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Social media “likes” healthcare: Interactive infographic by PWC

Social media “likes” healthcare:  Interactive infographic by PWC | Social Health on line |

With one half of health industry executives saying they are concerned about how to integrate social media data into their business strategy there is a recognition social media presents a significant industry challenge.

rob halkes's insight:

Great infographic to be handled interactively! You'll get the view ;-)

Get a clear view on percentages of people answering:

"Have you done any of the following health related activities using social media?" ...

Ray Stephens's curator insight, October 6, 2013 10:48 PM

Excellent interactive charts.

Social Health on line
Telecare, telemedicine, eHealth, social health, etc. are ways of providing support to health care on line: opportunities, costs and examples
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Modern Doctors’ House Calls: Skype Chat and Fast Diagnosis

Modern Doctors’ House Calls: Skype Chat and Fast Diagnosis | Social Health on line |

The same forces that have made instant messaging and video calls part of daily life for many Americans are now shaking up basic medical care.

TACOMA, Wash. — One night, when her face turned puffy and painful from what she thought was a sinus infection, Jessica DeVisser briefly considered going to an urgent care clinic, but then decided to try something “kind of sci-fi.”

She sat with her laptop on her living room couch, went online and requested a virtual consultation. She typed in her symptoms and credit card number, and within half an hour, a doctor appeared on her screen via Skype. He looked her over, asked some questions and agreed she had sinusitis. In minutes, Ms. DeVisser, a stay-at-home mother, had an antibiotics prescription called in to her pharmacy.

Continue reading the main story

The same forces that have made instant messaging and video calls part of daily life for many Americans are now shaking up basic medical care. Health systems and insurers are rushing to offer video consultations for routine ailments, convinced they will save money and relieve pressure on overextended primary care systems in cities and rural areas alike. And more people like Ms. DeVisser, fluent in Skype and FaceTime and eager for cheaper, more convenient medical care, are trying them out  [..]
But telemedicine is facing pushback from some more traditional corners of the medical world. Medicare, which often sets the precedent for other insurers, strictly limits reimbursement for telemedicine services out of concern that expanding coverage would increase, not reduce, costs. Some doctors assert that hands-on exams are more effective and warn that the potential for misdiagnoses via video is great [..].
While telemedicine consultations have been around for decades, they have mostly connected specialists with patients in remote areas, who almost always had to visit a clinic or hospital for the videoconference. The difference now is that patients can be wherever they want and use their own smartphones or tablets for the visits, which are trending toward more basic care.[..]
Advocates say virtual visits for basic care could reduce costs over the long term. It is cheaper to operate telemedicine services than brick-and-mortar offices, allowing companies to charge as little as $40 or $50 for consultations — less than for visits to emergency rooms, urgent care centers and doctors’ offices. They also say that by letting people talk to a doctor whenever they need to, from home or work, virtual visits make for more satisfied and potentially healthier patients than traditional appointments that are available only at certain times.[..]   

When the doctor appeared on her screen, she told him her symptoms and, holding her iPad close to her face, showed him her painful tooth and the swelling in her jaw.

“I was in so much pain, I didn’t care that it was weird,” Ms. Sickmeier said. “He got right to the point, which was what I wanted. He prescribed antibiotics and called them into an all-night pharmacy about 20 minutes away.”

Washington State gave a victory to the industry in April when Gov. Jay Inslee, a Democrat, signed legislation requiring insurers to cover a range of telemedicine services if they already cover those services when provided in person. But the new law, which made Washington the 24th state to ensure reimbursement for some telemedicine services, does not cover virtual urgent care outside a medical facility.

Still, the law “opens the doors with a lot of our payers,” said Matt Levi, CHI Franciscan Health’s director of virtual health services. He added that some insurers, like Molina Healthcare of Washington, the state’s largest Medicaid plan, were starting to cover virtual urgent care, though the law does not require it. [...]

Some large insurers are starting to pay, too. UnitedHealthcare, the nation’s largest insurer, announced in April that it would cover virtual visits for most of its 26 million commercial members by next year, citing the shortage of primary care doctors and the cost of less than $50 per virtual visit.[...]

Virtual urgent care visits are undoubtedly less expensive than trips to the emergency room, said Dr. Ateev Mehrotra, a professor of health policy at Harvard Medical School, who has studied telemedicine.[..]

CHI Franciscan’s virtual urgent care program contracts with Carena, a private company in Seattle that employs 17 physicians and nurse practitioners to do virtual consultations in 11 states. Among CHI Franciscan’s patients, the most frequent users are women ages 25 to 55, and the most typical diagnoses are bladder infections, upper respiratory tract infections and pinkeye.

Users are prescribed medication about 40 percent of the time, said Beth Bacon, the company’s vice president for consumer affairs. Most visits take place on weekends or between 5 p.m. and 8 a.m., she said, when doctors’ offices are closed. Like other virtual urgent care programs, CHI Franciscan’s emphasizes that it is not for medical emergencies, advising customers on its website to “call 911 or proceed to the nearest emergency room” if they have chest pain, difficulty breathing or other potentially life-threatening symptoms.

Continue reading the main story
rob halkes's insight:

Early applications of telemedicine / ehealth will struggle with experimental features of it. The benefits and profits to all stakeholder indicate the necessity of sustained effort. Along with necessary changes in healthcare as it is now, there is an effective outcome to be expected.

