The PMD Critical List: Doctors Test Drones to Speed Diagnoses

September 19, 2016
Greg Kelly

Drones could play a multi-faceted role in the provision of healthcare in the near future, a pill could play a role in halting alcoholism, and doctors report wishing to play a greater role in the health of some of their male patients. These stories and more comprise this week's PMD Critical List.

Drones could play a multi-faceted role in the provision of healthcare in the near future, a pill could play a role in halting alcoholism, and doctors report wishing to play a greater role in the health of some of their male patients. These stories and more comprise this week's PMD Critical List.

Doctors Test Drones to Speed Diagnoses (NPR.org)

“In the near future, drones could transform healthcare—not only in rural areas by bringing critical supplies into hard-to-reach places, but also in crowded cities where hospitals pay hefty fees to get medical samples across town during rush hour,” according to this report from Seattle. “By providing a faster, cheaper way to move test specimens, drones could speed diagnoses and save lives.”

“Outstanding” Job Market for Primary Care Physicians (PR Newswire)

An analysis of national employment data by Cejka Search shows that within the family medicine specialty there are 0.3 active candidates for every one open job, and for internal medicine 0.6 for every one open job—driving salaries, signing bonuses and relocation bonuses steadily upwards over the past three years.

Computer Better than Doctors at Diagnosing Cancer (UPI)

“A computer program at t Case Western Reserve accurately diagnosed dead cells and brain cancer at nearly twice the rate of doctors, suggesting similar software could be used to improve treatment selection, according to a new study in the American Journal of Neuroradiology.”

Be Cautious When Releasing Medical Records (Lexology)

“It’s a huge mistake for physicians to automatically assume that a subpoena or request is properly executed. Improperly releasing a patient’s medical records can result in a civil suit by the patient, an administrative fine by the federal government or disciplinary action by the state medical board,” according to two lawyers.

Hospital Physician Employment Up Nearly 50% in 3 Years (Becker’s ASC Review)

“The Physicians Advocacy Institute has published the “Physician Practice Acquisition Study: National and Regional Employment Changes” showing a steep increase in the number of hospital-employed physicians and hospital-owned practices.”

The End of Independent Medial Practice (Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons)

“One of the goals of ObamaCare is to eliminate independent fee-for-service medicine, and solo and small-group practices,” claims the president of Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, Dr. Lawrence Huntoon. “It’s far easier for government to control a relatively small number of entities compared to a relatively large number of independent physicians.”

Terminally ill Californians Struggle to Find Doctors to Help With Aid in Dying (Mercury News)

“It’s a scene being played out throughout California, as scores of terminally ill patients are learning to their dismay and outrage that the state’s new aid-in-dying law comes with no guarantee of finding a doctor. The average physician out there is not necessarily going to want to put themselves in that position,”

Medical Schools Have Competition From Other Teaching Tools (STAT)

“Medical students, frustrated by the inconsistency of faculty-delivered curricula, are universally adopting new platforms and products not only as study aids but in many cases as substitutes for textbooks, class lectures, and notes. Whether medical schools acknowledge the competitive forces already at work and how they choose to respond will ultimately determine the nature and pace of disruption in US medical education.”

The Pill That Could “Cure” Alcoholism (The Guardian)

“France is ground zero for clinical research on Baclofen, a drug said to eliminate alcohol cravings. The medication will soon be more accessible than ever—but not everyone thinks that’s a good thing.”

What Doctors Wish More Men Would Ask Them (attn:)

“A large part of what keeps men out of the doctor's office is fear of discovering that something is wrong. They're uncomfortable with body exams and don't want to answer personal questions, too. That's a problem, said Dr. Jesse Mills, the director of the Men's Clinic at UCLA.” Here are 5 questions that doctors should want to answer.