From time to time I glanced at JAMA cover art when working at various libraries.
Never quite understood the art. However, now I feel like part of JAMA’s soul is diminished….
From the 6 November 2013 Kevin MD article by JEFFREY M. LEVINE, MD
Beginning in 1964 the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) started publishing full color images of art on its cover accompanied by insightful essays.JAMA’s former editor, George Lundberg, wrote that this was part of an initiative to inform readers about nonclinical aspects of medicine and public health, and emphasize the humanities in medicine. Now after almost 50 years of covers that displayed over 2,000 pieces of art, JAMA has taken a great leap backwards and replaced the cover art with a pedestrian table of contents. The cover art that once distinguished JAMA from an array of leading medical journals has been demoted to an inside page, eliminating one of the more visible, inspiring beacons that once linked the humanities to medical science.
The cover art was always important to me. As a teenager envisioning my future, I saw copies of JAMA on my uncle’s desk. He was a medical doctor, and for me the JAMAcovers joined the visual arts to the science of medicine and gave me inspiration. As the years passed, I enjoyed seeing the distinguished covers of JAMA in medical libraries, and frequently picked them up to read the commentary. Glancing from the scientific articles to the essays on the cover art, my vision of the combination of art and medicine was validated. Over the years I received JAMA in my office and tacked many of my favorite covers to the wall by my desk.
The art swept across the vast panorama of civilization and human history. Just about any painter you can imagine has been featured on a JAMA cover. In addition the covers displayed Japanese Ukiyo-E prints (February 4, 1998), a 15th Century Apothecary Treatise (September 8, 1999), and African bronze statuary (April 6, 2011). One of my favorites was the photo of the Lewis Chessmen, a set that was carved from walrus ivory in the 12th Century and found in the Outer Hebrides off the coast of Scotland (February 16, 2011).
This page is geared towards health care providers, but it may be of interest to others.
FDA’s Bad Ad program is an outreach program designed to educate healthcare providers about the role they can play in helping the agency make sure that prescription drug advertising and promotion is truthful and not misleading.
The Bad Ad Program is administered by the agency’s Office of Prescription Drug Promotion (OPDP) in the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. The program’s goal is to help raise awareness among healthcare providers about misleading prescription drug promotion and provide them with an easy way to report this activity to the agency: e-mail BadAd@fda.gov or call 855-RX-BADAD.
Continuing Medical Education Video itself is free for anyone to view (http://www.sigmatech.com/BadAd/courses/index.htm)It covers what is legal/illegal for pharmaceutical companies and their representatives when advertising their products at different venues
Prescription drug advertising must:
- Be accurate
- Balance the risk and benefit information
- Be consistent with the prescribing information approved by FDA
- Only include information that is supported by strong evidence
What types of promotion does OPDP regulate?
- TV and radio advertisements
- All written or printed prescription drug promotional materials
- Speaker program presentations
- Sales representative presentations
OPDP does not regulate promotion of:
- Over-the-Counter Drugs
- Dietary Supplements
- Medical Devices
- Omitting or downplaying of risk
- Overstating the effectiveness
- Promoting Uses Not Addressed in Approved Labeling
- Misleading drug comparisons
Examples of Violations
Example of Omission of Risk
You attend a speaker program which features a slide show that presents efficacy information about Drug X, but no risk information.
This presentation would be misleading because it fails to include a fair balance of benefit and risk information for Drug X.
Example of Uses Not Addressed in Approved Labeling
You are in a commercial exhibit hall and a company representative tells you that a drug is effective for a use that is not in the FDA-approved product labeling.
This presentation would be illegal because it promotes an unapproved use.
Example of Overstating the Effectiveness
“Doctor Smith, Drug X delivers rapid results in as little as 3 days.”
This presentation is misleading because the majority of patients studied in the clinical trials for Drug X showed results at 12 weeks, with only very few showing results in 3 days.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Can I report anonymously?
Yes, anonymous complaints often alert FDA to potential problems. However, complaints accompanied by names and contact information are helpful in cases for which FDA needs to follow-up for more information.
2. Will OPDP be able to stop the misleading promotion?
In many cases, yes, especially if the appropriate evidence is provided. Evidence can include the actual promotional materials or documentation of oral statements made by company representatives.
3. What will happen to my complaint once I have contacted OPDP?
The information you provide will be sent to the Regulatory Review Officer in OPDP responsible for this class of drugs. The reviewer will evaluate it and determine if it may serve as the basis for a potential enforcement action or as valuable information for our ongoing surveillance activities.
