RUSH: Remember, ladies and gentlemen, all this talk some time ago about electronic medical records? We were told that if we could digitize everybody’s health records, medical records, that it would speed health care; it would make it more efficient, and it would help promote the general health and welfare because doctors and nurses in various places have quick access to your records when you went to see them, meaning that they could quickly diagnose what was wrong with you now based on your history. Well, guess what? ‘Electronic health records … failed to boost care delivered in routine doctor visits, U.S. researchers said on Monday. Of 17 measures of quality assessed, electronic health records made no difference in 14 measures, according to a study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine. … ‘Our findings were a bit of a surprise. We did expect practices (with electronic medical records) would have better quality of care,’ said Dr. Randall Stafford of Stanford University. ‘They really performed about the same,’ he said in a telephone interview. … Electronic health records promise to eliminate errors due to bad handwriting and make it easier for doctors to follow a patient’s care over time,’ and, of course, to leak information from them to curious members of the media and others that might be interested. At least you have to give these guys credit. These are ‘experts,’ now. The experts expected to get a totally different result from the result they got, and unlike this researcher on diversity we told you about a couple weeks ago who said, ‘Gee, I shouldn’t release this. This is horrible! This is totally against what I thought would happen. Diversity is not good for people,’ these guys went ahead and released their findings. Didn’t Mrs. Clinton want to do this, too? Was this part of the many tentacles of Hillary Care? By the way, they can’t find enough work for doctors in Texas. There are more doctors than they need — and there’s a reason for it, ladies and gentlemen. It’s not because there are more sick people there, and it really doesn’t have anything to do with illegal immigration.
In Texas, ‘An influx of doctors lured to Texas by new limits on malpractice lawsuits has overwhelmed the state board that screens candidates for medical licenses, creating a backlog that forces many applicants to wait months before they can start seeing patients. … The board received 4,000 applications for medical licenses in 2006, up from 2,992 the previous year. Spokes[babe] Jill Wiggins said the board expects to approve 2,750 new licenses this year, 235 more than last year. There is a backlog of more than 2,398 applications.’ Why is this? Why is this happening? Why in the world? It’s because a Texas law limited malpractice lawsuits! These doctors are flooding the state from other parts of the country where there aren’t any limits. Malpractice insurance premiums have gone through the roof. Because of the new limits in Texas, they can afford to do business there. This kind of stuff works every time it’s tried.
RUSH: ‘There is more evidence to back up a long-standing theory that smokers are less likely to develop Parkinson’s disease than people who do not use tobacco products, researchers reported on Monday.’ In fact, they’re finding all kinds of great things about nicotine. They’re breaking down nicotine and finding ways of using it to deal with other things, because it does trigger positive things brain chemistry-wise, serotonin and dopamine and these sort of things. ‘The apparent protective effect of tobacco against the [Parkinson’s] disease has been observed for years but a University of California Los Angeles School of Public Health report said a new review of existing studies seems to confirm it, with long-term and current smokers at the lowest risk’ for Parkinson’s disease. I always love passing along news like this, because you know what the news on smoking is: ‘It’ll kill you. It’s stupid. It’s dumb.’ Well, smokers, I’m telling you, deserve the Congressional Medal of Honor because smokers are single-handedly funding children’s health care in this country.
All right, this headline: ‘Women Drawn to Men with Muscles — Muscular young men are likely to have more sex partners than their less-chiseled peers, researchers at the University of California Los Angeles said yesterday.’ These people at UCLA, they’re working hard, they’re working on studying smoking and nicotine, and now muscled guys. ‘Their study, published in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, suggests muscles in men are akin to elaborate tail feathers in male peacocks: They attract females looking for a virile mate. ‘Women are predisposed to prefer muscularity in men,’ said study author David Frederick of UCLA.’ Now, this sounds like common sense, but I have — not recently, but I think I’ve — read not too long ago that women don’t like these kind of hunks because they’re so self-absorbed. All they do is think about themselves and they look in the mirror sort of like actresses. The last thing you want to do is get involved with one of those. The male component of that is people so absorbed with how they look to the degree that they become in attentive and unaware of other people. I think I’ve read that somewhere. We all know that this is not what really draws women to men. The evidence is all over the place. I mean, there are plenty of flabby, worthless, ugliest-people-you’ve-ever-seen, and they’ve got babes draped all over ’em. You tell me what it is. I’m not going to provide every answer here. Look, when I start talking about something, I have to come up short because once I’ve said something about something, there is nothing left to be said.
