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Patients are people, not numbers or diseases

Patients are people, not numbers or diseases | Doctor | Scoop.it

drlj writes:

 

At times it is convenient and even desirable to omit a patient’s name in a conversation. It was suggested on Twitter that it may be better to overhear what ‘bed 9′ needs rather than ‘John Doe is ready for his haemorrhoidectomy,’ and in this case I agree! My worry is that in most cases there is no explicit intent to maintain confidentiality. Instead the convenience of referring to people by their bed number slips into routine communication. I have certainly been guilty of this myself. I worry that this is not merely disrespectful, but that it contributes to the dehumanising experience of being a patient, and negatively impacts on the doctor-patient relationship.

 

There are many factors that contribute to dehumanisation in hospitals. It is often not the fault of individuals, and I would certainly not suggest any of the nurses I work with are uncaring. Instead the environment and structures inherent in the way we work create an “us and them” divide where healthcare workers and patients are in different tribes. This extends to factors as simple as the clothes we wear, an example of “deindividuation.” I am always amazed by the dramatic transformation when a patient puts on their own clothes as they get ready to leave hospital, having previously only worn a generic hospital gown. They miraculously turn into a “person” rather than a “patient.”

 

If and when I become a patient I want my medical team to treat my as an individual, consider my personal context and experience of illness, and integrate this into their decision-making process. I do not want to be referred to as “bed 2.”I realise that as a Medical Reg I would embody ‘the nightmare patient’, but something approaching this true partnership model should be what we aspire to for every patient, not just those (like me) who explicitly demand it. Many things need to change to achieve this ideal including; better data sharing with, and ownership by patients; better public and patient education allowing valuable discussion about trial data and the value and limits of evidence-based medicine; and a dramatic change in our IT structures such that they enhance rather than impede communication across arbitrary boundaries of primary, secondary  and tertiary care.

 

We should work to achieve system changes, but they will take time to implement.We can take immediate personal responsibility for our own actions and our own role in dehumanisation in healthcare.

 

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Healthcare is getting better. Let's talk about what you can do to make it even better, faster.

Healthcare is getting better. Let's talk about what you can do to make it even better, faster. | Doctor | Scoop.it

Click on the link above to contact Andrew Spong, Managing Director, STweM Ltd.

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Virtual therapy sessions make mental health care more widely available

Virtual therapy sessions make mental health care more widely available | Doctor | Scoop.it
The mental health field is perhaps uniquely suited to transition from face-to-face meetings to online appointments. Despite hurdles related to insurance reimbursement and concerns about whether an interpersonal connection can survive in the virtual world, proponents say that online therapy is an effective solution to bring mental health care to those who might not otherwise get it.
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Why doctors want the FDA to regulate health and fitness apps

Why doctors want the FDA to regulate health and fitness apps | Doctor | Scoop.it
Technology is shaping the future of healthcare, and while technology has brought a number of innovative healthcare solutions, some are worried about the growing impact and potential danger of unregulated health IT apps. Plenty of health and fitness apps in the Apple App Store and Google Play range from harmless to helpful, but doctors are worried about untested and unregulated apps that claim to replace medical devices or diagnose illnesses. Doctors are now asking the FDA to take notice and are warning the public to evaluate these apps with a critical eye.
Andrew Spong's insight:

This. Will. Never. Happen...

 

...for reasons of resourcing alone.

 

However, once they're settled their first class action against a health app, I can still see Apple and Google hiring massive clinical faculties to assure the quality of apps in house.

 

For health app makers, the era of low-to-no scrutiny will soon be over.

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Joel Finkle's curator insight, August 7, 9:52 AM

Sensible - doctors don't want apps that are inaccurate leading to poor choices on patients' part.

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How the demands of healthcare delivery are superseding the privacy debate

How the demands of healthcare delivery are superseding the privacy debate | Doctor | Scoop.it

Technology has the ability to reduce the cost of delivering healthcare, and can be utilised effectively in order to reduce the personal and economic burden of care in single-payer healthcare systems.

 

It’s just a shame that this has had to be pointed out 50 million times in the UK, at untold cost to patients and their families.