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Curely - Rely on Curely for everyday health concerns

Curely - Rely on Curely for everyday health concerns | Social Health on line |
Rely on Curely for everyday health concerns Watch Video HOW IT WORKS Curely brings board-certified doctors around the world to your fingertips. CHOOSE YOUR DOCTOR Browse through a list of board-certified doctors and select your doctor by specialty, price, and language. DISCUSS YOUR CONCERNS WITH YOUR DOCTOR Chat with a doctor immediately or send a …
rob halkes's insight:

"Curely" A doctor in your phone, on line. Again a new platform for distant help and support. I would be very much interested in evaluation data by patients ;-)

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The Empirical Foundations of Telemedicine Interventions for Chronic Disease Management

The Empirical Foundations of Telemedicine Interventions for Chronic Disease Management | Social Health on line |


The telemedicine intervention in chronic disease management promises to involve patients in their own care, provides continuous monitoring by their healthcare providers, identifies early symptoms, and responds promptly to exacerbations in their illnesses. This review set out to establish the evidence from the available literature on the impact of telemedicine for the management of three chronic diseases: congestive heart failure, stroke, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. By design, the review focuses on a limited set of representative chronic diseases because of their current and increasing importance relative to their prevalence, associated morbidity, mortality, and cost. Furthermore, these three diseases are amenable to timely interventions and secondary prevention through telemonitoring. The preponderance of evidence from studies using rigorous research methods points to beneficial results from telemonitoring in its various manifestations, albeit with a few exceptions. Generally, the benefits include reductions in use of service: hospital admissions/re-admissions, length of hospital stay, and emergency department visits typically declined. It is important that there often were reductions in mortality. Few studies reported neutral or mixed findings.

rob halkes's insight:

Mind you: the evidence says about telemedicine: "Generally, the benefits include reductions in use of service: hospital admissions/re-admissions, length of hospital stay, and emergency department visits typically declined. It is important that there often were reductions in mortality. Few studies reported neutral or mixed findings." So ehealth is on its way of fundamental recognition!

Want to know what it is: See "What is ehealth?"

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Most Wearable Devices Will Fail .. | Richie Etwaru

Most Wearable Devices Will Fail .. | Richie Etwaru | Social Health on line |

Wearables are anything but sensible, from first hand observation they are somewhat silly, as they are trying to solve a problem that can be solved by a myriad of simpler and more passive mechanism.

If you were at CES, you could not have missed a new category of computing called "wearables." This category of devices can be described as the FitBit gone mad. Wearables currently come in three main categories: health trackers, watches and glasses. In each of these categories some if not all devices are pivoting to solving the world's biggest health problems.

Almost daily, I see a new wearable device launched, and while they all are minimally viable products, they continually get sillier and sillier. We are seeing everything from wearable necklaces (like necklaces were never wearable) earrings, shoes, clothing and many other bodily accruements being outfitted with small computers/biosensors, low voltage needs and high connectivity. Like clockwork, every new device no matter how silly, calls out to the world with press releases, tweets, YouTube videos and multiple pounds of the manufacturing firm's proverbial digital chest reckoning how disruptive some new wearable product is.

My observation is that we have bastardized the word disruption. Most wearables are disturbing mankind under the once well-intended charter of disruption.

While a minority of humans continue to wear these devices past the first few months of purchase, most folks (like myself) stop wearing after the nostalgia has worn off. I gave up my FitBit after about six months, my pebble watch in about six days and my Google GLASS, well I got over that bad boy in about six hours. I got over them the same way I got over my first CASIO watch, which doubled as a calculator in high school; said watch plus calculator was disturbing my life. Disruption does not have to disturb.

Good disruption is change without disturbance.

The hypothesis is simple, wearing something on my body that is not confortable, fashionable and delivering more value than it disturbs me is not a sustainable value proposition. So the big question is what will become of wearables? Clearly the movement of computing to the edge of the network will continue, and the connecting of things/biosensors that are not computers (Internet of Things) will continue. Wearables currently position themselves as trying to solve health's biggest problems. [..]

Read the full article!

rob halkes's insight:

Reflective critique is always good. But I guess the way forward in health care to the triple aim (better care, better outcomes , less costs) is not as simple as to claim that disruption by wearables might go on without disturbance.

In healthcare  "digital', e-health, telemedicine  and sensores will have to large an impact on the way health care is organized and paid. My claim? Disruption will not succeed without disturbance!

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Why LinkedIn Is Ideal for Healthcare Professionals

Why LinkedIn Is Ideal for Healthcare Professionals | Social Health on line |

LinkedIn has become a staple social media outlet for professionals across the board, and now more than ever, people are actively using this platform to share information.  One and a half million LinkedIn members are sharing content and sixty-five percent of users have increased their consumption over the past year. This drastic increase is now being called “the content revolution,” and is a phenomenon that should not go unnoticed by healthcare professionals.

The healthcare industry can take advantage of what marketers have already been doing and utilize these social media sites for digital marketing.  LinkedIn recently released their 2014 Professional Content Consumption Report which surveyed over 2,700 users about their interactions with the site.  As ninety-one percent of those surveyed list LinkedIn as their number one choice for professional content and the average user spends eight hours a week on LinkedIn, connecting with these content revolutionaries is an excellent way for healthcare professionals to network and share valuable insights and information.

Present novel information, or information that will assist in decision making. Fifty-six percent of users feel it is the easiest way to find professionally relevant content.  Posts that present new and helpful information will be viewed and shared at a higher rate.
        Use this platform to spark discussion. Fifty-one percent of users feel the main benefit of LinkedIn is the potential for sparking conversations.  Content revolutionaries will share content that they feel evokes a response, and this content is more likely to be shared across other media platforms as well.
        Ensure that sharing this content would benefit a user’s professional network. Sixty-two percent of users use LinkedIn to build relationships with colleagues or clients. Network building is one of the main draws of this platform, and content revolutionaries are likely to share information that aids in building relationships.

    Format the content so it can be easily consumed on a mobile device. Users often need information at their fingertips and forty three percent of members visit this site on their mobile device.
    Publish content that users want to share to enhance their professional brand. Some of the main benefits to using LinkedIn are that it increases member visibility, enhances a member’s professional brand reputation, and positions a member as an innovator.  Content revolutionaries are most likely to share content that fulfills these needs.

For healthcare professionals to be most effective on LinkedIn, they must deliver information that content revolutionaries are seeking. In order to ensure that content revolutionaries share and consume healthcare professional’s content, it is important to present new, timely and discussion-worthy information.

Providing content beneficial to a professional’s network or brand, as well as providing small, easily “digestible” pieces of content will help increase the likelihood that the information is shared.

- See more at:

Via Plus91
rob halkes's insight:

Is my own experience as well..

