How to improve mental health care

Care becomes more accessible when doctors aren’t the first contact or the key holders to care

How to improve mental health careBy David Zitner and Dominic Covvey Contributors Nova Scotia Premier Tim Houston’s recent election campaign emphasized health services, including mental health. Now, federal leaders are also dedicating substantial energy during their election campaigns to discussions of health and mental health. Mistaken beliefs and our incomplete understanding of the nature of mental health problems lead to…

Put e-health systems to work to distribute COVID-19 vaccine

We must make use of our e-health technologies to manage vaccination logistics

Put e-health systems to work to distribute COVID-19 vaccineBy Dominic Covvey and David Zitner Contributors A COVID-19 vaccination is available now. However, a momentous challenge is before us: the vaccination of tens of millions of Canadians. Provincial and federal health departments have considered who should have priority for vaccination and we trust that the final version of this prioritization, informed by the science…

Trump defies the fundamentals of faith

Trump has blatantly contravened many of the commandments. He exhibits none of the qualities God teaches and which we should value

Trump defies the fundamentals of faithBy Dominic Covvey and David Zitner Contributors Both of us were raised in religious traditions, one as a Christian and the other as a Jew. The Bible has definitely affected our lives. One of us was more affected by the Old Testament, the other by the New. One even studied in a monastery, immersed in…

Health-care roadblocks stymie patients

The N.S. Health Authority lets an inefficient telephone system act as an important barrier to timely care

Health-care roadblocks stymie patientsIf there’s any way to inconvenience patients and embrace antiquated methods, the Nova Scotia Health Authority will find it. Ask the sick patients who are trying to arrange appointments with specialists, or for imaging tests or for blood work. Most enterprises try to encourage and support increased consumer access to worthwhile services. Not the Nova…

Creating an unnecessary barrier between doctors and patients

A convoluted – and doomed – communication portal in Nova Scotia has failed the health care system and its users on both sides

Creating an unnecessary barrier between doctors and patientsMost businesses encourage clients to electronically access their own information because consumers value the efficiency and convenience of electronic access. Unfortunately, the Nova Scotia Department of Health (DOH) has a different idea. It has been a successful barrier preventing most Nova Scotians from retrieving and using their own health information. Few Nova Scotians have access…

One patient, one record: the folly of Nova Scotia’s latest health plan

The plan seems to depend on methods developed in part in other countries that rank poorly for health services delivery

One patient, one record: the folly of Nova Scotia’s latest health planIs anyone surprised to learn that credit reporting agencies, Facebook and retail stores scan many sources and gather your personal information? Although many people have several credit cards, several loans and deal with many retail merchants, the credit reporting agencies have no difficulty aggregating your information, from all sources, to learn all about you. They…

The benefits of being an unlicensed medical doctor

An unlicensed doctor is free of the burden of bureaucratic make work, and can instead spend more time with a patient and keep up with medical research

The benefits of being an unlicensed medical doctorI’m now an unleashed doctor! Since I retired from a busy family medicine practice, I discovered the benefits of having an MD degree and no licence to practice. Universities confer the academic degree MD (medical doctor) on students who complete a particular set of studies. The degree is worth less than it appears, because the…

Nova Scotia increases health system complexity at the cost of actual care

Strangely, the health authority seems to believe that increasing the administrative burden on clinicians won’t decrease care

Nova Scotia increases health system complexity at the cost of actual careThe latest missive from the Nova Scotia Health Authority (NSHA) – sent to some doctors but not to the community at large – acknowledges the responsibility of the health authority for the sad state of primary care. In an April Department of Family Practice Update we see a development that imposes a costly and inefficient…

Not every mental health concern requires a doctor

Perhaps the elixir of good feeling is available at a friend’s house, at the next desk in the office, or from a partner or spouse

Not every mental health concern requires a doctorBy David Zitner and Dominic Covvey Contributors Troy Media Canadians suffer when important mental health services are unavailable or wait times are too long. Fortunately, many of us – including children, parents, other relatives and friends – may find and implement worthwhile solutions to important problems while people wait. However, some people are afraid to try.…