4. How do I learn more?
To learn more about OPDP in-service training for large medical group/hospitals call 301-796-1200.
- FDA providing education on bad drug ads (medicationhealthnews.wordpress.com)
- FDA “Bad Ads” – Now for CME Credit… (cooleyhealthbeat.com)
From the 20 March 2013 post at Science Roll
I was very glad to see the new book authored by e-Patient Dave deBronkart, whose thoughts I describe to medical students as a part of the official curriculum at Semmelweis Medical School, just became available.
Medical professionals must let patients help and become equal partners in the treatment! A must-read book!
Concise reasons, tips & methods for making patient engagement effective.
Third book by e-Patient Dave, cancer beater, blogger, internationally known keynote speaker and advocate for patient engagement; co-founder and past co-chair of the Society for Participatory Medicine. Profile:http://www.ePatientDave.com/about-dave
- Let Patients Help: A New Book Authored by e-Patient Dave deBronkart (scienceroll.com)
- Project HealthDesign’s new video series: Conversations with e-PatientDave (projecthealthdesign.typepad.com)
- Part 1: Value of social media in healthcare is already outlined – just not realized (himss.org)
- The Multidimensional Role of Social Media in Healthcare (gumption.typepad.com)
- First Post: A Video About Patients Involvement in Their Own Healthcare (healthitoutlook.wordpress.com)
- The 7 Habits of Highly Patient Centric Providers (forbes.com)
- I’m an e-patient: equipped, enabled, empowered, engaged (worldofdtcmarketing.com)
Now one can get summary and detailed drug information on the go from reputable resources
From a recent email rec’d from the US National Library of Medicine
The National Library of Medicine (NLM) Drug Information Portal is now available for mobile devices.http://druginfo.nlm.nih.gov/m.drugportal
This mobile optimized web site covers over 32,000 drugs and provides descriptions, drug names, pharmaceutical categories, and structural diagrams. Each record also features information links to 19 other resources including NLM PubMed, NLM LactMed, and Drugs@FDA. The mobile version of a resource is used when available.
Smart Phones accessing the main Drug Portal site will be taken the mobile site.
The Drug Information Portal (http://druginfo.nlm.nih.gov) is a free Web resource from the NLM that provides an informative, user friendly entry-way to current drug information for over 32,000 drugs. Links to sources span the breadth of the NLM, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and other government agencies. Current information regarding consumer health, clinical trials, AIDS–related drug information, MeSH pharmacological actions, PubMed biomedical literature, and physical properties and structure is easily retrieved by searching on a drug name. A varied selection of focused topics in medicine and drug–related information is also available from displayed subject headings.
For a full list of available apps and mobile websites, visit our NLM Gallery of Mobile Apps and Sites at: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/mobile/
- 5 Recent Changes to the PubMed Interface (intellogist.wordpress.com)
- Haz-Map (occupational health database) redesigned for web and mobile versions (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
- Correction: NLM Does Not Charge for PubMed Data (scholarlykitchen.sspnet.org)
- [Infographic] Making Patient Experience a Priority & Link to Other Infogaphics by the Author (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
From a recent email from NLM (US National Library of Medicine)
The National Library of Medicine (NLM) Division of Specialized Information Services (SIS) has released redesigned web and mobile versions of Haz-Map (http://hazmap.nlm.nih.gov/ ). The new design adapts to web browsers on desktop computers, laptops, and tablets, as well as mobile browsers on smart phones, such as iPhones, Android and Blackberry phones.
Haz-Map is an occupational health database designed for health and safety professionals and for consumers seeking information about the health effects of exposure to chemicals and biologicals at work. Haz-Map links jobs and hazardous tasks with occupational diseases and their symptoms. It currently covers over 5997 chemical and biological agents and 235 occupational diseases.
