Monday, November 9, 2009

Changing medical profession - NYRB

The podcast of the New York Review of Books (feed) is actually a promotional podcast for the paper. In the case of the issue where Jerome Groopman was interview about the changing medical profession (mp3) it actually worked. I went to read Groopman's article Diagnosis: What Doctors Are Missing.

In the podcast Groopman gets under twenty minutes to make some of his points, but apart from the bottom-line you will not be able to take away too much of them. It really helped to go and read the article and get more reference.

It is not all bad with the medical profession. Groopman begins to point out that crazy hours and the absence of team work and support are things of the past. Yet he points at a couple of new problems that have arisen. Obviously the economizing aspects that reduce the time doctors are with their patients can be bad and we need not too many examples to understand what he means. However, when he wants to argue that the trend to rely on evidence-based medicine has bad side-effects, at least I was surprised. Surely Groopman doesn't want to open the doors for untested alternative medicine, so what IS his point? In a nut-shell, medicine is not as general and empiric as evidence-based wants to have it and it cannot be totally formalized. Doctor's need the room to make decision about treatment based on the individual case without fear of roaming into malpractice.

More NYRB podcast:
David Cole,
Amateur Science - Freeman Dyson,
Roger Cohen in Tehran,
Ronald Dworkin.