I had a rather unsettling experience last night. A group of my co-workers (who happen to work in the healthcare field) stated that they believe researchers and physicians have the abilities to cure diseases like AIDS, cancer, Parkinson's, etc and don't because it would decrease their income. I stated that any pharmaceutical firm or research institution would be nuts to set on a scientific discovery of this magnitude when they could be making bazillions of dollars and saving lives with the technology. The thing that has really started to upset me is this: I am becoming more aware of the negative public opinion concerning physicians and scientists in general. Nevermind that these people have never had any experience or exposure to research beyond what they've heard about on the evening news and little to no idea about the biological and chemical aspects of disease. It seems like they just expect these cures to be easy and self-evident by nature. Of course, I am offended by statements such as these because I have done some research myself and know many people who do it on a daily basis. Some of the research PhDs I know are the greatest humanitarians that I've met. Now that I will be entering the medical field as a physician, I feel it is my and all of our duty to try to dispel some of this public resentment toward our profession by doing our part to educate and connect with people from all aspects of life. I am going to be a physician because I love science and I love helping people (trite as that might sound). I just can't believe that so many people think that we would withold a cure for disease because we want to make a few more bucks.