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In the last three years, I have had the opportunity to share some of my insights with all of you about various subjects in medicine. I hope that during our time together I was able to make you think about some important issues regarding the state of healthcare in the United States and its implications on the treatment of women.

However, the time has come to say goodbye to the magazine that launched my writing career. During my time with Moondance, I changed my career focus. The shingle that hung in the front of my office that read Neurology" now says "Network Engineer". Patients are again people, and disease is something I read about in the newspaper.

The transition has been an exhilarating one. Information technology is on an accelerating growth curve. We live in a special time in history that has the entire world communicating with the click of a mouse and the press of a keyboard button. We are also at a pivotal stage of human relations. The technology that can be used to free humanity from ignorance, fear and subjugation can easily be turned into a ruthless captor.

I pass the gauntlet to the next generation of physicians who are better equipped at handling the employee/ physician model. I don't envy these young men and women as they fight off diseases new on the health care scene. And the disease they will have to fight most vigorously will be the greed of the Health Maintenance Organizations.

And you, my dear readers, have to be more careful than ever. The new physican is less informed, and more time-challenged than in the previous 50 years. The new physician does not have the resources to get you the time and attention you require. The price you pay will be errors in diagnosis and treatment. The Internet provides you with the resources to research your problems, and then challenge what your physican and your third-party payers claim are right and proper diagnoses and treatments. Your research can literally mean the difference between life and death.

Well,Windows 2000 and have several more coming out in print next year. The universe has been good to us. In return, we will spend more time educating and motivating our Information Technology students to change the world for the better.

If you should ever need help on questions of medical import, please do not hesitate to write me at tshinder@hotmail.com. Even though I will no longer have a column at Moondance, YOUR HEALTH still MATTERS.

 


Thomas W. Shinder, M.D., M.C.P. is a neurologist-turned-computer systems engineer who practiced medicine in Texas, Oregon and Arkansas before moving to his present home in the Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas metropolitan area.

Email Thomas at: tshinder@shinder.net


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