treating the economy

I blog about patients, physicians and hospital systems. We converse about children, my foibles and occasionally my love of wild birds. Recently we have chatted a bit about Twitter. But the economy??

This morning I was listening to an interview on NPR with the Washington Chief of The Economist (a London publication), who was talking about how the dollar is used as the international currency, and how that benefits the USA, and what might happen if THAT competitive advantage should go away, as part of our current economic stress.

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my most significant mentor

I was delighted to be flipping through the pages of "Rochester Medicine" a publication of the University of Rochester School of Medicine (where I did my pediatrics residency), not really expecting to find anything of interest, when, near the end of the magazine my eye caught the visage of a man who had a significant positive impact in my life, and the lives of countless children throughout the world.

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I can dream....

...of a world without tobacco...this is world no tobacco day

It seems we have a "day" week, or month to celebrate just about anything and everything these days. Today, and every year on MAY 31, is a day declared by the WHO as a 24-hour period when we can and should forgo our use of ANY form of tobacco. For most, that form is cigarettes, for others it is chewing tobacco, cigars, pipes or hookahs. No form is safer than another. All contain nicotine which is addicting, and tar, which will eventually kill you (someone dies every six seconds from tobacco use).

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Carilion Clinic Children's Hospital in the newspaper

Many thanks to Sarah Bruyn Jones for the excellent article on our children's hospital published  in the Roanoke Times on Sunday March 27. If you haven't seen it, give this  LINK a click to read it on line. I think it really describes how we have grown over the last few years. It highlights our services and points out some things that make being at the children's hospital different from being at a place that just happens to take care of children.

The paper article is a bit more in depth, with more pictures and a map of all the sites where we provide pediatric care, but the electronic version will give you a good sense of what's going on.

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motherhood and apple pie?

If you have lived in the US for more than an hour, you have undoubtedly heard the expression: "That's as American as motherhood and apple pie." I have no issues with the apple pie component of this statement, my last post on obesity notwithstanding. I have no knowledge of how well or poorly America treats its apples.

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from the world of critical care

Those of you who have been reading from the beginning know that the first week of this blog I made several posts while attending the American Academy of Pediatrics annual meeting. Several of you commented (not in the blog post but directly to me by email or in person) how much you enjoyed getting an insider's look at what goes on at some medical conferences. Currently I am in San Diego attending the Society of Critical Care Medicine's annual Congress which starts on Sunday. So, why am I here two days early? Again, to help do the business of the societies to which I belong.

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surgery at the children's hospital

 When we think about choosing a place for our child to have surgery we think, appropriately, about the surgeon, and perhaps the anesthesiologist.

Many surgeons and anesthesiologists are able to provide technically excellent intraoperative care for children as well as adults, or exclusively for children, but if that care is provided in a non-children's hospital, something else might be missing. I am including below an exerpt from a letter written by the grandparent of a child who recently underwent a surgical procedure at the Carilion Clinic Children's Hospital to one of our Child Life Specialists.

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why I do what I do

On the inpatient pediatric unit, where I work as an occasional pediatric hospitalist, one can generally find all ages and sizes of infants, children and adolescents, with all sorts of medical and surgical problems. The role of the hospitalist is to be the general pediatrician for inpatients on our unit. We directly supervise a variety of students--medical, and physician assistant, plus interns and residents. We work side-by-side with our nursing and nurse practitioner colleagues, as well as respiratory, physical, occupational  and speech therapists, pharmacists, nutritionists, social workers, case managers, chaplains, child life specialists, and others that I may have neglected to mention.

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sudden infant death related to in utero smoke

My office is on the 13th floor of Roanoke Memorial Hospital.  I take the elevator that stops directly in front of the Labor and Delivery unit. Usually a happy place, this is where babies are born. It is also where mothers are admitted if they are in premature labor, placed on drugs to stop the contractions, and gain some time for the infant to mature before birth.

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pediatric asthma; a real challenge in management

Asthma is the most common chronic disease of childhood. Continuing on a theme we started yesterday, talking about children with chronic disease, I was very interested to read an  article by Kevin Dubrowski and colleagues from this month's edition of Pediatrics about one way to follow children with this disease, called spirometry.

I have asked my colleague, Dr. Andre Muelenaer, head of the Carilion Clinic Children's Hospital section of pediatric pulmonology and allergy, to comment on this article. Here is what he has to say:

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