KEY TAKEAWAY: There are two things that today’s patients’ want in health care; empathy and to be heard. Pharma has to find a way to take a more empathetic approach to DTC marketing if we want our efforts to be effective.
Depression does not require antidepressants! Here are 5 things people can do to boost their happiness levels without ever popping a pharmaceutical pill.
1. The Easiest Way to Feel Better, by Far, is to Exercise. In study after study, scientists have proven that just moving your body makes you feel better. Exercise boosts dopamine levels and oxytocin levels – two hormones responsible for happiness and love; one dampens pain, the other makes you feel ‘bliss.’
2. Spend Time with Friends and Family - Spending time with friends and family or even interacting with social media friends across cyber space can boost levels of seratonin and oxytocin, and even help you to live longer.
3. Get Outside - The Science of Nature’s Influence on Your Health, Happiness and Vitality, believes that the energy from mountains, trees, plants and water can improve your sleep and mental outlook.
4. Sleep More - Our circadian rhythms are absolutely vital to good mental health.
5. Improve Your Diet - Foods for depression can be much more effective than a bottle of junk made by Big Pharma. ... Try leafy greens, nuts, and foods high in Omega 3s to get an immediate happiness boost.
A team of Israeli researchers have developed a test that can distinguish whether an infection stems a virus or a bacteria – a simple but potentially impactful screener that could cut down unnecessary use of antibiotics.
I recently took on a position of medical journal editor. It is with the Journal of Kentucky Medical Association.
It’s been a good learning experience. Part of the job of editorial board members is to write an opinion column. (Check, I’ve done that before.) What follows below was published in this month’s journal.
The editorial board put no restrictions on me. So I decided to write about social media and why it is time that doctors make the leap from analog to digital. (It breaks the less than 500 words rule.)
The Greek philosopher Heraclitus gets credit for the idea that change is central to the universe. Physicians know this doctrine well. For us, in the practice of medicine, change is a constant. And in recent years, a major vehicle for change is the Internet and social media. Facebook boasts more than a billion users, Twitter more than 120 million, and up to 80% of patients go online for health information. Google yourself and you will discover your digital footprint—whether you like it or not.
Social media expert Dr. Bryan Vartebedian (Texas Children’s Hospital/Baylor College of Medicine) writes that there are two realities of online reputation management: 1) you have no control over what people say; and 2) you have 100% control of the story you create. Yet doctors have been slow to embrace social media. That’s not surprising; we are hardwired to be risk-averse.
It’s true; engaging with social media brings risk. That which is digital is permanent—a sobering reality for sure.
But I ask: What medical intervention, what shot at making things better, comes free of risk? A rule of doctoring is that to do good a doctor must risk doing harm. A distinguished heart surgeon once consoled me—after I had caused a procedural complication—that if I didn’t want complications, I shouldn’t do anything.
It’s the same with engaging in social media. In the hyper-connected world of 2014, medical professionals have reached a fork in the road. One path is a road well traveled. On this familiar route, we continue to keep our heads down, stay in the weeds, out of trouble. Don’t wiggle; don’t rock the boat; check the boxes; fill out the forms and accept what comes. Don’t dare engage in the online conversation. Choosing this path is like not treating a disease: less ownership confers less personal risk.
The purpose of what follows is to encourage you to consider the other path: the path of engaging in the online conversation and using the tools of social media to enhance the good that can be done—for patients, for ourselves, and for the profession at large.
As a multi-year participant in social media, I see more benefit and opportunity than risk. Here are five factors to consider while pausing at that fork in the road.
First, consider the blank-slate status of the playing field for health care social media. Beyond common sense and decency, there are few rules. Digital natives—like me, and perhaps you—will make the rules. Pause for a moment here and consider that idea: making rules rather than following them. Sounds good, doesn’t it?
Second, as a doctor, you are different. People will listen to you; your voice matters. Currently the Internet overwhelms people with information but, too often, the details come in the form of highly edited groupspeak from medical societies, or pseudo-science from people selling things, or anecdotes from patient forums. What patients really want to read is what their doctor says. How does John Mandrola feel about anticoagulation; what does James Patrick Murphy say about opioid addiction, and how does Kathy Nieder feel about electronic medical records?
Third, social media can be therapeutic. It’s an understatement to say morale amongst caregivers is low, and sinking lower. The primary reason for this, I believe, is that joy is being debrided from our job. It’s as if joy is extra; there’s not time for it anymore. Bulleted HPIs and 10-pt review of systems replace the beautiful stories; white screens inhibit human-human connections; and appropriate use criteria supersede the pleasure of using clinical judgment. Social media offers an elixir, a chance to reflect about what is still so good about our work. When you write, or Tweet, or blog, or create videos, you are forced to dwell on the patient who actually lost the weight, the pacing lead that found the perfect branch of the coronary sinus, or the family who sent you a Thank You note for having had the courage to discuss end-of-life care. What’s more, the social aspect of social media connects you with colleagues across the world, not just your hospital’s doctors’ lounge. I regularly connect with colleagues in Germany, Australia, and the UK. This is nice.
