White Coat, Black Art and Spark Team Up
Ever got sick and Googled your symptoms? You're not alone. It's estimated that 110 million Americans have consulted the Internet to try and figure out what ails them. I've got a tip for you. Doctors google symptoms all the time. Listen up, cyberchondriacs. Do we have a treat for you. White Coat, Black Art and Spark have teamed up to present the great Google Health Challenge. On this week's edition of Spark, I give Tammy Hillier and Ben Land some terrible symptoms...and send them off into cyberspace to see how well they self-diagnose.
Go here Spark for the symptoms I gave them and see if you can guess what's wrong.
And tune in to next week's White Coat, Black Art (February 25 and February 29), when our two cyberchondriacs match wits with a real doctor -- CBC Radio One Syndicated Health Columnist Dr. Peter Lin.
What are your favorite health-related web sites? We'll have some of the ones that health professionals like. That's medicine, from my side of the 'cyber-gurney.'
Categories: Past Episodes
Previous Comments (6)
That was a great show today. My son was rejected form a Family Health Team in Carlisle, Ontario as she thought that my son was to much work. This leads me to my comment about the show today. You did not cover how primary care doctors are getting paid. They system has change from fee for service to rostering under the MoHLTC primary care reform. This behaviour that we now see from doctors is based on how they are now getting paid. As a result, doctors are encourage to keep a healthier roster of patients since they get $97 per head per year. There are bonuses for delivering other healthcare outcomes, however, it seems like the doctors do default to have in healtier roster so than their work load is reduced.Glenn Lanteigne, February 18, 2008 12:08 PM
I heard the last half hour of this morning's show on orphan patients and the dire need for more family doctors. As a health care professional (RN) is a busy family practice office with 4 doctors, we constantly are called to see if we are accepting new patients. Of course we are not. Our local physician recruiter has started a list of orphan patients for our area (about 1900 on the list so far, which does not reflect the total number of orphans out there, I'm sure).
How about some new thinking for health care? People need to start being responsible for their own health BEFORE and while they are ill. A realistic option for most people without family doctors and those who have family doctors is to look for alternative health care services. These include nutritional counselling, massage therapy, chiropractic care, accupuncture and laser therapies, energy work, psychotherapy, fitness and strength training, physiotherapy, empowerment programs, naturopathy and more. Our local paper published an eye-opening article on the overuse/abuse/addiction to Oxycontin in our area. These people innocently enough are prescribed this narcotic for pain and very quickly become addicted. Another solution would be to choose an alternative therapy such as chiropractic care or physiotherapy to deal with the injury and pain. Lets take some responsibility for our own health, be our own advocate and be willing to "pay" for short-term effective health care and help to lighten the load on family doctors.
I agree with Glenns comment as to how doctors are being paid. In Nova Scotia doctors are paid either by fee for service or by "contract" with shadow billing. For doctors who are paid by the "fee for service" it's definitely in their best interest to be selective about their patients. Quality care for patients can only come about when the doctor spends time with a patient and just doesn't want the quick "in and out" that "fee for service" encourages.As for Dr Goldmans closing remark re: hiring more nurse practioners this is very short sighted. Nurse practicioners are not doctors and cannot fill that void. There is definitely a place for them in the system however are we trying to make the system more efficient or do we have the patients best interests in mind.Dr Goldman here is a question for you.If your mother or father were suffering or dying would you rather rely on a Doctor or a Nurse to best deal with their situation?Martin Lajoie, February 18, 2008 4:00 PM
Fair comments from Glenn and Martin. But I think both doctors and nurse practitioners could play roles in delivering primary care in this country. While there are situations in which I'd probably want an MD, that doesn't mean I need one in every case. I'd be just as happy to see a nurse practioner, especially if the option to see an MD right away isn't there and the NP knows when to treat me and when to refer me to an MD.
My other point is that we shouldn't overlook the role organized medicine plays in creating a shortage of doctors by artifically limiting their numbers.Brian Goldman, February 18, 2008 4:23 PM
I take issue with the comment made by Ms. Daiken. While she makes a good point by suggesting that patients look for alternative ways to maintaining/improving their health, the options she mentions are paid for out of pocket. And sometimes they are expensive. A lot of families just don't have the discretionary income to buffer their health care in this manner. And in the meantime, they're still paying taxes to support a health care system that they aren't able to make use of. Is this fair?
As for doctors being able to "choose" their patients, this too should be disallowed. Canadians pay handsomely for medical services through taxation. They'd be willing to pay more, I'm sure, if asked to. So they are entitled to at least basic health care, under a GP or family doctor, without being asked to fit a particular "profile" first. Or being rejected because they are too "complicated". Why do we have a doctor shortage in this country, when universities are graduating new ones every year? Where are they all going?Sharon G., March 20, 2008 10:36 AM
In response to Ms. Sharon G. "Where are they ( doctors ) all going? Ms. G., you are forgetting that the "oath", about "healing' and "saving" lives, doctors used to take for centuries has been changed to "For a Fistfull of Dollars More" we will go "south". The fact that it is us, the hapless Canadian taxpayers, who paid for the medical bums' education, has absolutely no meaning to them. On the contrary, it is one more reason for them ( doctors ) to hold us, the Canadian taxpayers, in utter contempt.Mark Mager, March 21, 2008 11:54 PM