Helen Adams's curator insight, November 24, 2014 9:31 AM

I've been suggesting LinkedIn to my clients as a social media channel to reach HCPs for some time. 

Ignacio Fernández Alberti's curator insight, November 24, 2014 11:02 AM

AÑADA su visión ...

Art Jones's curator insight, November 24, 2014 2:22 PM

"As ninety-one percent of those surveyed list LinkedIn as their number one choice for professional content and the average user spends eight hours a week on LinkedIn, connecting with these content revolutionaries is an excellent way for healthcare professionals to network and share valuable insights and information."

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Propeller Health (Asthma/COPD) raises $14.5M | mobihealthnews

Propeller Health (Asthma/COPD) raises $14.5M | mobihealthnews | Social Health on line |

Madison, Wisconsin-based Propeller Health, formerly known as Asthmapolis, has raised $14.5 million in a round of funding led by Safeguard Scientifics with participation from return backer The Social+Capital Partnership. (..)

The smart inhaler company’s devices and companion apps offer geographic mapping of inhaler use and asthma triggers as well as adherence tracking and early warning alerts for COPD patients.

The funding supports the mission we are already on: to bring sensors to the full variety of the inhaled medications that are used for chronic respiratory disease,” Propeller Health CEO David Van Sickle told MobiHealthNews in an interview. “We are already well down that path… but the respiratory pipeline is fairly active. We are seeing new medications, therapies, and form factors.”

In May Propeller received FDA clearance for its COPD offering. The new platform aims to help users prevent so-called “asthma attacks” or similar lung inflammation symptoms caused by COPD. The Propeller Metered-Dose Inhaler measures a patient’s use of their rescue inhaler. That data is automatically compared to a patient’s baseline and to general clinical guidelines, and the app can alert care teams if an attack seems likely. 

“In addition software development, as we take on more COPD programs, we have a broad spectrum of demographics that we have to cover with our products and services,” Van Sickle said. “So we are building out teams to support the usability and experience of not only kids with respiratory disease but elderly folks with respiratory disease, caregivers, new enterprise teams for care managers which are on their own evolving with the times and new healthcare arrangements.”(..)

Propeller is seeing a lot of interest in COPD programs, Van Sickle said, partly driven by the market forces in healthcare incentivizing providers to reduce readmissions for COPD patients in particular. (..)

rob halkes's insight:

Chronic diseases: the floor for researching these key questions:

  1. how should we choose what deivces/wearables, their functions, their userfriendlines;
  2. how should the process of delivering care be redisigned to what medical and patient criteria; and
  3. how should we get it payable/affordable?
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Healthcare Tweeting Tips | HealthWorks Collective

Healthcare Tweeting Tips | HealthWorks Collective | Social Health on line |

By Marie Ennis-O'Connor @JBBC

Twitter is a conversation, and just as you observe conversation etiquette in real life, when it comes to healthcare tweeting there are unwritten rules, too.

If you are new to Twitter becoming familiar with these rules will ease your transition into its culture; if you are already a seasoned tweeter, take this opportunity to see how you score on your Twitter etiquette.

  • Rule #1 Be polite at all times

Being courteous to those who follow you is the first rule of Twitter etiquette. Apologize if you make a mistake and never get drawn into a public argument.  If someone wants to argue with you on Twitter either ignore them or if they have a genuine grievance take it offline.

  • Rule #2 Keep it professional

Twitter is an excellent way to allow your personality to shine through your tweets, but you need to strike the right balance between the personal and professional. The standards expected of health care professionals do not change because you are communicating through social media. Posting inappropriate photos and using explicit language is definitely not on.  Be professional at all times; avoid flippancy or irreverence which may be misconstrued. 

  • Rule #3 Acknowledge your followers

As much as possible respond to those followers who engage with you and thank those who "Retweet"(RT) your updates in a timely manner.  Use their real name whenever you can. 

  • Rule #4 Learn the etiquette of following

You are under no obligation to follow every person who follows you. Following a large number of people indiscrminately diminishes your credibiltiy. Be selective and only follow those you genuinely want to engage with and who add value to your Twitter feed.  Similarly not everyone will want to follow you and that's ok. Never call someone out for not following you. Finally don't be the kind of follower who follows someone in order to get them to follow back, and then immediately unfollows. 

  • Rule #5 Use "Direct Message" (DM) for personal conversations

Whatever you post on your Twitter timeline is visible to everyone (whether they're following you or not). If you are engaged in a private conversation with someone on Twitter, use the "Direct Message" (DM) function to communicate. If you want to get in touch with someone about a business opportunity, contact him or her by email.  

  • Rule #6 Avoid overt self-promotion

While Twitter is a good place to promote your healthcare expertise or service, too much self-promotion will lose you followers. It’s ok to share your own content, so long as you balance it out by sharing content from others too.  Some social media experts suggest following the 80/20 rule - posting content for your followers 80% of the time and for yourself 20% of the time  - but there are no hard and fast rules on this.   In the same vein constantly retweeting people who praise you makes you look boastful and self-serving.  

  • Rule #7 Always credit your sources

Be transparent. If you tweet an idea or opinion that originated with another Twitter user, give them credit. Clicking "Retweet" (RT) on a user’s Twitter update allows you to share it with your followers. Alternatively you can manually retweet the post (add "RT" or "via" followed by @ the user’s handle) and add your own comment or insight. If you abbreviate the original tweet add "Modified Tweet" (MT). Adding HT (meaning "Hat Tip") to acknowledge a user who has pointed you in the direction of something interesting is considered polite.  

  • Rule #8 Shorten your links

Shortening long links in your tweets makes for a more streamlined experience for you and your followers.  Use a url shortener like which also gives you useful realtime information about who's clicking your Bitlink.

  • Rule #9 Forgo automated services

Do not use automated tweets to thank new followers when they follow you. You may do it with the best of intentions but an auto-DM (automatic direct message) is often viewed as spam. Never auto-DM a link to your website or service. 

  • Rule #10 Ask for Retweets sparingly

It’s ok to ask for a "Retweet" (RT) once in a while, but constantly seeking RTs from your followers is annoying for them.