 

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Fakebetes HCP challenge: the new nurse

Fakebetes HCP challenge: the new nurse | Doctor | Scoop.it

As a healthcare provider without diabetes, I will never fully understand what it is like to live with diabetes. I do however try my best to understand the day-to-day challenges as best as I can. I have tested my own blood sugars, worn all the insulin pumps and CGM devices, taken saline injections, etc.; I also engage in the DOC (diabetes online community).

 

To try to encourage other healthcare providers to gain better perspective on diabetes, I worked with members of the DOC to set-up a fakebetes challenge. Whitney, a new nursing graduate, and Kim Vlasnik both volunteered to be first to take this challenge, and were paired together.

 

In this fakebetes challenge, Kim text Whitney fake insulin doses, including a carb ratio and correction factor; and blood sugar readings from her own glucometer. Whitney was encouraged to check her own blood sugars and count carbohydrates, but take saline injections according to the blood sugars Kim had text text her. In this way there would be some blood sugar readings in different ranges to think about and respond to.

Andrew Spong's insight:

I'd be really interested to hear what the DOC thought of this initiative.

 

I'm conflicted, to be honest. On the one hand, I very much admire the commitment of the healthcare professionals involved to immerse themselves as fully as possible in the experience of living with diabetes.

 

However, in the last instance that does not extend beyond the routines involved with optimal management.

 

Also, for fear of stating the obvious, it can never take the provider inside the body and mind of a person living with diabetes to afford them first-hand experience of the multi-factorial inconveniences, physical discomforts and pain, and mental challenges of the disease.

 

Most significantly, their pancreas is still working. PWD don't have the option to stop being diabetic.

 

If this sounds more anti than pro, I don't mean it to -- there is simply a weight of things to say regarding the former.

 

Perhaps for people with diabetes, the gestural demonstration of wanting to understand what living with the disease is like to the best of the RN's ability is what they may consider most important.

 

I'd like to hear more, so please share any responses to this study that you may have seen from the DOC. Thanks!

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Smartphone app alerts doctor when patient exhibits symptoms

Smartphone app alerts doctor when patient exhibits symptoms | Doctor | Scoop.it
MIT researchers developed an app, Ginger.io, that collects data about its users behaviors, locations, health conditions and habits and then notes inconsistencies that may predict the onset of problems such as depression. The app alerts health care providers for intervention.
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The doctor will Skype you now: is e-consulting a good idea?

The doctor will Skype you now: is e-consulting a good idea? | Doctor | Scoop.it

Electronic consultation systems use the Internet to deliver health services to people all around the world and has been shown to reduce unnecessary visits to specialists, with a meaningful percentage of cases being resolved without a face-to-face visit. As a result, wait times are less for those who really do need to see a specialist. Skype is one method that is popular among health-care providers today. 

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LinkedIn, HCP communities and facebook matter most to the 56% of clinicians who use social professionally

LinkedIn, HCP communities and facebook matter most to the 56% of clinicians who use social professionally | Doctor | Scoop.it

When it comes to social media, the top sites that doctors do seem to use for work are LinkedIn, online physician communities, and Facebook (see chart below). The specialities that reported the most use of online physician communities were ophthalmology, geriatrics, psychiatry, otolaryngology, and oncology.

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Surgeons who use 3D printing to help explain patients’ conditions to them

Surgeons who use 3D printing to help explain patients’ conditions to them | Doctor | Scoop.it

Bioprinting continues to make significant strides towards a process that will involve dispensing cells onto biocompatible scaffolding using successive layers to generate tissue-like 3D structures and organs.

 

Along the way, however, there will be a number of interim steps that can also benefit the healthcare community. An excellent example of this is highlighted in a new study Physical Models of Renal Malignancies Using Standard Cross-Sectional Imaging and 3-Dimensional Printers: A Pilot Study.

 

The authors of the study, who work in theDepartment of Urology at Tulane University School of Medicine; were looking for a method of providing 3-dimensional models of patient’s kidneys based on cross-sectional imaging. According to Jonathan Silberstein, Assistant Professor of Urology, providing such a model “may aid patients, trainees, and clinicians in their comprehension, characterization, localization, and extirpation of suspicious renal masses.”

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Bettina Gifford's curator insight, July 18, 4:21 PM

Really interesting use of 3D printing

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Mount Sinai's Patient Itinerary app recognises that being organised and informed supports good outcomes

Mount Sinai's Patient Itinerary app recognises that being organised and informed supports good outcomes | Doctor | Scoop.it

A new “Patient Itinerary” app now gives patients at The Mount Sinai Hospital a detailed schedule of upcoming treatments, procedures and tests.

