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HEALTH
December 21, 2009
Re "A Prescription for Snooping," Dec. 14: There is virtually no need for a physician to be "detailed" by a drug company representative. There is a publication for physicians, the Medical Letter, that has been published biweekly for the past nearly 50 years. It is the Consumer Reports of drug information for doctors, reviewing virtually all new (and re-reviewing, as needed, older) drugs. It contains what the doctor needs to know about how a drug works, as well as efficacy, safety, some cost information and whatever is known about comparisons to other drugs.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 7, 2012 | By Jessica Garrison and Alan Zarembo, Los Angeles Times
Nobody disputes that 85-year-old Lorraine Sullivan steered her Toyota Corolla into oncoming traffic, causing a crash that killed her longtime boyfriend, who was in the front passenger seat. But she is not the one in a Santa Ana courtroom this week facing a wrongful death lawsuit for the 2010 accident. Her doctor is. Dr. Arthur Daigneault, who practices near the retirement community of Laguna Woods Village and caters to the elderly, is being sued by the family of William Powers.
NEWS
February 8, 2012 | By Karen Kaplan, Los Angeles Times/For the Booster Shots blog
Some things are better left unsaid - and that includes certain aspects of your medical condition, doctors say. In a nationwide survey of roughly 1,800 physicians, 17% had some level of disagreement with the notion that they should “never tell a patient something that is not true.” Not only that, but 11% of those surveyed acknowledged that they had told a patient “something that was not true” in the past year. The survey, led by Lisa Iezzoni, director of the Mongan Institute for Health Policy at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, didn't ask doctors for specifics about the type of untruths they told.
SPORTS
January 15, 2013 | By Houston Mitchell
Pro wrestling legend Hulk Hogan has sued the Laser Spine Institute in Florida, saying surgeries done there on his back were useless and cost him millions of dollars in revenue. Hogan went to the Institute in 2009 to get treatment for scoliosis and bulging discs but the operations he received left him feeling worse, according to the wrestler. Hogan claims he eventually had to undergo major back surgery with a different set of doctors to repair his back. The allegedly botched surgeries caused Hogan to miss several employment opportunities in wrestling and acting that would have earned him at least $50 million, according to the wrestler.
NEWS
September 12, 2012 | By Eryn Brown, Los Angeles Times
Doctors are supposed to help patients eat healthfully - but they're not exactly dietary angels themselves.    Skipping from meeting (snacks provided) to conference (catered, with jumbo cookies) to lunch at the hospital cafeteria (sugary soda on the side), many fall into the same bad habits the rest of us do, consuming too many calories, gaining too much weight, and eating all the wrong foods. At least one group of researchers thinks it's time for this to change.  Writing in the journal JAMA on Tuesday (subscription required)
TRAVEL
June 8, 1997
I enjoyed the May 25 article on preparing for emergencies abroad ("Preparation Can Save Lives in Health Disasters Abroad," Travel Insider), but was surprised that you didn't include the organization IAMAT (International Assn. for Medical Assistance to Travelers). IAMAT has doctors in virtually every country of the world who not only speak English but have been trained in North America or Britain, so their medical standards are the same as ours. IAMAT will send a free membership card (donations welcome)
SCIENCE
September 21, 2012 | By Jon Bardin
Doctors are less likely to trust research studies performed with funding from corporate interests such as pharmaceutical companies, according to a new study. The report, published this week in the New England Journal of Medicine, reveals a long-suspected bias against such research among physicians. It also demonstrates the price companies have paid for public violations of trust, including examples of data manipulation and misrepresentation of study results. In the study, researchers from Harvard Medical School asked physicians to read abstracts from studies reporting promising clinical data about a couple of different new drugs (the abstracts were fakes, written by the research team, but the doctors didn't know that)
WORLD
February 28, 2014 | By Alexandra Zavis
Doctors Without Borders has been ordered to cease activities in Myanmar, leaving  tens of thousands of patients without medical care, the Nobel Prize-winning aid group said Friday. Doctors Without Borders did not give a reason for the move. But local news reports said the government had taken issue with statements made by the group about sectarian violence in northern Rakhine state and accused it of bias toward the ethnic Rohingya Muslim minority. In a statement, Doctors Without Borders said it was “deeply shocked” by the suspension of its operations after 22 years in Myanmar and “extremely concerned about the fate” of patients under its care around the country.
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