More information can be found at http://www.nlm.nih.gov/pubs/factsheets/hazmap.html
- OSHA Introduces Seven New Hazardous Material Icons (smartsign.com)
- i can haz wi-fi? (niiteiko.wordpress.com)
- Recognizing chemical hazards (C&ENtral Science) (cenblog.org)
- HazMasterG3 Only CBRNE/HME System Compatible With Army’s First SmartPhone (prweb.com)
- Update 11:20am Everett Fire Calling in Extra Crews Due to Haz Mat Incident at Everett, WA Boeing plant (myeverettnews.com)
VaccineEthics.org – A Great Source for Summaries, News, Links to Published Items, and Additional Resources
Came across this Web site via a blog posting at Life of a Lab Rat (imho a great blog to follow- well grounded and informative on a nice range of topics)
Here’s a brief breakdown of Vaccines.org
- Issue Briefs -essays that review significant topics, developments, and controversies in vaccine ethics and policy.
these summaries reflect facts, ethical issues, and varied opinions by professionals (including policy makers)
- News Blog
- Bibliography -over 1300 items published since 1995 in scholarly journals, government reports, the popular media, and books; searchable
- Resources include links to vaccine research institutions and programs, relevant government (US and other) agencies, professional organizations, and more
- To Vaccinate or Not to Vaccinate? (education.com)
- We need an app for credible information on vaccines (kevinmd.com)
What if we had real time information about our schools? About our neighborhood? What if Google mapped our rates of protection from vaccinations? What if we had a smart phone app that provided us yearly data on school immunization/exemption rates when we selected a kindergarten? Why not an app for that?
So what if we gave new parents the tools to help educate Aunt Judy who refuses the Tdap shot. …
We have an opportunity to harness the tools of social media to affect real change and deconstruct barriers. Patients don’t only want more credible science, they want the truth from a trusted partner. The real story, the real facts. We patients want access to why/what/how to protect our children. Doctors need to be communicating online as a part of their day. We already know that parents trust the pediatrician more than anyone else when it comes to questions about vaccine safety. And we’ve known this for a long time. Dr. Diekema hints at online opportunity here:
Fourth, clinicians, health care organizations, and public health departments must learn to use the tools of persuasion effectively. In The Art of Rhetoric, Aristotle argued that persuasion requires not only a reasonable argument and supporting data, but also a messenger who is trustworthy and attentive to the audience and a message that engages the audience emotionally.
- Childhood Immunizations and Vaccinations | Special Edition | Education.com (education.com)
- How bacteria behind serious childhood disease evolve to evade vaccines (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
Springer’s SpringerLink science platform is now available in a free mobile app for iPhone and iPod touch, which can be downloaded from the Apple App Store. The app contains articles from over 2,000 peer-reviewed journals and chapters from 49,000 books, totaling over 5.4 million documents that span multiple areas of science, technology, and medicine.
Free content in the form of article abstracts, over 127,000 open access research articles, plus book and journal covers and other document details are included in the app. The SpringerLink app includes features like personalized notifications; “save” and “share” capabilities, including enabled sharing via email, Facebook, and Twitter; advanced search options; document details, including abstracts; and full-text views, which are available to institutional subscribers.
Springer publishes nearly 500 academic and professional society journals and is a part of the Springer Science+Business Media publishing group.
From the 9 December press release (at Eureka News Alert)CRD announces new partnership with PubMed Health
PubMed Health is a new online service provided by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) at the US National Library of Medicine (NLM) – the world’s largest medical library. The service provides summaries and full text of selected systematic reviews and also provides information for consumers and clinicians based on those reviews
Systematic reviews are widely recognised as reliable sources of information about the effects of healthcare interventions. But as with individual research studies, they can be hard to find, may have flaws and can be difficult to interpret.
Since 1994, CRD has been producing and maintaining DARE, a database which uniquely provides access to over 11,000 abstracts of quality assessed and critically appraised systematic reviews. The database has become a key resource for health professionals and policy makers as it provides its users with a ‘bottom line’ on the overall validity and reliability of each review.
The new partnership involves CRD providing DARE content to PubMed Health.
Deputy Director of CRD Dr Amanda Sowden said: “CRD aims to produce and disseminate high quality evidence to inform health care decision making in the UK and internationally. Our partnership with PubMed Health is an exciting and prestigious development that will help give our database content truly global reach.”
Update — PubMed Health December 2011 Release
With its December release, PubMed® Health grows to over 18,000 systematic reviews and health technology assessments in the last 10 years. With the inclusion of the Database of Reviews of Effects (DARE) from the Centre for Reviews and Dissemination in England, PubMed Health is getting close to comprehensive coverage of reliable systematic reviews on clinical effectiveness.
Other new features and content additions in this release include:
- Evidence-based, regularly updated information on cancer for consumers and health professionals from the National Cancer Institute (NCI®) Physician Data Query (PDQ®) database.