Oh, more health news. I have a whole health stack here today. ‘Doctors Wonder Why Fat People Outlive Thin People After Heart Attacks — While being fat increases your chances of a heart attack, some studies suggest a puzzling paradox: Obese people seem to have a better chance of surviving one. Scientists,’ i.e. experts, ‘are stumped — and warn overweight people that the results should not be used as an excuse to indulge. ‘We really don’t want people to think that they should put on a bit of weight to have a better chance with their bypass surgery,’ said Dr. Gerald Fletcher, a cardiologist at the Mayo Clinic in Florida and a spokesman for the American Heart Association. ‘These results do not mean it’s OK to be fat. Being fat is still dangerous to your health for lots of other reasons.” That’s true. So why put the news out, other than to say: We scientists are stumped. ”We don’t have a good explanation for the biological phenomenon that’s causing this,’ said Dr. Eric Eisenstein, an assistant professor in medicine at Duke University who led the 2005 study. ‘We need to understand scientifically what’s happening in these folks before we can develop new therapies.” (interruption) Well, no, I don’t feel better about having a bag of potato chops for dinner, and it wasn’t a whole bag. (sigh) It was a half a bag of chips. No, I don’t feel better about it. I came in here laden with guilt. Well, I wasn’t laden, but I had a little guilt arriving here today because I had a half a bag of potato chips.
I’ve been on a diet. I have not been stringently on the diet since the middle of May. I’m probably down 55 pounds now from when I started, but I was down 52 back in April. I have not been real strict with it, but I have not blown it like I did last night with a half a bag of potato and some French onion dip. It wasn’t worth it. No, it wasn’t worth it. See, the way you do this is you can’t blow a diet in one day, just like you can’t start a diet in one day, or it won’t have an effect. So the trick is to understand that you measure your intake over the course of a week, not over the course of the day. See, the problem with a diet (I have so much experience) is you can do what I did last night. You can guiltily consume half a bag of potato chips and wake up the next day and not have gained any weight, and if you’ve been on a diet for a period of time, two or three months, you could probably eat a bag of potato chips three or four times a week and not gain any weight, for a week or two. That’s when you get fooled. ‘A-ha! Why, I’ve got this beat!’ because your body is still in fat-burn mode. I don’t know what the scientists would call it, but that’s what I call it. After a while, you start cheating like that steadily, and your body is gonna switch around. You’re going to be in a fat-gain mode, or storage mode, and it’s all over. But it’s that period of time that you could eat pretty much what you want, and you don’t gain. You have to have been on a diet awhile for this to happen, for your metabolism to continue going in fat-burn mode. It takes a month or two at least to do that.
What else do we have in the health stack here before we have to go to the break? Oh, this is a shock: ‘Truck drivers, the people who deliver our food, cars and clothing, have one of the most dangerous jobs in America, accounting for 15 percent of U.S. work-related deaths. That’s only counting the accidents. They also are more at risk,’ the truck drivers are, ‘than average Americans for a number of health problems. Obesity is rampant. Many don’t bother to wear seatbelts because their stomachs get in the way; one in four has sleep apnea; half of them smoke.’ Well, let’s just run down the truck driver business. Let’s just characterize these guys as a bunch of worthless schlubs. Unhealthy truckers. The government numbers say the trucking industry has the most fatalities of all occupations. I wonder why that is? Where are they? We have 50,000 highway deaths in this country every year. Where are these guys working? (These people.)The Bureau of Labor Statistics says that truck drivers account for nearly 15% of all worker deaths in the most recent data available. That’s from 2005, and of those trucker deaths, 80% involve traffic accidents. They needed a study for that.
RUSH: To Cadillac, Michigan, this is Martin. I’m glad you waited, sir. Nice to have you with us.
CALLER: Rush, it’s such an honor for me to speak to you as an American and also as a physician. I really appreciate you bringing up that issue with regard to electronic medical records. There’s so much I could talk to you about, but I’m going to try to keep it straightforward here, that I think the electronic medical records is another step towards government regulation of health care in our country. I served as an Army doctor overseas. My parents are immigrants. I have cousins who are physicians in Europe, and our health care system is the best in the world, bar none. That’s who they compare all their health care to. They compare it to us: our technology, our caring, our efficiency, our professionalism, and I just really appreciate you bringing this up. I’ve listened to you since 1989, and it’s just an honor to talk to you.