  • Rule #11 #Don’t #overuse #hashtags

A hashtag is a popular way of creating and monitoring a conversation around a particular health related topic.  To create a hashtag, simply place the # symbol before a word but don't over do it. Placing too many hashtags in your tweet is visually unappealing and may make your tweet look like spam.

  • Rule #12 Don’t flood your Twitter feed with multiple tweets

If you do a lot of catching up on blogs and other online content first thing in the morning, it is easy to flood your Twitter feed with multiple links. Using a scheduling tool will help you manage a steady trickle of valuable tweets throughout the day, rather than deluging your followers with a downpour all at the same time. If you're going to be live-tweeting or taking part in a healthcare chat it’s polite to let your followers know that you will be tweeting more than usual. Stick to your allotted 140 characters; spreading your thoughts over multiple tweets can be off putting. 

  • Rule #13 Add value to the healthcare conversation

When you share a link to an article, go beyond the headline to add your insight. Contribute your expertise to one of the many health related Twitter chats.  You will find a full list of health hashtags via Symplur's Hashtag Project.

None of the above rules are mandatory and you will likely see them flouted every day on Twitter. However by following these unspoken rules of Twitter etiquette you are on the right path to attract new followers, engage more meaningfully with your existing followers and enrich the online healthcare conversation.

rob halkes's insight:

Great guidelines for tweeting in health care!

Carlos Martins's curator insight, September 6, 2014 1:28 PM

Great healthcare social media tips!

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The Digital Divide and Personal Health Records: An Outdated Misconception

The Digital Divide and Personal Health Records: An Outdated Misconception | Social Health on line |

One misconception clinicians and policy-makers have about a Personal Health Record is that it is a luxury available only to a wealthier minority and that, as a result, anyone promoting it is somehow turning their back on a whole segment of the population. The desire to improve access is one we at PKB fully support; we therefore strongly believe that this interpretation of PHRs is outdated and bad for patients. This is why the UK government, for example, has a Digital First strategy for the NHS. Digital services should be offered as the default, rather than delaying because of fears over access. In fact, if we look at the numbers, access is at remarkable levels already.

A study recently released by Ofcom, as part of an effort to “scorecard” internet and mobile infrastructure, access and speed in the UK, found the UK is a leader. It scores a whopping 81% of individuals accessing the internet at least once a week.


rob halkes's insight:

Yes, we are definitively connected with one another no excuse anymore for reluctance on ehealth ;-)

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Wikipedia, Twitter, facebook, and YouTube: uses in health

Wikipedia, Twitter, facebook, and YouTube: uses in health | Social Health on line |
Wikipedia, Twitter, facebook, and YouTube: uses in health

Via Andrew Spong
rob halkes's insight:

Great overview !

ChemaCepeda's curator insight, July 31, 2014 9:09 AM

¿Qué usos podemos dar a cada red social aplicados a la salud? Interesante gráfico con las ventajas y desventajas de cada una

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Connected Health as a Therapeutic

Connected Health as a Therapeutic | Social Health on line |

I heard the other day that by 2017, 50% of the pharmacy spend in the U.S. will be on specialty pharmacy.  It seems this is driven by two phenomena.  The first is the growing crop of new molecules that are in the class ‘biologics’ –  [..} These are classified as specialty pharmacy drugs.  The second phenomenon is that just about everything else will be generics. Specialty drugs in this one burgeoning expense class seem to be taking over the pharmaceutical industry, and bucking the trend in health care — to succeed by being more efficient.  This brings to mind two opportunities for connected health.  One is surrounding these expensive therapeutics with connected health applications in order to improve outcomes and reduce costs.  The second is that connected health interventions, because of their demonstrated improvements in adherence, can  improve the care experience, patient satisfaction and quality of life, and themselves prove to be therapeutic.

I am not going to speak to the first opportunity, but we are working on a real-life example of this at CCH now.  We are under non-disclosure with the research sponsor, but I promise you it will be an exciting result when we can publicly discuss it.

The latter opportunity is intriguing and a bit of a sleeper.  Traditionally, the introduction of new technologies into health care has been assumed by knee-jerk reaction to add costs.  Yet, we’ve accumulated evidence to the contrary. I have two stories to demonstrate this.
The first example is a clinical research program we have under way with adolescents who have asthma.  We’ve created a private Facebook group for them to be part of, and that’s about it really.  No fancy bells and whistles.  Just old-fashioned social networking.


The second example is in type II diabetes, using connected health to improve activity.  We randomized patients with type II diabetes into two groups, one received an activity tracker and nothing more versus a second group that received a tracker plus were sent automated motivational messages every day.


read full story!

rob halkes's insight:

Great examples of how simple add on services to the normal treatment do help a lot and create reald everyday value of support to patients!

Imagine what a more extensive program of ehealth might do!

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9 Digital Patient Engagement & Hospital Marketing Strategies to Improve Patient Acquisition and Retention

9 Digital Patient Engagement & Hospital Marketing Strategies to Improve Patient Acquisition and Retention | Social Health on line |
Digital Patient Engagement & Hospital Marketing Strategies to Improve Patient Acquisition and Retention

The value of your hospital's marketing efforts, both traditionally and online, can yield significant return on your marketing dollars. As consumers become more tech savvy, their online shopping transcends into the search for healthcare. Digital marketing amplifies your brand, raises awareness about your events and efforts in the community, and educates your patient populations. In turn, a focus on a digital strategy can help meet your patient acquisition objectives and boost patient loyalty while driving revenue in and back through the hospital and affiliated physicians.

What are some of these different strategies and blended approaches to attract and maintain a loyal patient base? Ensure your organization is utilizing or leveraging these key objectives to drive measureable return on your marketing investment:

Digital strategies to acquire new patients
The key to acquiring new patients digitally is simply making sure your organization and its information is easily accessible for those who need it quickest: physicians, patients and staff. Harness the strengths of technology to ensure your brand is discoverable online and create powerful, user-friendly tools.

