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The ways in which technology benefits healthcare
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Using Big Data To Predict Your Potential Heart Problems

Using Big Data To Predict Your Potential Heart Problems | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

It’s safe to say that Dr. Leslie Saxon, the founder of the USC Center for Body Computing, is more tech savvy than most doctors. Not only has she created a space at USC for academics, entrepreneurs, and venture capitalists to work on the future of wireless health, she also recently completed a study with AliveCor (maker of the iPhone ECG device) showing that wireless, ubiquitous heart rate monitoring--say, with the AliveCor iPhone case--can detect all sorts of heart conditions (note: I was part of this study).

 

Now Saxon is taking on another ambitious challenge: everyheartbeat, a website that will allow people to log their heart rate data using any available sensor--the iPhone light, the AliveCor iPhone case, or anything else that people have access to. The site--intended to be a place for people to continuously monitor their health--will record and analyze all heartbeat data that comes in to find global patterns and even warn people of potential heart issues. Saxon’s ultimate goal is to record every heartbeat in the world.

 

How can you realize the potential of continuous wireless communication as it relates to health?


"I’ve been thinking for awhile about how to realize the potential of continuous wireless communication as it relates to health," explains Saxon. "I came up with this concept because we have some traction here--a relatively complete understanding of wearable sensors and implantable devices."

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Engaged Patients Report Higher Quality Care, Better Overall Experience

Patients who take an active role in their own healthcare have fewer medical errors, higher ratings of care, and more positive views of the health system as a whole, according to a new international survey.

 

In the past few decades, healthcare has shifted from a practice-centric model in which patients were once viewed as passive recipients of health services to more patient-centered care in which patients are becoming more engaged participant in their care.

 

In an analysis of 2011 survey data of patients with complex healthcare needs in 11 countries – Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States – researchers found wide country variations in how well patients were engaged by their physicians.

 

The survey, released by the Commonwealth Fund on March 29, found that better engaged patients reported a higher quality of their care, and their overall experience with the health system improved when they were more involved in their care.

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I appreciate the benefits of health IT as a breast cancer survivor

I appreciate the benefits of health IT as a breast cancer survivor | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

As a 38-year-old breast cancer survivor, Stef Woods is on a mission: Raise awareness that breast cancer can strike at a young age and it can affect men, not just women. That's why she did a photo shoot while undergoing treatment in the chemotherapy room and why she walks the runway in breast cancer awareness fashion shows for Pink Jams! – a nonprofit breast cancer advocacy organization. Ms. Woods was diagnosed in June 2010 with an aggressive form of breast cancer, and it was early detection that is helping her beat the cancer and health information technology (health IT) which helps Ms. Woods and her providers better coordinate her care.

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MEDICAL WEBSITES CAN HELP A PATIENT EXPERIENCE A DOCTOR'S AWESOMENESS

MEDICAL WEBSITES CAN HELP A PATIENT EXPERIENCE A DOCTOR'S AWESOMENESS | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

MEDICAL WEBSITES CAN HELP A PATIENT EXPERIENCE A DOCTOR'S AWESOMENESS ...

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Firewall can stop medical device 'hacking'

Firewall can stop medical device 'hacking' | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

U.S. researchers say a prototype firewall can keep hackers from interfering with wireless medical devices such as pacemakers and insulin-delivery systems.

 

A team of scientists from Purdue and Princeton universities had previously demonstrated how medical devices could be hacked, potentially leading to catastrophic consequences.

 

"You could imagine all sorts of scary possibilities," Anand Raghunathan, a Purdue professor of electrical and computer engineering, said. "What motivated us to work on this problem was the ease with which we were able to break into wireless medical systems."

 

The potentially vulnerable devices include pacemakers and continuous glucose monitoring and insulin delivery systems for patients with diabetes

 

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Tony Hardman's curator insight, June 18, 2013 5:21 PM

Healthcare Interrupted -
Top Five Vulnerabilities Hackers Can Use Right Now To Shut Down Medical Devices http://bit.ly/12TDPR5

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To tweet, or not to tweet: Physicians misusing the internet

To tweet, or not to tweet: Physicians misusing the internet | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

(Medical Xpress) -- It’s a brave new world online. As the influence of social media widens, the lines between users’ personal and professional lives are blurring. Doctors are no exception.

