When she explains something, she makes War and Peace look like a pamphlet.
I took the patient to the operating room due to peer pressure.
So last night, Orthopedics nailed the labia.
Are you a health care professional who has an interest in international health? Are you interested in improving medical care in Haiti?
Take a look at the great work being done by the METI Project. You can read about the organization, the help, and the skills they are bringing to St Luke’s Hospital in Port-au-Prince. Check out their blog to track the journeys from each of the METI teams that have already been to Haiti.
And if you are a RN, PA, PT or MD who would like to get involved, complete the online application here. http://metiproject.org/get-involved/medical-professional-application/
Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway was originally named as one of the defendants in the lawsuit contesting the state’s ban on the recognition of same sex marriages. A federal judge in Louisville ruled four days ago that the state must recognize same-sex unions performed in other states. Today, the governor of Kentucky announced he would be seeking outside counsel in order to appeal the judge’s ruling… because Jack Conway decided that he wasn’t going to.
You can read Jack Conway’s announcement below (lifted from his Facebook page). I, for one, would like to applaud Mr Conway.
Statement from Attorney General Conway:
As Attorney General, I have vowed to the people of Kentucky to uphold my duty under the law and to do what is right, even if some disagreed with me. In evaluating how best to proceed as the Commonwealth’s chief lawyer in light of Judge Heyburn’s recent ruling, I have kept those promises in mind.When the Governor and I were first named as the technical defendants in this lawsuit, my duty as Attorney General was to provide the Commonwealth with a defense in the federal district court, and to frame the proper legal defenses. Those who passed the statutes and the voters who passed the constitutional amendment deserved that, and the Office of Attorney General performed its duty. However, it’s my duty to defend both the Kentucky Constitution and the Constitution of the United States.
The temporary stay we sought and received on Friday allowed me time to confer with my client and to consult with state leaders about my impending decision and the ramifications for the state.
I have evaluated Judge Heyburn’s legal analysis, and today am informing my client and the people of Kentucky that I am not appealing the decision and will not be seeking any further stays.
From a constitutional perspective, Judge Heyburn got it right, and in light of other recent federal decisions, these laws will not likely survive upon appeal. We cannot waste the resources of the Office of the Attorney General pursuing a case we are unlikely to win.
There are those who believe it’s my mandatory duty, regardless of my personal opinion, to continue to defend this case through the appellate process, and I have heard from many of them. However, I came to the inescapable conclusion that, if I did so, I would be defending discrimination.
That I will not do. As Attorney General of Kentucky, I must draw the line when it comes to discrimination.
The United States Constitution is designed to protect everyone’s rights, both the majority and the minority groups. Judge Heyburn’s decision does not tell a minister or a congregation what they must do, but in government ‘equal justice under law’ is a different matter.
I am also mindful of those from the business community who have reached out to me in the last few days encouraging me not to appeal the decision. I agree with their assessment that discriminatory policies hamper a state’s ability to attract business, create jobs and develop a modern workforce.
I prayed over this decision. I appreciate those who provided counsel, especially my remarkable wife, Elizabeth. In the end, this issue is really larger than any single person and it’s about placing people above politics. For those who disagree, I can only say that I am doing what I think is right. In the final analysis, I had to make a decision that I could be proud of – for me now, and my daughters’ judgment in the future.
May we all find ways to work together to build a more perfect union, and to build the future Commonwealth in which we want to live, work and raise all of our families.
When the Medicaid expansion portion of the Affordable Care Act was put into place, experts and health policy wonks knew that the expanded insurance coverage for the poor wouldn’t only mean access to hospital based clinical care. After all, nearly one in five uninsured Americans between the ages of 18 and 34 and making less than 138% of the federal poverty level suffer from mental health and substance abuse disorders. In states that opt to expand Medicaid under the ACA, those people would be eligible for coverage that includes mental health treatment.
Unfortunately, states that decide not to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act will leave more than 3.7 million Americans with mental illness without health-care coverage, and therefore out in the cold.
“Let’s just throw weed killer into your belly.”
“It’s like deep throating the aroma.”
“Your lack of planning is not my emergency.”
The Huffington Post yesterday pulled some data from the Commonwealth Fund about the amount of money going into Medicaid expansion. As you may or may not know, the 2012 Supreme Court ruling on the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare) made Medicaid expansion optional for the states. So far, 20 states have opted out of expansion (although a few are renewing their push to expand).
