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January 26, 1994

Medicine at the Crossroads: The Crisis in Health Care

Author Affiliations

University of Missouri Medical School Kansas City

JAMA. 1994;271(4):322. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03510280090046

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I find Dr Konner's book an interesting story of medical problems of today, some of which I first learned here. But I am left unconvinced that any real concrete solution has been proposed.

According to the author, an anthropologist who later graduated from Harvard Medical School (an experience he has described in a prior book, Becoming a Doctor, New York, NY, Viking Penguin, 1987) and who currently has an appointment as associate professor of psychiatry and neurology at Emory University, he and his quoted physicians are (p xvii) "in a minority in the medical profession at the moment." He adds (p xvii), "I did not end up practicing medicine for a living...." So much for his stated bias. I, on the other hand, earn my living and pay my malpractice and other expenses as a neurosurgeon, am given to "high tech," and argued 25 to 30 years ago with my

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