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Recent Newspaper & Online Columns by Kate Scannell MD

Doctors divided over common ethical dilemmas

By Dr. Kate Scannell, Syndicated Columnist
First published in print: 11/25/2012

They can haunt you for life. They can keep you awake at night They can change forever how you practice medicine. And for many doctors, they are the stuff of everyday experience.

"They" are the "ethical dilemmas" that so thoroughly permeate medical practice as to become inseparable from it. And because these dilemmas are so enmeshed, it is often difficult to tease them out from the daily fabric of health care. Still, they regularly thread through medical decision-making between doctors and patients in clinics, and through hospital policy-making in the executive offices.
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An election victory for health reform, the Affordable Care Act

By Kate Scannell, MD
First Published in Print: 11/11/2012

President Barack Obama's health care reform law survived a couple of brutal battles this year. In the first major match of 2012, we watched 27 states try to kill the Affordable Care Act in the U.S. Supreme Court, claiming that it violated constitutional law. The punch line, however, was delivered in a 5-4 decision that left most of the act standing as the supreme law of the land.

Bruised but not broken, the health care act then began slouching toward November, through blistering bipartisan bickering, facing peril of extinction should Obama lose the election. Indeed, Republican candidate Mitt Romney had promised to begin repealing the act on his very first day in office.

But with Obama's re-election last week, the embattled health care act was again resuscitated and restored to health. And because the act was such an integral feature of Obama's campaign platform, American voters provided much of the saving life support for Obamacare.  Read More