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OPINION
January 17, 2013
Re "Official vows to act on reckless doctors," Jan. 13 The Times has rightly been exposing those doctors in California who overprescribe narcotics and other addicting drugs for the profit they make and not to help patients. Now some in the Legislature want to give the Medical Board of California more investigators to help in this fight. I have a better idea how to stop those dishonest doctors: have the Legislature stop taking over one-third of the license fee money that doctors pay to fund the medical board and transferring it to the state general fund to cover the budget deficit.
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OPINION
January 5, 2014
Re "The gap in medical education," Opinion, Jan. 3 I would like to commend Rahul Rekhi's advocacy for incorporating health policy in medical education. In addition to focusing on healthcare systems and health economics, there is a critical need to focus on the impact of health policy on the underlying causes of disease. For example, medical care alone cannot address the obesity epidemic underlying the increasing prevalence of diabetes. Policies such as how we plan our communities, how much physical activity is provided in schools and how we promote nutritious food consumption have a great impact on the health of our communities.
NEWS
February 20, 2013 | By Mary MacVean
Perhaps you know whether you'd want to use marijuana to relieve severe pain or nausea. But if you were a doctor, what would you tell patients who asked about taking something that's against federal law? The New England Journal of Medicine poses the question to its readers and on Wednesday presented arguments for and against from doctors. The hypothetical patient is 68-year-old Marilyn, who has cancer and who says the standard medications are not relieving her pain and nausea.
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.
HEALTH
September 5, 2011 | By Danielle Ofri, Special to the Los Angeles Times
"It's gonna be a big one," one of the nurses said in a dry, blasé voice, as she walked down the clinic hall. "Plane just hit one of the twin towers. They'll be coming in droves. " Her tone was the nearly bored resignation of someone who's worked in a city hospital for years and who's seen it all: Bellevue Hospital, after all, is the quintessential municipal hospital — huge emergency room, Level 1 trauma center, recipient of New York City's urban fallout for 275 years. Another plane crash, or train wreck, or gunfight, typically elicits not much more than a "Here we go again.
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.
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.
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.
NATIONAL
April 18, 2014 | By Paresh Dave
Two Texas doctors who had been performing abortions for more than three decades lost their legal ability to do so at the end of March when their new hospital revoked their privileges. This week, a judge temporarily reinstated their positions. But the doctors face an April 30 court hearing to see if that temporary order will remain in place. The abortion case, like many others in Texas at the moment, was sparked by legislation passed last year that placed significant limits on who can perform abortions and where.
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)
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