NPR’s Morning Edition Story on Physician Blogging and Patient Privacy

By  |  March 16, 2008 | 

Here’s the link, featuring, among others, celebrity blogger Kevin, M.D., as well as yours truly, batting clean-up.

Although the privacy concerns raised by the story are real, personally I thought the psychiatrist went a bit overboard when she said,

“If you are unhappy with the people that you’re supposed to be serving and taking care of, you probably need therapy,” she says. “You don’t need to be venting your frustrations in a public manner like that. That’s very inappropriate and unprofessional.”

Re-read my last post on resuscitating 90-year-olds with metastatic cancer and dementia. Do I need a head shrinker?

About the Author:

Robert M. Wachter, MD is Professor and Interim Chairman of the Department of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, where he holds the Lynne and Marc Benioff Endowed Chair in Hospital Medicine. He is also Chief of the Division of Hospital Medicine. He has published 250 articles and 6 books in the fields of quality, safety, and health policy. He coined the term hospitalist” in a 1996 New England Journal of Medicine article and is past-president of the Society of Hospital Medicine. He is generally considered the academic leader of the hospitalist movement, the fastest growing specialty in the history of modern medicine. He is also a national leader in the fields of patient safety and healthcare quality. He is editor of AHRQ WebM&M, a case-based patient safety journal on the Web, and AHRQ Patient Safety Network, the leading federal patient safety portal. Together, the sites receive nearly one million unique visits each year. He received one of the 2004 John M. Eisenberg Awards, the nation’s top honor in patient safety and quality. He has been selected as one of the 50 most influential physician-executives in the U.S. by Modern Healthcare magazine for the past eight years, the only academic physician to achieve this distinction; in 2015 he was #1 on the list. He is a former chair of the American Board of Internal Medicine, and has served on the healthcare advisory boards of several companies, including Google. His 2015 book, The Digital Doctor: Hope, Hype, and Harm at the Dawn of Medicine’s Computer Age, was a New York Times science bestseller.

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One Comment

  1. chris johnson March 17, 2008 at 9:54 pm - Reply

    I disagree with her. One of the complaints for years about physicians is that we present to the public a monlithic edifice that nonphysicians can’t penetrate. It makes the public think we have something to hide. It’s healthy, I think, and good for the healthcare debate to let folks walk in our shoes now and then. My own small bit of the medical blogosphere is sort of high-road compared to most, but many readers have told me how much they appreciate it (even if they don’t leave comments!). And it’s therapy for me that doesn’t even require the skills of a certified mental health care provider such as the NPR commentator.

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