Dr. Westby G. Fisher

Dr. Westby G. Fisher

Dr. Westby G. Fisher is a cardiologist at NorthShore University HealthSystem who writes regularly at Dr. Wes.

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At age 3, PPACA is bratty child. It favors the system and not the patients

At age 3, PPACA is bratty child. It favors the system and not the patients

March 28, 2013 7:33 am by | 1 Comments

It’s been three years since the Patient Protection and Accountable Care Act (PPACA) became law. There have been widely divergent opinions published by journalists on the impact of the law…


My grand sweeping predictions for heart docs, devices and patients in 2013

My grand sweeping predictions for heart docs, devices and patients in 2013

December 27, 2012 8:02 am by | 0 Comments

Cardiovascular predictions  for next year are always fun to contemplate this time of year. So much is happening to the practice of medicine as we’ve known it that it can be helpful…



Routine of work means fixing one old heart while watching others break

Routine of work means fixing one old heart while watching others break

December 17, 2012 7:59 am by | 0 Comments

I believe that every human soul is teaching something to someone nearly every minute here in mortality. – M. Russell Ballard Aside from being a bit warmer than usual, it…


December surprise: New tax on docs to pay for … the war on drugs

December surprise: New tax on docs to pay for … the war on drugs

December 11, 2012 8:16 am by | 1 Comments

If you want to get more money for government programs, tax the “rich” doctors – the same doctors that are enjoying (and have experienced the delays in payment caused by) the joys of the annual doc fix and who are trying to figure out how to cope with Obamacare.


The end of our healthcare Happy Meal

The end of our healthcare Happy Meal

December 10, 2012 9:28 am by | 0 Comments

With the publication in the New York Times of how taxes would be affected because of the Affordable Care Act, our health care Happy Meal was officially pulled from the…


An inside look at AliveCor’s iPhone ECG case

An inside look at AliveCor’s iPhone ECG case

December 7, 2012 8:41 am by | 1 Comments

By now, this news is relatively old: AliveCor’s innovative ECG Case for the iPhone created by Dr. Dave Alpert, MD  received FDA approval.  But for something this innovative, it’s never…


Subcutaneous ICD: A lesson in FDA approval

Subcutaneous ICD: A lesson in FDA approval

November 28, 2012 3:10 pm by | 0 Comments

This week, a nice article in the Boston Globe appeared on Boston Scientific’s subcutaneous implantable cardiac defibrillator (S-ICD)  that recently received FDA approval.  It was a fairly balanced article, one that…



Mixing iPhones and EMRs might be a fatal combination

Mixing iPhones and EMRs might be a fatal combination

November 23, 2012 7:50 am by | 0 Comments

An interesting collision of doctor’s privacy rights and patient’s privacy rights can occur in our new world of mobile health care computing, thanks to a kill switch present inside Apple’s iPhone.


Hacked heart rate monitor plays music to your heart rate

Hacked heart rate monitor plays music to your heart rate

November 22, 2012 8:42 am by | 0 Comments

Now there’s an idea for a new exercise game that links your heart rate with the tempo of the music.


How one Oklahoma surgery center is disrupting the healthcare cost status quo

How one Oklahoma surgery center is disrupting the healthcare cost status quo

November 20, 2012 7:00 am by | 1 Comments

In Oklahoma, a startling example of how price transparency could disrupt health care bureaucracies as we know them. No wonder Illinois is a Certificate-of-Need state – it prevents any real…


Look AHEAD trial shows eating right and exercising may not solve our health problems

Look AHEAD trial shows eating right and exercising may not solve our health problems

November 1, 2012 8:30 am by | 1 Comments

A study of overweight adults with diabetes showed no difference in outcomes between an education group and an exercise group. Why will no one talk about this study?


Pumpkin didn’t survive surgery gone bad

Pumpkin didn’t survive surgery gone bad

October 31, 2012 11:22 am by | 0 Comments

It’s not every day that you can see an open heart surgery on the porch.


There may be way more medical school graduates than residency positions by 2015

There may be way more medical school graduates than residency positions by 2015

October 22, 2012 8:10 am by | 3 Comments

While medical schools have increased their medical school positions by about 30%, residency slots have increased at only 8%. Future doctors may have to pay for their residency if these numbers don’t balance out.


Who benefits from selling the idea of hospital-based killing?

Who benefits from selling the idea of hospital-based killing?

September 26, 2012 1:33 pm by | 1 Comments

It is trendy now to talk about how dangerous hospitals are to patients. However, these fear tactics are not without their costs to patients and the proposed solutions for our “current crisis” are actually quite thorny.


What’s the best way to avoid Medicare readmission penalties? Stop trying

What’s the best way to avoid Medicare readmission penalties? Stop trying

September 17, 2012 7:17 am by | 2 Comments

As a cardiac electrophysiologist, I’m pretty far removed from public policy.  But I have to admit that I was interested in the latest move by CMS to cut their Medicare…