- Two full-text books under “Understanding research results” from the “Understand clinical effectiveness” tab:
- Irwig L, et al. Smart Health Choices: Making Sense of Health Advice. London: Hammersmith Press; 2008. Available from: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK63638/
- Evans I, et al. Testing Treatments: Better Research for Better Healthcare. 2nd edition. London: Pinter & Martin; 2011. Available from: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK66204/
- Simplified and broadened — display of medical encyclopedia search results.
Addition of Over 12,000 Reviews from DARE
A new section in the “Contents” drop-down box on the homepage has been added for the DARE reviews (see Figure 1). This new content type rounds out PubMed Health’s coverage of systematic reviews on clinical effectiveness in the published biomedical literature, joining over 4,500 Cochrane reviews and hundreds of systematic reviews by health technology assessment agencies.
Figure 1: Contents drop-down box.
DARE is a key database produced by the Centre for Reviews and Dissemination (CRD) and funded by England’s National Institute of Health Research. Information specialists at CRD regularly search an extensive group of electronic databases, supplemented by hand searching, to identify published systematic reviews that meet their set of scientific criteria.
For about half of the reviews that qualify for DARE, a CRD summary with critical appraisal of the scientific quality of the review is added. These may raise caveats about the reliability of the review, as in the example featured in Figure 2.
PubMed Health displays the title of the review and its citation (see #1 in Figure 2). For those reviews with a full CRD summary and appraisal, the conclusion is then displayed, followed by a link to the complete version (see #2 in Figure 2). This is followed by the abstract of the review itself, if one is included in PubMed (see #3 in Figure 2).
Figure 2: Example of a DARE review with CRD summary.
Each PubMed Health record from DARE includes a link to an explanation of CRD’s process and assessment criteria.
Currently, DARE is added to weekly, and new records and summaries will appear shortly afterward in PubMed®Health. The records will not yet appear in PubMed.
Changes to Display of Search Results
DARE reviews are returned with all results, and can also be viewed under their own content type (see #1 in Figure 3).
Medical encyclopedia content has been simplified, with some content text also appearing (see #2 in Figure 3). Previously, only medical encyclopedia content for diseases and drugs were shown on the search results page. Relevant medical encyclopedia content for procedures and other types of searches now display.
The parallel “Clinical Queries” filter search for systematic reviews in PubMed remains (see #3 in Figure 3). This search continues to return results chronologically.
Figure 3: Search results.
NCI cancer information for patients and health professionals appears under the “For consumers” and “Clinical Guides” links, respectively.
Twitter followers can learn more about PubMed Health content and additions by following @PubMedHealth.
By Hilda Bastian
National Center for Biotechnology and Information
New Outlet Will Allow Access to Lectures, Training, Special Events and Other Video Content
The National Library of Medicine, the world’s largest medical library and a component of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), is pleased to announce the launch of its new YouTube channel, at http://www.youtube.com/nlmnih.
YouTube is a free video-sharing Web site, created in February 2005, on which users can upload, view and share videos. Unregistered users may watch videos, and registered users may upload an unlimited number of videos.
The NLM YouTube channel will post videos of database training, NLM exhibitions (such as an overview of the new Native Voices: Native Peoples’ Concepts of Health and Illness), public service announcements, lectures and more. Interested parties can subscribe to be notified whenever new content is posted on the NLM channel. The NLM site also features links to NIH YouTube channels and other federal health resources.
Although figures for the number of YouTube users worldwide vary, most studies list it as the third most popular Web site, following Facebook and Google. In November 2006, YouTube, LLC was bought by Google Inc. for $1.65 billion, and now operates as a subsidiary of Google.
From the Krafty Librarian post Apple Makes Finding Medical Apps for Professional A Little Easier.
PubMed Health — A Growing Resource for Clinical Effectiveness Information
PubMed® Health developed further as a resource for clinical effectiveness research with its August and September 2011 releases. Growing from around 200 items based on systematic reviews to over 5,000, PubMed Health has also begun a collection focused on helping people understand systematic reviews and their results. PubMed Health goals are: helping users find the evidence that could answer their questions about effects of health care and helping them understand what they find.
Making Systematic Reviews More Accessible
Systematic reviews that identify and interpret studies on the effects of health care form an essential research basis for informed decision-making. Systematic reviewing has been growing, especially with the advent of The Cochrane Collaboration and the increasing incorporation of this methodology in health technology assessment by public agencies and clinical practice guideline development.
