‘I’m Going to Be Down the Street Drinking a Beer’: What We Heard This Week

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“We don’t just flip ’em a scalpel and say, ‘Hey, good luck, I’m going to be down the street drinking a beer.'” — Christopher R. Porta, MD, of Madigan Army Medical Center in Tacoma, Washington, on the rigorous oversight of surgical trainees.

“We expected to get different results.” — Lawrence Casalino, MD, of Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City, on new counterintuitive research that showed burnout among doctors may actually be good for patients.

“The fact that the U.S. ranks last across a number of indicators should be a wake-up call for everyone.” — Rosemary Morgan, PhD, MSc, of Johns Hopkins University, commenting on a new report that reproductive-age American women have the highest rate of preventable deaths versus women from other wealthy nations.

“I think this is going to be an issue of tremendous proportion for us to address in the coming years and decades.” — Natalia Rost, MD, of Massachusetts General Hospital, on the lingering cognitive changes following mild COVID infection.

“We haven’t considered doing a geographic analysis, but now you’re making me think maybe we should try.” — Alison Seitz, MD, of New York-Presbyterian Hospital, discussing the increasing incidence of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in the U.S. and whether there’s any link to areas where chronic wasting disease in cervid is endemic.

“It’s really been a humanitarian catastrophe.” — Michele Heisler, MD, of the University of Michigan, on the CDC ending Title 42, an emergency public health order that has blocked migrants from entering the U.S. since the start of the pandemic.

“This is a huge industry where one could dig in and find some problems with pricing.” — Liza Vertinsky, PhD, JD, of Emory University School of Law, on addressing skyrocketing prescription drug prices, including the $150,000 per year prostate cancer drug enzalutamide (Xtandi).

“It restores one’s faith in regulators and government doing the right thing for the most people.” — Lon Schneider, MD, of the University of Southern California, on the CMS final decision about coverage for aducanumab (Aduhelm) and other anti-amyloid Alzheimer’s disease drugs.

“It’s presented like this is now the law and you should follow it, and that’s fairly misleading.” — Rachelle Colombo, executive director of the Kansas Medical Society, on a letter sent to over 250 hospitals in Kansas implying restrictions were removed regarding the use of controversial COVID treatments.

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