It turns out that rejecting expansion also means rejecting billions of dollars in federal funding. Two of the states that would have benefited the most? Texas and Florida, who stand to lose more than $9 billion and $5 billion, respectively, by 2022. If there was anything to make a political campaign on… this just might be one of them…
Stolen from a friend’s Facebook status…
Life consists not in holding good cards but playing those you hold well. But sometimes… it feels like ’52 pickup’.
You might as well rent a locker in either Atlanta or Charlotte, keep an extra suit, pair of underwear, or a tie there just in case. You’re going to be spending a lot of time there and you very well might be stranded.
Having already flown through these two cities several times in the past few weeks (including Atlanta yesterday), this would actually be ideal.
I know I’m a little behind on this (even though I live tweet, I don’t quite have the time to live blog) but there were two HUGE developments today with regard to LGBT rights.
First, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer ultimately decided to veto a controversial bill that passed through the Arizona Legislature earlier in the week that would have allowed businesses that asserted their religious beliefs the right to deny service to gay and lesbian customers.
While Brewer affirmed her commitment to traditional marriage, she noted that the bill had the potential to create more problems than it purports to solve. It could divide Arizona in ways we cannot even imagine and no one would ever want.” She concluded by noting, “Religious liberty is a core American and Arizona value, so is non-discrimination.”
The other huge news of the day was in Texas. I have to say, I never thought that marriage equality would ever become the law of the land in Texas without a judgment by the US Supreme Court, but a federal judge in San Antonio struck down the state’s same-sex marriage ban. Deeming the law unconstitutional, Judge Orlando Garcia noted in his ruling that the current prohibition has “no legitimate governmental purpose.”
As with similar rulings in Utah, Oklahoma, and Virginia, Judge Garcia’s decision will not take effect immediately, as it has been stayed while the case works its way through the appeals process.
In case you missed it, on Monday the president of Uganda signed a bill into law that calls for a sentence of 14 years in jail for first-time offenders of “homosexual acts.” The law sets life imprisonment as the maximum penalty for a category of offenses called “aggravated homosexuality,” defined as repeated gay sex between consenting adults as well as acts involving a minor, a disabled person or where one partner is infected with HIV. The new law also creates the offenses of “conspiracy to commit homosexuality” as well as “aiding and abetting homosexuality,” both of which are punishable with a seven-year jail term. Those convicted of “promoting homosexuality” face similar punishment.
If there’s any good news, it’s that the law originally called for the death penalty for some homosexual acts; that penalty was removed from after an international outcry forced the hand of the Ugandan legislature. But that’s where the good news stops. The situation for LGBT individuals in Uganda has clearly worsened, and yesterday a Ugandan newspaper published a list of what is calls the country’s ”200 top” homosexuals, including outing some Ugandans who previously had not identified themselves as gay. And the witch hunt begins…
The whole time during the Olympics, we were worried about Russia, while Uganda was actively working to promote this law (which is highly supported in the country). The US response to the passage and signing of the law has been swift, with John Kerry noting that the State Department would be reviewing it’s relationship with the Ugandan government and potentially changed its stance on US aid to the nation. Desmond Tutu denounced the law, referring to Nazi Germany and apartheid-era South Africa as prime examples of what happens when politicians legislate love. He noted that “there is no scientific basis or genetic rationale for love. There is no scientific justification for prejudice and discrimination, ever. And nor is there any moral justification.”
But the recent actions in both Russia and Uganda raise a critically important question that many in the international community aren’t prepared to face. Are we demonstrating cultural imperialism by denouncing countries that pass laws like Russia and Uganda or are we merely fighting the good fight for human rights? Are we too quick to judge other countries’ social policies… and quite frankly are we hypocritical when many states in our own nation have “legislated” against love?
I do think it’s easier for those of us who sit comfortably in Western societies, protected by a backdrop of laws that guarantee certain freedoms, to criticize nations we believe to be less progressive and tolerant. But this week’s news from Arizona shows us that perhaps we aren’t as progressive as we would like to think. Should we perhaps be more sympathetic to another nation’s social policies?
