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Healthcare System

Taking care of your health involves choosing a doctor and understanding how to best get the care you need. This section will help you deal with these issues and provide some fun and shocking facts about the medical field.

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What are the different types of nurses?

As professions go, nursing is pretty new -- and in the mid-19th century, anyone who served as a caregiver could be considered a nurse. But today, training and certification helps set the different types apart.


How Hospice Works

Hospice is too often seen as a last resort — a sign that someone has given up on life. But it can actually be a very life-affirming service, an end to suffering and sometimes even a health improvement. See more »

Why So Many Clinical Trials Attract So Few Participants and How That Hurts Us

A huge number of clinical trials — many of which are testing life-saving drugs — languish due to low participation levels. Why is that, and what can be done? See more »

Which Medical Services Are Overused and Underused?

A series of papers showed that overuse and underuse of medical care is a global health crisis. Here's how to address it. See more »

You're Fired! AAP Backs Docs Who Refuse to Treat Kids of Anti-Vaxxers

The American Academy of Pediatrics is supporting doctors who refuse to treat children whose parents won't have them vaccinated. Good move? See more »

Can U.S. Doctors Legally Ask Patients About Gun Ownership?

Although several states have proposed legal action banning the question, only Florida has actually passed a controversial law addressing the issue. See more »

How Doctors Really Die

Despite a much-loved article that said doctors died in hospitals less frequently than their patients, new research shows no difference. See more »

Study Argues Systemic Medical Error Is Third Leading Cause of Death in U.S.

Failings of the medical system are to blame for almost 10 percent of all deaths, and it's because we're not set up to properly account for them, the study suggests. See more »

Is the Affordable Care Act Changing the Ties Between Doctors and Big Pharma?

In the U.S., drug companies can't legally pay doctors to prescribe their drugs, but they do find ways to put money in doctors' pockets. Will the ACA change this? See more »

How Do Doctors' Biases Affect Your Health Care?

Docs are no different from the rest of us — they bring their unconscious biases into the workplace. But is there a way to lessen the impact of these biases on patients? See more »

What is the future of nursing?

If Florence Nightingale illustrates the illustrious history of nurses, who will represent the future? That man or woman will have an entire new health care world to inhabit. See more »