Saturday, September 5, 2009

Impaired physicians and alcohol rehab

We all know that there are impaired physicians in the community. We may not want to admit this reality, but it's true. Physicians fall into addictions and they often need rehab, including alcohol rehab. Whether it's inpatient rehab or outpatient rehab, these programs offer important services that can eventually protect the public from dangerous healthcare professionals who may have drinking problems.

You don't need to be a classic "alcoholic" to have a drinking problem. You don't need to fail the CAGE questionnaire to have a drinking problem. Some people have the misconception that they don't have an alcohol problem because they never need an "eye opener" and they only drink at night. Others may think they're drinking is fine because they never feel guilty about it. These people may be in desperate need of alcohol treatment, but they may simply be living in denial.

Let's hope that the statistics improve as more impaired healthcare professionals recognize their need for help. Let's also hope that co-workers are not shy to approach their impaired colleagues who may require assistance. Since physicians often hold the lives of other people in their own hands, they can't afford to be impaired. The effects of alcohol misuse or dependence may impact the lives of many patients if physicians don't get the help they need. The best way to get results may be to send our loved ones to private alcohol rehab.

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