I could not call this week’s round up a hot list. Because I am leading off with the announcement of the death of Dr. Samuel S Thatcher, MD., Ph.D. Sam was one of the most unusual doctors that I have come across in my career in reproductive medicine. And I mean that in a good way. The men that are cut from this cloth hardly exist. They don’t run with the pack, they are patient centered, and they are painfully honest with themselves and the field that they work in. They are true advocates. I actually work for such a man. Trust me – they are rare. Losing Sam this weekend felt like a kick in the stomach. I didn’t talk to him much – but it was so good knowing that he was there.
Angie Best-Boss, his friend, author and fertility consultant wrote this beautiful obituary for Sam. It begins with these words: “A good man died yesterday. You may not have ever heard of him, unless you were one of his patients and that’s a shame, because he was, quite simply, one of the smartest, most dedicated men I’ve known”. To read the rest please go here.
Sam rest in peace – you will be missed.
Angie Best-Boss is another truth teller – and apparently her truth telling is getting some people upset. You see Angie was interviewed in The Washington Times, “Having a Baby In The Fertility Maze”. The subject? Fertility Consultants. Oh, I have been done this path before. Is there a need for “Fertility Consultants?” or not? Is this just another service? Should they be licensed? In so many ways the patient groups that we have around the country are the precursor to “Fertility Consultants”. Do you think that any of the folks on the staff have licenses in fertility? As a prominent patient voice in the field of infertility – I can tell you that the only license I hold is in education – the certificate in patient advocacy that I hold, I earned by being and doing. And it is simply hubris that fertility center’s think that they can service all of the needs of a patient. They can’t. Patient’s also need a degree of separation from the center where they can say what they feel without worrying about getting punished by the center. That’s important. So, Angie is saying what she believes to be true about the field in this article in The Washington Post – and she comments on regulation, or the lack there of in the field of reproductive medicine. In fact just last week the American Society of Reproductive Medicine held a meeting in Washington, DC to talk about the need for more oversight in the field.
But I guess that blogger, Kathy Bernado, of the Egg Donation and Surrogacy Blog didn’t hear about the meeting, because according to her, we have plenty of oversight and regulation in the field of reproductive medicine. No concerns at all where Kathy Bernado lives. Perhaps she should have made the trip to The Mandarin Hotel to talk to the fields industry leaders for at their big oversight meeting last week
Check out her blog entry ” More Myths About The Fertility Industry” Look, I have to be honest – Kathy’s blog really annoyed me. First off – it was nasty. Whenever someone start a blog by calling some “a self proclaimed ‘Fertility Planner’ – come on – pull your claws in! And second of all – it was uninformed.
But Angie didn’t need my help. Oh the dust was flying over the weekend in the blogosphere! Check out Angie’s response to the “dis”, in “The Fertility Industry’s Worst Kept Secret”.
And now I am moving on…….
Want to win a basket of fertility goodies? (how is that for a segue?) Fertility Authority is giving away a $500 gift basket if you sign up for their newsletter. Hey – why not? You got to be in it to win it! And while you are there, you are only one click away by a great blog entry by Dr. David Kreiner on one of the biggest issues in reproductive medicine – “Trying to Conceive with Clomid Therapy”.
I was also really moved this weekend, when I came across a blog called GayUganda. This blog is written by a Gay, HIV Positive Ugandan man who faces death simply by being who he is, if the new anti-gay legislation passes in Uganda. Read the blog. Comment. Let him know that there are people that care….
I am continuing to be grabbed the re occurring writing in The New York Times on the issue of female sexual desire, self image, and the female role in society. This past weekend there was a fabulous piece, “‘From ‘Vibrator’ to ‘Cougar Town’, It’s Still a Man’s World” By Patricia Cohen. Read this piece as it furthers the conversation that has begun to percolate to the surface of our collective consciousness, that there is something incredibly damaging to women when our images of our female beings are reflected back to us through the lens of male fantasies. The New York Times has done a tremendous job of bringing this topic to the public through many different types of writing this past year that have the power to be a launching pad for an entire movement. Kudos.