I firmly believe in this case the answer is no. We aren’t talking about universal health care or socialized welfare. We’re talking about a law that potentially commits you to life in prison for marrying the person you love. We’re talking about people living in fear that they will be “discovered” as homosexuals. We’re talking about a law that potentially allows those seeking retribution to accuse others of being gay with potentially horrendous resulting punishment. We’re talking about a law that also imprisons directors of NGOs or foreign companies for merely assisting any LGBT individual; a law that affects individuals from other nations who travel to Uganda and are now afraid to provide humanitarian aid out of fear that they will be imprisoned.
It’s easy to say “oh that’s their social policy, leave them alone” when you’re sitting “across the pond” and will never be affected by it. But someone must speak up. For if we’ve learned anything from history, both that of our own nation and of the world, bad things happen when people don’t speak up. Martin Niemoller’s “First they came for the Socialists” quote is a glaring reminder of the dangers of silence.
I can’t say that I’m the biggest supporter or follower of Nancy Pelosi (@NancyPelosi), but I saw this tweet the other day from her and couldn’t help myself. I actually think it applies more broadly than Uganda and probably to more than the LGBT community, but it’s an important sentiment.
Individuals without health insurance are quickly coming up on an important deadline. According to regulations in the Affordable Care Act, individuals must purchase health insurance for 2014 by March 31st or face a penalty when filing their taxes. With the looming deadline, the Obama Administration is aggressively pursuing these individuals. But maybe those efforts don’t need to be nationwide…
It turns out that half of the nation’s uninsured live in relatively small geographic areas. Half of uninsured adults under 65 live in just 116 of the nation’s 3,143 counties, while half of all 19-39 year olds without insurance live in 108 counties. This last group is critically important to success of the Affordable Care Act because they tend to be young and healthy – a group that costs insurance companies less and will ultimately subsidize insurance for older and sicker individuals.
In fact, nearly 2 million uninsured individuals live in Los Angeles County, which accounts for roughly 5% of the national uninsured population, while nearly 30% of residents in Harris County, Texas (home to Houston) are uninsured. Federal efforts have shifted somewhat to metro areas like Dallas, Miami, Atlanta, and Philadelphia – particularly since these cities are located in states that are not running their own insurance exchanges.
After the disaster that this year’s Olympics seemed to be, I was terribly disturbed that my normal television viewing schedule was interrupted. I mean really… I’m sure that some of America’s favorite TV shows would have done quite well against the Olympics… which were rebroadcast hours after they actually happened.
I’m definitely ready for regular TV to come back!
Who is the true bigot here? Read on my followers…
DEAR ABBY: My husband and I relocated to Florida a little over a year ago and were quickly welcomed into our new neighbors’ social whirl. Two couples in the neighborhood are gay — one male, one female. While they are nice enough, my husband and I did not include them when it was our turn to host because we do not approve of their lifestyle choices. Since then, we have been excluded from neighborhood gatherings, and someone even suggested that we are bigots!
Abby, we moved here from a conservative community where people were pretty much the same. If people were “different,” they apparently kept it to themselves. While I understand the phrase “when in Rome,” I don’t feel we should have to compromise our values just to win the approval of our neighbors. But really, who is the true bigot here? Would you like to weigh in? — UNHAPPY IN TAMPA
DEAR UNHAPPY: I sure would. The first thing I’d like to say is that regardless of what you were told in your previous community, a person’s sexual orientation isn’t a “lifestyle choice.” Gay people don’t choose to be gay; they are born that way. They can’t change being gay any more than you can change being heterosexual.
I find it interesting that you are unwilling to reciprocate the hospitality of people who welcomed you and opened their homes to you, and yet you complain because you are receiving similar treatment.
From where I sit, you may have chosen the wrong place to live because it appears you would be happier in a less integrated neighborhood surrounded by people who think the way you do. But if you interact only with people like yourselves, you will have missed a chance for growth, which is what you have been offered here. Please don’t blow it
Stolen from a friend, but a great quote and words that echo what I often tell medical students, incoming residents, and those interested in pursuing a career in surgery but worried about having a personal life. Don’t put your life on hold because you are waiting for the “right time”. For many things in life, waiting for the “right time” may mean you are waiting forever.
If we let ourselves, we shall always be waiting for some distraction or other to end before we can really get down to our work. The only people who achieve much are those who want knowledge so badly that they seek it while the conditions are still unfavorable. Favorable conditions never come.