With recent advances in computing technology, improving outcomes in healthcare may not require new or revolutionary approaches. It may just require a more informed look at the way Mother Nature has already been working for billions of years.
Twitter can serve as a dashboard indicator of a community’s psychological well-being and can predict county-level rates of heart disease, according to new research published in Psychological Science, a journal of theAssociation for Psychological Science.
Previous studies have identified many factors that contribute to the risk of heart disease, including behavioral factors like smoking and psychological factors like stress.
Researchers from the University of Pennsylvania demonstrated that Twitter can capture more information about heart disease risk than many traditional factors combined, as it also characterizes the psychological atmosphere of a community.
The findings show that expressions of negative emotions such as anger, stress, and fatigue in the tweets from people in a given county were associated with higher heart disease risk in that county. On the other hand, expressions of positive emotions like excitement and optimism were associated with lower risk.
The results suggest that using Twitter as a window into a community’s collective mental state may provide a useful tool in epidemiology:
The specter of the U.S. Supreme Court striking down premium subsidies for millions of Americans will loom over the healthcare policy debate in Washington during the first half of 2015, and its fallout could dominate the second half of the year.
Finding care for children with medically complex or rare conditions—which may affect fewer than 100 kids nationwide—can force parents to tap into networks of highly specialized physicians and hospitals scattered around the country.
Vera Peters was a pioneering Canadian doctor who radically changed the way breast cancer is treated, making lumpectomy an option for women with early stages of the disease. Her achievement is celebrated in a new play about her life.
The Microsoft Band and Health apps will begin comparing your fitness to a cross-section of your peers. And if you don't have a Band, no problem -- the Health app will use your iPhone or Android phone, instead.
HealthTap published a survey of the top physician-rated apps for both iOS and Android, and breaks it down into 30 separate categories.
HealthTap founder and CEO Ron Gutman said the company's goal is to give clinicians and consumers a guide to choosing apps that have been approved by doctors, rather than resorting to the user ratings found in app stores (HealthTap's AppRx app, by the way, has a healthy 4.72 star rating in the Apple App Store, he said). The apps are judged on three standards – ease of use, effectiveness and medical accuracy, validity and soundness. They're not given a number rating, but are ranked solely based on how many doctors would recommend them.
Top 10 Health and Medical Apps for Android
1. Weight Watchers Mobile (Weight Watchers International)
2. White Noise Lite (TMSoft)
3. Lose It! (FitNow)
4. First Aid (American Red Cross)
5. RunKeeper – GPS Track Run Walk (FitnessKeeper)
6. Emergency First Aid/Treatment (Phoneflips)
7. Instant Heart Rate (Azumio)
8. Fooducate – Healthy Food Diet (Fooducate)
9. Glucose Buddy – Diabetes Log (Azumio)
10. Pocket First Aid & CPR (Jive Media)
Top Health and Medical Apps for iOS
1. Calorie Counter and Diet Tracker (MyFitnessPal.com)
2. Weight Watchers Mobile (Weight Watchers International)
3. Lose It! (FitNow)
4. White Noise Lite (TMSoft)
5. First Aid (American Red Cross)
6. Runkeeper (FitnessKeeper)
7. Stroke Riskometer (Autel)
8. Emergency First Aid & Treatment Guide (Phoneflips)
Starting this month, Medicare will pay primary care doctors a monthly fee to better coordinate care for the most vulnerable seniors - those with multiple chronic illnesses - even if they don't have a face-to-face exam.
The Kaiser Family Foundation website provides in-depth information on key health policy issues including Medicaid, Medicare, health reform, global health, HIV/AIDS, health insurance, the uninsured and much more.
The Australian Medical Association predicts many doctors will be caught out by a change quietly made by the Abbott government two days before Christmas which will cut the Medicare rebates which apply for short consultations for one class of doctors.
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