon their profits.  His remedy, he informs us, was supported by an eminent specialist who didn't want to be named.  He wanders on at great length about combinations of food that reverse Altzheimer's and that totally reversed his wife's disease.  The money grubbing doctors and pharmaceutical companies do everything in their power to keep this cure from the public.  Their only interest is in the fortune they are making from the disease. On and on it goes, anecdotal fairy-tales, one after the other, without a grain of proof
   The bottom line? You can buy the book,"Alzheimer's Defense Program" only $67, regularly $199. 

  I have a few more snake-oil stories to tell you.  If you have any to tell me, I would be glad to share them with my readers!   


Friday 24 March 2017

Marijuana! Keep the dopes doped!

   Keep the dopes doped or How to get your doctor to prescribe Marijuana!
   Someone mentioned to me the other day that there is now a whole category of youtube presentations teaching the dopeheads how to get a nice legitimate marijuana medical card.  He even mentioned to me that there were several generated right here, in the second biggest London in the world!
   Slightly skeptically, I fired up my old desk top to take a look. I type in "cannabis prescription cards -Canada".  I got three thousand hits!  Now, they weren't all Canadian and they weren't all dealing with medical prescription cards, but a lot were.  There were numerous tutorials about how to find and  manipulate dumb or crooked physicians into providing a certificate.  A few, very few, dealt with how to get a medical card for someone who actually has a medical condition that could benefit from pot.  Most of them didn't even pretend there was a medical issue.  There were some interesting titles, like "How to get your medical marijuana card in five minutes", or "How I got my medical marijuana card without leaving my couch!"  Then there was "Getting a medical marijuana card - tips  and tricks", presented by a young woman who was obviously a little stoned and "Getting my weed card," by a man who had such pressured speech and was so excited that I have little doubt that he was manic. (This was the London guy!)   A few presenters were so stoned as to be unintelligible. There was one presenter who spoke very clearly with measured words and, under the circumstances, relatively good advice. I suspect he was a paid tout for a cannabis company.
   Just in case you decide you would like a med marij card so that you can indulge legally, the steps are relatively simple.
        1.Call your family doc and ask to be referred to a cannabis clinic.  (If think you have a real problem then you could ask you regular physician if they could prescribe it.  Personally, I never prescribed cannabis because I believe it to very rarely to be the drug of choice for anything. 
        2. Even if your doc won't refer you the clinics will but will require you to see one of their docs.  You will need some documentation such as a drivers license or passport and your medical history.
(One advisor suggested just by-passing your doc and taking to the secretary and requesting a copy of your medical records. "They are your records, they have to give them to you!")
        3. Go to the Cannabis clinic, their doctor will see you and have you fill in a questionnaire and talk to you for a few minutes.  
        4. Pay their fee.
        5. Voila! Get your card. 
Feel free to comment on this scandalous state of affairs that our government promotes.   

Sunday 19 March 2017

Health care priorities in Canada.

Former Guantanamo prisoner has 19-hour surgery in Canada 

Washington Post. Associated Press.

This was a recent headline in the Washington Post.
   In a country where citizens are suffering  (and sometimes dying) on obscenely lengthy waiting lists  Khadr, who sustained a shoulder injury in the process of a confessed involvement in the murdering of a U.S. Army Medic was allowed to usurp services in a declining, second rate, health care system that hard working Canadians have worked for and paid for all their lives. The nineteen hour surgery cost many thousands and deprived people with life threatening conditions. It is an embarrassment that this man was allowed to retain Canadian citizenship and to come back to Canada and an outrage that Canadians are forced to pay for non life threatening and non emergency surgery resulting from his crimes.  We desperately need some sane guidelines as to where our grossly inadequate health care resources should be spent. 
   His lawyer said, "it would be great for him to get in to Medicine of some sort! 
Personally, I think Law would be a more suitable sort of profession for him!

