Looking back on 2020, if there’s one thing that the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us, it’s that crises reveal character. Unfortunately, even as many doctors bravely risked their lives taking care of COVID-19 patients, the character of too many other physicians was been found wanting, as they spent 2020 denying the pandemic and spreading misinformation. What can be done?
Apparently signed by thousands of scientists, the Great Barrington Declaration argues that lockdowns in response to the coronavirus pandemic do more harm than good and that society should use “Focused Protection” for the elderly and those at high risk for severe disease and death from COVID-19 while letting the young go about their business normally. A closer look reveals that COVID-19 deniers are taking a page from a very old denialist propaganda playbook.
Even though they should know better based on their training, too many physicians embrace the dark side and become antivaccine. How does this happen? What personality traits common among physicians can facilitate a descent into pseudoscience?
Yesterday was a long day, starting in the operating room and finishing at a dinner reception for our visiting speaker today. As a result, when I arrived home, I was sawing the proverbial logs within five or ten minutes of hitting the couch, more or less without realizing it. I was going to just skip […]
Early in the history of this blog, I had a running gag that I’d use every now and then. Basically, it involved humorously extravagant descriptions of how I wanted to hide my face behind a paper bag in sheer embarrassment at the antics of fellow physicians, particularly fellow surgeons. Over time, the gag evolved to […]