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Laurent FLOURET's curator insight, July 4, 9:23 AM

This is brilliant! A pure WIN/WIN!

Time saved for hospital staff and visibility/transparency for patient.

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We don’t need no FOAM Curriculum

We don’t need no FOAM Curriculum | Doctor | Scoop.it
Amid enthusiastic discussion (at opposite ends of the earth) of the need for a FOAM curriculum, I say no. Read on to find out why.
Andrew Spong's insight:

Only just stumbled across this eloquent exposition from 2013 of why #FOAMed is dismantling the idea of the curriculum in medical education.

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Frederic Llordachs: “We’re returning to the health care model where the patient received all care at home”

Frederic Llordachs: “We’re returning to the health care model where the patient received all care at home” | Doctor | Scoop.it
Frederic Llordachs is what is called a health care and well being entrepreneur. He recognized the potential of the Internet in his field right away, and he admits that many colleagues didn’t take his initiative seriously at first. Currently, Doctoralia, of which Llordach is a founding partner, has more than 2 million users monthly and has a network of more than 73,000 medical professionals. Does the health care system as we know it have an expiration date?
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The top 20 healthcare app categories, ranked by number of apps available

Mobile phone technologies have evolved to handle increasingly complex tasks. While the majority of apps are designed for simple tasks, some of the more sophisticated ones can handle high resolution imaging, real-time monitoring and other advanced functions.


Based on functional complexity, vision care apps lead the market, followed by medical sensors and specialised apps for patients with psoriasis, cardiovascular conditions, cancer support, apps for medical reference, baby care and others.

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Apple envisions wireless wristbands for hospital stays

Apple envisions wireless wristbands for hospital stays | Doctor | Scoop.it

Apple patents indicate the development of technologies that could be used in a disposable wristband that stores and transmits health information to a doctor's smartphone.

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An Uber for healthcare? New app brings docs to your door

An Uber for healthcare? New app brings docs to your door | Doctor | Scoop.it

Taking a hint from on-demand car service Uber, several US companies have developed smartphone apps that bring physicians directly to patients—often for less that it would cost to receive treatment elsewhere.

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Art Jones's curator insight, August 11, 10:15 AM

The times they are a changing (for the better)!

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Five things that are missing from digital health

Five things that are missing from digital health | Doctor | Scoop.it

1. A practical digital health fellowship for providers and post-graduates

2. True interoperability

3. More women in leadership positions

4. A more robust representation of people involved in healthcare

5. A Hippocratic oath for the digital age

Andrew Spong's insight:

All sound enough observations.

 

Would any of them have made your top five?

 

Right now, mine would include:

 

1. A primary focus on patient outcomes as the driver of innovation

2. A secondary focus on reducing the personal and economic burden of care

3. A strong emphasis on design and the promotion of user uptake, utilisation, and retention

4. Interoperability (my definition includes not just connected systems, but also integrated workflows, and assumes a commitment to promoting open, anonymised data)

5. Dialogue: by which I do not mean ceaseless pronouncements about the seductive distractions of novelty, but rather the nurturing of ongoing, iterative, analytic discussions between designers, healthcare systems, clinicians, and users regarding objectives and outcomes (as well as the UX and UI) at every stage of the developmental process -- before, during, and after initiation

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Personalised medicine for kids: 3D printing's pediatric possibilities

Personalised medicine for kids: 3D printing's pediatric possibilities | Doctor | Scoop.it
3D Pediatrics is taking part in DreamIt Ventures' Open Canvas@CHOP. It wants to use 3D printing technology to provide customized medical devices for kids.
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81% of HCPs want more direct connection between CME and patient health outcomes

81% of HCPs want more direct connection between CME and patient health outcomes | Doctor | Scoop.it

When asked whether users would like to see a more direct connection between the CME they take and patient outcomes, eighty-one percent of HCPs surveyed responded affirmatively.

 

Seventy-eight percent of respondents said "yes" when asked whether CME delivered at the point of care (in the form of decision support) could lend valuable insights into the management of patients.

