Archive for the MEDICOPOLITICS Category

CANCER QUACKERY!!

Posted in MEDICOPOLITICS with tags , , , , on December 25, 2013 by drjgelb

I read a Blog recently, where readers and author were locked in a battle royale over alternative cancer treatments.

Here’s my comment:

People with cancer and their loved ones are highly vulnerable, frightened and often desperate, not only to avoid untimely death but especially a painful or horrific one. So powerful is this primal fear of a horrible death associated with cancer that people from all backgrounds suspend their critical faculties and fail to detect the thousands of predatory, psychopathic individuals hunting for the weak & desperate to rip-off, defraud and exploit. Add to this the sad fact that Science has failed to ensure or demand that scientific method is taught to and understood by all from early on in school and that science be treated as a core subject, just like reading, writing and arithmetic. Without a true understanding of the significance and meaning of scientific evidence, all subsequent discussion is handicapped as an uninformed participant will likely raise examples that do not fulfil criteria as scientific evidence and they will not understand why science rejects their contribution. This naturally predisposes to the development of a search for alternative reasons for the rejection, hence the proliferation of myriad conspiracy theories essentially blaming greed and power as the motivators for science, rather than seeing multiple, varied motivating factors underpinning all human endeavours. To reduce the influence of the negative factors, science insists on several safeguards all too often missing from other forms of evidence. These include multiple peer review by experts not identified to the scientist, editorial board scrutiny, experimental replication to confirm findings, journal publication and invitation to criticism, move to Open Source publication to avoid conflicts of interest or favouritism and the current movement towards publication of all trials performed per topic by that author’s group, along with their raw data, so that anyone can analyse the data by any accepted statistical method in order to verify findings and so both negative and positive findings can be compared.

So, science is tightening up, leaving an even wider gap between it and pseudoscience. Alternative medical approaches to Cancer are unproven not because of Big Pharma. The alternative industry is worth not 1 billion dollars annually but tens of billions, yet the industry invests precious little in proper scientific research. Why is it so? It is entirely due to the need to prevent exposure of profitable commercial products as useless frauds. If no such fears existed, Universities would jump at the chance to accept funding for scientific study, with all the benefits that can produce for the Public, the University and its students. But unfortunately, alternative treatment promoters and producers cannot be tempted to make independent scientific validation of efficacy a central plank in their business plans, causing its absence from their corporate budgets year after year. National Regulatory Bodies require evidence of safety but not efficacy with any treatment not labeled a pharmaceutical. This applies to the vast majority of alternatives. Safe? Usually. Effective? Untested!

Whoever champions an unproven treatment and trumpets claims for its effectiveness without scientific proof, STOP RIGHT NOW! Go to the source of the treatment and demand it be scientifically trialled and published to allow criticism. Demand publication of the raw data so the findings can be verified. Demand that others attempt to replicate the findings. Then and only then can anyone trust what they read or hear about the alternative treatment of Cancer or any other medical condition.

THE ANTI-VACCINE & ANTI-WESTERN MEDICINE CRACKPOTS ARE AT IT AGAIN!

Posted in MEDICOPOLITICS with tags , on May 10, 2013 by drjgelb

I’m getting pissed off by the weakness of doctors in opposing these organisations:

I commented tonight:

Anti-Vaccine activists are cranks of the worst kind. They use fear & cult like conspiracy theories to further their crazy aims. Undervaccination puts children too young to be immunised at great risk of death by preventable disease. The anti-vaccinators use false info to further their cause. They cannot prove any of their assertions re vaccines being unsafe. As soon as vaccination rates fall, epidemics follow & deaths are concentrated in non-immunised infants. Non-qualified nutjobs calling themselves “natural chemists” & similar bullshit names, claim that there is no such thing as herd immunity. They simply do not know what they are talking about! Most are too young to have seen wards full of diphtheria, measles, or polio victims in iron lungs! I have! The vaccine possible diseases killed millions of people….Smallpox, Typhoid Fever, Cholera, Chicken Pox Encephalitis etc etc. Ignore these charlatans & vaccinate your kids. Severe side effects are as rare as being hit by lightning. As for the obsessed anti-vaccinators? They should be criminally prosecuted for their lies resulting in sickness & death for our most vulnerable citizens.

I got encouragement from my father-in-law, who knows the difference between lies & the truth & That prompted me to post more!