  • Check your search engine optimization. [..]
  • Add a toolbar of "quick links" [..]
  • Include referral phoine numbers and other key info on all pages [..]
  • Make a call to action [..]
  • Leverage your website [..]
  • Leverage your social channels [..]

These tactics provide significant value to your brand that can influence customers' purchasing decisions when shopping around for healthcare.

Patient retention through online engagement

For the engaged and technology-savvy patient, hospitals can leverage social media channels, apps or patient portals to keep existing patients in-network by promoting value-added services.

  • Create segmented conversations [..]
  • Take support groups beyond weekly meetings [..]
  • Listen and respond [..]

As hospitals work even harder to elevate their presence in a highly competitive market, online marketing strategies can improve retention, open lines of communication and boost the experience for patients and healthcare providers.

rob halkes's insight:

It is easy to teel what all could be wrong at a hospital website - the more difficult it is to make it right. Do not trust an agency which states that they can do it for you. Being on line and digital engage with patients is a matter tha must come from the people of the organization itself! But here are some tips to get there !

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Is Your Hospital Website Patient-Centric?

Is Your Hospital Website Patient-Centric? | Social Health on line |
Free Download: Hospital Marketing Report Card

Learn how some of America's top hospitals fall short in delivering on patients' online expectations and how it affects your hospital's ROI.

Download the full report - "Aligning Patient Needs with Online Capabilities" - today.

  • 49% of the top hospitals lack a mobile-friendly website
  • Only 1 out of 5 offers online pre-registration for appointments

  • 67% fail to offer online rehab and aftercare information

Read the full report to evaluate what is preventing your own hospital's marketing efforts from achieving a greater return on investment from your website.

Hospitals whose websites are lacking in substantial content, helpful resources, and general functionality will suffer from a decrease in traffic and authority.

With over 70% of Internet users using online resources to discover health information, now is the time to invest in creating a website that delivers on the patient needs end-to-end.

Taking advantage of the right digital tools, including your website, will allow your healthcare organization to more easily deliver greater results to patient outcomes while lowering hands-on interactions.

rob halkes's insight:

Great insights ... though commercial of intention, one can really learn how to approach the issue: how to serve patients more through your hospital website..

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How to Treat Patient Wait-Time Woes IndustryView | 2013

How to Treat Patient Wait-Time Woes IndustryView | 2013 | Social Health on line |
We surveyed 5,003 patients to determine how they feel about wait times and what might alleviate their frustration.


Key Findings:

  1. 80 percent of patients would be less frustrated if they knew how long the wait would be.
  2. A personal apology from the doctor would minimize frustration for 70 percent of patients.
  3. 41 percent of patients would be willing to see another doctor in the practice to reduce their wait.

Patients are nearly unanimous in their dislike of waiting at their doctors’ offices, but there are steps you can take to help alleviate their frustration. Simply notifying patients how long they’ll have to wait can ease the frustration of most patients, as will a personal apology from their doctor when they’ve had to wait.

See download of report

rob halkes's insight:

Waiting without being informed about why so, and how long will it take, is most annoying - a certainty that is now demonstrated in health care. Lots can be done to resolve this irritation, but the online and ehealth technology will be the fundamental changes to overcome these ;-)

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Survey: 41 percent of consumers have never heard of telemedicine | mobihealthnews

Survey: 41 percent of consumers have never heard of telemedicine | mobihealthnews | Social Health on line |

Forty-one percent of consumers have never heard of telemedicine, according to a new survey of 1,200 consumers conducted by Survey Sampling International on behalf of HealthMine. That number goes down for millennials, just 30 percent of whom say they haven’t heard of telemedicine, but it goes up for the 45 to 64 age group, 46 percent of whom hadn’t heard of telemedicine.

HealthMine is a consumer health engagement company, and as such has a stake in gauging consumer awareness of health technology trends.

“Telemedicine has the potential to deliver convenient and affordable basic healthcare to people of all ages,” Bryce Williams, CEO and President of HealthMine said in a statement. “Wellness programs can be the place where consumers are educated on the best way to access healthcare services, whether it be through a doctor’s office, emergency room, urgent care center, or telemedicine visit. Plus, telehealth is evolving to more than telephone visits. Soon, your smartphone will be a stethoscope and more.”

In the survey consumers were asked whether they would use telemedicine if it was offered by their physician as an alternative to traditional doctor visits, and whether they understood when it was best to use telemedicine. For the second question, “I’ve never heard of telemedicine” was included as a response option.

Overall, 45 percent of respondents said they would use telemedicine if it was offered, 16 percent said they wouldn’t, and 39 percent weren’t sure. The number who said they would use telemedicine rose to 58 percent for millennials (25 to 34-year-olds) and dropped to 37 percent for 55 to 64-year-olds. However the difference was mostly in how many were unsure — the portion of each group that answered “no” was 15 percent for millennials, 17 percent for seniors, and 16 percent for all age groups in between.

Forty-three percent of total respondents said they knew when it was best to use telemedicine, 16 percent said they didn’t, and 41 percent said they hadn’t heard of telemedicine. Fifty-two percent of millennials and 46 percent of 35 to 44-year-olds felt they knew when to use telemedicine compared to 38 percent of 55 to 64-year-olds and just 34 percent of 45 to 54-year-olds.

Earlier this month, a 500-person survey from TechnologyAdvice found that some 35 percent of consumers said they would likely choose a virtual visit over an in-person one. The survey also found that 56 percent of respondents would be somewhat or very uncomfortable conducting a doctor visit using a telemedicine offering. On the other hand, 75 percent of people said they would not trust a diagnosis that a doctor made over a video visit, or would trust it less than if they met with a doctor in person.

rob halkes's insight:

Very inspiring data found in asking consumers whether they knew of "telemedicine"! Disappointing numbers indeed. BUT: the positive sight is that doctors and health insitutions now still have the opportunity to introduce it the right way!
Maybe you want a first introduction in ehealth? See here

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Hashtags to Access Health Information

Hashtags to Access Health Information | Social Health on line |
Health Hashtags Research - Can We Make It Work?

People deserve access to safe, reliable health information online. Doctors have an ethical obligation to help make the internet easier and safer. Will health hashtags help or not?