Systematic reviews (including health technology assessments) are often lengthy and highly technical. Their evolution has been accompanied by a growth in knowledge translation activity. Along with traditional abstracts, various forms have been developed to help people use systematic reviews: executive and policymaker summaries, summaries or other forms for patients/consumers and summaries for clinicians.
However, these materials have been scattered widely on content providers’ Web sites without being collected centrally. Many of the systematic reviews undertaken by public health technology assessment agencies have also remained outside the National Library of Medicine® (NLM®) system. The PubMed Health initiative is gathering them together within a single searchable resource.
PubMed Health Content
PubMed Health contains systematic reviews and summaries of systematic reviews undertaken or updated in roughly the last ten years. The time limit is applied to publication date of around eight years, to allow for the time lag from the date of the evidence search. The cut-off currently is 2003.
New content incorporated in these releases include summaries from The Cochrane Collaboration and the National Health Service (NHS) National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Health Technology Assessment Programme. There are also full text reviews from the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), the Drug Effectiveness Review Project (DERP) at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU), England’s National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) guidelines program, and the Department of Veterans Affairs’ Evidence-based Synthesis Program. From NHS Choices comes “Behind the Headlines”, its educational service on the science behind the news. These new content providers join PubMed Health original consumer clinical effectiveness content for consumers content provided by AHRQ and the German Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG).
The reviews and review summaries now in PubMed Health account for perhaps one-third of the good quality systematic reviews published by public agencies and journals worldwide. Most of the remainder can be found in PubMed “Clinical Queries” Systematic Reviews search which runs simultaneously with a PubMed Health search; those PubMed results are presented as links on the right-hand portion of the results page (see #3 in Figure 4).
The re-designed homepage (see Figure 1) includes four key sections:
- Contents: a complete alphabetical listing of all titles, sorted by type of content.
- Behind Headlines: the NHS guide to the science behind health stories in the news.
- New & updated: content added in the last 60 days.
- Featured reviews: high quality reviews on interesting topics are selected and featured here. “Previously featured reviews” are provided in an RSS feed to which people can subscribe.
- Understanding clinical effectiveness: an explanation of clinical effectiveness research along with a section focusing on resources to help people understand systematic reviews and interpret the results.
Figure 1: PubMed Health homepage.
A drop-down box under “Contents” (see Figure 2) shows the categories of information currently included in PubMed Health where these are available:
- For consumers: includes consumer summaries of systematic reviews as well as consumer information based on systematic reviews.
- Executive summaries: executive or policymaker summaries of systematic reviews.
- Clinical guides: clinician summaries of systematic reviews as well as clinical practice guidelines that are based on a fully reported systematic review.
- Full text reviews: systematic reviews with full texts, including PDF versions.
- Medical encyclopedia: medical and drug information for consumers for supplementary background information.
PubMed Health includes content that is currently also cited in PubMed, and PubMed Health will systematically be building in links to these citations. However, there will be some time lag for many items between inclusion in PubMed Health and citation in PubMed. Consumer content from PubMed Health is currently not included in PubMed.
Figure 2: Contents drop-down box.
At the top right-hand corner (see Figure 3), “About PubMed Health” explains the Web site and the National Center Biotechnology Information, NLM, with a full listing of content providers. “Help” includes explanation of basic functions, along with suggested citations for PubMed Health content.
Figure 3: About PubMed Health and Help features.
The primary search (see #1 in Figure 4) returns clinical effectiveness content by relevance, with the option of viewing all (default) or only specified content types. Relevant medical encyclopedia results are shown at the right (see #2 inFigure 4), with the results of the “Clinical Queries” filter search for systematic reviews in PubMed showing below those (see #3 in Figure 4). “Clinical Queries” returns results chronologically.
Figure 4: Search results.
With medical encyclopedia content, PubMed Health has enhanced the display of anatomical images and given this popular feature a more prominent position. There are links from the medical encyclopedia diseases and conditions pages to MedlinePlus® content.
PubMed Health now features “Add this” sharing for e-mail and social media. Coming in the fall, PubMed Health will begin a Twitter feed, announcing new content providers and features, as well as featured content.
