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Old 08-24-2005, 08:16 AM   #1
Jeremy Jones
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Found this article on Yahoo. . .

Woman Offended by Doc's Obesity Advice

ROCHESTER, N.H. - As doctors warn more patients that they should lose weight, the advice has backfired on one doctor with a woman filing a complaint with the state saying he was hurtful, not helpful.


Dr. Terry Bennett says he tells obese patients their weight is bad for their health and their love lives, but the lecture drove one patient to complain to the state.

"I told a fat woman she was obese," Bennett says. "I tried to get her attention. I told her, 'You need to get on a program, join a group of like-minded people and peel off the weight that is going to kill you.' "

He says he wrote a letter of apology to the woman when he found out she was offended.

Her complaint, filed about a year ago, was initially investigated by a panel of the New Hampshire Board of Medicine, which recommended that Bennett be sent a confidential letter of concern. The board rejected the suggestion in December and asked the attorney general's office to investigate.

Bennett rejected that office's proposal that he attend a medical education course and acknowledge that he made a mistake.

Bruce Friedman, chairman of the board of medicine, said he could not discuss specific complaints. Assistant Attorney General Catherine Bernhard, who conducted the investigation, also would not comment, citing state law that complaints are confidential until the board takes disciplinary action.

The board's Web site says disciplinary sanctions may range from a reprimand to the revocation of all rights to practice in the state.

"Physicians have to be professional with patients and remember everyone is an individual. You should not be inflammatory or degrading to anyone," said board member Kevin Costin.

Other overweight patients have come to Bennett's defense.

"What really makes me angry is he told the truth," Mindy Haney told WMUR-TV on Tuesday. "How can you punish somebody for that?"

Haney said Bennett has helped her lose more than 150 pounds, but acknowledged that the initially didn't want to listen.

"I have been in this lady's shoes. I've been angry and left his practice. I mean, in-my-car-taking-off angry," Haney said. "But once you think about it, you're angry at yourself, not Doctor Bennett. He's the messenger. He's telling you what you already know."
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Old 08-24-2005, 09:10 AM   #2
Scott Kustes
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Political correctness at it's finest.
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Old 08-24-2005, 09:36 AM   #3
Ted Williams
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This can be summed up with a quick one liner I use at work all the time: "I hate people, people are stupid"
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Old 08-24-2005, 09:38 AM   #4
Allen Yeh
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Old 08-24-2005, 10:50 AM   #5
John Walsh
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That doc was on a talk radio program here in Boston yesterday. He was money. The guy tells is like it is and he should. It's his job. He also said he was essentialy fed up with the cost that fat people impose on society. He is 67 years old, has plenty of dough and will not subject himself to any silly sanctions anyone is trying to impose on him. Rumor has it that he's a real solid guy that goes above and beyond the call regardless of compensation.
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Old 08-24-2005, 01:19 PM   #6
Jason Steele
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Listen, the lady knows she obese, why all of the sudden does she not like it when a medical professional points it out, and goes the extra step to say he is willing to work out a program for her to lose wt? Frankly, he handled it really well, and the state medical review panel has nothing to gig him on, since bedside manner is not a matter that they will discuss. At least he didn't point blank say, "so you know you're fat right?" Kudos to him to try to fix a system that in its own right can't really be fixed.
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Old 08-24-2005, 01:54 PM   #7
Roger Harrell
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Next we're gonna get sued for telling someone they need to do more pullups... I am really, really bugged by crap like this... We are crippling the people that should be telling us what we need to know. Doctors should not have to worry about hurting people's feelings. Period.
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Old 08-24-2005, 06:00 PM   #8
Kristian Palaoro
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On a positive note, the effort the lady put forth was probably the most exercise she had seen in ages. Perhaps she will get the "I'll show him " attitude, and move herself into the state of fitness. Its a wake-up call. We're all either a little fatter, or slower, or weaker than we want to be. Maybe this is her first step, or maybe its one of her last. Natural selection at its finest.
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Old 08-24-2005, 06:37 PM   #9
Lincoln Brigham
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The medical board is willing to squash the doctor because his advice and attitude is bad for physicians. The AMA is in the disease care business, not the health care business. Healthy people are bad for business. Recurring sickness is good for business. Telling the customer what they want to hear is what is good for business.
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Old 08-24-2005, 08:53 PM   #10
Beth Moscov
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I wonder if there is more here than meets the eye though. While the doc was totally right about talking to her about health issues, he also seems to have said her love life is suffering. It really is no business of his what is happening in her love life (unless there is medical reason). She might be hanging out with one of those rare men who love obese women (they do exist - an odd fetish). I could see being offended if my doc told me that my weight made me less attractive - even if true. On the other hand, if he truly said it was just health issues, then it should fall completely under medical jurisdiction.

I always take these things with a grain of salt cause we aren't getting the full story ever.
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