- “My heart rate jumps each time I hear someone talk about COVID’s silver linings or the opportunities we’ve found to reimagine our health system. The message has been clear. We’ve moved on. But COVID continues to live in my muscles,” writes Richard E. Leiter, MD, who reflects on his experience leading a palliative care team in his hospital’s COVID ICU ~ Reentry (New England Journal of Medicine)
- By next year, the U.S. may have a handful of mediocre coronavirus vaccines. But people will struggle to know which to take and the availability of these options may hamper efforts to develop more effective vaccines. Some chaos and confusion “is inevitable,” Carl Zimmer writes. “But it didn’t have to be this way” ~ First, a Vaccine Approval. Then ‘Chaos and Confusion.‘ (The New York Times)
- What has the true death toll from COVID-19 been so far? Steven H. Woolf, MD, MPH, and colleagues update older estimates that undercounted the death rate ~ Excess Deaths From COVID-19 and Other Causes, March-July 2020 (JAMA)
- “I regularly witness patients malign the medicine and science that undergird our efforts against COVID-19,” writes Jalal Baig, who reflects on the ways in which politics is harming our health ~ As a doctor, I must act when coronavirus politics threaten to harm my patients (The Washington Post)
- The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of elective surgery. J. Wayne Meredith, MD, Kevin P. High, MD, MS, and Julie Ann Freischlag, MD, discuss the consequences of delaying surgical care early in the pandemic and how we can prevent further disruptions ~ Preserving Elective Surgeries in the COVID-19 Pandemic and the Future (JAMA)
- Ala Stanford, MD, a Philadelphia-based pediatric surgeon in private practice, saw a racial divide in coronavirus testing. To help close the gap, she started the Black Doctors COVID-19 Consortium, which has tested more than 10,000 people since late April, Nina Feldman writes ~ Black Doctors Work to Make Coronavirus Testing More Equitable (Kaiser Health News/NPR/WHYY)
- In November, patients will be able to read their electronic health information, including the clinical notes providers write. Charlotte Blease, PhD, and colleagues explore the implications of this change ~ New U.S. Law Mandates Access to Clinical Notes: Implications for Patients and Clinicians (Annals of Internal Medicine)
Fred N. Pelzman, MD, of Weill Cornell Internal Medicine Associates and weekly blogger for MedPage Today, follows what’s going on in the world of primary care medicine. Pelzman’s Picks is a compilation of links to blogs, articles, tweets, journal studies, opinion pieces, and news briefs related to primary care that caught his eye.