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Tuesday, September 6, 2016
WND's Far-Right Doc Pretends Armchair Diagnosis Is Just Like Telemedicine
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Jane Orient, head of the far-right-fringe Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, has long been a promoter of conspiracy theories about Hillary Clinton's health. She tries to justify them in a Sept. 4 WorldNetDaily column, insisting that diagnosing someone you've never examined is just like telemedicine:

A number of physicians, including me, have dared to suggest that Hillary Clinton might have a serious health problem that would affect her ability to serve as president, and they have suggested some things that it could be, based on past known diagnoses and current public observations recorded on video. All have stated that to make an actual diagnosis, you need to see the patient – and all the records.

Dr. Drew lost his TV show, and others got lambasted in the mainstream media and the Twittersphere. How dare we diagnose Mrs. Clinton without seeing her? It’s nothing but a conspiracy theory.

It’s so ironic. Patients are being diagnosed every day, and treatments prescribed – or denied – by people who have not seen the patient. There’s telemedicine, and doctors signing off on patients seen only by a “mid-level.” Then there are people with no medical training at all, making life-changing decisions about insurance coverage. Where are Hillary’s supporters when that happens? They probably say, in other contexts, that you can’t trust those greedy doctors who actually see patients and get paid for it.

No, Dr. Orient, your politically motivated armchair diagnosis of Hillary is not the same as telemedicine. Telemedicine typically involves either a prior doctor-patient relationship or the ability to communicate relevant patient health data to a teleconnected doctor -- neither of which are present in Orient's armchair diagnosis, which apparently relies mostly upon selectively edited videos and photos promoted by her fellow right-wing Hillary-haters.

Orient then attacks a doctor who, unlike her, has actually examined Hillary, nitpicking the statement she released about Hillary's health.Orient whined that Hillary's doctor did not do a "detailed neurologic exam" or an EEG on Hillary to look into her purported "seizures, a known complication of traumatic brain injury." Orient huffed: "I challenge any doctor to say that any one of these items is unimportant in a person with Mrs. Clinton’s history and recently reported signs who aspires to a position as a bus driver – or U.S. president."

Yet, in contrast to the detailed medical information Hillary's doctor released, Donald Trump's doctor issued a laughable, bizarrely worded letter that revealed no medical information whatsoever about Trump -- and Orient hasn't said a word about that, et alone demand that his doctor -- actually, a gastroenterologist who is less than qualified to speak to Trump's full health -- do the detailed physical exam she demands from Hillary.

Orient was still in trolling mode -- a odd thing for a medical professional to be in -- in her Sept. 6 WND column, in which she complains about Hillary's appearance on a late-night TV show in which she opened a pickle jar to show she's healthy. Orient mocked: "A peanut butter jar might have been a better diagnostic test. The ability (or inability) to smell peanut butter has been used as a screening test for dementia. Conditions affecting the frontal lobes also frequently affect the sense of smell."

Orient then takes some personal shots at Hillary: It was a rare appearance, and she looked like a million dollars. Not at all old, tired, frumpy, or shrill. Perhaps it was a million-dollar makeup job and voice coaching. You couldn’t tell from her face that she’s nearly 70. Any tell-tale signs of aging on the skin of her neck? Couldn’t see it, hidden behind the stand-up collar of her bright red Mao jacket. Is clothing preference diagnostic of anything? Revolutionary red, a la Mao? She does have the endorsement of the Communist Party USA (though not of Vladimir Putin)."

She didn't mention that Trump has the Putin endorsement locked up.

Orient concludes by whining: "The comedy skit is very revealing and diagnostic in a non-medical sense. It shows Hillary’s view of Americans. The joke is on us. And we’re not the ones who are laughing."

No, the joke is on anyone who thinks Orient actually cares more about Hillary's health than she does about politics. It's rather shameful for a doctor to abuse her medical privilege in such a manner.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:15 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, September 6, 2016 11:18 PM EDT

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