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The sickness of ’eminence-based medicine’

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Larry Husten, in a piece in MedCity News, headlined “The Big Dirty Secret Every Doctor Knows: Eminence-based medicine is not the exception. It’s the rule,” writes, among other things:

“{M}ost eminence-based medicine is dressed up in the guise of evidence-based medicine. The distinguished thought leader will provide a ceaseless barrage of statistics, of which he (or she, but usually he) will have an unparalleled mastery. At each step of the argument, the logic will appear flawless, even brilliant. But, in general, the entire purpose of the talk will be to ‘prove’ the thought leader’s opinion, despite the complete lack of genuine reliable evidence, or to disprove the actual evidence that exists, because it fails to support that opinion.

“But the responsibility for eminence-based medicine goes well beyond the elite coterie of experts. The real problem is the culture of medicine, which rewards the hubris of eminence and actively punishes or offers subtle disincentives to anyone who question this process.”

To read Mr. Husten’s entire essay, please hit this link.

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