Resident Review  |   January 2016
A Clear and Persistent Message: You Need to Be Involved
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Central and Peripheral Nervous Systems / Education / CPD / Advocacy and Legislative Issues / Resident Review
Resident Review   |   January 2016
A Clear and Persistent Message: You Need to Be Involved
ASA Monitor 01 2016, Vol.80, 54.
ASA Monitor 01 2016, Vol.80, 54.
Welcome to the first edition of a resident newsletter article aimed at helping you in your future career as a physician anesthesiologist. While it is of great importance that we learn how to safely deliver anesthetics, it is also of great importance that all of us understand the current political, legal and economic state of our specialty. Don’t worry, we intend to explain why!
The following is a true story. A few years back, there was an anesthesiologist elected as a state senator in Michigan, and he took his job very seriously. One day, a group of motorcyclists showed up at the state capital to lobby for a law to repeal the state’s mandatory motorcycle helmet law. He immediately knew this was an absolutely terrible public health decision that would lead to an increase in head injuries, deaths, health care costs, etc. As a physician, he was compelled to speak up and so he vehemently opposed any legislation that would repeal helmet laws for bikers. What followed, however, was a persistent and well-orchestrated campaign by a small group of bikers to explain why helmets were bad. Helmets, they explained, were dangerous, and the bikers even produced a study they had commissioned that proved helmets reduced their peripheral vision and blocked important sounds out. Many of the bikers were also veterans and argued they had earned the right to ride a motorcycle without a helmet. At the end of the day, the Michigan state senate voted to REPEAL A MANDATORY MOTORCYCLE HELMET LAW, and the governor signed it into law.
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