To your point, all the issues are related. I do get passionate about the medical piece if for no other reason than as a veteran, with the exception of my PCP who is a nurse who runs marathons, I run into a slew of physicians who do not (for a lot of reasons) keep up with the research. This isn’t entirely their fault, but their arrogance and self-righteousness are their fault. When you and I walk in with plenty of research under our arms, the initial knee-jerk reaction is “who the hell do you think you are?” Well, having been nearly killed my several docs while under the knife (I’m a hemophiliac and the doctors called me “hysterical” under I very nearly bled to death) and having been given diagnoses that were completely off the mark, told to take meds or get extreme procedures that had nothing to do with what was really wrong (again I was proven right), I have little to no faith in our medical system. I’ve written elsewhere about this, G, and it has a great deal to do with how women, especially older women, are treated in our system. This doesn’t say that there aren’t good docs, because there are. One that I work with is down in Albuquerque but she doesn’t take insurance and she uses a number of holistic processes. She also gets lots of results, in part because she invests the emotional time with her patients. Since I’ve done stories on her patients I’m aware of what healed them- and to a person, man or woman, all of them give credit to her personal investment in their health, her willingness to not know. That’s not common. I trust a doctor who, in our initial discussion, admits s/he doesn’t know yet. I do NOT trust a doctor who looks at my age, hears one symptom and proclaims what I have. That has happened more often than not, especially at the VA where the docs are far more accustomed to dealing with cranky old men rather than an athlete who just happens to be 66 and female. As in all fields, there is a bell curve. If we’re lucky, we find the good ones at the top. There are plenty of doctors who barely made it through med school but who are practicing anyway.