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You think people in California realize Boston has hospitals?

Ad for a Stanford, CA hospital in the Boston Globe

Today's Globe has a full-page ad that promotes all the wonderful care patients can get at a newly rebuilt hospital - in Palo Alto, CA.

Sure, sure, even Boston's world-class hospitals don't do everything, and there are reasons why even somebody from the Hub of the Universe might travel to a hospital somewhere else for a particular kind of care. But the ad doesn't promise cutting-edge theta-radiation beam therapy or whatever; all it offers is some slogany BS about how this new hospital is "inspired - by you."

So, aside from the opportunity to run up overall health-care costs for no good reason ("Martha, cancel my gallstone surgery at the Faulkner, we're heading to California!" said nobody, ever), why is some seemingly generic hospital 3,000 miles away wasting money on advertising in a city that has some of the most advanced medical care in the world?

Maybe, even though the ad seems to be aimed at patients, it's really aimed at doctors and nurses who, for whatever reasons, want to change coasts (we get it, the weather here can be frightful). If so, though, it's incredibly subtle about it. Which gets us back to why they're spending so much money on a full-page ad in the Globe, where most of the readers, even here in Boston, are not medical professionals.

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Comments

Stanford possibly chuffed over this MIT project in their own back yard last month ?

https://grandhack.mit.edu/sf/

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The Globe still prints a newspaper?

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I was born at the “old” one—and now live in Boston.

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Hey, me too! Small world indeed

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Medical professionals in Boston are underpaid, call it the Harvard tax. Because we produce so many medical professionals, more than a relatively small city needs, there is an oversupply. San Fran has Stanford and UCSF, but it’s a larger city. So you can get paid more and have nicer weather.

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Not sure this checks out. If we were oversupplied with physicians then why does it take 2 months to get an appointment with my PCP?

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Two things:

1/ You can have lots of doctors and not enough PCPs - this is actually the case, as a lot of doctors want to go into specialties, not general care. So a market can have an excess of specialists and not enough regular care providers.

2/ You should maybe look into changing to another PCP if you can. I can see my PCP within a couple weeks for a regular appointment, and within 1-2 days if I am actually sick of have an immediate concern. Hopefully you have the option to find one that is less overloaded.

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You should find a new one or have a talk with them about scheduling.

I have no problem getting an appointment with mine - right away if I'm really sick, two weeks out if its a chronic sort of thing.

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It's true. Harvard underpays compared to other hospitals because they feel that working for Harvard is a reward in itself. They also have additional levels that doctors must progress through in order to have the same titles as doctors in other hospitals because it's such an honor to work for them.

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Ummmmm... Stanford Hospital isn't in SF. It's nowhere close. Try going down the Peninsula about 35 miles. It's not exactly a "generic" hospital, either. It's a major teaching hospital which is currently ranked 12th in the US by US News.

And yeah, the weather in February is WAY better there.

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And still in the same league as places that are here.

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We're Stanford and our hospital is every bit as good as your Harvard hospitals, so there!

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The text in the ad is all about how the new hospital is more than just a building - it's all about YOU - and yet, most of the page is actually taken up by a picture of a building (I didn't show the whole thing here because it's really long, being an entire page in the Globe and all).

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If I needed to spend an extended time in or near a hospital and money was no issue I'd be tempted to be treated in the Bay Area as opposed to Boston, at least in the winter.

The ad is aimed at people with loads of disposable income (plenty in Boston) who are venue shopping for treatment so the building and location are selling points.

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After reading the text, I conclude that this is aimed at rich, "chronically ill" people who have been to every doctor in Boston but, "They just don't understand me." The ad suggests to me that they will listen when other doctors have given up listening to you.

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...and was perplexed.

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Because it would have been:

Mahthar, cancel my gallstone surgery at the Faulknah, we're heading to Califahniar!

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