September 27, 2007, - 10:18 am

Just Hope She’s Never Your Doctor

By Debbie Schlussel
Well, you didn’t see this issue in Michael Moore’s “Sicko.” But if this becomes a trend, it will be a problem.
Sophie Currier, a Harvard medical student, sued the National Board of Medical Examiners after it turned down her request to take more than the standard 45-minute break during the 9-hour medical licensing exam. Why?

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Well, she needs a lot more time to pump breast milk to feed her 4-month-old daughter. This, despite the fact that the board offered to allow her to bring a breast pump into the exam room and to provide her with a private room in which to express milk during breaks. Would you want your doctor doing this while she operated on you?
And while a smart trial court sided with the medical board, citing the need for equal treatment (other nursing moms have found the 45-minute break adequate and have taken and passed the exam), a Massachusetts Appeals Court judge overtuned the decision. Currier will now get even more time.
Here’s part of Mass. Appeals Court Judge Gary Katzmann’s absurd pronouncement:

In order to put the petitioner on equal footing as the male and non-lactating female examinees, she must be provided with sufficient time to pump breast milk and to address the same physiological and other functions to which those examinees are able to attend.

PUH-LEEZE. This is not about “equal footing.” It’s about EXTRA footing. Hope you never hear this kind of thing while your under anesthesia on an operating table.
Add to that the fact that Currier, who already has a 22-month-old son, already has received more time allowances for the exam, under the Americans with Disabilities Act for her dyslexia and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. Because of that, she already has permission to take the test over two days, instead of just one, like most licensed doctors in Massachusetts. Talk about chutzpah. (A couple of years or so ago, ABC News ran an in-depth investigative piece on the growing number of high school, college, and grad students who go doctor shopping to get these excuses for diseases and, thus, extra time to take standardized exams.)
So my question is this: What will “Doctor” Currier do when she is in the middle of a complicated, 9-hour surgery? Will she tell the patient that he/she must sit on the operating table with clamps and open body cavity for several hours or an extra day, while she pumps breast milk and attends to her dyslexia and ADD?
Again, hope that women with breast-milk-pumping time allowances and other doctors-to-be with alleged ADD and dyslexia problems don’t ever come near your body . . . or the operating table.
This kind of legal decision and extra allowance gives us more reason to choose male doctors. No-one wants to risk “healthcare” from an affirmative action provider like Currier.

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7 Responses

“This kind of legal decision and extra allowance gives us more reason to choose male doctors. No-one wants to risk “healthcare” from an affirmative action provider like Currier.”
Exactly. Affirmative action not only allows women and minorities (especially) to engage in professions for which they are less or un-qualified, but it casts doubt on the qualifications and abilities of ALL women and minorities in these professions.
For this reason, it is simple prudence to avoid black and hispanic and foreign-born doctors. However, this story is an anomaly. White women doctors (like Currier) generally get few AA advantages, so their average quality remains high. Also, Asians, of course.
Studies show that in both medical school and law school, blacks and hispanics consistently come out at or near the bottom of their classes. Yes, there are exceptions. However, under the regime of affirmative action, you cannot be confident that minorities have “earned” their credentials. If given the choice, why run the risk?

RepublicanPatriot on September 27, 2007 at 11:14 am

Oh, please. This is the most absurd thing I have ever heard, and it makes me angry and disgusted.
I gave birth during the first month I was in nursing school (yeah, yeah, my baby was “unplanned.”) I nursed him for three months, but I was away from him for 9 hour days, three days a week. I pumped on my lunch break and put the milk in the school refrigerator after first obtaining permission. It was no big deal. He took a bottle from his child care provider when he was not with me.
This woman is an idiot. She shows extremely poor judgment; not a good trait in a physician-to-be. Not to mention narcissism and immaturity . . .

AmericanJewess on September 27, 2007 at 2:13 pm

RepublicanPatriot, you raise up an interesting issue worthy of discussion. However, have you come across any studies that show a correlation between class rank and actual professional success, especially in the medical field? I only ask because of an article I read in the AMA Journal a while a back that stated that some of the nation’s best surgeons didn’t exactly graduate in the top half of their medical school class. They just had the “gift” as they called it. For example, remember that neurosurgeon that was featured on 60 Minutes a few years back who was regarded as the top brain surgeon in the country yet graduated last in his med school class?
I’d also be curious to see the college GPAs of some of our nations top trial attorneys, generals, business leaders etc. Last I heard, the average undergraduate GPA of Fortune 500 CEOs was 2.75 on a 4.0 scale. Not exactly stellar, but I doubt their college class ranking could measure such things are drive, leadership, management skills, business acumen etc. I also wonder how many wealthy entrepreneurs out there were poor students?
RepublicanPatriot, I understand your concerns with affirmative action and as the son of a schoolteacher, I by no means want to downplay academic and intellectual attainment. And you are correct when you say that affirmative action has branded Black professionals (many times unfairly) with a question mark. But the issues you raised open up another can of worms….does class ranking correlate to professional success? And doesn’t graduating from a Med School or Law school mean you’ve earned your credentials?
Oh….I almost forgot…I’m against extra break time for the Med Student listed above!

JibberJabber on September 27, 2007 at 2:39 pm

Debbie,
Not sure if you monitor postings, but your link directs to:
Bad “Flight Plan”: Jodie Foster Film Defames Air Marshals, Flight Attendants
From 2005.

eloopd on September 27, 2007 at 3:06 pm

She what? She’s to be a physician, perhaps surgeon, with Dyslexia and ADHD? My how things change….long ago I was disqualified from Helicopter flight school at Fort Rucker because I have flat feet. Not disqualification from infantry mind you, but flying. I was also not invited to play football for the U of Wisconsin, due to the simple fact I sucked at football, unlike my roomate who was on scholarhsip and deservedly so with his football and academic skills (4.0 as Math & Physics major).
Life is so unfair….now somebody risks treatment by a doctor who has difficulty reading and can’t pay attention. Splendidly vomitous fur sur.

Zoyadog on September 27, 2007 at 3:24 pm

Thanks for the heads-up on this poor excuse of a physician. Dyslexia and ADHD?? Doesn’t that disqualify one, temperament-wise? Shouldn’t it? There better be full disclosure before she gets near a patient or there should be a lawsuit. No one in their right mind would see this affirmative action product.
Well, I doubt she would be anything more than a GP at an HMO like Kaiser Permanente. They like the dim bulbs. But still, beware.

lexi on September 27, 2007 at 11:16 pm

Shades of George Gilder. He predicted it all. As women dominate a field, prestige and pay and quality all go down. Men, as a rule, have these ‘awful’ competitive drives to be breadwinners, successes and when asked why they work – will reach for the wallet photo of their wife and kids.

poetcomic1 on May 29, 2008 at 1:11 pm

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