Friendly fire

Frequent use of the term “friendly fire” has caused me some discomfort. I imagined it was a recent journalistic creation, but I was wrong. According to an essay published by the Poynter Institute, the term was first used during WWI. Author Roy Peter Clark wrote, “It is used accurately only when it describes a force […]

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Racial Prejudice

In the summer of 1963, my parents, my older brother and I boarded the westbound Western Star in Chicago. Our passenger car was designed with three bench seats on each side of a center aisle. As the fourth person in our party, I was seated behind my family next to a soldier in full dress […]

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Learning

 “The best thing for being sad,” replied Merlin, beginning to puff and blow, “is to learn something. That’s the only thing that never fails. You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love, you may see […]

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When COVID is Personal

On Thursday evening December 17, 2020 following a typical day of work, David (not his real name) felt unusually fatigued. He begged off doing the dishes and evening child care duties and went to bed. He awoke at 2am with chills and shifted to his couch. He slept fitfully and shortly arose again with a […]

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High-Tech versus High-Touch

According to Wikipedia the terms high-tech and high-touch were coined in 1982 by John Naisbitt in his book Megatrends. Those contrasting terms have been frequently recited around medical circles for decades. Family medicine is either derided or praised by commentators of differing viewpoints as a high-touch medical specialty. Many family doctors embrace this generalization and value being able […]

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Family Medicine in time of COVID

  I haven’t read much about family doctors since the pandemic began. I have regularly consumed news items that recognize intensivists, pulmonologists, hospitalists and ER physicians. I have been pleased to see spontaneous efforts that express gratitude for heroic nurses, emergency medical technicians and respiratory therapists. I have appreciated minor nods to delivery workers, morticians, […]

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Logistics

On January 8, 2011 Jared Lee Loughner brandished a 9mm pistol with a 33-round magazine and opened fire at a Safeway Supermarket near Tucson Arizona. He had purchased ammunition for the firearm that very morning at a nearby Walmart. His first target was US representative Gabby Gifford who was hosting a community political gathering. Gifford […]

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Power to the People

     My major criticism of modern medical care has not changed since 1970. It was apparent to me as a first year medical student that we had abandoned the most powerful tool that helps people stay healthy. Antibiotic use was exploding, “new and improved” anti-inflammatory drugs were surfacing daily and chronic disease care was emerging. […]

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Human Behavior

Preamble I previously wrote a number of blogs about healthcare still available at frugalfamilyoctor.blogspot.com. I stopped writing blogs while focused on a biography of Richard S. Buker Jr., MD. After the book was published in July 2020, I planned to resume blogging but procrastinated. I start again with a subject that has puzzled me even […]

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Book update

For those of you who have been waiting patiently for my book (Windblown; The Remarkable Life of Richard S. Buker Jr., MD; A Family Doctor), I am happy to report that it has been printed and scheduled to be delivered to my residence today. I will transport copies to St. Louis tomorrow where the vendor […]

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