On June 1st, I presented data on the growing use of the Cancer Tag Ontology (CTO) at the American Society of Clinical Oncology’s annual meeting. Here is the poster:

Analyzing 531,765 tweets from over 70,000 users through December 2014, we found that CTO use is increasing. 93% still come from tags with active chats. We didn’t do any formal statistical analysis, but it’s interesting to see how each tag has different stakeholders using them.

At the meeting, ASCO attendees from all backgrounds expressed interest and came to the poster: patients, advocacy organizations, doctors, industry. Beyond the scope of the study, I learned more from discussion with Symplur: as of early May, 62% of NCCN-designated cancer centers have used CTO tags at least 25 times. The five biggest users: Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, MD Anderson Cancer Center, Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, and UCSF Medical Center.


Despite the great response, we need more research on whether hashtags help. Originally, I focused on creating meaning and community-building by patients and advocates. Collaboration with doctors like Deanna Attai has worked great for #bcsm, but #pancsm was started by doctors. It has been active and useful, just different. What will work best? Read on here: Symplur

rob halkes's insight:

A very inspiring and intriguing initiative at the same time. Patients need to be informed about information concerning their diseases and how to cope with it. Still, how can we help them without bias to get the right meaning for them. We do not want to patronize patients, but it is not wrong to know that they might need support. doctors might be the first trusted source to turn too.
At the other hand the doctors themselves might have trouble to acquire  enough of the latest insights for their own profession.

Let's be honest the speed of research and new insights is one of the trends that disrupt our routines of professional work.
Disruption looks good to create innovation and progress but how can patients and healthcare providers adapt themselves? There is need for help. To begin with the recognition that help is needed.

This is to be found in this initiative by Matthew Katz. @subatomicdoc


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Key Digital Health Trends for EU Pharma - Manhattan Research

Key Digital Health Trends for EU Pharma - Manhattan Research | Social Health on line |
Key Digital Health Trends for EU Pharma Marketers- Manhattan Research

Via Alexandre Gultzgoff, COUCH Medcomms, Celine Sportisse, Olivier Delannoy, Thierry Le Magny
rob halkes's insight:

How fast is heathcare realy changed?

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Making Sense Of The Internet Of Things

Making Sense Of The Internet Of Things | Social Health on line |
Editor's note: Matt Turck is a managing director of FirstMark Capital. The he emerging Internet of Things — essentially, the world of physical devices connected to the network/Internet, from your Fitbit or Nest to industrial machines — is experiencing a burst of activity and creativity that is getting entrepreneurs, VCs and the press equally excited.

The space looks like a boisterous hodgepodge of smart hobbyists, new startups and large corporations that are eager to be a part of what could be a huge market, and all sorts of enabling products and technologies, some of which, including crowdfunding and 3D printing, are themselves far from established.

(Click to enlarge)

The chart [..] is an attempt at making sense of this frenetic activity. From bottom to top, I see three broad areas – building blocks, verticals and horizontals:
Building Blocks

The concept of the Internet of Things is not new (the term itself was coined in 1999), but it is now in the process of becoming a reality thanks to the confluence of several key factors.

First, while still challenging, it is easier and cheaper than ever to produce hardware – some components are open sourced (e.g. Arduino microcontrollers); 3D printing helps with rapid prototyping; specialized providers like Dragon Innovation and PCH can handle key parts of the production process, and emerging marketplaces such as Grand St. help with distribution. Crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter or Indiegogo considerably de-risk the early phase of creating hardware by establishing market demand and providing financing.

Second, the world of wireless connectivity has dramatically evolved over the last few years. The mobile phone (or tablet), now a supercomputer in everyone’s hand, is becoming the universal remote control of the Internet of Things. Ubiquitous connectivity is becoming a reality (Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, 4G) and standards are starting to emerge (MQTT).  The slight irony of the “Internet of Things” moniker is that things are often connected via M2M (machine to machine) protocols rather than the Internet itself.

Third, the Internet of Things is able to leverage an entire infrastructure that has emerged in related areas. Cloud computing enables the creation of “dumb” (simpler, cheaper) devices, with all the intelligence processed in the cloud. Big data tools, often open sourced (Hadoop), enable the processing of massive amounts of data captured by the devices and will play a crucial role in the space.

rob halkes's insight:

Great overview of the concept of the "internet of things" IOT See the chart! or this one from Quartz

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Changing the life of patients, together! | LinkedIn

Changing the life of patients, together! | LinkedIn | Social Health on line |

Philips, and Radboud university medical center (Radboudumc) are collaborating to develop cloud based technologies to deliver better patient-centered clinical applications. Earlier this year, Philips announced its alliancewith CRM company to develop an open, cloud-based health platform integrating the data of medical devices and data from personal devices and offering applications. Philips at the same time announced the first two clinical applications to run on this platform that allow doctors and other caregivers to monitor patients with chronic conditions in their homes. REshape will be using this new Philips HealthSuite cloud-platform and its applications to further develop and implement its innovative patient services, creating an environment in which patients are equal partners in care delivery.

Lucien Engelen, Director at REshape, says that in the past years, REshape has been actively experimenting with a number of innovative digital tools. The most ambitious of these is Hereismydata™, a combination of a personal health record, a community system for patients, caregivers and families and a connectivity tool for all kinds of medical devices and apps, fully embedded in the clinical process. “Our pilots and clinical trials made it clear that traditional hospital software does not offer all the required functionality to share device and treatment data in a secure way. Therefor the patients themselves should be able to own (at least a copy) of their own records. [...]

Radboudumc is the first European academic hospital to use the new Philips HealthSuite platform for actual clinical usage. One of the first pilots will be patients with the chronic condition COPD. They will be monitored with devices such as the Health Patch, a small sensor worn on the chest that enables clinical-grade remote monitoring. Pilots involving patients with heart disease, diabetes and pregnancy will follow in the next months.