I wrote:

“When similar talk gripped Japan several years ago, falling vaccination rates led to epidemics of measles involving thousands of cases. When vaccine rates rose again, the disease once again became rarely seen. The anti-vaccine mob believed Wakefield’s greed driven lies about Vaccines & Autism….he has been deregistered for his lies……lies for which he was paid! Forget political correctness & stop debating these idiots! Give them no more publicity! No more time on A Current Affair, no more time on radio or in the papers! Doctors, Scientists, Politicians & Parents need to tell the anti-western medical brigade to FUCK OFF!

Let me make it easy for everyone. Natural Medicine, Chinese Medicine, Reflexology & lots of other “alternatives” have been around for up to 5000yrs (Chinese) & in all that time, HOW MANY YEARS OF LIFE EXPECTANCY WERE ADDED TO HUMAN BEINGS LIVES? The Answer? FUCKING ZERO, ZIP, NONE!!

Life Expectancy after 5000Yrs of Chinese Medicine was 40yrs of age in 1900 in the West & even LESS in China!! SO WHY DID LIFE EXPECTANCY INCREASE FROM 40yrs to over 80yrs today!???

The answer is WESTERN MEDICINE!!! GET IT CRYSTAL BELIEVERS & POTION PEOPLE? Before the rise of modern medicine people had been dying of the same scourges as they had for over 100,000yrs!

I for one am sick & tired of Western Medicine being given such a pounding by New Age crackpots! When they get seriously ill from any one of thousands of known diseases, let them seek help only from the alternative practitioners & put their lives where their mouths have been! Watch how quickly the tune will change then!

Why am I angry? Because I’ve watched parents at a Melbourne hospital where I was working, deny their son chemo for leukaemia & I watched that kid slowly die an unnecessary death! And I was just a lowly intern….and I hated those parents for insisting that they knew better! I’ve seen this scenario 4-5 times over 32 yrs as a doctor…..what would you think by then?”

MEDICAL REGULATORS SEEK TOTAL CONTROL OVER DOCTORS

Posted in MEDICOPOLITICS with tags , , , on April 11, 2013 by drjgelb

The Medical Board of Australia is talking up recertification or revalidation, despite there being no evidence that doctors are increasingly incompetent, no evidence that recertification detects the problem doctors or that the process ensures remediation. As usual I just had to add my voice to the debate:

“The tone of comments posted so far, indicate the skepticism that rightly greets any further attempts to pile yet more burden on doctors. Multiple surveys have shown that doctors are highly stressed, burdened by government regulations & red-tape & sick of regulatory bodies that show scant regard for their health & well-being. I recall one survey revealing that over 50% of doctors would leave the profession if they could maintain their standard of living doing something else. Revalidation would give AHPRA & the MBA a stranglehold on doctors that is unprecedented in this country. Currently, “protecting patients” is pursued by AHPRA to the exclusion of all else, including the fate of the doctor’s family. Every previous step to control doctors has made medical life more difficult & less attractive as a carreer. Remember one of the greatest lies of all time, “I’m from the government & I’m here to help you”!!!

DOCTOR WHO SAT ON PATIENT CLEARED

Posted in MEDICOPOLITICS with tags , , on April 10, 2013 by drjgelb

The plight of a doctor brought before the Medical Board of Australia for sitting on top of a boy during a consultation is being used to educate health practitioners.

Last week AHPRA announced that it would start publishing selected summaries of medical board panel hearings into alleged misconduct.

Only summaries of “educational and clinical value” are being made accessible online and the names of health practitioners involved will be removed.

So far, 16 summaries have appeared on the AHPRA site covering issues such as inappropriate care and “boundary violations”.

They include the case of a doctor who saw a boy “about a problem of oppositional behaviour”.

In March last year, the panel heard that the doctor reacted when the patient, who was accompanied by his mother, “raised his leg towards the doctor”. Believing the boy was attempting to kick him and hit him with a fist, the doctor pulled the child down to the floor and sat on him.

The boy’s father then made a formal complaint. The next day the child complained of “discomfort while breathing” and was diagnosed with “bruised ribs” by a GP.

But the medical board panel concluded the doctor involved had no case to answer, saying the boy’s injury was not major and the little force used was “reasonably necessary”.

“His actions were reasonable in the context of his concern for his physical wellbeing and it was reasonable for the practitioner to contain the situation and then ask the parent of the patient for consent,” the board concluded.

“When the parent did not consent to the action taken, the practitioner released the child.”

