Why medicine is broken, with Seamus O’Mahony

Seamus O’Mahony is an Irish physician who’s written a trilogy of books that explore the varied ways in which modern medicine is broken. The first book, “The way we die now”, discusses how the movement of death in to hospitals in the modern era and a culture of denial around mortality has resulted in horrendous overtreatment of dying patients up until the very moment of death, which robs them and their families of the chance to say goodbye and experience the “good death” that everyone hopes for but few are able to experience.

The second book, “Can medicine be cured?”, showcases how medicine has come to be dominated by vested interests and perverse incentives, from medical research that has been corrupted by pharmaceutical companies and a metric driven culture that causes medical scientists to produce an endless stream of useless papers, to hospitals that are run like factories, in which any value that can’t be quantified in numbers and measured is ignored.

The third book, “The ministry of bodies”, is a sort of diary, which showcases just how inhumane modern healthcare has become, towards both healthcare staff and patients (and somehow manages to make you laugh at the same time).

In this podcast, I talk to Seamus O’Mahony about his three books and what motivated him to write them. You can watch it here.

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20 thoughts on “Why medicine is broken, with Seamus O’Mahony”

  1. I see from another piece written by Mr O’Mahony last year about Govt lockdown restrictions ‘But none has talked of defying these restrictions. There is an acceptance, both among the bereaved and in society at large, that there is no alternative. They are angry with the virus, not the government’. People are either angry at the virus or the government. The media largely dictates which it is that gets the blame for the havoc caused by the Govt’s reaction to Covid 19 (which actually may well have been around since 2018)!

    1. Now they are angry with the “antivaxxers” (which includes those of us who have 12+ vaccines for various diseases, but not this one, and are against vaccine mandates.)

      1. You damn anti-vaxxers, you are the reason my covid vaccine doesn’t work.
        [Sarcasm mode set to max, I’m an organic human and I intend to stay that way].

      2. The anger is due to DeSmet’s “Mass Formation.”

        Start with social isolation. People stay home. Antisocial distancing. They avoid handshakes and hugs. No kissing, of course. Every stranger could give you an infection that could kill you. At least, this is what people believed.

        Add in a bucket of fear to prevent critical thinking. Overstate the danger from covid and smear effective repurposed antiviral treatments. Recommend NPIs like masking and antisocial distancing to increase the perception of danger. Plant stories in the media of young people hospitalized and dying of covid.

        Infuse a dollop of confusion. Public health authorities saying nonsensical things and contradicting themselves. Call opponents of your narrative Spreaders of “Misinformation.” Censor critics of your narrative in social media. Get people to focus on vaccines as The Cure. Hide data of vaccine harm and push the narrative that vaccines are “safe and effective.”

        Increase anxiety with stories of ICUs overrun and new variants. Cast people skeptical of covid vaccines as “antivaxxers” who are making us unsafe, thus undermining society. Strangers. Outsiders. Dangers to us. Stupid, unscientific people. The new Untermensch.

        Create “camps” for antivaxxers and limit their travel. Put restrictions on antivaxxers. No restaurants for them. Can’t enter grocery stores to buy food. Make them quarantine in camps.

        Totalitarianism follows. We’ve seen this movie before–about 80 years ago.

  2. My poor husband died 2 weeks ago from bowel cancer which had spread to his lymph nodes and liver.
    He died 10 weeks after being diagnosed and having a bowel resection.
    He was an analyst, knew he was dying and did not want a “death by a thousand cuts”. He was given to believe that chemotherapy would give him a few months to be with his family over Christmas but when he was discharged into the care of the local hospice after only one chemotherapy session the oncologist admitted that he knew the chemotherapy would probably cause more harm than good. If he had been told that at the outset he wouldn’t have agreed to it. We did our best with the time left but it we were overwhelmed by emergency admissions into hospital and myself having to battle with hospital staff for him to have adequate pain relief and basic nursing care.

    Because the hospital doctors refused to admit that he was at the stage of end of life care the hospice had him for only 3 days which wasn’t long enough to control his pain and other distressing symptoms.
    He died in dreadful pain and distress and I am left with the most awful images of that evening.
    If I find myself in a similar position I’ll tape my head into a bag of nitrogen and end it while I can.

    1. Dear JM
      I am not able to pass by without commenting on your sad experience. I cannot know exactly the depth of your hurt as I have not experienced the loss of a dearly loved spouse, however over 30yrs ago I lost my younger sister at age 33 in very similar circumstances, so your anger and frustration I have experienced. My working life from which I have just retired involved records management here in Australia; these situations are fairly commonplace I have often seen them during the archiving process. What I have learned is to check everything for myself, be selective regarding treatment you will cop a bit of flack i.e. we do not like patients to check this or other, but you will have a better outcome and be settled in your decision. It will be hard for you but I hope for some peace and happiness for you in the future. Revelation 21:3&4 a Bible help.

    2. Dear JM – my heartfelt sympathy for your recent experience. Truly. I have worked in Healthcare billing the US, and my personal belief is that much of the reason behind these prolonging (and torturous) experiences is related to money, and has little to do with patient experience or the relief of disease or suffering. I believe Drs. Rushworth and O’Mahony speak to this as well, and I can only say I’m sorry – sorry that this failing system has created such suffering for you.

