Time To Pivot: Science Leaders (not government relations dept.’s) Must Assert Control and Republican Leaders Must Dump Norquist.

Posted on | October 31, 2012 | No Comments

Mike Magee

As we have seen over the past few days, science matters and Americans care for each other. Regarding science, you can deny the truth (as some have done with global warming), but that doesn’t change the reality. It simply delays dealing with it and makes us all more vulnerable to forces we might better control and manage.

Whether it’s the conspicuous silence around Akin’s “legitimate rape” or clear harm to the planetary patient, we have a right to expect our medical and scientific leaders to speak loudly, even if a guy is on the Congressional Science and Technology committee. And we have a right to expect Americans to care for Americans as they have with Hurricane Sandy – witness Governor Christie’s close partnership with President Obama in the response to Sandy in NJ. So much for cooperation and compromise being dirty words!

This has undeniably been a period of great challenges and we’re one week away from a critical election. We’re all tied up in knots coming to grips with the fact that the world has changed quicker than our ability to accomodate those changes. It’s catch-up time. But first we have to break free. Here are three steps for science and governmental leaders that will help move us in the right direction.

I. Expose Grover Norquist: Listen to Steve Croft’s interview on 60 Minutes of this guy who has 270 + elected officials tied up in knots as he hides behind a forced insipid smile. Who gave him this power? To answer that question you’d have to know where his money comes from.  Grover is shriveling as we speak.  With a little help from a few courageous leaders, he will fold like bullies do and 270+ elected officials will have enough political cover to break the “pledge” to Grover and do what they were elected to do – govern and use their God given intelligence and range of skills to govern.

II. Insist that Medical and Scientific Leaders Engage In Public Discourse On Record: We can no longer afford to have our major leaders of medical associations and health professional schools stand quiet in the face of scientific lies and misinformation. I know they have government relations plans. But their commitment to the public must take precedence. If you are a dean or a elected association president, or a hospital CEO, you must have the courage of your conviction to go public when scientific knowledge is trashed – even if it makes your guy in Washington or at the state house go ballistic.

III. Listen to Nurses: If you want to know the direction of change, nurses are sentinel. They are both providers and consumers of health and understand human potential. Their opinions reflect what is possible right now or in the near future. For example, here are some of the opinions of over 300+ nursing students from a Midwest Nursing School surveyed this year as part of our Healthy Person Project.

Health Visions Survey Results:

● The future epicenter of our preventive health care system should be:

Hospital            6%

Doctor’s Office  15%

Home               79%

●  Members of the family who serve as family caregivers for parents/grandparents or children/grandchildren should receive support from the health care system as:

Health Providers     4%

Health Consumers   5%

Both                     91%

●  Electronic health records should reside with the:

Doctor           26%

Hospital         31%

Individual      39%

Employer        0%

Government    3%

●  With appropriate privacy protections, I would be willing to share my complete Personal Health Record including Family History, Past Medical History, and future DNA testing results with: (check all that apply)

My Employer                                  9%

My Insurer                                    19%

The Government                              9%

My Doctor, Nurse and Care Team    99%

My Pharmacy                                 50%

My Hospital                                    69%

●  I believe strict enforcement of environmental standards for clean air and water, and management of global warming, is essential to assure optimal health of all Americans.

Strongly Agree      53%

Agree                   35%

Not Sure                7%

Disagree                4%

Strongly Disagree   2%

●  I believe health care is a human right and should be universally available to all Americans.

Strongly Agree      49%

Agree                   34%

Not Sure               11%

Disagree                5%

Strongly Disagree   1%

VOTE. LEAD. PROSPER. Trust the people and the people caring for the people!

For Health Commentary, I’m Mike Magee

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