So he often advocates what a Vox.com writer terms derisively “simple tricks and natural remedies.” (Come to think about it, isn’t good health about some very simple things?) But has Dr. Mehmet Oz ever killed anyone with his friendly advice or during cardiac and thoracic surgery? Members of the medical establishment certainly have with their Food and Drug Administration approved remedies and interventions, their phony food pyramid, not to mention the many bans and shortages the FDA creates.
I don’t watch Dr. Oz’s show, but in the odd segment I’ve seen, he appears genuine, humble, likeable; someone who loves people (especially the ladies) and does his best to make them happier and healthier. He also makes a bundle in the process. Wicked, I know. At least so the medical establishment thinks. Via CNN:
Earlier this week, a group of 10 physicians from across the country emailed a letter to Columbia University expressing disapproval that Oz is on the faculty. The email sent to Columbia’s faculty dean for Health Sciences and Medicine, Dr. Lee Goldman, said the group is “surprised and dismayed” that Oz is on faculty and that he holds a senior administrative position. Oz is vice chair of the Department of Surgery, at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons.
The email was sent by Dr. Henry Miller, a fellow in scientific philosophy and public policy at Stanford University’s Hoover Institute. It was signed by nine other physicians from across the country, none of whom are affiliated with Columbia. They accuse Oz of, what they call, “manifesting an egregious lack of integrity by promoting quack treatments and cures in the interest of personal financial gain.”
Dr. Richard Green, the associate chief of cardiac, thoracic, and vascular surgery at New York–Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center disagrees:
Oz has achieved some of the greatest scientific accomplishments of his career at Columbia. While a resident there, he was the four-time winner of the prestigious Blakemore research prize, which goes to the most outstanding surgery resident. He now holds 11 patents for inventing methods and devices involved in heart surgeries and transplants. This includes helping to research and develop the left ventricular assist device, or LVAD, which helps keep people alive while they’re awaiting a heart transplant. Oz had a hand in turning the hospital’s LVAD program into one of the biggest and most active in the world.
Dr. Green greeted me in a beige hospital hallway, a compact man with worn skin and white hair, dressed in blue scrubs. In his office, which was decorated with family pictures, diplomas, and medical textbooks, he alternately praised and defended his colleague. He said the following things about Oz: “He’s a brilliant mind.” “He’s a very charming person.” “He has great energy.” “He’s uniformly respected and admired here.” “Maybe he should be president. I would vote for him.” “He’s a talent. He’s multidirectional.” “As for the other doctors who are on TV, I don’t put them in [Oz’s] league. Not even close.”
Green also suggested that the leveling off we’re seeing in obesity rates in the US may be thanks to the awareness Oz has raised about the importance of eating more healthfully and exercising.