The PMD Critical List: Are White Coats Germ Magnets?

White lab coats are a standard uniform for physicians, but one doctor says it's time to get rid of the jacket, for reasons both symbolic and clinical. That story, plus a look at the doctor at the center of the indictment of US Sen. Robert Menendez, in this week's PMD Critical List.

White lab coats are a standard uniform for physicians, but one doctor says it’s time to get rid of the jacket, for reasons both symbolic and clinical. That story, plus a look at the doctor at the center of the indictment of US Sen. Robert Menendez, in this week’s PMD Critical List.

Retire the Doctor’s White Coat? (Philly.com)

Here’s a thoughtful essay about the traditional doctor’s white lab coat from a veteran cardiologist. Every doc has worn one. Despite its lengthy medical heritage, though, the garment can invoke separation and confusion and, most importantly, act as a germ magnet.

Who is Dr. Salomon Melgen? (Heavy.com)

He’s the Florida eye doctor at the center of a federal indictment of a US Senator from New Jersey. He’s also the nation’s highest-billing Medicare physician. Federal prosecutors must prove it was favoritism and not friendship.

Is the Doctor Stoned? (WRCB TV)

Studies by the government show that at least 1 in 10 physicians in the US suffer from addiction. The greatest challenge, says one addict-MD, is getting doctors “to own up to their mistakes and take responsibility.”

Doctors Offer Free Shoes to Cheat Poor (The New York Times)

Several NYC physicians and health clinics are “charged with running an insurance fraud scheme by persuading homeless and poor people to get unnecessary medical tests with promises of free shoes.” Exploiting the city’s “most vulnerable” cost $7 million.

Top Doctors: How to Fix Health Care (AARP.org)

Several of the nation’s top physicians offer insight on healing our ailing health care system: “more transparency, understand sex differences, encourage better health behaviors, reward primary care, look to Silicon Valley, implement team care, empower patients, and create a unified care system.”

The 25 Best Medical Schools in America (Business Insider)

This new list is from a panel of physicians affiliated with some of the nation’s best hospitals. Topping the med school roll are the University of Washington, the University of California at San Francisco, and the University of Wisconsin at Madison.

The New Physician Career Guide (StreamFeed.com)

Jackson & Coker’s new doctor’s career guide is “composed of 12 lessons to help prepare all types of physicians for a job search. The firm surveyed the country’s top physician recruiters for their best job advice.

Doctor-Patient Emotional Fit is Key (Stanford University)

The utter foundation of satisfactory health care is a symbiotic doctor-patient relationship. And it helps a lot if the 2 can connect emotionally. To succeed physicians must learn “that people also differ in their emotional values.”