Harm Reduction

A new report by the American Medical Association reinforces what Dr. Bloom, among others, has said for a long time. Opioid overdose deaths are not the result of the prescribing behavior of physicians.
Physicians frequently overestimate the probability that a diagnosis or intervention would be helpful. Are they overly optimistic? Are the cynical correct in assuming that optimism hides a conflict of interest? Or are physicians no better than most of us at the mathematics of probability? A new study suggests we are not receiving a passing grade in that course.
When it comes to assaults, firearms get much attention, although there are many other means of mayhem. That includes knives in stabbings and using blunt objects, including fists; guns are just the most efficient at causing injury and death. A new study looks at the healthcare costs for assaults. Why should you care? Because in the world of city budgets, we should at least consider these expenses when we redefine where policing policies are directed. 
A recent survey conducted at schools in England has yielded additional evidence that vaping is an effective smoking-cessation tool.
McKinsey & Company, those highly paid consultants to entrepreneurs, corporations, and governments, make some general suggestions about “greening” our grocery stores. Let’s take a look at what they are suggesting.
One measure of the safety and quality of nursing home care is the presence of a pressure ulcer on its residents. CMS reports these numbers to the public as a star-ranking on Nursing Home Compares and penalizes nursing homes with more observed pressure ulcers than anticipated. The system relies on the self-reporting of pressure ulcers to CMS. A new study finds that nursing homes “substantially underreport” these events.
With the announcement by Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the Director of the Centers for Disease Control, that “The CDC has to change,” the season for bureaucratic changes in response to its failing pandemic responses is fully underway. But to misquote William Shakespeare, I have come to neither bury nor praise their work. Instead, I want to discuss their efforts through the lens of “midinformation.”
“The CDC has to change.” Those are the words of the Centers for Disease Control’s director, Dr. Rochelle Walensky as she announced a reorganization and change in leadership stemming from its flawed handling of the coronavirus pandemic. But, will such a shake-up lead to a shape-up? We have our doubts.
In the last few weeks, there was a skirmish in the political battles involving the veterans of our efforts in Iraq, Afghanistan, and the rest of the Middle East, Jon Stewart, and PACT, the Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics Act. After a bit of posturing and strategy, PACT was passed. But what do we know about the burn pits beyond the sound bites?
The robots are coming, the robots are coming. Robotic automation of manufacturing lines has been with us for some time. A new study looks at the benefits to our physical health and, for an important group, detriments to mental health.
Recent demands by gender activists include insisting that American medicine conforms to an individual’s contrived identity, including during emergency room and hospital admissions.  People who identify as transgender (or gender nonconforming) may use a veritable cornucopia of different terms to describe themselves. [1] Forcing the public to use "preferred genders" is confusing and complicated enough socially, but more crucially:  it is a significant problem clinically. 
We are social creatures, taking our cues as we grow up from those surrounding us – it does take a village to raise a child. But our use of social cues, mimicking the behavior and thoughts of our “village,” does not end with adolescence; it follows us into adulthood. A new study looks at the influence of others on our behavior.