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Harsh on All Fronts!

Posted Jan 26 2009 4:32pm

I am often accused of being overly critical....whether it is of the Genetic Counselors, or the Physicians, or maybe the Scientists. I am definitely critical of DTC and even more so of the Medical Geneticists....


In fact, I praise each of these groups at such a low rate, that many think I am looking to isolate myself from the entire field.....I am not. I just point out problems in our backyards so that we can clean them up.....

I was told the other day by a senior Geneticist that what I had done to the Genetic Counselors had then questioning their roles. I had thrown academic genetic departments up in arms, trying to now figure out how to bill legally for what they are doing....

Is that such a bad thing? To make people accountable for what they do.....to help motivate them to lobby extra hard to get paid what they should. Rather than break the law and just exist?

I strategically pick issues and attack them. I know that it upsets most who read this blog when they hear shortcomings in their own fields.
The pediatric geneticist who gets mad because I say they don't know what Plavix is.....

The DTC company who I say is "playing doctor" without any of the liability.....

The PhD Geneticist who says that I devalue what they do......I don't I just think we need not hype every little discovery....

My point is not to keep picking on us.....it is to help motivate us towards change.....

So I now will give you a rare Atta Boy.


1.) DTC, thank you for putting genetics into the public eye. Your millions of dollars spent on PR has helped raise awareness of genetics. Misdirected as you may be, the public is now aware that we can do genetic tests.....


2.) Human Geneticists, thank you for your tireless hours of work to discover new genes and new functions. We would have nothing without you. I can understand why you are so proud of your work and why it often comes across over zealously in the news....Thank you for your efforts,


3.) Genetic Counselors, thank you for working so hard to keep our field alive. When geneticists abandoned cancer genetics and you picked up the torch we needed you most. You have kept us true to genetic principles and spoke out against great atrocities. In addition, you spoke against false advertising.......Thank you


4.) Adult Physicians, you have felt the burden of my wrath most......but guess what, you have done the greatest thing of all, you have carried on the traditions of medicine and kept primary care alive this long....Without your work we wouldn't even have a thought of Personalized Medicine. Working long hours for continuous pay cuts by insurers, you have fought to keep patients cared for. How could you have the time to learn genetics?


5.) Medical Geneticists, thank you for caring for patients with monogenic diseases, studying new ways to investigate and care for them. To the small batch of you teaching adult doctors genetics, thank you. To those teaching medical students, thank you. We need you now more than ever.


The Sherpa Says: Now don't let that get to your head, we have a lot of climbing to do, so eat a big breakfast and let's get going!
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