Posts by Brad Flansbaum

“Hospitalists Don’t Do It Like We Do. We’re Better.”

How often do we hear declarative statements rooted in dogma, propagated over decades?  Countless times, physicians providing continuity care for chronically ill patients "assume" that by the very nature of that continuity, they outperform doctors not in that station, especially as it relates to intimate tasks.  "Hospitalists are ill equipped to obtain advanced directives; they don’t know the patient like I do," or something to that effect. (more…)

Observation Units. All Good. Right?

Would you like to read about some good policy, but bad execution?  Browse on. On the physician side of the ledger, we trust that observation units, i.e., geographic weigh stations to determine fitness of admission or discharge, are a good thing.  Earlier discharge, focused resource use, possibly less exposure to hospital badness—all winning strategies to improve efficiency.  What is the problem then?  From todays WSJ: (more…)

Those Fateful Words: “You Remember That Patient?”

If you read me regularly, you know I love TED talks.  This one is fantastic.  What makes it particularly great is despite the subject matter, medicine, you would not know whether the speaker--a physician himself, is speaking to a lay audience or peers.  There is some skill in that, as you will see. I did not know what to make of his introductory remarks, but his talk gets real, real fast; and he sure has guts. It is a polished, hard-hitting account of committing a a major medical mistake, not once, but twice. Brutally honest, and true to a fault, as those who have lived through this will account. It shows the cross border universality of our practice environment as well (he is Canadian), but that only enhances the value.  The problem he expresses is sweeping; the emotions the same. This is someone that needs to speak at all our…