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Geripal Blog: “Thoughts on Preventative Medicine”

September 22nd, 2014 | Posted in Blogs | No Comments

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Tuesday December 1, 2009: 
You can prevent Heart Attacks
You can prevent Strokes
You can prevent Colon Cancer
You can prevent Cervical Cancer
You can prevent Breast Cancer
You can prevent Prostate Cancer
Really? Well perhaps
You can prevent Syphilis
You can prevent the Friends of Syphilis
You can prevent smallpox, polio, measles, mumps, rubella, tetanus, chicken pox, meningitis, influenza, hepatitis, diphtheria, whooping cough
You can prevent Diabetes
You can prevent Complications of Diabetes
You can prevent Hip fractures
You can prevent Diarrheal Illness
You can prevent Nosocomial Infections
Really? Really, just wash your hands

But you cannot prevent death.
Saying that we can prevent death is preposterous.
Indeed, the word “prevention” doesn’t even apply to death
You can delay death
You can stall death
You can prolong life

But it just doesn’t make sense to say that you can prevent death.
Posted by Dan Matlock

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Excerpt from “In Blackwater Woods”; a poem by Mary Oliver