 

Nearly 90 percent of physicians use a social media website for personal use, and 67 percent use social media professionally. A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) found that 92 percent of state medical boards in the United States have received reports of violations.

 

“Physicians need to understand the guidelines for what constitutes professional behavior online,” said Robert Wachter, MD, professor and chief of the Division of Hospital Medicine at UCSF and author of the popular health care blog Wachter’s World. “In nearly every situation, especially on the Internet, they should be wearing their doctor’s hat.”

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What are your top tips for creating successful pharmacy forms?

What are your top tips for creating successful pharmacy forms? | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

Forms are a part of pharmacy life. There are forms that need to be filled out by doctors, by pharmacists, and by patients. Correctly filled out forms make everyone’s lives a lot easier, but it seems like getting a patient to fill out a form correctly is like pulling teeth. But is it the patient’s fault or the forms’ fault? Well, the answer may surprise you. A poorly created form lies at the heart of most of the common issues we run across.

 

How can we avoid these issues?

 

Simple; create a better form. A good form means a higher retention and conversion rate, more satisfied patients, and less frustration for the pharmacist. Here are four tips to help you improve your forms.

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Five ways pharma uses social media

Traditional pharma websites – CompanyName.com sites – have generally been online for more than a decade. So the first step into social media tends to add to these sites with an equivalent presence on sites like YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and even, in some cases, Google+.

 

The social media accounts are usually run by the corporate communications team and, allowing for some variation in terms of conversational voice, tone, level of participation and type of information shared, generally concentrate on pushing out links to company information.

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How can we increase recognition of healthcare extenders?

How can we increase recognition of healthcare extenders? | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

This is an article about healthcare extenders such as nurses and pharmacists and their role in overall patient care.

 

When a patient needs new medication or treatment, typically it’s a doctor’s name and signature on the prescription slip. As a result, pharma companies have invested much of their promotional resources interacting with physicians. Today, as the healthcare landscape shifts, pharma is beginning to recognize the power of a different professional audience whose influence can be felt well beyond the prescription.

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Text messages boost happiness

Text messages boost happiness | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

New research shows that both sending and receiving text messages can improve your mood if you are feeling stressed or lonely.


Text messaging may be blamed for contributing to illiteracy but the study indicates there are clear mental health benefits.

 

Psychologists at the University of California , Berkeley, found people suffering from depression reported feeling more connected and cared for when they receive text messages.

 

One patient told study author Professor Adrian Aguilera: "When I was in a difficult situation and I received a message, I felt much better. I felt cared for and supported. My mood even improved."

 

Now researchers believe that everyone - not just people diagnosed with depression - experiences an up-lift in their mood when they receive or respond to a text message from a friend or family member.

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My doctor is a computer!

My doctor is a computer! | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

It is strange to think that a system of information and data exchange, which allows you to communicate with anyone around the entire world, interferers with connecting to the person right in front of you. We see it constantly as cell phones, Ipads, computers and even that “old” obstructer the television, get between us. At the time we need to communicate most desperately, electronics can block that most human connection of all, the physician – patient relationship.

 

Let us be clear. Multitasking is a fallacy. We can only do one thing at a time. We cannot drive and text. We cannot talk on a cell phone and listen to our mates. We cannot watch a game on TV and discuss finance with our partners. Most importantly, we cannot focus fully on a patient and a computer at the same time.

 

Now, I am 100% committed to full computerization of the medical community and exam room. The future of quality, medical safety, and cost containment can only come from full implementation of Electronic Medical Records (EMRs) with system wide analysis and the assistance of artificial intelligence. However, right now is a tough time. We need to figure out the new social mores’ and workflows, which will allow physicians to communicate with patients and with the electronic world.

 

Therefore, both physicians and patients need to learn new habits and establish slightly different norms for the doctor visit. Patients must understand that for moments the doctor will look at the computer instead of directly at them, and not be offended. Both doctors and patients should turn off their cell phones. Doctors need to take time during each visit to look patients in the eye, instead of ogling the monitor. Exam rooms should be set up to make this easy. It is one thing to type information (smoking history, dates they of medicines, type of surgery…) and another to ask tough personal questions while absorbed in a monitor. Doctors must never teach or give advice while at the keyboard. We must turn, see and touch our patients.