“We are witnessing an explosion of personal medical data”, Engelen says, “but the real challenge is to integrate this data in the systems that doctors and other caregivers are actually using in their day-to-day processes and to make sure that doctors and patients can trust the data.” ...

rob halkes's insight:

Maybe we are witnessing a true partnership between health care professionals, a hospital, technology provider and patients here! I guess there are not too many examples of such alliances, whereas they from the basis and also conditional alliance to make it effective to better health outcomes!  I for one do wish them the success they deserve!

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The Empirical Foundations of Telemedicine Interventions for Chronic Disease Management

The Empirical Foundations of Telemedicine Interventions for Chronic Disease Management | Social Health on line |

New Evidence Points to Outcomes and Cost Benefits of Telemedicine in Managing Chronic Diseases

New Rochelle, NY, September 10, 2014  Congestive heart failure, stroke, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are three of the leading causes of death in the U.S. The use of telemedicine to help manage chronic diseases such as these can yield clear benefits including fewer and shorter hospital stays, fewer emergency room visits, less severe illness, and even fewer deaths, as reported in a study published in Telemedicine and e-Health, a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers. The article is available free on the Telemedicine and e-Health website until October 10, 2014.

Rashid Bashshur, PhD, Gary Shannon, PhD, and Brian Smith, MS, led a team of clinicians and researchers from the U.S. and Canada that included Telemedicine and e-Health Co-Editors-in-Chief Charles R. Doarn, MBA, and Ronald C. Merrell, MD, in the study entitled “The Empirical Foundations of Telemedicine Interventions for Chronic Disease Management.” The advantages enabled by telemedicine derive from its ability to help patients become more involved in their own care, facilitate continuous monitoring and early detection of new and recurring symptoms, and allow for prompt responses to worsening illness.

“The integration of telemedicine into healthcare adds great value in managing chronic disease both for patient and provider,” says Co-Editor-in-Chief Charles R. Doarn, MBA, Research Professor of Family and Community Medicine, University of Cincinnati, Ohio. “Dr. Bashshur has presented this work to both the U.S. Congress and the Congressional Budget Office, and with concomitant efforts by the American Telemedicine Association and others, the Congress may finally move telemedicine forward as an important element in healthcare for all Americans.

rob halkes's insight:

Great research and readings regarding the effects of ehealth!

Still free download till October 10th Here

Indeed, what we already guessed finds now its foundatoins in research. there's no way back. and the way forward is paved with lots of wuestions and issues how to do best. Luckily enough everyone, each institute of health care providers may find its own way. But remember cooperation is at the heart of it. You're not alone in providing care any more !

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Researchers develop app to determine if a patient is faking alcohol tremors

Researchers develop app to determine if a patient is faking alcohol tremors | Social Health on line |

A group of researchers in Toronto have developed an app that aims to measure a patients alcohol withdrawal tremors and determine whether they are real or fake.

A statement from the University of Toronto explains that tremors, which are caused by alcohol withdrawal, are commonly treated with sedatives, but addicts sometimes fake tremors to get prescriptions for the medications.

In order to prevent doctors from prescribing drugs to patients who aren’t actually going through withdrawal, PhD candidate Narges Norouzi, Mount Sinai Hospital emergency physician Bjug Borgundvaag, and University of Toronto Associate Professor Parham Aarabi developed the app, which is still being studied — it’s not FDA-cleared or available commercially.

To use the app, patients hold a phone in their outstretched hand with the app opened on the screen. The app will then set a timer and measure the patient’s tremors for a period of time. The frequency with which the user’s hand shakes is measured, based on the iPhone’s accelerometer, to determine whether the patient is actually experiencing tremors.

“Our app may also be useful in assisting withdrawal management staff, who typically have no clinical training, and determining which patients should be transferred to the emergency department for medical treatment or assessment,” Borgundvaag said in a statement. “We think our app has great potential to improve treatment for these patients overall.”

While developing the app, the researchers conducted a preliminary study at three Toronto hospitals: Schwartz/Reisman Emergency Medicine Institute at Mount Sinai Hospital, St. Michael’s Hospital, and Women’s College Hospital. During the study, the app analyzed tremors from 49 patients and 12 nurses who attempted to replicate the symptom.

Read more at the blog here

rob halkes's insight:

It looks for instance by this example, that we are really in the stage of "Brainstorming mobile technology": exploring whatever we can create to be used mobile... And yes we can ;-)

But, imagine for a moment what a patient, and for that, also his care providers, need to coordinate, handle, organize data flows and review of them, to enable functional use of all those apps and applications.. Got it? - Indeed, let's begin integrating and organizing packaged applications! ;-)

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How often do consumers use digital health tools? This graph will show you

How often do consumers use digital health tools? This graph will show you | Social Health on line |

A chart by Parks Associates followed up an infographic on consumer's use of digital health tools this week with a chart showing how frequently they used them in the past year.

As the use of digital health tools continues to become common practice in people’s lives, it’s always useful to quantify that. An infographic released this week(displayed below) showed that 60 percent of households have some sort of digital health device — such as a digital scale or glucometer. Although 25 percent used digital health apps, only 27 percent used their healthcare provider or insurer’s website. That seems like a low number to me, especially when you consider the push by payers and providers to improve patient engagement on multiple levels.

Thanks to a request from Matthew Holt of Health 2.0, market research business Parks Associates did a drill down to add more context on how frequently people look up health information online and how often they used a device to track their health patterns.

The point was to add some more color beyond the original survey’s finding that 38 percent looked up health information online or through an app. That seemed a little low considering Pew Research has said that 72 percent of Internet users looked up health information in the past year. Parks decided that the actual amount is probably higher than 38 percent but was influenced by the way the question was asked.

The graph also serves as a useful reminder that the growth of digital health in everyday life is likely to be in small steps. The most frequent use of digital health tools seems to average out at three times a month. It’s encouraging that the use of apps to manage a health condition tops the list since it demonstrates the most engagement. It’s also interesting to see the frequency of telehealth interactions with healthcare professionals.

Since Parks Associates is open to requests, I’d like to see a comparison chart next year to see how 2014 numbers stack up.

I’ve included the original infographic here. [ See also here ]

rob halkes's insight:

Consumers' searches on line for health services.

