Different Takes: Gun Violence Is Almost Rivaling The Pandemic; Sacklers Just Might Get Away With Their Fortune Intact
Editorial pages focus on these public health issues and others.
The Washington Post:
2020 Is Shattering Gun Violence Records. We Must Act.
As the novel coronavirus pandemic continues to ravage the United States, another epidemic is surging: gun violence. Most other types of crime fell during the initial phases of the pandemic, but gun violence increased and mass shootings in particular continue to spiral out of control. There are a lot of crises tugging at the public’s attention, but we cannot let this go unresolved. Often when people discuss mass shootings, they focus on the number of people killed, but that overlooks the massive public health and economic toll that nonfatal shootings have on this country. To better take that into account, we define mass shootings as incidents in which four or more people are shot, excluding the shooter. (Devin Hughes, 7/21)
The New York Times:
The Sacklers Could Get Away With It
The billionaire Sacklers who own Purdue Pharma, maker of the OxyContin painkiller that helped fuel America’s opioid epidemic, are among America’s richest families. And if they have their way, the federal court handling Purdue’s bankruptcy case will help them hold on to their wealth by releasing them from liability for the ravages caused by OxyContin. The July 30 deadline for filing claims in Purdue’s bankruptcy proceedings potentially implicates not just claims against Purdue, but also claims against the Sacklers. The Sacklers may yet again benefit from expansive powers that bankruptcy courts exercise in complex cases. (Gerald Posner and Ralph Brubaker, 7/22)
Medical Schools Need To Lower The Cost Of Producing Doctors
Medicine has become a profession accessible mainly to the rich. Just look at the price tag for medical school. In the 1960s, the four years of medical education needed to earn an M.D. in the United States could be had for about $40,000 in today’s dollars. The price is now $300,000, a 750% increase. (David A. Asch, Justin Grischkan and Sean Nicholson, 7/21)
My Patients Want The Good Old Days Of Office Visits
I recently got a note from my secretary with this message from a patient: “Tell the doctor I have no interest in a phone call or one of those video visits. When she is back to seeing patients again in the office, let me know. ”I’m hearing that a lot lately from patients who continue to delay routine medical care, not due to fears of Covid-19 but because they yearn for the old face-to-face office visit. (Amy E. Wheeler, 7/22)