   Because most of my acquaintances are well aware that I spent a lifetime in medical practice, (no matter how hard I try to conceal the fact ), they frequently bring their health care system problems to me and many of them are truly unconscionable.   I am horrified at the indifference of the administridiots and others to their suffering and their preoccupation with political correctness.  This is at the expense of social justice to Canadians who have contributed all their lives to make the system work and to have appropriate care when  they are ill or disabled.  It is very nice to be generous and charitable to everyone, but the old trope about charity beginning at home contains more than a grain of truth.     Unfortunately, until an individual or a member of their immediate family is affected, most people don't give it a thought.  Someone awaiting an MRI for a potentially serious condition should not have to wait while Khadr and his ilk are getting Cadillac health care.  I have worked in the Corrections Canada system and the same rules apply there.
   Decent hardworking law-abiding citizens do deserve preference in the handing out of health care resources than convicted criminals.  Sounds like common sense to me.  Political correctness be damned!

   Time for Canucks to wake up!! 

It's hard to  believe the world is so full of snowflakes that no one will have a comment to make on this.


Monday 13 March 2017

Sexual Abuse and Bill 87.

"Ontario has introduced legislation that would, if passed, further protect patients in Ontario and keep them healthy, including strengthening and reinforcing Ontario's zero tolerance policy on sexual abuse of patients by any regulated health professional. 
The Protecting Patients Act, 2016 includes legislative amendments that would, if passed:

  • Expand the list of acts of sexual abuse that will result in the mandatory revocation of a regulated health professional's license
  • Remove the ability of a regulated health professional to continue to practice on patients of a specific gender after an allegation or finding of sexual abuse
  • Increase access to patient therapy and counseling as soon as a complaint of sexual abuse by a regulated health professional is filed
  • Ensure that all relevant information about regulated health professionals' current and past conduct is available to the public in an easy-to-access and transparent way." 

       Sexual abuse, within or outside medical practice is outside the pale and never to be tolerated.  Within the profession the safeguards against it and the measures that have been set up to detect and deal with it have been rigorously enforced and due process has been followed.  The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons has been charged with the responsibility of monitoring medical malpractice of any kind and of investigating and dealing with any breaches of proper professional behaviour.   For the most part the system has worked well, though as with most regulatory bodies there are occasional failures.  There are also false allegations made on occasion that can irrefutably damage a health care professional who is entirely innocent.  Nevertheless, both patients and physicians have had access to due process and been treated fairly and for the most part the punishment has fitted the crime.  That any accused be given a fair hearing and not massacred by the media, has been the bedrock of a  civilized society, but that seems to be under attack in many ways in contemporary society.  The government of Ontario now intends to change this structure in a fashion that would give them complete control of how individual cases would be disposed of  and of defining what comprises an infringement and how it should be dealt with.  It is allocating to itself the defining of the committee structure and penalty for alleged infringement of any rules they legislate.   It is undermining a system implemented by the College of Physicians and Surgeons composed of both physicians and non physicians, that has worked well in Canada in the fifty-five years I have practiced here and plans to replace it with a department of health dictatorship.  Because the risk is so high for any physician frivolously, maliciously or mistakenly accused of such an offense, I would advise no physician to do an intimate examination of a patient without a family member present and if still in practice I would so inform my patients.
       How many pelvic, rectal, prostate or breast exams will remain unperformed if this bill passes is hard to assess.  Ultimately, it is the patient who loses out.
       Meanwhile, the administridiots continue to destroy health care in Canada.
    Comment if you have any view on whether Bill 87 will help or harm health care.

Thursday 9 March 2017

Patient advocacy.