Mind you that you're there ;-)

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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 | Social Health on line |
Recent press coverage in the UK about harried GP practices offering patients Skype and email consultations in order to address the estimated 50 million occasions during the last year on which it was not possible for NHS service users to schedule face-to-face appointments have taken many by surprise.

Only a few months ago, concerns about the ‘safety’ of using VOiP services such as Skype in a healthcare setting were being brought to the privacy debate that focused on the UK’s forthcoming electronic health record system.

“What if Skype calls are intercepted, or recorded?”, it was asked.

Such questions are seldom posed as a duty of care with regard to safeguarding the security of novel forms of patient access to provider services, but as a means of evading the hard work involved in redesigning existing provider workflows.

VOiP is neither more nor less secure than any other existing means of patient-clinician interaction.

Overlooking the fact that patient consent is customarily taken to include all forms of provider communication unless expressly stated, from a logical standpoint it makes no sense to say that VOiP calls are less private than medical records left open momentarily at a GP’s reception, or an overheard telephone call between a doctor and their patient, or a patient-clinician conversation that might be audible through a door during a consult, or an intercepted or otherwise lost piece of correspondence such as a test result.

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 an untold human cost to patients and their families.

rob halkes's insight:

Remarkable, but still complicated. From a direct user need, one will be happy to learn opportunities for care in using social media and VOiP. Still, from a formal perspective of guarding privacy it is a more difficult discussion. I would say let providers and technicians work for better connections?

Michael Seres's curator insight, July 30, 2014 12:43 PM

I was involved in starting skype clinics in my hospital. At first no one wanted to know but due to patient demand they have become common place. More common sense thinking like this is needed. It is a great use of a COST FREE resource.

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Social media use among patients and caregivers: a scoping review - Hamm et al. - BMJ Open

Social media use among patients and caregivers: a scoping review - Hamm et al. - BMJ Open | Social Health on line |

Article summary
Article focus

  • The use of social media in healthcare has been widely advocated, but there is little evidence describing the current state of the science and whether or not these tools can be used to benefit patient populations.

  • We mapped the state of the existing literature evaluating the use of social media in patient and caregiver populations.

Key messages

  • There is an extensive and rapidly growing body of literature available investigating the use of social media in patient and caregiver populations.

  • Most studies have been descriptive; however, with such widespread use, evaluations of effectiveness are needed.

  • In studies that have examined effectiveness, positive conclusions are often reported, despite the non-significant findings.

Strengths and limitations of this study

  • Our search was comprehensive and we included an extensive body of literature, across conditions, populations and study designs.

  • Social media is constantly evolving, leading to challenges in keeping the search updated.

  • A more in-depth analysis is needed on specific topics, conditions and populations to guide the use and implementation of social media interventions.

rob halkes's insight:

Good to see the impact of socical media in health care reviewed.
What maybe "non-sginificant" to reserach in statistic perspective, might not be the same as relevance in view of personal meaning ! ;-)

Still a lot to go, specifcally in the direction of impact on personal satisfaction, behaviour and health outcomes.. (see the discussion paragraph)

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Why Top Hospitals Have Inadequate Websites: 10 Things to Know

Why Top Hospitals Have Inadequate Websites: 10 Things to Know | Social Health on line |
Even hospitals with the sturdiest reputations are having a hard time extending their digital presence and offering expertise beyond the confines of a brick-and-mortar hospital.

This first-of-its-kind report, "The Digital Health of Today's Best Hospitals," evaluates the online presence and patient use of digital assets or websites from some of the top hospitals in the country, as identified by U.S. News & World Report. Hospitals and health systems analyzed include Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, UPMC in Pittsburgh, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia and University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, among many others.

Here are 10 key findings and points of analyses from the report.

1 Even top brands struggle [...]

2 Key findings: [...]

  • 49 percent of hospitals lacked a mobile patient website
  • 67 percent failed to offer online rehabilitation and aftercare information
  • Only 1 in 5 had online pre-registration to reduce patient wait time
  • Nearly 1 in 3 failed to facilitate online bill pay
  • At least 18 percent had onsite errors that hindered the patient experience
  • Nearly 1 out of 2 hospitals did not support post-prescription refill requests online

3 [..] "Clinical oversight of content is probably a barrier. The lack of knowledge of what they should actually invest in this, and what the ROI can be, is a barrier. The internal systems and processes not built for a digita l life or world and what consumers expect is a barrier." [..]

4 The need for digital governance [..] the need for digital governance across healthcare organizations to fill the communication gap between patients, clinicians, health IT experts, marketing and communication teams.[..]

5 The top 10 patient-centric hospital websites, according to the report, are:

  • Mayo Clinic (Rochester, Minn.)
  • Cleveland Clinic
  • University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (Houston [..]

6 Determining patient-friendliness [..]

7 Google results and brand reach [..]

8 Mayo Clinic did best in research results [..]

9 There is a distinction between patient- and brand-centric website content [..]

10 The link between digital presence and spending [..]

"it's the most scalable way to reach people"..

rob halkes's insight:

The hospital website with "Answers" as lead, is the best hospital website according to this study. See the 10 key findings, formulated as issues to address !

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Deal between Google and Novartis will see the development of non-invasive smart lenses

Deal between Google and Novartis will see the development of non-invasive smart lenses | Social Health on line |

Google[x] and Novartis' eye care division Alcon will create smart lenses that feature "non-invasive sensors, microchips and other miniaturized electronics" and focus on two main areas.


The first will provide a way for diabetic patients to keep on top of their glucose levels by measuring the sugar levels in their tear fluid, feeding the data back to a smartphone or tablet. The second solution aims to help restore the eye's natural focus on near objects, restoring clear vision to those who are only farsighted (presbyopia).


Via Andrew Spong
rob halkes's insight:

This certainly is a logical follow up of earlier policy intentions by Mac and Samsung : the health world is changing indeed.

See here and here and here

Andrew Spong's curator insight, July 16, 2014 9:11 AM

Non-invasive, all-pervasive sensors in health: #NIAP begins here