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Finding a doctor you can trust

This interview originally aired on "In the Moment" on SDPB Radio.

The 22nd season of "On Call with the Prairie Doc®" is wrapping up. The program features local physicians diving into a variety of medical topics and questions relevant to South Dakotans.

Its hosts strive to offer health care advice and insights you can trust. But they're not the only figures on TV who go by "doctor."

So, as the season winds down, we're going to explore the wide variety of doctors in TV and films and why you should seek your medical advice elsewhere.

Jill Kruse, D.O., is an "On Call with the Prairie Doc®" team member and host of this week's episode. She previews the episode and talks about how to find a (real) doctor you can turn to with your questions and concerns.
Based on Science, Built on Trust
By Jill Kruse, D.O.

As we approach the end of our 22nd season, I would like to thank our audience for trusting us to bring them health information that is current and accurate.

There are many doctors out there who cannot make the same claims as the Prairie Docs, and I would like to take this opportunity to help sort out those charlatans and quacks from trusted sources of health information.

While tasty and refreshing, I would not trust Dr. Pepper for medical advice.

Nor would I trust Dr. Evil from "Austin Powers," despite his claims that he went to “four years of Evil Medical School."

I like to read Dr. Seuss’ books, but I would not let him take a look. While I think he is a dear, I would not let him peek in my ear. He is not the doctor that I want to see if I need an appendectomy.

While you can trust Doc Martin and his shoes to help you look cool, I am certain he has no medical training.

Doc Brown from "Back to the Future" is another doctor I’m not sure I would listen to. Besides the fact that he likely has a Ph.D. rather than an M.D. or D.O. degree, can you really trust someone who would make a time machine out of a DeLorean?

The Doctor from "Doctor Who" is someone whom his companions trust with their lives. Unfortunately, a sonic screwdriver will not replace a stethoscope for making a medical diagnosis. The Doctor has also been known to put those companions in grave danger from Daleks and Cybermen.

Although Dr. Stephen Strange from the Marvel Universe is a legitimate doctor by training, I suspect he allowed his license and board certification to lapse when he became an Avenger. Thus, he would not be my first choice for current medical advice or treatment. Similarly, I would not let Doc Ock, a known villain from the Spider-Man series, use any of his mechanical arms to examine me.

Dr. Benjamin Franklin Pierce, aka Hawkeye, from "M*A*S*H" was an excellent surgeon, but his treatments and techniques are decades out of date. We have come a long way in surgery and anesthesia since the Korean War.

I would also trust "Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman" but only if I were living back in the 1800s on the prairie. The current Prairie Docs have much more training and knowledge than she had access to at the time.

As you can see, there are many doctors out there. However, when looking for medical advice, you need not only someone you can trust but also someone who has the training to give you the most current and up-to-date advice.

The Prairie Docs strive to answer your medical questions each week with such information. So tune in and ask anything. We are here to help you stay healthy out there with health information that is based on science and built on over 20 years of trust.

Cara Hetland is the Director of Radio and Journalism Content for South Dakota Public Broadcasting.
Ellen Koester is a producer of In the Moment, SDPB's daily news and culture broadcast.
Ari Jungemann is a producer of In the Moment, SDPB's daily news and culture broadcast.