Mayor Menino's Elbow Infection, Treated At The Brigham

Update: Mayor Menino will have to spend the night at Brigham and Women's Hospital on intravenous antibiotics while doctors monitor his skin infection, said Dr. Brandon Earp at a news conference this afternoon. Here she is on NECN.
This from Boston Mayor Menino's office:

This morning Mayor Thomas M. Menino was admitted to the orthopedic center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital to treat a septic bursitis and cellulitis of the left elbow, a skin infection that developed from a scrape the mayor sustained this weekend while in Italy. Mayor Menino is currently receiving a routine treatment of antibiotics to treat the infection. Doctors will continue to monitor the infection and Mayor Menino will be released as doctors see progress in clearing the infection. This orthopedic condition is not unusual and Mayor Menino remains in good health, expected to make a quick and complete recovery.

We truly wish Mayor Menino a quick and easy recovery, and he has been treated in the past at the Brigham. But we also cannot help noting that by choosing to be treated at the Brigham, he's doing what many of us do: going to a "brand-name," more expensive hospital for fairly routine care. (Not to single out the mayor. Sen. John Kerry had hip surgery at Mass. General, as did Gov. Deval Patrick.)

Granted, no one wants to switch providers in the midst of an acute medical problem. But still, it left us wondering: Readers, do you know of any politicians who talk about cutting health care costs and actually shop for lower-cost care? Will voters ever demand it, the way they expect education-oriented politicians to send their children to public schools?

This program aired on November 23, 2010. The audio for this program is not available.

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Carey Goldberg Editor, CommonHealth
Carey Goldberg is the editor of WBUR's CommonHealth section.



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