Category Archive: Medications

When Western medicine fails patients and clinicians

It’s a common scenario: a patient shows up to my office lugging a bagful of over-the-counter supplements, defiantly informing me that they “don’t believe in prescription drugs.” In the very next breath, they present a lab slip with a list of bloodwork …

Does that patient really need antibiotics?

For those of you who have been following my story since this summer of 2018, you will remember that I quit my nine-to-five job to pursue a career in public speaking on a more semi-permanent basis. I started working essentially full-time with a national…

Telemedicine should be easy. Here’s why it’s not.

Who was Ryan Haight? Ryan Haight was an 18-year-old honor student from La Mesa, California who died on February 12, 2001, from an overdose of hydrocodone ordered from an online doctor he never saw — and shipped to his home from a rogue online pharmacy during the beginning of the opioid epidemic. The pharmacist, Clayton […]

Stop stigmatizing medication-assisted treatment

Imagine yourself as a patient burdened with a chronic disease that necessitated daily medication adherence to function. Now imagine that medication has become so stigmatized by society that you feel judged and ashamed every time that you use it. That’s the world that individuals with opioid use disorder are forced to live in when they’re […]

At the top of patients’ wish lists: price transparency

One of the most important factors on patients’ minds is affordability of care. According to a recent McKinsey study, 72 percent of consumers are concerned about at least one kind of health care expense, be it related to health insurance, routine medical procedures, end-of-life care or otherwise. As it pertains to prescriptions, patients carry these […]

Do opioid contracts harm the doctor-patient relationship?

A contract is an agreement stipulating the rights and obligations of the signatories. In most cases, a contract is consulted when a dispute arises. When all is proceeding swimmingly, the contract remains dormant in a file drawer or in a digital file. In general, decent people resolve differences in the old-fashioned way utilizing the twin […]

Doctors as the gatekeepers of marijuana is a race to the bottom

This year Oklahoma voters made a clear choice to legalize medical marijuana, joining thirty other states that permit cannabis for medicinal use. Unsurprisingly, immediately in the vote’s aftermath, patients began asking me to “prescribe” medical marijuana licenses, as the new law stipulates users must have as a precondition for legal purchase. The new law does not, however, specify […]

How to avoid negative press and fines during the opioid crisis

No news is good news. Especially for hospitals in the middle of the opioid epidemic. Recently, the University of Michigan Health System (UMHS) agreed to a civil penalty in the amount of $4.3 million for failing to prevent opioid drug diversion and federal recordkeeping violations as a result of a DEA investigation. The headline from […]

The way U.S. drug makers price their products is legal, but it’s not moral

While walking through the duty-free at Dulles International Airport in Washington, DC, I happened upon the price tag of an imported French purse. Looking around, I wondered how many travelers could afford a $2,000 handbag.At the gate, I found a seat and logged on to the internet, where I happened upon a story about the […]

Tips to help you afford medications

A doctor writes prescription, pharmacist fills prescription, insurance covers prescription. Simple, right? But that’s not the way it works anymore. Some changes are good. Gone are the cryptic abbreviations and illegible handwriting — replaced by computer printed scripts, or better yet scripts magically transmitted via the ether. But along with fewer errors there’s even less transparency on pricing […]

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