Health Care

The Ethical Delivery of Medical Care

Healing the sick, curing disease, easing pain, and prolonging life have always been the foundation of ethical medical care.  Early medicine lacked the diagnostic and treatment modalities we have today.  Nevertheless, ethical physicians of all eras have consistently used any tools at their disposal to care for their patients.

De humani corporis fabrica
Andreas Vesalius (Flemish, Brussels 1514–1564 Zakynthos, Greece) De humani corporis fabrica (Of the Structure of the Human Body)
The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Medical progress across the centuries is a remarkable story.  The Greeks and Romans were the first to study anatomy and record their findings.  In the late Middle Ages and early Renaissance periods, the study of human anatomy in “medical schools” allowed for the sharing of anatomical information among a cadre of professionals.  In the 16th century, Andreas Vesalius, began to record dissection findings in great detail and wrote De humani corporis fabrica, the first illustrated book of human anatomy.  The development of the microscope by Anton van Leeuwenhoek in the 17th century and an understanding of physiology finally allowed physicians to develop treatment and cures based on accurate medical knowledge.  

Incredibly, however, physicians have been treating and healing patients before there was any true understanding of human anatomy.  For thousands of years, healers of various kinds used natural and fabricated compounds in a system we now would call “trial and error” to cure illness and prevent death.  The use of these “experimental” therapies, whether successful or lethal, was undertaken with an honest and faithful attempt to serve the needs of patients.  Some of our current medications are actually based on the herbs, roots, mold, and potions created and that were initially used without any scientific basis.   

The lesson here is critical for modern physicians.  Medical progress is only possible by trial and error either in the context of elaborate and costly FDA clinical trials or one-on-one at the bedside of a seriously ill patient.  In dealing with experimental medications, especially in government trials, it is essential that the data, results, and conclusions are truthful and comply with the requirements of the scientific method.  That means that the scientists and physicians designing and performing the studies must not be subject to financial or career pressures that can influence the results.  That is the only way to ensure that the studies are reliable and truthful.   

It is disgraceful that these basic tenets of science and medicine have been discarded in response to the Covid epidemic to the detriment of our patients.  Faced with a potentially lethal infectious disease, absolutely every potential treatment modality must be available.  That is especially true of medicines like hydroxychloroquine and Azithromycin with a long history of being safe for human use.  To use medications like Ivermectin, now shown to be effective, a frank discussion of risk versus benefit is part of informed consent and must be available if patients decide to accept the risk.    

It is also unacceptable to ignore public health protocols used successfully in past epidemics and initiate requirements that contradict long-standing medical practice.  As outlined in Dr. Kulldorf’s excellent article, Sweden protected its vulnerable citizens, did not lock down society, and established herd immunity as our past epidemic experience has demonstrated. 

Patients in America with early Covid symptoms are told to stay at home, take over-the-counter meds, and go to the hospital when they cannot breathe.  That advice is responsible for unnecessary disability and death.  Treatment should begin immediately using integrative medicine practices to boost immunity and prescription medications that have been proven effective against this viral disease.   

The Hippocratic Oath is the Golden Rule of medicine.  Ethical physicians treat their patients as they would want to be treated themselves under the same circumstances.  Most famously, the Oath admonishes physicians to “do no harm” in caring for patients.  Withholding care that has even the smallest potential for cure in the face of death is the essence of doing harm. 

When medicine becomes politicized and corporate, decision-making is based on corporate profit and political agendas – neither of which enhances the quality of medical care.  Physicians who are part of corporate medicine systems end up “following orders” instead of designing a treatment plan for each individual patient.  Unfortunately, Government and Big Pharma now control the delivery of medical care for most Americans which inevitably leads to limitations and rationing of essential treatments.

Restoring the individual doctor-patient relationship should be the goal of every ethical physician.  It is time to stand up and act for patient care as required by the Hippocratic Oath.

Resist Tyranny and Trust in Freedom!

Dr. Wiggy Saunders

Dr. Dan’s guest on Freedom Forum Radio this weekend is Dr. Wiggy Saunders, co-founder of Robinhood Integrative Health in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, one of the largest Integrative Medicine clinics in the country with over 20,000 patients.  He is also the co-founder and co-medical director of North Carolina Physicians for Freedom, a coalition of healthcare providers fighting for medical freedom. The coalition stands for patient rights, the doctor-patient relationship, individualized patient care, informed consent, and medical privacy.

Dr. Wiggy is married to Emily Saunders, who is the Network Director of NC Physicians for Freedom, and they have 4 boys.

Don’t miss this informative interview. Part one airs on Saturday and Sunday, February 26-27, on WJRB 95.1 FM and streamed live over the Internet. Part two airs on Saturday and Sunday, March 5-6.

Air times are Saturday, 8:00 AM and 9:30 AM, and Sunday, 2:30 PM and 7:00 PM.

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