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Keyboard alternatives appeal to docs

Keyboard alternatives appeal to docs | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

“Clinical documentation doesn’t lend itself to keyboard entry,” said Steve Hau, president of Shareable Ink in Nashville, Tenn. “You need all these drop-down menus that are unwieldy – and doctors aren’t court stenographers.” Shareable Ink offers technology that lets doctors use a digital pen with a built-in laser camera to scan and capture notes, which then get turned into text that flows directly into designated fields in an EHR.

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Report Calls for U.S. Health Care Industry To Boost Social Media Use

Report Calls for U.S. Health Care Industry To Boost Social Media Use | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

U.S. health care organizations should take lessons from other countries and expand their use of social media tools beyond marketing purposes, according to a report from technology consultancy firm CSC, InformationWeek reports.


Key Findings

 

The report found that across the globe, the health care industry is less proactive than other industries in embracing social media. Within the health care industry, hospitals are the furthest from using social media to engage with consumers, the report found.

 

The report also classified countries by how active their hospitals are in social media adoption. It noted that:

 

Countries with a high level of hospital social media adoption are the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom;

 

Countries with a mid-range level of hospital social media adoption are Austria and the U.S.; and

 

Countries with a low level of hospital social media adoption are Australia, Germany and Switzerland.

 

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5 Facebook Marketing Strategies for Health Care Non-Profits

5 Facebook Marketing Strategies for Health Care Non-Profits | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

Days are already here when you cannot afford to omit social networking sites from your online marketing strategy.

 

The reason is social networking sites have established themselves as low-cost or no-cost avenue to market your product. Sites like Facebook are more effective if you are talking about a non-profit initiative dealing with public healthcare. You can draw people’s attention, engage them in your non-profit activity, ask them to volunteer and definitely raise fund. And for all these you don’t need to spend hefty money on adverts and promotional.


But what’s so special about Facebook? In fact, every networking site has its niche. Unlike LinkedIn and Twitter, on Facebook people maintain a more sociable attitude. People here try to replicate what they do or want to do for their society in real life. Non-profit healthcare initiatives, trying to improve public health, can expect more acceptances on Facebook rather than on business networking sites. So, if you have genuine cause to think about you should try FB to get people on your side. There are too many non-profit healthcare initiatives, like, ‘Stand up to Cancer’, Tyson Hunger Relief’, ‘Free the Children’ and many, out there campaigning on FB successfully.

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Who Is Using Social Media In Healthcare?

Social media is permeating our personal and professional lives everywhere you look—even in the healthcare industry. As more hospitals, clinics, doctors and medical staff are joining social media platforms, it is imperative that healthcare providers have a comprehensive social media policy in place. Don’t have a policy in place yet? Looking for some motivation?

 

Recent research shows that, of the 5,754 registered hospitals in the United States, 21% of them are actively using social media. That’s one out of five hospitals promoting and potentially engaging with the public and patients on Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare and YouTube. Facebook is by far the most popular social media choice with 87% creating a brand page and encouraging people to “like” them.

Coming in second with 77% of hospitals is Foursquare, the social site that lets you “check in” to places to see who else is there and what they have to say about it. Twitter, the other social media golden child, is used by two-thirds of hospitals who tend to tweet about upcoming events, encourage wellness checks and screenings as well as provide helpful links and information to common ailments and conditions.

 

Healthcare organizations are getting creative with their use of social media as well. While marketing, brand and reputation management are staples of their social programs, employee and clinical trial recruitment, education initiatives and patient monitoring are also in their repertoire.

 

 

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Technology gives doctors new ways to see patients

Technology gives doctors new ways to see patients | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

ravis Proctor logged onto his computer, turned on his new webcam and clicked his mouse. Within seconds, the 42-year-old father of three was face to face with Dr. Kelvin Burton, his primary care physician.

 

Just months ago, Proctor would have had to drive for nearly an hour round-trip from his home in Powder Springs to Burton's Douglasville family care practice just for a checkup.

 

Not anymore.

