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September 8, 1999

Advances in Medical Care: Promise, Problems, and Proper Application

Author Affiliations

Margaret AWinkerMD, Deputy EditorIndividualAuthorPhil B.FontanarosaMD, Interim CoeditorIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 1999;282(10):938-939. doi:10-1001/pubs.JAMA-ISSN-0098-7484-282-10-jbk0908

To the Editor: The article by Drs Fisher and Welch1 uses semantics and faulty logic and condemns medical growth and progress. The authors fail to have a real-world grasp of how technology is brought to application by clinicians, do not respect the free market in ideas or economics, give physicians no credit for dealing with complex issues, and assign mercenary motives to most decisions. They claim, for instance, that "Physicians rarely stop with a diagnosis." Their choice of words also reveals a clear bias; words such as "tampering" and "pseudodisease" are pejorative, unsubstantiated, or both.