Opinion: Heart of the matter -- treating the disease instead of the person

NPR, June 26, 2014

A 56-year-old man is having lunch with his wife at a seafood restaurant just outside Boston when he develops crushing chest pain. He refuses an ambulance, so the man's wife drives him to the ER. What happens next says a lot about the difference that being a doctor or a patient can make in how one feels about the health care system. First, how did the patient and his wife see the trip to the hospital? When the man arrives in the ER, he is told to take off his shirt. He lies in the hallway, in pain, naked from the waist up. Strangers surround him. They don't introduce themselves, and they talk over him, at each other.


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