By Hilda Bastian
National Center for Biotechnology Information
- Patients want to understand the medical literature (with links to resources for patients) (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
- Consult with a librarian to find information more efficiently and effectively! (peer reviewed study summary) (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
This October 24th Popular Mechanics story includes
- How text messaging is used to coordinate health care by health care professionals in rural areas across long distances
- How text messaging in Haiti was used to locate victims in search and rescue efforts despite language barriers
- Camera phones as diagnostic aids
The notion that SMS could revolutionize healthcare first entered Nesbit’s mind in 2007, when he was still a Stanford undergrad. He’d just met Dickson Mtanga, a community health worker in rural Malawi who was walking 35 miles to deliver handwritten patient charts to the nearest hospital. Nesbit biked out to Mtanga’s village one day, only to discover that his cellphone got a better signal there than it did on Stanford’s campus in Palo Alto, Calif. All those bars of service jumped from the phone’s screen and slapped him across the face: These far-reaching GSM networks, he realized, could connect doctors and patients like never before.
Armed with a $5000 grant, a backpack full of old phones, and a laptop running a GSM modem and the open-source group-texting software called FrontlineSMS, Nesbit started working with the hospital and community health workers to coordinate patient care. The system they put in place allowed Mtanga and others to text in the information on those medical charts rather than making the hours-long trek. Patients could text their symptoms to doctors, cutting down on unnecessary visits for minor ailments and freeing up space for those in need of serious care. Within six months of the system going live, the number of patients being treated for tuberculosis doubled, more than 1200 hours in travel time were eliminated, and emergency services became available in the area for the first time. The operating costs in those six months: $500, Nesbit saysThe explosion of cellphone use around the world has inspired a flood of new ideas about how to use that tech to improve healthcare. Besides Nesbit’s Medic Mobile, there are also ideas to turn camera phones into cheap diagnostic tools for vision problems or malaria, for example.
Patty Mechael, executive director of the U.N. Foundation’s mHealth Alliance, keeps tabs on these new techs. They all face major infrastructure hurdles, such as the lack of reliable energy sources to power phone chargers in some developing countries. But another, less tangible challenge is figuring out what mobile health programs are actually working and worth scaling up, and which ones aren’t. “What we have in mHealth are millions of flowers blooming, in many ways. Lots of pilots are being done throughout the world, many of which are reaching populations of a few thousand each,” Mechael says. “We’re at a tipping point where people are starting to say, ‘Okay, we need to be a bit more strategic, collaborative, cohesive.’”
Nesbit is among the voices calling for a more focused approach to mobile health. A wave of angst washes over his face when I ask if there’s too much hype surrounding mobile health, if it’s too saturated of a field. Hype is good, he says. What’s bad is hype that’s disconnected from implementation. All the media coverage and promises made about mobile health in recent years, he says, make it seem as if millions of health workers in developing nations have already integrated their phones into their daily practice. In reality, only about 20,000 have done so. Medic Mobile has SMS systems operating in 14 countries, and that number will jump to 20 in the next six months. Only a few thousand people are using Medic Mobile’s programs today, but the nonprofit just rolled out its first SIM card application, which can be used on virtually every mobile phone in existence. By 2015, Nesbit expects to have 500,000 community health workers using SMS applications to link patients with doctors.
If he hits those numbers, ubiquity really will be the killer app.
- How Your Discarded Phone Can Improve Global Health (newser.com)
- BellVoz Launches a New Communication Service, Direct SMS, Allows Customers to Send International Text Messages from their Mobile Phone, at a Lower Cost (prweb.com)
- Mobile Medicine (andrewsullivan.thedailybeast.com)
- How Mobile Phones Are Saving Lives in the Developing World (mashable.com)
The National Library of Medicine (NLM), wishes to congratulate the five winning entries in the Library’s software development challenge, “Show off Your Apps: Innovative Uses of NLM Information.” In addition, we thank all Entrants for participating in the Library’s first software development challenge!
GLAD4U (Gene List Automatically Derived For You) is a new, free web-based gene retrieval and prioritization tool, which takes advantage of the NCBI’s Entrez Programming Utilities (E-utilities). Upon the submission of a query, GLAD4U retrieves the corresponding publications with eSearch before using Pubmed ID-Entrez Gene ID mapping tables provided by the NCBI to create a list of genes. A statistics-based prioritization algorithm ranks those genes into a list that is output to the user, usually within less than a minute. The GLAD4U user interface accepts any valid queries for PubMed, and its output page displays the ranked gene list and information associated with each gene, chronologically-ordered supporting publications, along with a summary of the run and links for file exports and for further functional enrichment analyses.
