Thursday, August 20, 2009

But doctor I want a new drug

For every medical ailment there’s a new prescription drug, rubbed in our face by pharmaceutical company advertisements, to fix it and bring us back to good health. There’s a pill to fix our diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol problems, oftentimes but not always, brought upon us by obesity, poor nutrition, lack of regular exercise, and a lethargic and sedentary lifestyle.

Well my great state of California, whose political leaders are known to be on the cutting edge of bright legislative ideas requiring its citizenry to do what they think we should be doing are at it again; this time with proposed legislation, Assembly Bill 1478, that would require doctors to “inform patients or the patient’s legal representative of the option of medical nutrition therapy for diabetes or heart disease, respectively, including a description of the potential risks, consequences, and benefits of this treatment relative to other medical treatment options.”

Sounds good you say and I argue not. Should we do it? I say no. Wellness and good health are achieved when people have ownership of it. I don’t believe it can or should be mandated by law.

Two additional thoughts fire off in my head about this medical doctor mandate. First, what are their educational and experience qualifications to dispense nutritional advice; could they or do they practice what they preach in greater numbers than society in general? Second, what if this medical nutrition therapy advice is not what the patient wants because it requires too much work and takes too much time to see results.

If this mandate becomes law, it wouldn’t surprise me if patients on the receiving end of this medical nutrition therapy respond with “but doctor I want a new drug”.

Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum


Justin_PS said...

medical nutrition therapy?

Isn't this just, um, I don't know... EATING HEALTHY????

How about this: Fat guy goes to a doctor with high cholesterol. Doctor tells him, "I'm not going to give you any drugs. You just have to start eating properly."

Yeah, funny joke, I know. THAT'LL HAPPEN!

Tom said...

My first reaction was that the proposal would be silly, but thinking about it more, how is it unlike the required nutritional content of food? I read the carb protein facts all the time.
Since we're into labeling foods anyway, I'd like the surgeon general to warn, "Being fat and overweight may make you sick and shorten your life."

Franklin said...

This is very sad situation of a case of well intentioned individuals creating less accountability across a larger segment of society especially if it results in the dispensing of unnecessary expensive drugs.