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More Responsibility Means The Right to be Informed

Helping patients and readers to become more responsible for their own health decisions is one of the key elements in my vision for transforming the sorry excuse that passes for health care in this country -- addicted to quick-fix drugs and ''cures'' -- to a safer and more effective one focused on treating and preventing the underlying causes of disease.

But how can you make more informed decisions about your health if you don't know what options are available? That's the gist of an interesting piece posted yesterday on Herbalist.com that proposes federal legislation to protect a patient's right to be informed about the potential consequences of allopathic treatments doctors may prescribe.

If this principle sounds familiar, it should since it's based on the 40-year-old Supreme Court decision that led to the Miranda warning that protects crime suspects from self-incrimination.

In the case of patients and medical professionals, almost always, the latter has the upper hand in any medical decisions, particularly on the allopathic side that can often be prone to bias, at the expense of your future health.

This thoughtful, must-read piece outlines a "bill of rights" that would guarantee a patient's right to know about the array of treatments -- natural and allopathic -- as well as the risks and rewards.

Herbalist.com January 5, 2006 Free Full Text Article

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