Check out the article below which focuses on the Unwanted Stigma against D.O.s - The full article can also be found by clicking here
Dr. Katherine Pannel was initially thrilled to see President Donald Trump’s physician is a doctor of osteopathic medicine. A practicing D.O. herself, she loved seeing another glass ceiling broken for the type of doctor representing 11% of practicing physicians
in the U.S. and now 1 in 4 medical students
in the country.
But then, as Dr. Sean Conley issued public updates on his treatment of Trump’s COVID-19, the questions and the insults about his qualifications rolled in.
“How many times will Trump’s doctor, who is actually not an MD, have to change his statements?” MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell tweeted
“It all came falling down when we had people questioning why the president was being seen by someone that wasn’t even a doctor,” Pannel said.
The osteopathic medical field has had high-profile doctors before, good and bad. Dr. Murray Goldstein was the first D.O. to serve as a director of an institute at the National Institutes of Health, and Dr. Ronald R. Blanck was the surgeon general of the U.S. Army
. Former Vice President Joe Biden, challenging Trump for the presidency, also sees a doctor who is a D.O.
But another now former D.O., Larry Nassar, who was the doctor for USA Gymnastics, was convicted of serial sexual assault.
Still, with this latest example, Dr. Kevin Klauer, CEO of the American Osteopathic Association, said he’s heard from many fellow osteopathic physicians outraged that Conley — and by extension, they, too — are not considered real doctors.
“You may or may not like that physician, but you don’t have the right to completely disqualify an entire profession,” Klauer said.
For years, doctors of osteopathic medicine have been growing in number alongside the better-known doctors of medicine, who are sometimes called allopathic doctors and use the M.D. after their names.
According to the American Osteopathic Association
, the number of osteopathic doctors grew 63% in the past decade and nearly 300% over the past three decades. Still, many Americans don’t know much about osteopathic doctors, if they know the term at all.
“There are probably a lot of people who have D.O.s as their primary [care doctor] and never realized it,” said Brian Castrucci, president and CEO of the de Beaumont Foundation, a philanthropic group focused on community health.
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