 

The survey also found that less than one percent of respondents currently consume CME through an EHR system, demonstrating a significant unmet need in the marketplace for new approaches to CME delivery.

 

 

Andrew Spong's insight:

What did the other 19 percent want? <boggle>

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Gilbert Faure au nom de l'ASSIM's comment, July 24, 7:41 AM
EHR Electronic Health Records
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Smartphones: the new stethoscopes

Smartphones: the new stethoscopes | Doctor | Scoop.it

Among the many instruments your doctor uses — stethoscope, thermometer, scale — the most valuable one may be in her pocket: a smartphone.   Due to increasingly compressed office visits, patients are becoming more active participants in managing their healthcare, and a new generation of Internet-savvy physicians is using social media to improve the way they run their practices. Currently, 67 percent of physicians use social media — sites like Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and Pinterest — for professional purposes, according to a recent report released by the Federation of State Medical Boards. One Yahoo Facebook user reported that her nurse practitioner gives advice over the social networking site, while another said sharing photos and videos can even save her a trip to the office.   “Social media is changing the way people give and receive information and, as a result, the medical profession is changing, too,” Lee Aase, social media director at the Mayo Clinic, tells Yahoo Health.

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Survey: 80% of smartphone users would like to use their devices to interact with HCPs

Survey: 80% of smartphone users would like to use their devices to interact with HCPs | Doctor | Scoop.it

A survey (n=2,239) of smartphone users across geographies found that:

 

* 71% of smartphone users are open to offers of relevant health care services from businesses

* 80% of patients would like the option to use their smartphones to interact with health care providers

* 56% of people worldwide trust health care organisations with personal data and indicated that while e-health records have yet to take off in many countries, innovations around mobile alerts and information services are helping build trust

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Marcus Healey's curator insight, July 15, 4:24 PM

The impending m-health revolution is in its infancy, but coming sooner than planned?

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3D printing the human circulatory system

3D printing the human circulatory system | Doctor | Scoop.it

From skin to guns to customisable phone covers to mini-robots, the capacities of 3D printing are widening all the time.

Now, in a development that could have big implications in the transplant field, scientists have figured out how to print a circulatory system which is vital to keeping tissue alive.

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What can oncologists learn from social media?

What can oncologists learn from social media? | Doctor | Scoop.it

Dr. Matthew Katz (@subatomicdoc) describes how he uses social media to learn more about patient perceptions of cancer, how to decide which social media to use, and drawbacks to using social media in a professional capacity.

Andrew Spong's insight:

One of my long-time, trusted clinical voices in oncology shares his insights in this video.

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Who will win the health app race?

Who will win the health app race? | Doctor | Scoop.it

Apple debuted HealthKit at its Worldwide Developers Conference and Google followed a few weeks later with GoogleFit at its I/O conference.

 

It is clear that Apple and Google see health apps as a major feature for future iPhones, iPads and Android devices. Where this gets interesting is how the two companies will vie for supremacy and where they identify their best marketplace opportunities...

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Survey: 80 percent of smartphone users want to interact with doctors on mobile devices

Survey: 80 percent of smartphone users want to interact with doctors on mobile devices | Doctor | Scoop.it

Eighty percent of smartphone users are interested in using their smartphones to interact with health care providers, according to a FICO survey of 2,239 adult smartphone users from the UK, Australia, Brazil, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Russia, Turkey, and the United States.

The survey analyzed how consumers prefer to interact with health care providers on mobile devices, online and in-person.


Via Alex Butler
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Helen Adams's curator insight, July 3, 4:22 AM

Now that depends on what they mean by "interact", are they meaning consultation with their HCP or accessing test results and repeat prescriptions.

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Amazon Fire Phone's array of sensors could make it an attractive health platform

Amazon Fire Phone's array of sensors could make it an attractive health platform | Doctor | Scoop.it
Sensors on the Amazon Fire Phone could be a boon for mobile health apps that involve physical therapy, scanning the eyes and face and therapeutic gaming.
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Digital health: from sensors to data fusion (video)

Digital health: from sensors to data fusion (video) | Doctor | Scoop.it

All grit, no fluff. One of the best digital healthcare surveys I've seen from the University of Oxford's Lionel Tarrasenko.

 

Note the emphasis on non-invasive sensors in digital health and data fusion in analytics.

 

If you only watch one digital health video this year, make it this one.

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