Should You Get Health Insurance?

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“Open Enrollment” for 2015, which is the time when you can sign up for health insurance and, if you qualify, get subsidy for the premiums, ends on February 15. With that deadline fast approaching you may want to consider the reasons you should consider getting coverage. You won’t have an opportunity to enroll after February… Read more »

New Year Commitments

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Well, it’s that time of year, isn’t it? An opportunity for a fresh start with a fresh year and many of us make resolutions aimed at our health and wellbeing. Our good intentions don’t always translate into sustained action, but perhaps prioritizing our health goals would help. What follows is based on a Facebook post… Read more »

Time for New Thinking About Chronic Pain

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Over the last 25 years our approach to chronic pain has shifted dramatically. Beginning around 1990 and without science to support the approach, it was determined that chronic pain should be treated with opioid pain killers (commonly referred to as narcotics – medications like oxycodone, Oxycontin, morphine and Vicodin), that there was no unsafe dose… Read more »

Immunize Me

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The understandable concern about Ebola has raised public awareness of communicable diseases, especially viral illnesses, and some of the challenges in treating them. And while Ebola is a terrible disease and is causing devastation in Western Africa, it actually poses very little threat to citizens of the US. Politics, unrelenting media coverage and the devastating… Read more »

New Recommendations for Birth Control in Teens

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Through much of my career the standard approach to contraception for adolescents had been to offer birth control pills and barrier methods (condoms). Intrauterine devices (IUD) were avoided because of concerns about their potential impact on future fertility. In the last decade or so progesterone injections, which offer protection for 3 months at a time,… Read more »

Cancer Screening, Part 2

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Last month I wrote about the kind of cancers for which adults of a certain age should consider regular screening examinations.  As part of that discussion I mentioned several forms of cancer for which there is no evidence of benefit from screening, and even some for which there is evidence of harm from screening!  This… Read more »

Cancer Screening

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Over the past weekend I had the pleasure of participating in EMMC’s Champion the Cure Challenge and like most families, mine has been profoundly impacted by cancer.  I lost my father to leukemia and a sister to breast cancer and I have two more sisters who have had breast cancer (one cured and one currently… Read more »

Federally Qualified Health Centers

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Since their inception in the early 1960’s, addressing disparities in healthcare has been at the core of the mission of FQHCs.  Through the ensuing decades, much of the approach has been aimed at access, as we have provided healthcare to all members of our communities, including the most needy and those with no health insurance… Read more »

Summertime Rashes

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Most Mainers eagerly await the summer months when we can enjoy great warm weather activities in one of the most beautiful sates in the country. Whether it’s sports, fishing, boating, cycling, running, walking, camping or just relaxing outdoors, it is an energizing and fulfilling time of the year. Of course, nothing is perfect and summertime… Read more »

What Keeps You Up At Night?

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Insomnia is one of the most frequent complaints that a primary provider hears in the office. 50% of adults experience it in their lifetime and up to 10% of adults may suffer from long-term insomnia. It is also one of the most challenging to treat and one of the most misunderstood of the common ailments… Read more »