Steve Diaz, an emergency medicine doctor at Augusta’s MaineGeneral Health, says he knows what patients want when they come to him in pain. Drugs. And preferably strong ones.
“The only thing they think of is, ‘Do I get a pill?’” he said.
In his recent book, “The Finest Traditions of My Calling,” Dr. Abraham Nussbaum, 41, makes the case that doctors and patients alike are being shortchanged by current medical practices that emphasize population-based standards of care rather than individual patient needs and experiences.
Starting June 9, terminally ill Californians with six months or less to live can request a doctor’s prescription for medications intended to end their lives peacefully.
If that sounds simple, it won’t be.
Federal officials have unveiled their roadmap to a revamped Medicare physician payment system designed to reward doctors and other clinicians for the quality of care delivered, rather than the quantity.
In a perfect world, patients with advance directives would be confident that their doctors and nurses — no matter where they receive care — could know in a split second their end-of-life wishes.
Doctors know it’s important to talk with their patients about end-of-life care.
But they’re finding it tough to start those conversations — and when they do, they’re not sure what to say, according to a national poll released Thursday.
Such discussions are becoming more important as baby boomers reach their golden years. By 2030, an estimated 72 million Americans will be 65 or over, nearly one-fifth of the U.S. population.