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All I Want for Christmas:
A Christmas Wish List

By Dr. Peter W. Kujtan, B.Sc., M.D., Ph.D.

Article printed on page 14 in the December 20-21, 2008 issue of The Mississauga News under the feature: Health, Wellness & Beauty, Medicine Matters.
Portrait of Dr. Peter W. Kujtan, supplied 2005
Dr. Peter W. Kujtan

It is no secret that I believe in Santa Claus. The spirit of Christmas is all around us. It is just a matter of being able to spot it. My Wish List is a little different from most people, but as a community, we are capable of miracles.

Dear Santa:

Here are a few things I hope you might consider to put under my tree.

1.   I wish for results ordered by physicians I've never heard of, in places I may not venture to, to magically arrive the next day just as the whole world keeps telling my patients that they will. Remember, results are not opinions and diagnoses, they are only results. All physicians are responsible to review and act on tests, which they order for patients.

2.   I really need more "Soil & Send" McGuinty Gift Packs. You know the ones that come in those envelopes and you take home, fill with a fresh morning specimen and send them back. (See also: Fecal Occult Blood Test - FOBT).

3.   I really want the Health Care System to join the electronic age and allow instant communication between health care professionals. I hear some parts of the world already enjoy this miracle, and even have a name for it. It's called the Internet.

4.   For patients to stop referring to their medications by color and learn the names. This is not an age related thing.

5.   For people to realize that little blobs of ground up and smelly looking sawdust capsules are not the same as fresh fruits.

6.   For the Health Department to work together with Doctors and start letting them know when they decide to immunize patients at the shopping mall or school. It contributes to a record keeping nightmare and impedes the provision of good care.

7.   If the closest we have ever come to meeting is through this column, then please stop telling walk-in clinics that I am your doctor.

8.   Santa, I could really use a few good medical residents to help process the few thousand people needing care, and who could not be dissuaded from calling "Family Medicine" a career. Thanks, but STOP sending me Elves masquerading as Doctors. We need the real thing!

9.   For Administrators and Senior Government Members to stop hanging my columns on their dart boards. Personally, I would suggest burning them instead.

10.   Please give my young hockey playing patients a home-grown idol to proudly wear the "C" on a Toronto uniform. Dreams built this country, and hockey can deliver a message of hope to our young people at a time when they could use it.

11.   Lastly, Santa, please bless the politicians and bring them wisdom to lead this country in a manner we can all be proud of, and root out the evil that would see this great nation divided and separated. It is easy to begin a war or battle, be it across the ocean or in the bedroom. To know how and when to end conflicts takes courage, fortitude and above all, piety. Allow my descendents to experience CANADA, rather than read about it in some HISTORY text!

Please do not drive recklessly this holiday season. Merry Christmas!

Related resources:

McGuinty Government Launches Campaign to Encourage Ontarians to Get Screened for Colorectal Cancer Home Screening Kit Available in April, 2008 from Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care.
Fact Sheets in 26/27 Languages on Colon Cancer Check.
Coalition games could start when counting votes ends. Opinion by Rosemary Speirs, Toronto Star, Oct 13, 2008. Coalition 'disastrous,' PM says. Prime Minister Stephen Harper will cross the country today, stopping in three key provinces in the final push of the election campaign. Minority outcome would open door to grand bargain between Liberals, NDP, Bloc.
Canada has a solid health-care system. Technology is set to make it even better. Transforming Health Care from Backbone Magazine, Focus on eHealth.

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