Fourth, social media can make you a better doctor. The pace of change in health care is increasing. Look no farther than the new cholesterol and hypertension guidelines. In the course of three weeks in late 2013, two ensconced paradigms of cardiovascular medicine were upended. Social media covered the story in real time; print journal coverage came later. Another example: one of my favorite types of sessions at medical meetings is the pro/con debate. Social media brings these lively discussions to your smartphone or tablet. (In fact, as a participant in social media, you could be a debater.) The challenge for physicians of the past was having enough to do for patients. The challenge for today’s caregiver is about managing the expanding menu of options. Staying current and informed has never been more important. The micro-blogging platform Twitter allows easy curation of content from trusted sources as it comes available. Another aspect of creating content is the depth of knowledge it requires. In this way, I have no doubt that participating in social media has made me a more informed clinician.
Finally, the democracy of social media levels the playing field of influence–for patients, doctors and even journalists. The blog and Twitter feed of stage IV breast cancer patient Lisa Adams has stirred the mainstream of journalism and medicine. When writers Bill and Emma Keller (of the NY Times and the Guardian, respectively) weighed-in on Ms. Adams poignant posts, a torrent of criticism and conversation followed. The vastness of the response (from the New Yorker, Wired, NPR, Atlantic, The Nation, the American College of Oncology and many more outlets) removed any doubt that social media has transformed the sphere of influence.
I recently presented at an Indiana University Medical Student Council Leadership conference. One of the other speakers, Dr. Richard Gunderman, a radiology professor and author, told attendees about the importance of narrative. “If you can tell a story, you are a leader. Stories are powerful. Medicine is story-penic.” He went further, speaking a truth well known to today’s clinicians: “there are things in medicine that need to be said. But it takes courage to speak candidly…. If you are courageous, you are a leader.”
My recent experience provides proof of this concept. Although I am an academic nobody, at the 2013 Heart Rhythm Society Sessions I shared a stage with three other distinguished leaders in the field. Why? Dr. Rich Fogel, the president of HRS said this when I posed the why me question to him: “John, you say things we need to hear.” Social media gives regular doctors a voice, a chance to influence.
Perchance I have piqued your interest in social media, that the benefits outweigh the risks, the peril of not engaging greater than engaging. If so, I invite you to read my Ten Simple Rules for doctors on social media and follow me on Twitter at @DrJohnM.
Why do most people fail to stick to something challenging, like losing weight or getting in better shape? They don't start small. They immediately go all in. They change everything, which pretty soon results in not changing anything.
Here's a better approach. Don't immediately go all in. Don't waste your time adopting the latest trendy diet or the current fitness fad. No matter how incredible the program, go all in and you're incredibly unlikely to stick with it.
Instead, just start with making a few simple changes to your day. You'll lose a little weight, feel a little better, and then find it a lot easier to incorporate a few more healthy habits into your routine.
So for now just make these five changes:
1. Drink a glass of water before every meal.
Everyone needs to drink more water. That's a given. Plus when you drink a glass of water before you eat you'll already feel a little more full and won't be as tempted to eat past the point of hunger.
2. Eat one really healthy meal.
Pick one meal. Just one. Then change what you eat. If it's lunch, eat one portion of protein that fits in the palm of your hand, a vegetable or fruit, and four or five almonds.
I know that's not a lot of food, but it's healthier than what you're eating now and, just as important, it lets you take small steps toward better controlling your portions at every meal.
3. Use your lunch to be active.
It doesn't take 30 minutes or an hour to eat. So make your lunch break productive. Go for a walk. (Better yet, find a walking buddy or do like LinkedIn's Jeff Weiner and have walking meetings.) Or stretch. Or do some push-ups or sit-ups.
4. Eat one meal-replacement bar.
OK, so most protein bars taste like flavored sawdust. But most are also nutritious and low in calories, and they make it easy to stave off the midafternoon hunger pangs you'll inevitably feel after having eaten, say, a light lunch.
Eating a midmorning or midafternoon meal replacement bar doesn't just bridge the gap between meals; it's an easy way to get in the habit of eating smaller meals more frequently, another habit you'll eventually want to adopt.
5. Have fun completing a physical challenge.
It would be great if you could consistently hit the gym four to five days a week, but if you're starting from zero instantly transforming yourself into a gym rat isn't realistic.
Instead, once a week pick something challenging to do. Take a really long walk. Take a long bike ride. Take a testing hike.
Just make sure you pick an accomplishment, not a yardstick. Don't decide to walk six miles on a treadmill; that's a yardstick. Walk the six miles to a friend's house. Don't ride 20 miles on an exercise bike; ride to a café, grab a snack, and then ride back home.
