Healthcare in Developing Nations – What They Truly Need.

In Editorial by Edmund KwokLeave a Comment

Guest post by Barbara Watson. Health. It’s something that we should take seriously. As I see it, a good health is a foundation of a great nation. A country with unhealthy people won’t be able to produce well. If this is the case, one will always be a striving nation but will not experience improvement. That’s why we need to improve the health care status of developing nations. I have chosen 5 developing …

The Pain with Painkillers.

In Editorial, Opinion by Edmund Kwok5 Comments

There is a medical horror story told to all medical students since 2004. It is a story of thousands and thousands of deaths related to a prescription painkiller: Rofecoxib, or better know by its trade name Vioxx. In a nutshell, Vioxx was marketed as an important pain management option for patients suffering from chronic painful conditions like arthritis. It didn’t save any lives, but promised to relief some of the morbidity associated with …

Wait lists: A Necessary Evil. But How Long is Too Long?

In Editorial, Opinion by Edmund Kwok4 Comments

Imagine that you had debilitating low back pain, with sharp shooting pains down your leg. Despite physiotherapy, pain medications, and prolonged rest, the pain is preventing you from working. An MRI of your spine had revealed a complex disc that is impinging some nerves, with major spine surgery being a potential cure. So why must you wait months for a spine surgeon? The scenario is likely worse if the pathology involved was much …

The Hunger for Diagnoses.

In Editorial, Opinion by Edmund Kwok1 Comment

I cannot count how many times patients have arrived in the ER with a predetermined mindset that they are suffering from a severe disease. Some are genuine fears, and we do our best to investigate and treat – most of these patients are relieved when we find nothing dangerous, even though in many instances a clear-cut diagnosis is not possible at that moment. Some however, will insist on endless and extravagant investigations until …

Should we be punishing medical errors?

In Editorial, Opinion by Edmund Kwok2 Comments

An interesting story came across my desk recently. Apparently, some states in the U.S. have moved towards a punitive model in trying deal with medical errors and adverse outcomes – this particular story describes how Utah will no longer fund healthcare providers and hospitals for dealing with illnesses that resulted from avoidable errors and infections. On the surface, it kind of makes sense – one should be punished for making a mistake, right? …

The 13 pieces of a fragmented healthcare system.

In Editorial, Opinion by Edmund KwokLeave a Comment

As Canadians we pride ourselves on having one of the best national healthcare system in the world. That is however not technically correct – instead, we have a jigsaw system that’s cut up into very distinct and different pieces. The Canada Health Act supposedly ensures that all citizens have equal access to quality healthcare, regardless of where you live. Working in a tertiary care center situated right on the border between two of …