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A roundup of various postings and essays that recently grabbed my attention:

MinnPost’s new health care blog, Second Opinion, takes a look at the myths that have persisted about the U.S. health care system. Blogger Susan Perry starts with the claim that health care in the U.S. is the best in the world. The next entry in this series addresses the uninsured (scroll down to find it).

– Weight is becoming synonymous with health – but is this really the best approach for patients? Dr. Meg Reitmeyer muses on "scale obsessional disorder" and how it’s altering our perception of good health. A sample quote from her essay in the current issue of Medical Economics: "The reality is that the scale is a poor surrogate for the overall health of a patient, yet each pound becomes a marker of victory or defeat."

– What is it like to have diabetes and be forced to deal with comments such as "diabetes is from eating too much sugar" or "diabetics are the reason for increased health care costs"? Kerri Morrone Sparling at Six Until Me tackles this issue in Stereotypes: We Haz Them. There are also some great perspectives in the comment thread.

– This story from Kaiser Health News examines the perspective of small-business owners: They want relief from the high cost of health care, but they don’t agree on how to get there.

– What should you do if you’re a doctor or nurse and you discover a patient – or someone in the patient’s family – has been blogging about the care being provided? What if the blog criticizes you? What if it’s inaccurate or names individual providers? A recent "case of the month" at the Kenneth B. Schwartz Center explores this thorny issue and the ethical challenges it presents.

– Finally, for a look at world health past and present, check out the online photo collection of the World Health Organization. The WHO has put together a special exhibit, "Picturing Health: 35 Years of Photojournalism at WHO." It’s a fascinating collection of historic photos that capture international health programs ranging from urban health to medical education.

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