Saturday, November 3, 2007

A catalog of clinical liberalisms

A couple of weeks ago, there were posts at What's Wrong with the World and Mere Comments about the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines recommending that physicians attempt to subvert parents' authority over their children, and consider them guilty until proven innocent of all kinds of horrible crimes, ranging from molestation to gun ownership. The Boston Herald story and accompanying comments are also worth reading. I chimed in at WWTW, since I've already begun to see how these ideas are taught to physicians in training.

In general, what we are seeing, predictably, is that the elites of the medical profession (medical school deans and administrators, the leaders of the various boards and professional societies, etc.) are cultural liberals who believe that normality, decency, convention, tradition, and authority are evil and must be subverted, that beneath the facade of every apparently normal, loving relationship between husband and wife or parents and children lurks all kinds of social pathology. Being doctors, they are especially concered with health, and so they think that health is hindered by traditional morality and would be greatly improved if traditional morality were overthrown. That is why they think, for example, that all men should be suspected of wife-beating, all fathers of molestation, and all parents of being clueless fuddy-duddies hopelessly opposed to their teens' inevitable and healthy sexual activity.

Being in medical school, I can't help but remember every time I hear or see a specific recommendation along these lines, so I thought I would start a catalog of them. These are based both on things I have been told in medical school, and things I have read in articles like the one from the Boston Herald.
  • When seeing an adolescent patient, it is essential that at some point you kick the parent(s) out of the room so that you can ask the teen about his drug use, sexual activity, and anything else he may simply not want to talk to his parents about.
  • When a husband, or, um, "partner," accompanies a female patient to her medical visit, it is essential that at some point you get her alone and ask her "do you feel safe at home?"
  • When a husband, or, um, "partner," accompanies a female patient who is seeking a pregnancy test, even if the couple came to the visit together specifically for the purpose of confirming that they are pregnant, you must kick him out of the room before giving her the results so that you can ask her in confidence whether she wants the man to know.
  • When a female patient presents with amenorrhea (absence of a menstrual period), you should first rule out pregnancy, and must always do a pregnancy test no matter what the woman tells you, even if she says that she's never had sex.
I may add to this catalog as I am exposed to more of these atrocities. Also, if you have visited a liberal doctor or hospital and been the victim of such tripe, feel free to contribute your own.

  • This should have been part of the original list, because I had heard it already when I first created this post: As part of a history and physical, it is important to take a patient's sexual history. This should begin with the question "are you sexually active?" and if the patient answers yes, you must follow-up by asking "with men, women, or both?" You must ask this second question no matter how offended you think the patient may be by it, no matter how unlikely you think it may be that the patient will give an unconventional answer (e.g., with a 70-year-old widow.)


Sheila Coyne said...

None of this is really new - just to the more unsuspecting parents. While I have not had my children asked about guns, etc. (I have always been present when they were at the doctors), back in 1997 my older son had a cut on his eyebrow needing stitches. He was asked in the emergency room (in my presence)about the accident (which occurred playing with another 5 year old). The questions clearly implied that perhaps Mommy hurt you, and it's ok to tell. I was appalled (but since I have never really liked or respected most medical professionals, not surprised).

Sheila Coyne said...

Sorry, but I neglected to mention something else. Our nanny state is so pervasive and the liberal mindset so dangerous, that parents really have to be more concerned about other parents, I would argue. Two examples: when my younger son was born we spent a significant amount of money getting official approval and installation of an air bag disconnect switch so we could safely put his car seat in the front next to me (multiple reasons). On different occasions I found nasty notes on my windshield to the effect that I was condemning my child to injury/death by putting the car seat in front. Same child, a few years later - someone apparently observed me disciplining my son (smacking his kicking legs) as he had a temper tantrum on being placed in his car seat (now in the back of the car). This good samaritan anonymously reported my license plate and I got a surprise visit from Child Protective Services. I was in shock as she interviewed my then 3 year old and my 11 year old. I'm sure if I had said she couldn't come in and/or interview my children, she would have assumed the worst and removed my children. As it was I had to get "references" from my child's Sunday school teacher, preschool teacher, friends, doctor, etc., to prove I did not beat or abuse him and have the case dismissed. Hate to use a cliche, but 1984 anyone?