Stories written by Sean Price

Talk to Your Patients About: Meningococcal B - 06/17/2019

Texas Medicine recently highlighted Meningococcal B, a bacterial infection that can affect the blood, brain, and spinal cord with lasting effects like learning difficulties, hearing loss, or limb amputation. The Meningococcal B vaccine is relatively new, having won Food and Drug Administration approval in 2014.


Talk to Patients About: Meningococcal B - 06/03/2019

Meningococcal B (MenB) vaccine is the new kid on the block for children and adolescents, having won Food and Drug Administration approval in 2014. This presents a problem for physicians: Because there is an older vaccine for the other types of meningococcal bacteria, many patients who’ve had that vaccine wrongly believe they’re also protected against MenB.


Working Toward Wellness: TMA’s Physician Health and Wellness Exchange Tackles Burnout - 05/28/2019

TMA’s Physician Health and Wellness Exchange helps physicians find ways to fight burnout.


What’s Killing Texans? Fixing Texas' System for Tracking Deaths - 05/28/2019

Distorted death statistics inaccurately portray how people are dying, with significant public health implications. System changes and physician education could help.


A Growing Problem: Childhood Obesity Could Hamper Military Readiness - 05/28/2019

Childhood obesity has become so widespread in the U.S. that it threatens military readiness, but bills currently moving through the Texas Legislature could help alleviate the problem, according to a pair of state lawmakers.


Changing the Conversation about Addiction - 05/24/2019

Drug addiction is a chronic medical disease, and stigma about it is keeping millions of Americans – including the growing number who suffer with opioid addiction – from getting proper medical treatment, one of the nation’s foremost addiction specialists told the closing general session audience at TexMed 2019 in Dallas.


Digital Tools Improve Patient-Physician Communication, Says Seattle Mama Doc - 05/24/2019

Technologies like smart phones and social media can benefit physicians and make their jobs easier by spreading accurate, helpful medical information, the physician-blogger better known as Seattle Mama Doc told the opening session audience at TexMed 2019. But if physicians don’t use those technologies more aggressively, they risk letting other, less-reputable voices become the chief information sources for patients.


Don Read, MD, Receives TMA’s Highest Award Posthumously - 05/22/2019

The Texas Medical Association's House of Delegates last week gave the association's highest award to the late Don Read, MD, a Dallas colon and rectal surgeon who had served as the organization's 151st president. Dr. Read died in March after a year-and-a-half-long battle with cancer, so the award was given posthumously.


Talk to Your Patients About: Hepatitis B - 05/14/2019

Texas Medicine recently highlighted Hepatitis B, a viral liver infection that spreads through contact with blood and other bodily fluids. Hepatitis B has two stages: acute and chronic. The acute stage is often symptomless, making the disease easy to spread unknowingly. The acute stage normally resolves within six months. But if it becomes chronic, the condition can cause lifelong health problems like cirrhosis (scarring of the liver) and liver failure.


Talk to Patients About: Hepatitis B - 04/30/2019

There are six different vaccines for hepatitis B in the United States, so there’s no shortage of tools to prevent it. Yet in 2016, more than 1,698 people in this country – and more than 780,000 worldwide – died from this viral liver infection, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization.


Out of the Shadows - 04/22/2019

Lubbock physicians shine a light on sex trafficking and get victims needed care.


Talk to Patients About: Tetanus - 04/17/2019

Almost all U.S. tetanus cases occur among people who are unvaccinated or did not receive a booster shot, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


Pushing the Envelope: Match Day, Medicine’s Rite of Passage - 04/17/2019

On March 15, more than 200 medical school seniors, as well as their friends and family, gathered outdoors in Webber Plaza behind the McGovern Medical School at UTHealth in Houston. The students were about to learn where they’d be doing their residency training.


Most Valuable Team: Managing Nonphysician Staff Efficiently Can Boost Patient Care and Bottom Line - 04/17/2019

Because state laws and insurer billing requirements governing physician delegation and supervision can be tricky to navigate, practices must stay up to date to avoid potential penalties.


Taking Medicine's Temperature: TMA's 2018 Survey of Texas Physicians - 04/17/2019

TMA’s 2018 Survey of Texas Physicians asked members about their legislative priorities, payer relationships, and practice environment, scope of practice concerns, and much, much more. TMA conducted the email survey in monthly installments between January and August 2018. Here are some highlights.


Medicine’s Soft-Spoken Champion: TMA Past President Don Read, MD, Dies After Cancer Battle - 04/16/2019

TMA Past President Don Read, MD, died March 21 after a short battle with cancer.


Searching for a Better Online Reputation - 04/15/2019

What people see on the internet can bring in — or drive away — patients. But most physicians are not trained in either communications or digital technology, and so have little understanding of the financial impact of search engines, social media, and review sites.


Talk to Your Patients About: Tetanus - 04/08/2019

The April issue of Texas Medicine highlights tetanus, which causes painful spasms that typically occur in jaw muscles but can wrack the entire body, and can be fatal.


Borders Without Enough Doctors: El Paso Physicians Volunteer Care for Asylum-Seekers - 04/02/2019

Dr. Gutierrez is part of a small group of El Paso physicians who provide volunteer medical care at the city’s 18 shelters for asylum-seekers entering the United States through the Texas border. What started in October 2018 as a local, ad hoc way to address health care needs among the steady stream of immigrants is gradually turning into a statewide — even national — network of volunteer physicians.


AIMing to Save Lives: More Standardized Care Could Bring Down Texas' Maternal Death Rate - 03/28/2019

Texas’ maternal death rate is still high, and public health officials are betting that more standardized care will bring it down with guidelines set up by the Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health (AIM).


Rural Residencies: Texas Tech’s Rural Training Track Brings More Physicians to Small Towns - 03/26/2019

In all his dreams about becoming a doctor, Ivan Becerra, MD, never imagined he’d lead a cesarean section delivery during just his second year of residency. Yet last August, that’s exactly what he was doing at Pecos County Memorial


The Deal's Off: Baylor, Memorial Hermann Opt to Skip Merger - 03/12/2019

Many health care companies have merged in recent years, but nothing symbolized the high-dollar, high-stakes nature of the trend like the proposed $14 billion merger of Texas health care giants Baylor Scott & White Health in Dallas and Memorial Hermann Health System in Houston. But then officials from both health care systems abruptly called off the deal today.


Talk To Your Patients About: Mumps - 03/11/2019

The March issue of Texas Medicine highlights mumps, which spreads easily through sneezing and coughing, or just touching infected surfaces. A vaccine, first introduced in 1967, reduced U.S. cases by 99 percent, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


Prescription for Addiction: Primary Care Plays Bigger Role in Treating Substance Abuse - 03/11/2019

When primary care physicians step in to fill this treatment voids for substance-use disorder, research shows that good things happen.


The Making of a Med School - 03/11/2019

Building more medical schoos might seem like an obvious answer to the doctor shortage, especially because medical schools can bring other benefits to a community beyond producing physicians, including prestige, high-paying jobs, and improved health care services. But not everyone is a fan of the idea, and starting one from scratch is complicated. Some have struggled more than others to get established, mostly because of funding.