(NaturalNews) Just as Natural News has warned for over a decade, mind-altering medications such as tranquilizers and psychiatric drugs (SSRIs) have now been confirmed to increased to risk of a person committing murder.A new study published in the...
About 30 countries have health systems that are as dangerously weak as the ones that allowed Ebola to ravage Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, the World Health Organization warned Thursday.
The UN health agency stressed the urgency of learning the lessons drawn from the outbreak that has killed more than 11,100 people in west Africa, calling for strengthening health systems so they can rapidly detect and counter looming disasters.
"We must reverse the trend in global health where we wait for the fire to flare up, run to put it out but then forget to fireproof the building," said senior WHO official Ruediger Krech.
The world, he told reporters, had to create a health system "built to withstand shocks whether from an outbreak like Ebola, a natural disaster or a financial crisis."
The fragile health systems in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Libera, weakened by conflict and poverty, were an important factor in Ebola's rapid spread through the three countries last year.
And Krech said at least 28 other countries worldwide, mainly in Africa, but also in Asia and Latin America, had similarly weak systems.
The list includes Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar, Burundi, Sudan, Afghanistan and Haiti.
"So our work will not be limited to west Africa," he said.
The Ebola outbreak began in late 2013 in Guinea, but was permitted to spread silently for three months before the WHO and the region raised the alarm.
The crisis sparked a global health scare, with the humanitarian response especially gaining momentum once stray cases were detected in the United States and some European countries.
Liberia, once the worst-hit country, was declared Ebola-free on May 9. But Krech said the crisis was far from over in the two neighbouring countries and refused to give a timeframe for them to acquire a similar status.
On Wednesday, the WHO's annual decision-making assembly approved a significant hike in its budget for 2016-17 to among other things help strengthen health systems in west Africa and elsewhere.
Just pouring in money will not fix the problem, Krech warned, adding that "corruption is rife in many countries."
"The elephant in the room" in many nations with poor health systems is endemic corruption and a lack of transparency of how funds are spent in key sectors such as health, he told AFP.
"To further complicate things, the private health sector in many countries in unregulated," he said.
Non-adherence is when a patient does not take their medication as frequently as prescribed or for the period of time recommended by their physician.2
The clinical implications are clear, with poor adherence to CV therapy increasing so does the risk of poorer patient outcomes and death.2Risks relating to non-adherence have been reported in many studies and remain an ongoing challenge for treating physicians as well as patients around the world.
L’autorisation de mise sur le marché d’un médicament doit être rigoureuse
L’AMM d’un médicament, son efficacité, son prix et son remboursement sont soumis à diverses commissions supposées indépendantes.
Cependant, une récente enquête de Mediapart à permis de découvrir que ce n’était pas du tout le cas. Mais bon, ce n’est pas un scoop, au BonCoinSanté nous dénonçons depuis plusieurs années tous les conflits d’intérêts liés au business du médicament. Voici donc les grandes lignes de cette enquête.
Qui décide qu’un médicament va être sur le marché ?
La commission de mise sur le marché du médicament, permet à un médicament d’être vendu sur le territoire français. Les avis rendus par cette fameuse commission sur les médicaments proposés par les labos ont deux gros impacts: La sécurité sanitaire, avec tous les risques qu’ont connait, il suffi de se rappeler l’affaire du médiator, protelos ou autre champix…
Le prix du médicament, et donc le taux de remboursement par la Sécurité sociale, avec le risque d’augmenter son déficit…
Intérêts des labos
Pour les labos qui proposent un nouveau médicament sur le marché, vous comprendrez certainement que l’avis de cette commission va peser lourd, jusqu’à plusieurs centaines de millions d’euros pour un seul médoc. Nous ne parlerons pas d’efficacité car c’est vraiment la dernière chose qui va intervenir dans une AMM. Donc si un médicament ne reçoit pas, ou peu de remboursement, il ne se vendra pas ou très peu. Il faudra donc que le nouveau médicament (efficace ou pas, dangereux ou pas…) reçoive cette fameuse autorisation avec un bon taux de remboursement, tous ceci afin de contribuer à la bonne santé financière du fameux labo qui fabrique le médicament.
As athletes and fitness enthusiasts, it's easy for us to get carried away and focus only on training our bodies. After all, these are what we primarily use when we play sports or exercise. However, in doing so, we often neglect one part essential to our progress and performance: our minds.
It may not seem obvious, but our minds play crucial roles in how well we do and how far we go in sports and fitness. They can be the difference between a bad performance and a good one, or between a good one and a great one. They can either slow down our progress (even bring us back!) or they can speed us along faster than we ever imagined. Our minds are powerful tools, perhaps the most powerful one that we have. Unfortunately, we often forget this and fail to use our minds to their full potential.
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Creating engaging newsletters with your curated content is really easy.