RUSH: I thank you. The US health care system is the best in the world. It has its flaws and problems, but this is another area that the Democrat Party, the liberals in this country, the media, have all for so many years now explained about the health care system that most people in this country, or a lot of people, think that it’s no good and rotten and it’s ineffective, inefficient and so forth. Yet, the truly sick around the world come here for care, if they can afford it, if they can get here. Of course, most of the world’s leaders if they have serious health problems come here to one of our facilities. They don’t go to their own countries. They don’t go to Cuba, which our media also tells us has the best health care system around, free and so forth. It’s absolutely ridiculous. The electronic medical records, digitalizing medical records is also not just as you say, or another step in the direction of government regulation of health care. It’s another way to have a much easier invasion of someone’s privacy simply by way of computer connection. Now, as a doctor, let me ask you, though, about this. Some people in law enforcement and others are having chips inserted underneath their epidermis that contain their medical history and their medical records, so if they’re in an accident, some kind of emergency, unconscious, the emergency room can read the data and know, for example, what drugs they’re allergic to and this sort of thing. Do you support that?
CALLER: Well, once again I think it comes down to privacy. What safeguards are there should that information be accessible to others besides an emergency medical person? You know, I think that would be a huge issue. So, you know, once again I don’t know if the privacy safeguards are in place for that. I think you bring up a wonderful point that our electronic medical records are — you know, there are huge privacy issues with that, and technology should be driven by the doctor and the patient: the doctors to perform health care better and more efficiently, and the patient if they so choose to access information on health care.
RUSH: Well, I also think patients are probably going to be more open with doctors about their past, therefore their records are going to be more complete if they trust the confidentiality. Start digitalizing these things? Everything is on the Internet now. It won’t be long before somebody’s medical records are.
RUSH: But that chip, I’ll tell you I’ve thought about it. Well, I’ve not thought about doing it, but the reason it intrigues me is because of my cochlear implant. I cannot get an MRI because of that, because of the magnet, the MRI is this giant magnet, and I’ve got a magnet as part of the implant to keep my headpiece on. What if I’m in an accident and the external implant is knocked off and I end up in the emergency room and nobody knows that I’ve got a cochlear implant, and they have to do an MRI? Bam, that machine blows up and I don’t know what’s going to happen to my brain at the same time because of the magnet in there with the MRI — and if I’m unconscious and can’t tell ’em, and there’s nobody around that knows to tell anybody… And I’m sure there are other people that have similar medical circumstances that if they’re unconscious, they couldn’t tell anybody about. This chip, to me, seems a little bit more private in that somebody would have to kidnap me and read the chip. Now, once the doctors at the emergency room or wherever have done that, I guess that’s somewhere in a record but as long as that record is not digitized it’s still a little bit safer than if we digitized everything like we’re talking about. The great news about this anyway is that they didn’t find any greater efficiency in a test of electronic medical records, didn’t help them out, didn’t speed things up, didn’t change much at all.
CALLER: Yes. And I think that, you know, I use a computer almost on a daily basis, but once again, nothing substitutes the doctor-patient relationship, that confidential interaction we have, you know, one on one with our patient. It’s so important, and we really do do it well in this country. It always can be improved, but that’s a hallmark of great medical care, is that live interaction with the patient.
RUSH: I agree. I couldn’t agree more. It’s a good news report that we got today. Martin, thanks for the call. I appreciate it.
RUSH: This is Bebe from southern Illinois. It’s nice to have you on the program on the EIB Network. Hello.
CALLER: Rush, I can’t believe I’m talking to you! Hey, I got a great idea for you. Just put a little tattoo behind your ear that says ‘cochlear’ or something like that, with the international warning sign.
RUSH: I love all of you people with this helpful hints. I just do, but I —
CALLER: We want to protect your brain. We don’t want it blowing up. It’s too valuable.
RUSH: Yes, I do, too. I understand that. But, gosh, bracelets, necklaces, tattoos?
CALLER: Just a tiny one. No one would ever know it.
RUSH: Well, if they’re that tiny, the doctors in the emergency, such as that circumstance, might miss it.
CALLER: Oh, I don’t think so, the first thing they do is look over your head, especially if you’re unconscious.
RUSH: Yeah, well, you hope so.
CALLER: Or put a tiny one on your chest. They also put you on a heart monitor first thing.
RUSH: I’ve looked at tattoos as something that’s just short of butchery.
CALLER: Well, this is for medicinal purposes, so it’s okay.
RUSH: Yeah, okay.
RUSH: The important thing is here, Bebe, that you and millions of other Americans care, and that is what warms my heart. It really does.
CALLER: Well, you’re welcome, and we smart women prefer the muscles between the ears, not on the biceps.
RUSH: Yeah, yeah, yeah. I’ve heard that, too.
CALLER: Ha-ha! You take care, buddy. We love you out here.
RUSH: Okay, all right.
CALLER: We love you out here.
RUSH: Thank you, Bebe. Nice to have you with us on the program.