The Theory of Everything Except a Theory of How Mr. Hawkins Survives

For our date night yesterday Kay and I went to the new movie The Theory of Everything, a docudrama about the life of Stephen Hawkins.  The movie was really quite good, a fine tale of a brilliant physicist who despite being diagnosed with what in the movie is described as “motor-neuron disease” as well as “Lou… Continue Reading

Access to Healthcare: The US Income Disparity

In the U.S. our method of rationing healthcare is that if you have good insurance or lots of money you have access to good healthcare otherwise you don’t have access to good healthcare. I believe this is far more reality than the widespread U.S. perception that health care is rationed in countries with government funded universal healthcare.  A… Continue Reading

Why Wait Until 60 for your Shingles Vaccine?

In 2011 Merck received FDA approval to administer Zostavax (Herpes Zoster/ shingles vaccine) in patients age 50-59.  Since 2006 Zostavax has been approved for patients age 60 and older.  So why should you wait until 60 to get shingles vaccine? I wondered this and on reading the ACIP update on Zoster Immunization released this August… Continue Reading

Pneumonia Vaccination Is More Complex but Better Than Ever

In my 30+ years as a family physician I’ve seen first hand the effects of a relatively new type of vaccines called conjugate polysaccharide vaccinations. In the 1980’s nearly every year I had one or more young children in the hospital with meningitis due to either Hemophyllus influenza B or Streptococcus pneumoniae.  Now there are… Continue Reading

Pros and Cons of Planned Parenthood E-visits for Birth Control Pills

Planned Parenthood has announced that it is launching a program to allow women to obtain hormonal contraception, primarily birth control pills but also contraceptive patches and vaginal hormonal rings via an e-visit online.  This is an attempt to try to reduce the incidence of unplanned and undesired pregnancies that often occur because of women delaying… Continue Reading