Our One Great Idea series features a health care suggestion this week. The suggestion comes from Alexander R. Vaccaro, M.D., Ph.D., Professor and Attending Surgeon of Orthopaedics and Neurosurgery at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. He is board certified in Orthopaedic Surgery and is the Vice Chairman of the Department of Orthopaedics.
Here is a transcript of the video in which Dr. Vaccaro offers his idea:
My name is Alex Vaccaro, I'm a spine surgeon at the Rothman Institute, I'm a professor of orthopedics and neurosurgery, and I have probably the greatest idea to bring health care to the masses. We are a medical city, like Boston: Boston, Cleveland, Philadelphia... The problem is, patients don't have access. Are you sitting around and you have neck pain, back pain, elbow pain, and you just want to talk about it to someone? You don't want to get in the car, drive to the inner city, park your car, and see a doctor. How about having a town hall once a month where every specialty gets out, has a group of ten to fifteen doctors in that specialty - just talk to the people, we'll answer any questions you want... It's not treating a patient with a problem, just discussing problems.
We will do that on a volunteer basis. I would love, from an orthopedic perspective, to sit down with little kids or grandparents and talk about whatever problems they have, and then they could say, "You know something? I need to see a doctor." Or, "You know, this is a common problem. I probably don't have to see anybody." People tend to behave better and take better care of themselves if they're educated about their bodies. We know the simple things - don't smoke, don't drink, don't eat too much - but there are so many other things about vitamins, exercises, when not to overdo it, when to get more active, what you need to do before childbirth to make sure you have a healthy baby ...