ER Wait Times – do you know what it is?

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“Woman dies in emergency waiting room.” – CBC News, Oct 11 2002 “We warned of ER deaths.” – The Vancouver Sun, Apr 27 2006 “Another death in … hospital waiting room.” – Winnipeg Free Press, Sept 26 2008 These are the headlines that the public is constantly bombarded with over the years with regards to ER wait times. If I didn’t know any better, I’d think that the emergency waiting room is the …

What is a Physician Worth?

In Featured by Edmund Kwok4 Comments

Imagine you were in control of healthcare spending. How much would you pay a doctor a year? Write that number down. Now let me rephrase that question. Let’s say you were in a terrible motor vehicle accident, and you and a loved one suffered life-threatening injuries. The doctor at the hospital (which is on the ready 24/7 for you), who has spent over 9 years of post-graduate training to ensure you get appropriate …

Shortage of drugs … or accountability?

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Since the past week or so, Ontarians are dangerously close to completely running out of the most commonly used injectable medications. Translation? The elective surgery you have been waiting for probably won’t happen. Your relative who is suffering from metastatic cancer may not get the relief he/she needs from intractable nausea and vomiting. Your young child infected with a life-threatening bacteria could potentially not get the most effective antibiotic and instead receive a …

Choosing the right pill.

In Featured by Edmund Kwok3 Comments

In the movie the Matrix, Morpheus gives Neo a choice: either take the red pill, or the blue pill. What Neo never considered, was that perhaps he shouldn’t take any pills. In a bid to combat the exploding epidemic of narcotic abuse and addiction, the government recently chose to stop public funding for OxyContin and instead opted to fund a new alternative called, coincidentally enough, OxyNEO. The theory sold by the drug company …

Social Media – Potential in Medicine?

In Featured by Edmund Kwok1 Comment

It was my first ER shift in charge of the Resuscitation area. Needless to say, my adrenaline and nerves were firing like crazy; being responsible for the sickest of the sick that rolls through our doors is a daunting task, especially since we were the local trauma center. The shift was going relatively well, and with only a few hours left I was beginning to breathe a sigh of relief. BBEEEEPPP. There is …

Drummond’s musings.

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We have a fixed “X” amount of money and resources. We want the best care for everyone. And we want it forever. If I presented this basic problem to a class of 5th graders, I can already picture them scratching their heads. “Excuse me sir,” one of them would raise his/her hand and say, “but that doesn’t add up – it’s not possible.”