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Posts Tagged ‘doctor

“Cura te ipsum”*…

 

Americans are increasingly sorting themselves by political affiliation into friendships, even into neighborhoods. Something similar seems to be happening with doctors and their various specialties.

New data show that, in certain medical fields, large majorities of physicians tend to share the political leanings of their colleagues, and a study suggests ideology could affect some treatment recommendations. In surgery, anesthesiology and urology, for example, around two-thirds of doctors who have registered a political affiliation are Republicans. In infectious disease medicine, psychiatry and pediatrics, more than two-thirds are Democrats.

The conclusions are drawn from data compiled by researchers at Yale. They joined two large public data sets, one listing every doctor in the United States and another containing the party registration of every voter in 29 states…

It would be tempting to conclude that it’s all about the Benjamins…  and data does support that:

But age and gender play roles too.  One can examine for oneself at “Your Surgeon Is Probably a Republican, Your Psychiatrist Probably a Democrat.”

* (Physician) heal thyself, from the Vulgate, Luke 4:23

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As we turn our heads and cough, we might recall that it was on this date in 1823 that Scottish chemist and waterproof fabric pioneer Charles Macintosh sold the first “raincoat.”

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Written by LW

October 12, 2016 at 1:01 am

“I never quite envisioned myself a proper doctor under that white coat”*…

 

The Agnew Clinic” by Thomas Eakin, 1889

Toward the end of the 19th century, Western medicine had an image problem. Joseph Lister’s ideas about antiseptics were spreading, and John Snow had made a breakthrough in mapping the spread of cholera. But to the public, most medical “cures” were little more than quackery and mysticism, and the appearance of a physician merely presaged a painful death.

At the same time, the reputation of science was in rapid ascendancy. The Industrial Revolution was transforming the towns and cities of Europe and America, and new breakthroughs were reported on a weekly basis in more than a thousand different scientific journals.

So the medical establishment did a costume change. Doctors dropped their traditional black coats, which were worn either as a mark of formality (like a tuxedo) or to symbolize the solemnity of their profession, and instead opted for white coats like the ones worn by scientists in their laboratories…

Sartorial history at its most clinical: “Why the White Lab Coat Changed Medical History.”

* Robert Jay Lifton

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As we battle “white coat hypertension,” we might spare a thought for Sir Ronald Ross; he died on this date in 1932.  A physician, bacteriologist, and mathematician, he located the malarial parasite in the gut of the Anopheles mosquito, identifying it as the disease vector– for which he became the first British Nobelist, awarded the 1902 Prize for Physiology or Medicine.

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Written by LW

September 16, 2016 at 1:01 am

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