 

Now in what amounts to a 21st century house call, Burton and other doctors are seeing their patients via teleconferencing on personal computers, iPads and, if they have the app, iPhones.

 

From the convenience of home, patients can receive care for minor illnesses or receive a diagnosis for something as complicated as a heart condition.

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Upstate physician creates apps as healthcare management tools

Upstate physician creates apps as healthcare management tools | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

Joshua Steinberg, MD, knows how difficult it can be for generalist physicians to take care of patients at every stage of life. “These days, there’s a new paradigm—you can’t possibly know everything you need to know. Luckily, we can develop strategies to have extra information at our fingertips the moment we need it,” said Dr. Steinberg, clinical assistant professor of family medicine at Upstate Medical University’s Binghamton Clinical Campus.


To meet this need, Dr. Steinberg, in collaboration with members of the Computer Science Department at SUNY Binghamtom, created a point-of-care software system for the iPhone to help physicians provide care and to train students and medical residents. Dr. Steinberg and his team rolled out their first iPhone application in June 2010 and since then, have created seven more applications.

 

“A computer science student programmed the software code and I filled in the medical content,” Dr. Steinberg said. While Dr. Steinberg is not much of a computer programmer, he has found ways to extend what the computer scientists created and use it in different ways.

 

“I’ve learned to read the code, take it apart and then build it back together,” said Dr. Steinberg. “I use the pieces to make several more apps and just change the content. It would be truly difficult to do anything from scratch.”

 

Each app provides interactive guidance for managing a certain medical condition or disease. Apps include a range of therapeutic topics from pre-operative evaluation to pneumonia treatment. The software is free for all iPhone/iPad users worldwide.

 

“This is my hobby. As an educator, as well as a doctor, I want to help doctors do good work without charging money for it,” Dr. Steinberg said.
When filling in content for the apps, Dr. Steinberg refers not to his medical knowledge but to information from other evidence-based sources.

 

“Basing content off information that’s available to everyone is another reason the apps are free of charge,” Dr. Steinberg said.

 

“I copyright what I’ve done because I brought these ideas together and I produced it, but I don’t want anyone to pretend I’m an expert or that it’s my intellectual property,” Dr. Steinberg said.

 

Dr. Steinberg considers three criteria when developing an app—a question that comes up frequently in patient care, an issue that is too complex to memorize, and a topic that is so high-stakes that a doctor shouldn’t guess at the answer.

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Hospital Care: How Smart Phones and Tablets Are Helping Patients

Hospital Care: How Smart Phones and Tablets Are Helping Patients | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

Hospitals are embracing devices like iPhones and iPads to improve care and connect with patients.

 

When Henry Feldman wants to give a patient a quick tutorial on her gall bladder or hip joint, or explain the message behind a white blob on her X-ray, he pulls out his iPad and taps the screen to call up electronic records, test results and images, and massive reference resources in an instant. "I'll sit on the side of the bed and show patients their imaging results, and then I'll bring up a perfect drawing of the anatomy, sometimes in 3-D," says Feldman, a hospitalist at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. "And they really respond. I remember one patient saying, 'Wow. This is the first time I've understood what's going on.' "

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5 steps to transform EHRs into modern patient collaboration tools

With the rise of accountable care organizations (ACOs) and patient-centered medical homes (PCMH), the spotlight has been put on IT to help make a smoother transition to those new care models. And although the partnership between patient and EHR plays a critical role in their success, Shahid Shah, software analyst and author of the blog The Healthcare IT Guy, believes EHRs have a long way to go before they can take on the full responsibility of supporting these organizations.

 

"Today's reality of patient management is 'disjointed care,' and most of the collaborators in a patient's care team don't know what each other is doing for the patient in real time," he said.

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The Missing Metric: ROI

The Missing Metric: ROI | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

Metrics are essential measurements to determine if a project is meeting the established goals of time, delivery and budget constraints. This may be a bit off the requirements blog norm, but worth the mention.


There has been a change in the market where the ROI (Return on Investment) is not a requirement in the eyes on projects. Is the ROI forecast replaced by a focus upon the financial burn? Are people considering what was spent to arrive at the solution and counting up the cost after the fact? It is important to track what was spent and if the project arrived on, under, or over budget. Some organizations are of the thought, “Just track the burn.” Financial disaster, monetary suicide, bad judgment, new line of thought; you be the judge.