Learning anatomy interactively with a touchscreen device is dynamic and engaging. Having it as an app, makes the information available anywhere, anytime. iAnatomy is an exciting electronic anatomy atlas for iPhone/iPod touch. The images are interactive and zoomable. If a label is touched, the name of the structure is shown. Images span from the face to the pelvis. The face and neck images and the female pelvis images are reconstructed from data from the National Library of Medicine’s Visible Human Project. iAnatomy is designed to stand on its own and does not require an ongoing internet connection. Learning is reinforced with multiple quiz modes. Latin medical terminology is also included as an option for international use.
The KNALIJ web application addresses the challenges and opportunities posed by ‘big data’ with a new generation of information visualization tools. It offers researchers, students and health consumers alike a technology platform with capabilities to rapidly discover and gain insights from the copious amounts of information being made available from the National Libraries of Medicine (NLM), through its data repositories such as PubMed. KNALIJ recognizes the ‘connections’ linking bio-medical and life sciences research and researchers around the world, and visualizes those linkages. This makes them clear, intuitive, and even playful by providing interactive ‘information communities’ for exploration, analysis, and education.
NLMplus is an innovative semantic search and discovery application developed by WebLib LLC, a small business in Maryland. NLMplus provides enhanced access to the vast collection of health and biomedical information and services made available by the world’s largest medical library, the National Library of Medicine (NLM).
Quertle is an innovative website for searching and investigating the biomedical literature. Quertle uses advanced linguistic methods to find the most relevant documents instead of traditional keyword searching, which often returns an overwhelming list of uninformative articles. Quertle is geared to active life science professionals – both researchers and health care providers – and saves them considerable time and effort in finding the literature they need. Quertle, available on the web using any browser, simultaneously searches multiple sources of life science literature, including MEDLINE.
The BioDigital Human Platform simplifies the understanding of health topics by visualizing anatomy, conditions and treatments. Similar to how geo-browsers such as Google Earth serve as the basis for thousands of location based applications, the BioDigital Human Platform will open up entirely new ways to augment healthcare applications. From the visual representation of concepts found on health portals, to step-by-step virtual guidance for surgical planning, to EHR integration so patients can finally understand their diagnosis, the BioDigital Human Platform will meet the learning demands of 21st century medicine.
DailyMedPlus is an online application providing integrated access to pharmaceutical information available from various databases provided by the National Library of Medicine (NLM). DailyMedPlus offers a high-performance unified search engine providing ranked, highlighted and full-text search results for patients and healthcare professionals who seek updated prescribing information. As the only product of its kind, the application supports searching NLM databases for pharmaceutical products using trade and generic names, medical conditions, indications, contra-indications, side-effects, and also allows for the searching of these products by their physical characteristics (“red round”), providing image results in an in line intuitive layout. Users benefit from comprehensive search results of more than 90,000 products displayed in over 26,000 organized and digitally curated monographs designed for browsing on a wide variety of desktop and mobile platforms.
Drug Diary is an iOS (iPhone / iPod Touch / iPad) application that allows users to quickly build an inventory of prescribed and OTC medications they are currently taking or have taken in the past along with information on the associated prescribers and pharmacies. From there, they are able to take notes outlining their experiences with these medications and generate reports to share with care providers. Data entry is made quick and easy through the use of a locally cached copy of the NLM’s RxTerms dataset and intelligent data entry screens that require little to no typing. The app leverages the data present in RxTerms to allow one tap access to another NLM source, MedLine Plus, which is a web portal that provides detailed information on the medications in the user’s library.
Molecules is a 3-D molecular modeling application for Apple’s iOS devices, including the iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch. It pushes the limits of mobile graphics processors by using advanced techniques to make realistic renderings of molecular models. A touch-based interface allows for intuitive manipulation of these structures, so that they can be viewed from any angle and at any scale. While originally designed for researchers to view and present biomolecule structures on the go, the most popular use of Molecules has proven to be in education. Chemistry teachers are using this application to explain common molecular structures to their students, and biology professors are demonstrating the form and function of biomolecules. Many students already have iOS devices of their own, so they are able to make the lesson more personal by following along on their own iPhone or iPad. The popularity of this approach is seen in the over 1.7 million downloads of this application to date.
