Medicine in the News: From Antibiotic Resistance to the FDA and TV ads

MD humor, doctor humor, physician humor, doctor cartoon

The medical news has been busy lately.  From the threat of antibiotic resistant strains of bacteria in hospitals, to the FDA’s consideration of shortening warnings for pharmaceutical ads, there has been no shortage of doctor lounge conversation.

Antibiotic Resistance Forecasting

Sci-fi channels and fear-mongering movies have been using a “super-bug” outbreak scenario for years.  Unfortunately, one infectious disease forecaster is sounding the alarm that we are a lot closer than we think to actually creating one.  As hospitals and local municipalities track resistance, they are seeing more and more strains of bacteria that are resistant to our standard medications.  In addition, adaptation to resistance seems to be happening at a faster rate than previously recorded.

FDA and Pharma Ads on TV

The Food and Drug Administration is considering allowing pharmaceutical companies to shorten the warnings rattled off at the end of TV commercials.  While still allowing for the most prominent symptoms, they are considering dropping lesser side-effects from the list.  Is this a boon for the pharmaceutical industry which can pay less for advertising?  Is it a benefit to the doctor who gets regular requests for drugs that are advertised on TV?  There is a great discussion on our blog about it.

CVS Drops Tobacco

CVS is repositioning itself from a pharmacy chain that sells snacks and sundries to a nationwide chain of health clinics dedicated to improving patient lives.  To that end they will be dropping tobacco products later this year.  Is this a savvy marketing move or is it a conflict of interest (or even the law) for a medical clinic to also sell tobacco products?

Infectious Disease Cartoon

Our Sermo physicians had some fun this past month coming up with a caption for an infectious disease cartoon.  The results are laugh out loud funny, while still reminding us that we have a lot of work ahead of us when it comes to infectious disease.

Separating Hype from Research with HIV/AIDS

HIV/AIDS has been in the news quite a bit the past few months.  One report will proclaim an AIDS cure while another will report on a  “cured” patient lapsing back into active HIV.  Some media channels suggest it’s a truly manageable disease while others point to a new strain being more aggressive and deadly.  We interviewed Sagar Vaidya, M.D. a top researcher to get his perspective and separate media hype from the reality researchers, patients, and their doctors face every day.

We have a very active community inside Sermo.  If you’re an M.D. or D.O. please join us in our virtual doctor’s lounge and discuss everything from clinical outcomes, practice management and the latest research.

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