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Category: Medicine

Health 101: Myth and Bloated Bureaucracies

Health 101: Myth and Bloated Bureaucracies

Myth #3: other country’s universal healthcare systems require bloated bureaucracies.  This first of two related myths, as summed up by TR Reid, has it that the universal healthcare systems of other wealthy countries are run by bloated bureaucracies. This is simply not true. Every other system Reid cited is less wasteful than ours. This is true whether they are public or private systems. Our for-profit setup has the highest administrative costs in the world. This is a major reason we spend more on healthcare and…

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Health 101: Myth and Socialized Medicine

Health 101: Myth and Socialized Medicine

I’d like to talk about mythology. Not Greek mythology or Norse mythology, but American Healthcare mythology. In his book, The Healing of America, TR Reid listed a number of healthcare myths he had busted in the course of researching his book. Some of these I knew about (because I have friends who are living or have lived in countries with universal healthcare) and some I didn’t. Myth #1: “Universal healthcare is socialized medicine!” (sound of game show buzzer) Wrong. Apparently even Michael Moore got this…

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A Hero Goes into the West — from my personal blog

A Hero Goes into the West — from my personal blog

I was shocked and saddened to hear that one of my greatest heroes is dying. I have experienced Oliver Sacks as a being of great wisdom and compassion. His work has been a blessing and an illumination to me as both as a writer and a human being, and has gifted me with many deep insights into the human spirit that have informed my own craft. Dr. Sacks has written extensively about conditions that impact the way affected individuals experience the world—migraine, sleeping sickness,…

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Materialism and Discontent

Materialism and Discontent

“Since we cannot get what we like, let us like what we get.” (Spanish proverb) Abdu’l-Missagh Ghadirian May 11, 2012. What is materialism? Or to be a bit more specific, what is moral materialism? Here is what the dictionary says: “moral materialism” is “a desire for wealth and material possessions with little interest in ethical or spiritual matters.” We can elaborate. Materialism is a state of mind and a lifestyle chosen by those who believe that acquiring and owning material…

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I, Borg: A Maya’s-eye-View of Where Science Meets Faith

I, Borg: A Maya’s-eye-View of Where Science Meets Faith

Well, it’s official: I am now a cyborg. On December 2nd, 2011, I joined the ranks of Darth Vader, Luke Skywalker, John-Luc Picard and Seven of Nine (which is, by the way, my husband’s new nickname for me). I prefer to think of myself as the Borg Queen. How did this come about? Long story.    Send article as PDF   

Science, Medicine, and Spirituality #1: Medicine and the Soul

Science, Medicine, and Spirituality #1: Medicine and the Soul

In recent years debate about the interrelationship between medical science and spirituality has been flourishing.  Modern medicine, despite its unprecedented discoveries and progress in identifying the cause and treatment of disease, has been viewed as overly “scientific”, and consequently “the healing bond between patient and physician” has been weakened (David Rosen, “Modern Medicine and the Healing Process”, Humane Medicine, 1989). The world-renowned Canadian physician William Osler, over a century ago wrote, “Nothing in life is more wonderful than faith –…

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Human Zinc Deficiency: 50th Anniversary

Human Zinc Deficiency: 50th Anniversary

We have a global zinc deficiency epidemic on our hands; over one third of the population of the world is zinc deficient, contributing to about half a million deaths in children world wide every year, and putting two billion people at risk. Zinc is vital to many biological functions, such as disease resistance, wound healing, digestion, reproduction, physical growth, blood sugar regulation, taste and smell. October 2011 marks the fiftieth anniversary of first conceptual breakthrough of zinc deficiency in man….

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