MY COMMENT 10/04/2013 Medical Observer

drjgelb to Dr John Drinkwater • 4 minutes ago −

When I did my 6 month training rotation to the now defunct Larundel Hospital in Bundoora, Victoria in 1985, it was brought to my attention by a male psychiatric RN that no formal acute threat management training was provided on campus & that patient on staff assaults were common. The nurse was a martial artist who had been involved in staff training in threat containment overseas & after generously teaching me the basic principles & a few easily applied techniques that involved almost zero risk to patients or staff, I asked if he would conduct a couple of sessions to teach my fellow registrars & the acute admissions nursing staff. Everyone who could squeeze into the conference room did so & came away from the sessions far more confident in handling dangerous or assaultive patients. Seeing the various scenarios demonstrated “live” & practising under the instructor’s gaze, was considered by all of us to be critical to the learning of these techniques. Inclusion of instruction in specialised handling of these situations could be a valuable addition to the Medical School curriculum. What do readers think?

MEDICARE LOCALS & OTHER GOVERNMENT LIES

Posted in MEDICOPOLITICS with tags , , on December 5, 2012 by drjgelb
How terrible to realise that government blackmail & extortion have succeeded in cowering the medical profession in Australia as it has in the UK & elsewhere. I don’t misuse the language, for what are threats of prosecution, ruination & suspension for pursuing independence in one’s career, other than standover, extortion & gangsterism in the fabricated guise of ensuring the public good. 
 
The profession united would never be so defeated & I for one am sickened by the traitors in our midst who seem so easily bought by the prospect of wielding power within the profession & advancing their circumstances. These turncoats betray public trust that doctors will stand up for their health & so betray the very philosophical underpinnings of doctoring. 
 
The obvious answer is the one constantly rejected by the profession’s cowardly & self-serving leadership…….organise the 80,000 strong medical workforce & refuse to play ball with government. Boycott the devaluation of our vocation & the attempts to force us into a weak & easily manipulated flock of sheep, kept in check by a few dogs snapping at our heels! I’ve witnessed 31yrs of corrosive disunity hand the heart of our profession to politicians, panels, boards & corporations, all for absolutely no public good. The same waiting times in ED, the same beds in corridors, fatal delays of ambulances, restricted availability of medications…..the list is long! The time for meaningless debate is long over, the future of our central role as deliverers of science based high quality health care to our fellow citizens is under the greatest threat in Australia’s history. Failure to prevent government from continuing to covertly implement their plan to introduce cheaper substitutes to perform our functions & to reduce the remaining doctors to a vestigial tail, able to be docked at the government’s pleasure, will destroy the most profound components, the so called “deep structure” of Medicine & risks forever diminishing its power to advance, to amaze, to inspire & ultimately, to heal. Please awaken colleagues & cease debating the process of shuffling the Titanic’s deckchairs! It’s truly time to man the lifeboats & abandon ship!!
 
JEROME GELB

Please Put Your Political Point-Scoring Aside & Get Smart on Crime, Rather than “Tough on Crime”

Posted in MEDICOPOLITICS, WAR ON DRUGS with tags , , , on November 24, 2012 by drjgelb

The Hon. Premier
Dear Sir,

Below is a link to a video of an experienced Californian Superior Court Judge, making the case for the legalisation of Cannabis & it’s control & regulation by the State.

Please listen to the information he is imparting & recognise that there is broad consensus on these facts as having been scientifically proven.

I have asked you to engage with me on this issue but apart from your initial response, which I responded to promptly, I have only received form letters from your staff. I am a 54yr old Psychiatrist & I have never smoked cannabis. I smoked a couple of cigarettes in front of my parents, at their insistence, when I was 12yrs old and hated it and I rarely drink. I am an highly trained & experienced medical specialist. Can I ask why you would choose not to talk with me, even completely informally, about addiction & the failure of the legal system to successfully manage this problem. I have extensive experience psychiatrically assessing offenders of all types & providing reports to the courts in Qld, NSW & Victoria. I was at Junee Jail on Thursday, once again hearing disaster after disaster of people’s lives shattered by the inability to receive treatment for their addictions, when their illness causes them to offend again to gain access to the drug they crave. Once in jail, only one simplistic course is offered & no psychotherapy or expert pharmacotherapy can be obtained.

I also happen to have been a Liberal voter all my adult life & I have strongly advocated for Liberal principles to anyone whose faulty logic or wishful thinking causes them to support the other team. Surely Mr Premier, Sir, you must by now wish to avoid confining your thinking to outdated hypotheses & continue to incarcerate dope users. If you would like to even have a brief chat, you would at least discover that I’m genuine in my desire to put an end to the numerous biopsychosocial losses incurred by Victorians with substance abuse and that I’m not in any way difficult to talk with!

By the way, I’m a very busy person & don’t wish to waste your time or mine.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qKgY5eOlhEc&sns=em

Yours sincerely,

DR JEROME L GELB
Consultant Psychiatrist
http://about.me/drjgelb
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