Hardy Souls

Economics, Health 2009-06-30 01:27

“By 1935, when America set up its Social Security system, the official pension age was 65—three years beyond the lifespan of the typical American. State-sponsored retirement was designed to be a brief sunset to life, for a few hardy souls.”

From The end of retirement

A Step Away from Demonization

Psychedelia, Politics, Health 2009-04-20 01:14

Dr. Sanjay Gupta was offered the job of Surgeon General of the United States. He turned it down, but note that he can be seen describing the theraputetic benefits of MDMA in this video.

Order Your Bloodwork Online

Health 2009-04-16 01:18

Continuing my theme of taking control of your healthcare, check out Private MD Labs. This site lets you order your own blood tests.

You purchase the tests you want through a shopping cart on their website, like any other product. Then, you go to a local lab to have the blood drawn. The lab is the exact same one that a doctor would send you to - usually a Labcorp location. The difference is that the results go back to the privatemdlabs.com secure website, where you can login and view the results. If you get an abnormal result, you can then take a printout of the report to your doctor.
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Health Savings Accounts

Health 2008-06-19 03:47

Health insurance is seriously fucked up in the US. This supposed “free market” system is actually a perverted mockery of everything a true capitalist holds dear. And the link between health insurance and your employer is stupid beyond fathoming.

Normally I show my dissatisfaction with a bad system via a simple, quiet, and effective manner: non-participation. I vote with my feet, as the saying goes. Unfortunately, going without health insurance is a very bad idea, so in this particular case that option is closed.

But there’s an option that, while not a complete panacea, has the potential to go a long way to improve things. That option is called health savings accounts, or HSAs. An HSA is exactly like a normal bank account, except that it’s designated only for use on medical expenses, and the money you put into it is not taxed.
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Cyborg Runner

Technology, Health, Infinite Series 2008-03-09 09:29

Wikimedica

Technology, Health 2007-11-26 12:32

Medical doctors spend a lot of their time doing pattern matching. Specifically, matching symptoms (combined with other data, like age and sex) against maladies to produce a diagnosis, and from that determining a treatment. Much of a med student’s studying is essentially memorization of long lists of this stuff: symptoms -> malady -> treatment. Much of the work of an interned doctor is trying to improve their recall of these patterns in real-world situations. And finally, much of the work of practicing doctors is applying these patterns to their patients over and over again.

This is pretty dumb.
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Organs For Sale

Philosophy, Health 2007-02-27 03:45

Organs for Sale outlines the current state of the organ market (that is, there is none: sale of organs is illegal), and some alternatives to the current system that would allow a great number of lives to be saved through transplants.

Invasion of the Meat Machines

Life, Health 2007-01-16 01:27

Modern medical science is all about fixing what’s broken. This is a good solution when you have a direct affliction or injury: a specific infectious disease, a broken bone, a deep cut. But this is only one small part of the overall picture of human health. Keeping the body sound and healthy is much more than just stitching up the occasional wound.

I think that most people sense this subconsciously, and that’s the appeal of all the folk healing and new age practices that people spend so much time and energy on: acupuncture, crystal healing, homeopathy, herbal remedies, etc. If you’ve read my blog much you probably already know that I think all that stuff is best described as somewhere between ineffective and an outright scam. But don’t worry, this post is not yet another debunking, or more critical thinker finger-wagging. No, today I’ve got something a little different on the menu.
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