Medicine Within Reach's Blog

Making Sure You Get Quality Preventive Care

quality-preventive-carePreventive care recently entered the crosshairs of politics. Benefits Pro explores this in a recent article titled “The case for preventive care.”

Kathryn Mayer of Benefits Pro writes, “Six years ago, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force doled out a controversial recommendation: Change long-standing breast cancer-screening recommendations and advise women to wait until age 50 rather than 40 to start getting mammograms. The task force also said women should get the test every other year instead of annually. Criticism was swift, and rightfully so. The call for the change died down until the same recommendations resurfaced this month. I’m hoping the recommendations die this time around, too. The proposed change has big ramifications: If the recommendations are finalized, according to Avalere Health analysis, the move could deny coverage of biennial mammograms to some 17 million women, most of whom are covered by employer-sponsored plans. The guidelines go against the advice of, you know, actual medical groups, including the American Cancer Society, the American Medical Association and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, all of whom say women should get annual mammograms starting when they’re 40.”

Despite this controversy, this year’s Women’s Health Week made sure the call for routine preventive screenings was still loud. Ky Forward takes a look at this in a recent article titled “Department of public health encourages women to follow four rules of good health.” The author of the article writes, “The nationwide initiative, coordinated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office on Women’s Health, encourages women to make their health a top priority and take simple steps for a longer, healthier and happier life. ‘Taking simple, preventive steps for your health are key to lifelong wellness,’ Mayfield said. ‘The first step in taking care of our own health is education. This includes eating right, exercising and avoiding tobacco products to scheduling regular preventive health check-ups. I plan to use Women’s Health Week as a reminder to schedule my own preventive exams. Be interactive with your health care provider so that the best health care plan can be developed for you.’”

When it comes to developing the best healthcare plan for you, there’s no better way than personalizing your experience with your doctor. This individualized treatment is what has so many across the country turning to concierge medicine.

Providing this individualized service is what we specialize in at Medicine Within Reach. At Medicine Within Reach, we believe that a strong patient-doctor relationship is essential to good health. Our personalized services make this special bond easily attainable.

Some of our services include preventive screening and other women’s health tests. With us, you also get easy accessibility, flexible scheduling, and comprehensive care for your complex medical needs.

If you’re considering concierge medicine, contact us for a consultation.

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Texas Politics Put EKG Testing in the Spotlight

texas-ekg-politicsAt Medicine Within Reach, we provide a number of services, including onsite EKG testing. Recently, we’ve turned our eyes to Texas, where EKG testing is part of a heated political debate. CBS DFW explores this in a recent article titled “Texas House Mandates EKG Tests For High School Athletes.”

The author of the article writes, “The Texas House has preliminarily approved requiring high school athletes to undergo electrocardiogram testing for possible degenerative heart problems before participating in campus sports. Representatives voted 86-57 Monday to make EKG testing mandatory as part of physicals taken to participate in all University Interscholastic League activities. They did so while Scott Stephens – whose son Cody was a high school football player but died in 2012 of sudden cardiac arrest just before graduating – watched from the gallery.”

Jim Vertuno of the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal adds some analysis in a recent article titled “Texas the front line on high school ECG debate.” Vertuno writes, “But opponents of mandatory screening, including the American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association, question its effectiveness, saying it would lead to thousands of false-positives each year, which would lead to further, more expensive testing that isn’t necessary. Furthermore, they point out that relatively few children die of sudden cardiac arrest. According to Texas officials, only nine of the more than 13.6 million public middle school and high school students who played sports from 2005 through 2014 died of cardiac arrest during a game or practice. That figure doesn’t reflect Cody Stephens’ death, because he died at home. ‘Indeed, the major cause of death in young athletes, by a factor of 10-fold, is accidents,’ said Dr. Benjamin Levine, a Dallas-based cardiologist and former vice president of the American College of Sports Medicine, who opposes the mandatory testing proposal. The debate over mandatory electrocardiograms, also known as ECG or EKG tests, has been swirling for years and is rekindled with each death of a young athlete. Despite the resistance of the medical establishment, groups like the Stephens’ have been sprouting up throughout the country.”

Potentially unreliable EKG testing is a major concern. At Medicine Within Reach, we provide onsite EKG testing as part of our numerous services.

We are a group of primary care physicians who have joined together to improve healthcare in San Francisco through concierge medicine. Our individualized approach is designed to serve your specific needs. Some of the benefits of our service include flexible scheduling, easy accessibility, and comprehensive care for complex medical needs. In addition to onsite EKG testing, we also provide comprehensive annual physical examinations, women’s health testing, and preventative health planning.