  Yesterday, while looking  for a book in Indigo, I ran into a lady I  know and learned that she had recently lost her husband, who was a diabetic and not very old.  After expressing my condolences, I listened with horror to the story of her husband's management.  Not his medical management as such, he was going to die in a short time whatever the treatment, but the total lack of compassion with which he was treated, the tardiness of access when he needed it, the inability to contact the family doctor and the inadequacy of the response when by all accounts an urgent response was called for.   (She had to call 911 when a return telephone call would probably have avoided a trip to the hospital and an overnight stay.)  She stayed with him around the clock because she was fearful of what might happen to  him if he didn't have an advocate when he was no longer capable of looking out for himself.  Having practiced medicine for more than half a century, I hear stories of this sort with alarming frequency.  The technical service that patients receive is usually of a high standard, but the level  of indifference to the discomfort and sometimes distress of the patient is such that I would recommend that no one with more than minor illness should be without an advocate such as a family member or close friend.
   Nowadays, one reads increasingly  of groups that label themselves advocacy groups, often suggesting that what we need is the establishment of further government funded groups allegedly looking out for the patients welfare.  In an era when there are more highly paid, highly pensioned people, without any health care training, employed in the health care field, consuming an increasing portion of the health care budget, I am often surprised to hear of the huge gap in health  care advocacy,  particularly in relation to the elderly.  I can only write it off as indifference.  This should be a major part of the training of every health care administrator and for many years I laboured under the misapprehension that it was.  There are already many advocacy groups supported by various pharmacy and medical appliance interests.  There are also privately paid patient advocates . But the  sort of advocate that every patient needs most of all, is  a loving family member or friend who is going  to accompany them whenever serious situations arise or are anticipated.  No stranger provides that sort of input.
     As layer upon layer of health care administrator evolve, holding endless meeting at which the ultimate objective often seems to be the hearing of one's own voice and an attempt to assert a degree of authority unmatched by talent, I recall with horror the amount of time I was forced to waste as a department chair at such meetings.  I knew, of course I was only there to give an aura of legitimacy to the proceedings ("of course we had medical input!"), nevertheless, I was sometimes afraid to go to the washroom for fear of the decision that might be made in my absence.    I frequently noticed at these meetings that the emphasis was almost entirely on the non clinical aspects of medical care.  This was because the committee as a whole, understood little of the clinical attitudes, knowledge and skills necessary for a first class medical system.  There are issues important in health care management  that physicians and nurses need to be aware of and point them in the the appropriate direction to be resolved.   These are responsibilities for administrators and social workers to deal with so that physicians and nurses can spend their time doing what they are trained to do instead of wrestling with administration.  I am referring to attempting to resolve issues such as social determinants of health, poverty, ignorance, cognitive impairment, financial management and the business of administering hospitals and other physical plants..  I am also talking about dealing with obscene waiting lists for which there is no excuse.  Absurd Medico- legal situations that have earned themselves the title of 'health care lotteries' should be dealt with in a very different way, instead of resulting in huge expenses in performing investigations that are necessary only because physicians have to protect themselves.  Keeping up to date in medical skills is a full time job and maintaining physician patient relationships that benefits both the patient and the physician takes time, eye contact and meaningful communication.  Unfortunately, the computerized medical record seems to have taken the wrong track and become more a tool for administration and administrative control than a tool for patient care.  It is time our Colleges got back on track and instead of mindlessly adopting the 'politically correct', start looking out for patients and physicians.    
  And it is time for the armies of healthcare administrators to roll up their sleeves and start dealing directly and efficiently with the non clinical problems of patients, instead of trying to turn physicians into medical technicians whom they can manipulate as they please.

Sunday 5 March 2017

A sick woman with a sick agenda.

 The Liberal Government of the Province of Ontario
believe that the sexual  education of the children of this  province should be determined by them regardless of the opinion of parents.  Fortunately, the Canadian Family Alliance (CFA) had the guts to initiate a program to stop the radical sex education of children.  For more information about this outrageous sex ed program promoted and pushed through by the amoral disturbed premier of this province you should go to to gain some insight into the devious attempt to influence how children think about sex and sexual  issues.  There is obviously an progressive attempt to engineer children into sharing Ms Wynne's views.
   Children as young as six are having 'genitalia' instruction and by eight are being taught 'Gender Identity Theory'. Whether you are a boy or a girl is unrelated to your physical anatomy.  Being a boy or a girl is just an "imagined social construct", you can choose what you want to be.  After that masturbation education and by age of twelve, anal intercourse, oral sex and sexual pleasure are dealt with.  At the advanced age of  thirteen, children are encouraged to make a personal sexual plan.
   By the way, the man under whose direction this curriculum was written, the former Deputy Education Minister Benjamin Levin is behind bars for - yes, you guessed correctly - CHILD PORNOGRAPHY AND PEDOPHILIA -RELATED CRIMES.
   Ms Wynne and her satraps have already destroyed the economy of this once economic engine of Canada,
are we now going to sit by while she destroys our youth?