How We Do Harm: A Doctor Breaks Ranks About Being Sick in America

Front Cover
Macmillan, Jan 31, 2012 - Biography & Autobiography - 304 pages
6 Reviews

How We Do Harm exposes the underbelly of healthcare today—the overtreatment of the rich, the under treatment of the poor, the financial conflicts of interest that determine the care that physicians' provide, insurance companies that don't demand the best (or even the least expensive) care, and pharmaceutical companies concerned with selling drugs, regardless of whether they improve health or do harm.

Dr. Otis Brawley is the chief medical and scientific officer of The American Cancer Society, an oncologist with a dazzling clinical, research, and policy career. How We Do Harm pulls back the curtain on how medicine is really practiced in America. Brawley tells of doctors who select treatment based on payment they will receive, rather than on demonstrated scientific results; hospitals and pharmaceutical companies that seek out patients to treat even if they are not actually ill (but as long as their insurance will pay); a public primed to swallow the latest pill, no matter the cost; and rising healthcare costs for unnecessary—and often unproven—treatments that we all pay for. Brawley calls for rational healthcare, healthcare drawn from results-based, scientifically justifiable treatments, and not just the peddling of hot new drugs.

Brawley's personal history – from a childhood in the gang-ridden streets of black Detroit, to the green hallways of Grady Memorial Hospital, the largest public hospital in the U.S., to the boardrooms of The American Cancer Society—results in a passionate view of medicine and the politics of illness in America - and a deep understanding of healthcare today. How We Do Harm is his well-reasoned manifesto for change.

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Jeannine504 - LibraryThing

This book is one of a long string of books that caution against uncritically following your doctor's advice. Many factors contribute to U.S. citizens being overtreated and underserved: over-aggressive ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - creynolds - LibraryThing

The author, an oncologist, describes how many factors drive patient care that aren't based on evidence found through clinical trials. We all know that poor people often get substandard care because of ... Read full review

Contents

Chief Complaint
3
More Is Better
12
Brawleyism
19
Cadillac Care
29
Skepticism
45
A Wallet Biopsy
49
Failure Is the System
69
Red Juice
71
Palpitation
105
Saving Mr Huzjak
113
God Is Calling
127
FaithBased Medicine
193
19
211
Epilogue
277
Acknowledgments
285
173
302

Tumor Promotion
91
Defibrillation
99

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About the author (2012)

DR. OTIS BRAWLEY is the chief medical and scientific officer and executive vice president of the American Cancer Society. Dr. Brawley currently serves as professor of hematology, oncology, medicine and epidemiology at Emory University. He is also a CNN medical consultant. He is a graduate of the University of Chicago, Pritzker School of Medicine, and completed a residency in internal medicine at University Hospitals of Cleveland, Case-Western Reserve University, and a fellowship in medical oncology at the National Cancer Institute.

PAUL GOLDBERG is an award-winning investigative reporter who covers oncology for The Cancer Letter, a weekly publication focused on drug development and the politics of cancer. His articles have appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Washington Monthly and he has been featured on 60 Minutes, 20/20, CNN and NPR. Goldberg is also the author of two books on the Soviet human rights movement.

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