If you’re considering concierge medicine, contact Medicine Within Reach for a consultation.

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How Individualized Healthcare Can Help Empower Patients

health-good-healthcare-pillsWith the healthcare industry transitioning to meet the needs of the times, patients are looking for more options that empower them. Fierce Health Finance takes a look at the unfortunate consequences of the issues currently plaguing healthcare industry in a recent article titled “Healthcare industry must empower patients to say no to unnecessary care.”

Ron Shinkman of Fierce Health Finance writes, “The most horrifying story involves an 82-year-old family friend, who underwent triple bypass surgery because he had fainting spells. The father deferred to his son Bruce’s judgment about whether to proceed. ‘The blockages weren’t causing his father’s fainting episodes or any other impairments to his life. The operation would not make him feel better. Instead, ‘success’ to the doctors meant reducing his future risk of a stroke. How long would it take for the future benefit to outweigh the immediate risk of surgery? The doctors didn’t say, but carotid surgery in a patient like Bruce’s father reduces stroke risk by about one percentage point per year.’ In other words, a mechanistic evaluation and solution. Bruce’s father didn’t fit the definition of success. He suffered a stroke on the operating table. Merge healthcare’s commodification with its mechanization, and you have its system of delivery in a nutshell… Unless patients are empowered to put their foots down and say ‘enough’–the systematic changes required to actually make a dent in the way healthcare is delivered and financed will never occur. Unfortunately, patients are often still too cowed by the complexity of the services being delivered, intimidated by the reality of their own medical condition or that of their family member, and worried about the costs to insist upon hearing alternatives.”

With a more individualized healthcare system, many of these issues can be resolved. At Medicine Within Reach, we believe that a strong patient-doctor relationship is essential to good health. We are a group of primary care physicians in San Francisco who have come together to form a concierge medical practice. Our personalized services make this special bond easily attainable. We have a mission to partner with our patients in an integrated approach by navigating through the complex medical system for you.

Some of our services include comprehensive annual physical examinations, women’s health tests, and preventative health planning. With Medicine Within Reach, you can enjoy such benefits as flexible scheduling, easy accessibility, and comprehensive care for complex medical needs.

If you’re considering concierge medicine, contact us for a consultation.

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Should EKG Testing be Required in High School Sports? College?

With athletes dying of sudden cardiac arrest every year, debates over mandatory EKG testing continue to rage on throughout the country. The Wall Street Journal tackles the subject in a recent article titled “Getting to the Heart of the Matter: Should NCAA Require EKG Testing?” Sharon Terlep of the Wall Street Journal writes, “Even opponents […]

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Being a Man and Getting Your Annual Check Up

In honor of Father’s Day, the Moapa Valley Progress issued a challenge to men throughout the country in the form of an article titled “Dodging the Doctor? Real Men Get An Annual Check Up.” Addressing STD testing, Enrique Alfaro of the Moapa Valley Progress writes, “Why: Depending on lifestyle and sexual history, men should talk […]

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Concierge Medicine Taking Hold in Nevada

Concierge medicine is becoming increasingly popular throughout the country. For example, consider a recent article for the Las Vegas Review-Journal titled “Concierge doctors aim to address Southern Nevada patient complaints.” Steven Moore of the Las Vegas Review-Journal writes, “Concierge doctors make up a small minority of the hundreds of primary care and family practice physicians […]

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New Study Highlights the Importance of Nutrition

We all must stay on top of our nutrition. According to recent news, this isn’t just important for our physical health, but also for our mental health. News-Medical reports on this in a recent article titled “Study highlights the importance of nutrition for maintaining mental health.” The author of the story writes, “An international study […]

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The Hidden Roots of Medicine

An old African proverb goes, “In order to know where you’re going, you must know where you’ve been.” When it comes to the history of medicine, that is no different. The New York Times recently helped shed some light on medical history in an article titled “Medicine’s Hidden Roots in an Ancient Manuscript.” Mark Schrope […]

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Inspirational Speeches on Innovation in Medicine

In order for modern medicine to solve the issues that we deal with everyday, it’s going to take innovation. Yet, before you get to innovation, you must first have inspiration. Med City News attempts to provide some of that inspiration in a recent article titled “5 powerful speeches that changed medicine for the better.” Chris […]

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Concierge Medicine for Everyone

There is plenty of stigma around concierge medicine when it comes to cost. People have often associated the practice with only being for the super wealthy. However, that is not the case. CNBC sheds some light on this reality in a recent article titled “Doctors on demand: Affordable and getting more popular.” Sharon Epperson of […]

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