Month: August 2020

Racism in Healthcare

admin

27 August 2020

Hi, thank you for coming back for the latest edition of Beyond Primary Cares blog; How Racism in Healthcare. In Beyond Primary Care blogs I highlight healthy and fun recipes, healthcare news, advice for medical conditions, as well as how membership for care works! Dr. Jeff O’Boyle is the owner of Beyond Primary Care, which is an insurance free, membership based family medicine and addiction medicine clinic. Beyond Primary Care is the only Direct Care clinic serving patients in Ann Arbor and throughout Washtenaw, Livingston, and Wayne County giving families and employers peace of mind with healthcare costs by providing affordable, accessible, and authentic primary care services.

The primary purpose of the blog is to introduce healthy lifestyle concepts and answer common questions I receive from patients that I believe are important. I want to start discussions that will help educate, benefit, and improve your well-being. 

In this blog post, I wanted to update my patients and any prospective patients on important discussions to have anytime, but especially now and that is:

Racism in Healthcare

Black lives matter. Black lives matter to us as physicians, community members, and more importantly as fellow humans. I acknowledge that the medical system has repeatedly treated the African American community in ways that lead to unacceptable health outcomes. 

Race is a social construct used to separate humans based on the amount of melanin- the amount of pigment- in their skin. We see racism on the other end of the melanin spectrum as well, when individuals produce little or no melanin- a condition called albinism. Race is one of many societal constructs that have systematically oppressed and marginalized groups of people including but not limited to:

  • Immigrants
  • LGBTQ
  • The most visible at this time, the African American community 

Health Disparities

Data demonstrates that African American women and infants have increased rates of death in childbirth. African Americans have lower life expectancy. More recently African Americans have been disproportionally killed by the Covid-19 pandemic. 

This is due to many factors. We recognize that healthcare workers carry implicit biases that affect the quality of the care they provide, oftentimes unconsciously. In the past, there have been more blatant racists efforts undertaken by the healthcare system,- the Tuskegee Syphilis Study being an egregious example of such shortcomings.

While in medical school, I actively participated in small group sessions aimed at recognizing and addressing medically underserved populations. Accessing basic needs is difficult for minority populations- people like:

  • Migrant farm workers
  • Prison populations
  • Individuals struggling with substance abuse and addictive behaviors
  • Individuals lacking financial and medical literacy
  • People without safe and affordable housing, etc..

All of these scenarios contribute to poorer health outcomes that affect minority communities the hardest.

The Point Of This Blog Post

One of my favorite medical educators- a Jack McFarland doppelganger- use to tell me and everyone:

“There are no mistakes, just educational opportunities.”

In the spirit of “Dr. Jack”, please do interpret this post as a way to place blame or to shame any group of individuals into defensive posture, but to elevate the discussion surrounding the increasing permeating manner that racism is affecting, and will continue to affect large parts of our community.

Moving Towards A Better Future

We recognize that racism exists. We also recognize that we, the people of Ann Arbor, greater Michigan, and this great nation must unite together to form meaningful solutions. Beyond Primary Care is committed to doing our small part by continuously pushing the status quo of healthcare to become more inclusive and more mindful of the catastrophic financial effects our current healthcare system has on those who are most vulnerable. 

It’s small, but it’s what we can do well and what we promise to do for those in our care.

Thank you for reading.

– Dr. Jeff O’Boyle with Beyond Primary Care

Where Can I Find A Sublocade Doctor In Michigan?

admin

7 August 2020

Hi, thank you for coming back for the latest edition of Beyond Primary Cares blog; Where can I find a Sublocade Doctor in Michigan. In Beyond Primary Care blogs I highlight healthy and fun recipes, healthcare news, advice for medical conditions, as well as how membership for care works! Dr. Jeff O’Boyle is the owner of Beyond Primary Care, which is an insurance free, membership based family medicine and addiction medicine clinic. Beyond Primary Care is the only Direct Care clinic serving patients in Ann Arbor and throughout Washtenaw, Livingston, and Wayne County giving families and employers peace of mind with healthcare costs by providing affordable, accessible, and authentic primary care services.

The primary purpose of the blog is to introduce healthy lifestyle concepts and answer common questions I receive from patients that I believe are important. I want to start discussions that will help educate, benefit, and improve your well-being. 

In this blog post, I wanted to answer a common question…

Where can I find a Sublocade doctor in Michigan?

First, Sublocade Explained

Sublocade is a brand name medication available by prescription only from physicians or other professionals with a special Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) license. Sublocade is actually injectable Buprenorphine, one of the active medications in brand name medications such as Suboxone and Zubsolv. This medication is delivered directly to the physician’s office, and is typically given every 28 days- roughly once a month.

Sublocade is injected by a physician as a liquid right under the skin in a patient’s abdominal area. Once inside someone’s body, it turns into a solid gel that gradually releases buprenorphine at a controlled rate all month.

What is Sublocade used for?

Sublocade is used to treat opioid addiction, a type of substance use disorder that is classified as a neurobiological disease. Addiction has genetic, psychosocial, and environmental factors influencing its development and manifestations. 

A great way to think of how opioids and the medication works is to imagine your brain has a bunch of empty ice cream cones on it- we’ll call these ‘receptors.’ When the ice cream- we’ll call these ‘opioids,’ enters the space by the brain, they normally fit right into the empty cone. Unless you have a dairy allergy or are lactose intolerant, this will feel really good for most people. 

This same mechanism is what happens for opioids (pills, drugs) in the brain, when they result in a release of Dopamine creating a sense of pleasure and reward.

Sublocade and the medication in it, buprenorphine, attaches to those ice cream cones making other scoops of ice cream less likely to park. 

Why Sublocade Is Important

The simple answer is this medication is a method of harm reduction against opioid use disorder, and it saves lives. I previously talked about what ‘harm reduction’ is in a post about The Sinclair Method here.

According to the Centers for Disease Control:

  • 40% of overdose deaths are due to natural opioids such as morphine and codeine or semisynthetic opioids such as oxycodone or hydrocodone
  • 15% of overdose deaths are attributed to synthetic opioids such as fentanyl
  • 10% of overdose deaths are attributed to methadone
  • 35% of overdose deaths are attributed to heroin

While on Sublocade, individuals will receive a continual delivery of the medication buprenorphine all month, and it only requires a once-monthly injection by a trained physician. 

This is important. 

Why? The injection takes out any compliance issues for many folks battling opioid addiction such as:

  • Forgetting doses
  • Missing doses
  • Losing medication

The injection also results in a safer community through less diversion of the Buprenorphine films or tablets. 

Where to find Sublocade Doctors in Michigan

You can always click through the Sublocade website and look for providers that way. In addition to being a board certified family medicine doctor, I am also a board certified addiction doctor. I utilize buprenorphine products such as Sublocade, Suboxone, and Zubsolv at my clinic, Beyond Primary Care in Ann Arbor, Michigan. I use an eclectic and personalized approach towards assessing and resolving your life changes and stressors. Not a ‘cookie cutter’ one size fits all plan. In addition to a thorough health history, I am going to ask about your family, where your quality of life is being most affected, and—most importantly—what you want to do.

Reach Out For Help

If you think some health concerns of what you may be experiencing may be due to excessive opioid consumption, or if you notice any coworkers, friends, or family members silently struggling, send them a link to this post so that they can join the conversation!

You can also contact Dr. O’Boyle directly. I look forward to hearing from you!