      I wish I had something to offer other than an apology. Truly. Words mean little from strangers I recognize – but maybe I can offer a source that I turned to in my own grief very recently with the loss of my father in similar circumstances.

      Dr. Robert Lanza, Dr. Sam Parnia (and if you’ve a stomach for it – Dr. Donald Hoffman of UC Irvine) have all published works related to consciousness, life, death and dying – and much of it speaks to what it means to be alive, and conversely what it may mean to die or cease to be alive biologically. The works of these men have provided a ministry of sorts to me in my time of grief – mostly because they raise questions (and attempt to answer them) that I’ve always asked inside my own brain.

      May the passing of time ease your brief, JM, and may memories and the re-membering of your loved one bring you solace.

    3. What a dreadful dreadful experience. No one should have to go through that, and my heart goes out to you. You Have every right to be angry (livid even) and overwhelmed with sadness as well. I worked as a hospice physician and my personal belief is that pain and suffering can and should be relieved. I am mortified to hear this and hope somehow your story can be used to improve the basic palliative care in your region

  3. Readers may be interested in resources (medical, legal, practical) that help people shift their perspective and culture to deal in a more balanced way with dying such as https://compassionateottawa.ca/resources/ Obviously whats available will differ in each region of the world.
    A quote: “A community that recognizes that all natural cycles of sickness and health, birth and death, and love and loss, occur every day within the orbits of its institutions and regular activities.”

    1. Krishna, than you for your comment. I believe that until we embrace the fullness of our cycle of being – rather, the fullness of the manifestation of the living experience (which includes its ending) we will continue to seek solutions in broken systems. In the West, death is feared; taboo even. We spend all our lives hiding from conversations about it, denying its inevitability through our mutual silence. Then, when what we perceive as a loss occurs, we observe our rituals, say our prayers, and then return to the routine of what we once knew, because in the security of routine we lose our grief over time. I like the information you provided here – because what is needed is conversation: let’s talk about it. Let’s de-stigmatize it. Then, the fear of it may leave us. Thanks again for sharing!

  4. Dear Sebastian
    Can you look into interviewing Dr. Suzanne Humphries, she wrote the book Dissolving Illusions.
    The book is an in depth look at the lies that have been told about the role of vaccines and pharmaceuticals in defeating so much disease.
    I know it is really really hard to believe that pharma, Doctors and the science men might tell lies about their products in order to line their own pockets (whilst killing people along the way) but try to kep an open mind.

    From the book overview-
    ‘Today, we are told that medical interventions increased our lifespan and single-handedly prevented masses of deaths. But is this really true? Dissolving Illusions details facts and figures from long-overlooked medical journals, books, newspapers, and other sources. Using myth-shattering graphs, this book shows that vaccines, antibiotics, and other medical interventions are not responsible for the increase in lifespan and the decline in mortality from infectious diseases. If the medical profession could systematically misinterpret and ignore key historical information, the question must be asked, “What else is ignored and misinterpreted today?”Perhaps the best reason to know our history is so that the worst parts are never repeated. ‘

    A presentation by Dr Humphries

      1. If that book review is correct, he need only review one section of one chapter in the book to find sufficient reasons NOT to interview her. I do agree with the reviewer in not liking the way the book jumps around with dramatic anecdotes – it could benefit from some rework by an epidemiologist and an editor.
        However i think it is likely she has some legitimate complaints, based on her own experience with patients and the system. Our society has an unfortunate emphasis on pharmaceutical and other technological interventions to fix problems created by profit-driven policies and rapid change. Check out the book “Trust Us We’re Experts: How Industry Manipulates Science and Gambles with Your Future” to see some lesser known history.

  5. I found your interview with Dr. Seamus O’Mahony both interesting and informative. I have, as a result, ordered his book The Ministry of Bodies. I note he is now enjoying working as a vaccinator. Perhaps there is a market for a follow up book that could be titled The Ministry of Bodies II when and if the global list of death and injuries resulting from the current mRNA injection programme becomes public.

  6. Can you find these books in Spanish? The Spanish-speaking world is completely ignorant about what’s going on in the world, most of the people can only consume mainstream media in their own language. There are some many great books about medicine and the pandemic that should be translated and widely circulated!

  7. There I was, thinking that Sweden was an oasis of sanity in a bonkers desert of a world, when I came across this: https://tinyurl.com/8da9k2nk .

    Have your politicians & senior beaurocrats now become infected with the same lunacy as ours? Or maybe I missed something.

    This has nothing to do with health!

  8. Is he working as a vaccinator admistering the Covid vaccines? If so, how is that possible with the views he expressed in this interview?

    1. I wonder if Dr. O’Mahoney is working as a vaccinator and watching carefully for vaccine injuries to publicize? And maybe gathering material for another book where he is one of the villains?

  9. A growing theme in the postmortem analysis of the pandemic is: what happened to our semi-rational, semi-enlightened governments? Seemingly out of nowhere, governments began behaving as out-of-control behemoths completely disconnected from the well fair of the citizens. In my view, the pandemic highlights a fundamental flaw in our liberal democratic tradition; the close accommodation between science and the state. I argue that that is the root of the brazen corruption of science in the pandemic. Just as there is fundamental separation of church and state in the US constitution, there is an equal need for a separation of science and state. Search for scientific truth, like the search for supernatural truths must be insulated from messy power struggles. I write about this concept here: https://peteryim.substack.com/p/separation-of-science-and-state

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