Skip to main content.

physician

Picture of Manoj Jain

Dr. Manoj Jain takes a look at the patient doctor surveys that were conducted in Memphis and gives a doctor's point of view on choosing a primary care physician.

Picture of Angilee Shah

Tom Linden seemed to be on a fast track to a successful career in journalism.

He was the editor-in-chief of his high school newspaper in Southern California. As a college student at Yale University, Linden got his reporter's legs at the Yale Daily News and covered the New Haven Black Panther trials for the Los Angeles Times. When he graduated in 1970, he won a fellowship and secured a book deal to write about army deserters in exile who were protesting or escaping the Vietnam War.

Picture of William Heisel

As a health writer for a newspaper, I used to tease reporters who would say, “I have calls in” when they were asked about something happening on their beat.

“You have calls in? Why are you waiting for someone to call you back? Call their boss and their boss’s boss until you get your questions answered.”

Yet in Monday’s post about the Illinois Division of Professional Regulation, I basically told readers, “I have calls in.”

And my editor called me on it.

Picture of William Heisel

Everybody has worked with a jerk. Someone who steals credit for your work. Someone who berates their employees behind closed doors but turns on the smiles for the executives. Someone who is loathe to admit a mistake.

When that jerk is a physician, the consequences are steeper than bruised egos or misbegotten bonus pay. Patients can end up with the wrong medication. Surgery can be performed on the wrong organ. Someone who had an excellent chance at surviving a disease can be dead in seconds.

Picture of William Heisel

When I sent my last Doctors Behaving Badly post to my editor, she responded with a bunch of great questions:

How is it possible to take down a major database that most states have?

Does this mean no one can check their doctor online now?

Picture of William Heisel

For medical malpractice attorneys in Chicago, Dr. Robert Levi-D’Ancona’s name sounds like victory. For patients, however, his name could become synonymous with a major patient safety defeat.

Picture of William Heisel

A judge this week rejected an attempt by the state of California to temporarily ban Dr. Conrad Murray, the doctor charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of Michael Jackson.

Now the ball is in the Medical Board of California’s court. The board rightly sought to use the criminal justice system first to stop Murray from practicing.

But few reporters picked up on the fact that the criminal system isn’t the only route.

Picture of William Heisel

Who hasn’t come home from work with a company pen in their pocket? Used the work printer for directions to a restaurant on a Friday afternoon? Answered a call from their mom on the company cell phone?

In that spirit, we could consider Dr. Duane Stillions just one of the rest of us.

If only he weren’t a children’s physician with a drug habit.

Stillions, a 42-year-old anesthesiologist, was caught in May 2009 by Children’s National Medical Center in Washington DC taking painkillers that were meant for kids undergoing surgery.

Picture of William Heisel

One would think the Dr. Earl Bradley horror show could not get worse.

The Delaware pediatrician was indicted in February on charges he brutally molested more than 100 children in a toy-filled basement.

Then Chris Barrish at the Delaware News Journal showed how even a story this bad could get uglier:

Pages

Announcements

In this webinar, we'll look at how journalists can tell urgent stories as states reopen and workers are potentially forced to choose between their health and their economic survival. Sign-up here!

The Center for Health Journalism is dedicated to supporting journalists covering two of the biggest stories of our time -- the twin pandemics of COVID-19 and systemic racism and inequities in America. We provide reporters with intensive training instituteswebinars and tips about craft and content and are providing deep and sustained support for reporters and their newsrooms in this historic and difficult moment. You can donate through the USC web portal at this link: https://bit.ly/3c8d4xs  Pressed for time? You can also text to donate! No amount is too small; just send a text to 41-444 and type the message CHJ for further instructions.

 

CONNECT WITH THE COMMUNITY

Follow Us

Facebook


Twitter

CHJ Icon
ReportingHealth