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Time for patients

July 08, 2006

Re "Safer medicine," editorial, June 30

The 100,000 Lives Campaign to nudge doctors toward more appropriate procedural practice is heartwarming news for patients. Getting doctors to follow a few basic medical procedures clearly makes sense. Still, no mention was made of another fundamental flaw in today's medical care system: the failure of devoting sufficient cognitive time with the patient before any procedures are selected and carried out. Getting doctors to adopt the old adage "never treat a stranger" is the best insurance that the appropriate procedure will be successful.

WILLIAM K. SOLBERG

Los Angeles

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