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Start-Ups Use Technology in Patient-Doctor Relations

Start-Ups Use Technology in Patient-Doctor Relations | healthcare technology | Scoop.it
Some entrepreneurial doctors and patients have come up with Web sites and mobile apps to ease monitoring of a person’s vital signs and even make appointments.

 

If ever an industry were ready for disruption, it is the American health care industry. Americans spend about $7,600 a year per person on health care, one in two adults lives with a chronic disease and the average wait time to see a doctor in a metropolitan area is 20 days. Entrepreneurs have responded by starting health care technology companies that are changing the way we interact with the entire system.

 

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Does Pharma have a place on Pinterest?

For those of you who have not yet joined, Pinterest is a pinboard-styled social photo sharing website. The site, that gained two million subscribers in under two years, allows users to create and manage theme-based image collections. Pinterest’s mission statement is to "connect everyone in the world through the 'things' they find interesting." Fair enough. But, is there any use for Pinterest in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industry or will the site stay a library of recipes, crafts and fashion tips?

 

On the site, users can upload images directly to a particular “board” or use a toolbar widget to “pin” an image from a blog post or web page. The software automatically imbeds a link in the image, making it easy to find that graphic again down the road. For, Big Pharma, this technology might prove useful with tracking new technology updates on the manufacturing side or creating boards for specific disease/drugs on the patient side.

 

The only Big Pharma company that has embraced Pinterest so far seems to be Novo Nordisk (http://pinterest.com/NovoNordisk/). However, they list only a company logo and description and have yet to create any boards. Pharma Marketing blogger, John Mack, did some searching for Big Pharma companies and found that companies like Roche, GSK, Novartis, JNJ and Merck’s names have already been taken by other Pinterest users sharing similar acronyms or family names which might make it difficult for the companies to establish a brand presence on the site.

 

 

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Patients Make Poor Health-Care Consumers, Says Quest Diagnostics’ CMO

Patients Make Poor Health-Care Consumers, Says Quest Diagnostics’ CMO | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

Are patients good consumers of healthcare?

 

Nope, says Jon Cohen, a vascular surgeon and chief medical officer at Quest Diagnostics. The average American spends twice as much time before buying a TV as they do looking for a doctor, he told participants today at TEDMED in Washington.

 

“Consumer-driven healthcare doesn’t work because people don’t want health care,” he said.

 

The three main factors that drive consumers to make a choice: price, quality and desire, said Cohen.

 

When it comes to health care, however, price doesn’t correspond with quality, so going to a more expensive doctor doesn’t guarantee better treatment.

 

It’s also difficult to judge quality when it comes to health care, he said.

 

He gives the example of his own father getting a recommendation about a doctor not from his physician son, but from a nice guy in the lobby of the hospital.

 

“The guy sold doughnuts,” said Cohen.

 

People like to use service to judge quality, such as whether the doctor’s office calls back quickly, holds evening hours or has parking, rather than the more important measures like judgment and experience, he says. Patients have to do a lot more digging to get the more vital information and don’t know how to get the information or whom to ask.

 

Finally, desire is critical to being a critical consumer.

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Docs, patients must practice patience with regard to IT use

Both physicians and patients will have to change their habits--and be patient in the process--to accommodate and get used to technology in healthcare settings, according to James Salwitz, M.D., posting on his Sunrise Rounds blog. "Patients must understand that for moments the doctor will look at the computer instead of directly at them, and not be offended," he writes. "Both doctors and patients should turn off their cell phones." In addition, he says, doctors will need to make sure they take time to look their patients in the eye, rather than continuing to "ogle" the computer screen. "We must turn, see and touch our patients," he says. 

 

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Patients First puts EHR to work on diabetes care

Patients First puts EHR to work on diabetes care | healthcare technology | Scoop.it

The EHR has become central to building a comprehensive care program for diabetic patients that has resulted in better control over the disease and better outcomes for patients, says Pam Pavely, RN, director of health information technology for Patients First Health Care. There have been some financial benefits as well, she adds.

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