AT MY AGE, I AM LEARNING THAT PEOPLE TEND TO HOLD ONE OF TWO OPINIONS about me. It seems that I can frequently be considered a doddering old fool who is totally unhip (although I recall an even earlier generation calling it “unhep”). On the other hand, there are those who grant me great respect. For them, I am a wise elder with experience and insight. My long years on the planet give me a certain sagacity and judgement that they find valuable.
I mention this for one reason. As Publisher Emeritus of THE DARK REPORT, it is my job to provide our editorial staff with perspective and continuity about the events and forces now reshaping the profession of pathology and the clinical laboratory industry. Our long-time clients know that I can get a bit ornery now and then in these columns. I do believe there is value in speaking bluntly about issues which need a public debate. Our industry is no different than the national political arena.
Just as there are vested interests in government and politics, so also does our industry have its vested interests. The result is that public debate is frequently not based on facts, reality, and an objective discussion about both sides of an issue. Rather, it is manipulated, spun, and controlled in a way that protects the powers that be. Our industry is not served well by its thought leaders when rational, objective, far-ranging discussion fails to take place in the public domain.
Why do I mention these facts? Because it has been a goal of THE DARK REPORT, since its inception, to bring to the public forum an appropriate airing of the issues and trends which affect pathology practices and clinical laboratories. As you read this latest issue, I hope you respect the fact that we are willing to study the facts, state our opinions, and take a position which might not be popular, but best represents our belief about what is true.
THE DARK REPORT is firmly committed to the success of pathologists and clinical laboratories. Even as managed care wrecks the infrastructure of our former fee-for-service healthcare system, new technology, new management models, and new economic developments promise better quality, better outcomes and improved finances. Only those pathologists and laboratory executives willing to push their personal boundaries, and those of their co-workers, will harvest the benefits of these new discoveries. That is why THE DARK REPORT strives to bring you the earliest news and opinion about subjects such as pharmacogenomics and physician practice management companies. Your future success is also why, even at my age, I still offer whatever perspicuous horse sense my experience deems appropriate within these pages.