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|Have We Lost the Art of Medicine?|
|News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition|
|Written by Ginny Grimsley|
|Monday, 25 November 2013 14:33|
Experienced Caregiver Shares 3 Tips for Injecting Humanity
into an Often Cold & Arbitrary Heath-Care System
As a well-traveled, well-educated couple who spent most of their lives in New York City, Philip and Ruth Barash had witnessed and experienced much as they approached their golden years. A savvy New York couple, they’d learned to anticipate challenges.
Philip was a U.S. Army veteran who’d served in the Korean War and later became an attorney; Ruth’s education and experience includes philosophy, art, real estate, public relations and executive-level civic work. But one problem they didn’t foresee was navigating their own country’s health-care system. In the most prominent city of the wealthiest nation on the planet, how bad could it be?
“Philip’s health problems began in 1988 and steadily continued until his death in 2012,” says Barash, who shares her health-care experiences in a new book, “For Better or Worse: Lurching from Crisis to Crisis in America’s Medical Morass,” (http://forbetterorworsebook.
“We were in and out of doctors’ offices, hospitals and emergency rooms a lot, and I was shocked by the lack of compassion we frequently encountered, as well as the number of health-care professionals who simply are not good diagnosticians.”
Barash’s cautionary tale traces her husband’s long death through a medical journey fraught with mismanagement and excess, useless interventions and a sometimes complete disregard for pain – even when there was no hope of healing.
“The art of intuitive, compassionate health care is dying as doctors rely more on technology and are guided through an arbitrary template established by insurance company policies,” she says.
Barash discusses some of the lessons she has learned while navigating overcrowded and dingy emergency room lobbies, callous staff and tech-absorbed doctors.
About Ruth Fenner Barash
Ruth Fenner Barash studied philosophy at City College of New York and did graduate work at the University of Chicago. In 1958, she met and married Philip Barash, a private practice attorney. She went on to work in public relations and real estate, served education and civic organizations at the executive level, and taught art in various media. Her long marriage was a “harmonious adventure” despite the couple’s treacherous journey through the health-care system. Her husband died in 2012.
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