Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Washington Post article on med school woo misses the point

I’ve often fumed and ranted about how mainstream medical institutions--- journals, hospitals and medical schools---embrace quackery. Although it may serve no purpose other than to vent my spleen I try and do my meager part in the battle against pseudoscience by exposing it when I see it in hopes that some how, some day, the thought leaders of mainstream medicine will catch my outrage.

The deplorable trend is increasing, and the latest report comes from the Washington Post. Unfortunately the article, linked by Kevin M.D. and the WSJ Health Blog, seems to miss the point (italics mine):

While CAM and conventional medicine have long held each other at arm's length, major medical schools have begun to incorporate information about these non-conventional techniques into their curricula. The idea is that doctors need to know about CAM -- if only to keep up with what their patients are already doing to heal themselves.

Unfortunately that doesn’t seem to be the only reason medical schools are introducing CAM into their curricula. Not by a long shot. I’ve been monitoring this trend for a good while now and have cited example after outrageous example of promotion of pseudoscience and quackery by medical schools. If my compelling anecdotes aren’t convincing, survey data published in the journal Academic Medicine indicate that the teaching of CAM in medical schools is overwhelmingly promotional and uncritical. That’s what the Washington Post article left out.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you. That was fabulous.