Personal Medicine In The Age Of Technology

Dr Norman Makous was involved in the medical field for more than 60 years. What more qualified person could you have to talk about the current state of health care? The medical world has changed significantly since the 1940’s, but not all of it is for the better. Great strides have been made in combating a number of diseases and other ailments. But is it all positive? Have health care providers become dispassionate and detached from their patients?

Time To Care is an interesting book, in part it is Dr Makous’s biography, and in part it is a look at how medicine and its application has evolved over the past 60 years. Dr Makous was assisted by his son Bruce in compiling the book, and I think they are both to be congratulated on doing a very fine job.

As a young child in the 1950’s I can remember the local doctor, a kindly and caring man who would spend half of his working day making house calls. I can recall him visiting me while I was struck down with the Measles.

The medical world has changed. Today most patients are merely a number, we wait patiently in the medical office for our 5 minutes of fame with a doctor that most likely we have never met before, and knows little about us other that the words and numbers contained in our file. This can hardly be the definition of a ‘bedside manner’.

Costs associated with health care have skyrocketed, millions of people are without even the most basic of health coverage. There is much to be said about the  old adage, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of care. The problem is that many people cannot afford to pay for the ounce, and avoid the the trip to the doctor, instead they wait until the ‘pound of cure’ is required.

Dr. Makous puts forward his thoughts on how to reform the medical world, not only to contain costs, but also to change the current doctor/patient relationship. Today’s world has created a situation where there are many unnecessary tests that are performed. This is not due to greed, more the fact that the doctor no longer knows who he is treating. A doctor takes an oath to do no harm. This is actually a double edged sword, he or she, must request often redundant tests because they do not have the patients full history.

The idea of a return to a simpler time is an appealing one, and Dr. Makous does put forward a very well argued case.

Health care is mentioned on the cable news stations every day, if not every hour! This author is not a lobbyist, he is a deeply caring man that has dedicated his life to the practice of medicine. Time To Care is an important book, it details his long and illustrious career, it also shows one potential solution to a huge problem that we face today.

You can order your copy of Time To Care from Amazon by clicking on the cover art.

Simon Barrett

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