Orkov is a Greek term for Hippocratic Oath that medical professionals, especially, physicians take all over the world. Orkov, an iPhone App for iOS 5 platform as well as for Android OS is a productivity smart phone application for hundreds of thousands of medical researchers who are the end users of PubMed.gov data all over the world. Orkov empowers many researchers to search and browse research abstracts and full text research articles from the repository of PubMed.gov’s over 5,000+ research journals. Orkov utilizes publicly available web service interface of PubMed.gov. Majority of the features of PubMed.gov are wrapped into a powerful iPhone/Andorid App that is easy to use and navigate.
- Quertle, a Life Sciences Semantic Search Engine, Wins a National Library of Medicine Award (biojobblog.com)
As an educator, I am always looking for ways to make learning fun. Social media, such as YouTube, has been growing in use since its inception. Even my 13 year old son looks at YouTube videos. So, I thought, why don’t I see how I can incorporate YouTube into nursing education? Having a fun, innovative learning strategy would make learning more enjoyable, and also add a different dimension to the process. I decided to start adding YouTube to my simulation preparatory material. I carefully viewed various videos based on the simulation scenarios I was writing. After speaking to the students, I learned that they enjoyed the YouTube inclusion. After that, I decided to add it to my pathophysiology course, as well as my psychiatric clinical teaching. I am always looking for new YouTube videos and am interested in how the students themselves use it. I ask students to send me links that they have found useful. After using YouTube for a few years, I decided that my experience with using it could be helpful to other faculty, as all educators are looking for new innovative learning formats.Guest blogger Leighsa Sharoff, EdD, RN, NPP, AHN-BC, Associate Professor and Coordinator of Simulation and Learning Resources at Hunter-Bellevue School of Nursing, writes about the use of YouTube in courses.
My article, “Integrating YouTube into the Nursing Curriculum” has just been published by OJIN: The Online Journal of Issues in Nursing. It provides a description of social networking sites and tools, as well as YouTube. I also share hints and cautions about will be most helpful to the many faculty who know it is time to integrate YouTube and other Internet content into their courses, but are hesitant to do so.
I’d love to hear about other YouTube videos that faculty have used in courses for health professionals. What are you using?
Leighsa Sharoff, EdD, RN, NPP, AHN-BC, Associate Professor of Nursing, Hunter College, CUNY
There are multiple costs to non-compliance, including financial, both personal and societal, and physical-emotional. When patients fail to comply with treatment protocols, fail to get prescribed tests, or fail to stop destructive behaviors, there is a societal cost.
Today, I want to address the physical and emotional costs of non-compliance. I just read a brilliant article by Roxanne Sukol, MD. Dr. Sukol’s article discussed the fact that diabetes starts 10 years prior to your doctor making a diagnosis and, if addressed early, often can be avoided. In her article, Dr. Sukol states, “I like my patient vertical. Not horizontal.” Most doctors have favorite sayings. My favorite is, “May you be so blessed as to never know what disease you prevented.” I’ll add Dr. Sukol’s to my favorite list.
Another one of my favorite sayings is “There is no such thing as pre-diabetes. Pre-diabetes is like being pre-pregnant.” …
(readers responses here, along with responses to other cases)
According to a story in today’s New York Times, a study conducted by reaserchers from the University of Oxford and the Kenya Medical Research Institute demonstrated that texting treatment tips to healthcare workers increased the number of cases that they handled correctly and six months later, the effect was still there.
“Since each text cost less than a penny, every nurse in rural Kenya could get reminders for $39,000, the study said. That is far cheaper than sending trainers or brochures, neither of which improved care much, the authors said.”
The original report was published in The Lancet.
- Study finds text messages help smokers quit (pakistannewsupdate.wordpress.com)
- Cellphones Boost Health Across Globe (livescience.com)
I interviewed about 150 medical leaders just a few years ago for my book The Future of Medicine – Megatrends in Healthcare. Not one mentioned wireless devices as a coming megatrend. How fast the world changes! Nowadays everyone has a cell phone and we rarely stop to think that just two decades ago almost no one had them. We have a laptop or tablet computer that can access information from the web at very high rates of speed; again it is hard to remember when this wasn’t so. And those with smart phones have numerous “apps” – to check traffic conditions, find the nearest Starbucks, or play games. But these and other devices that use wireless technology will lead to major changes in the delivery of health care in the coming years. This is another of those coming medical megatrends.
Read the rest of Wireless devices will dramatically change how medicine is practiced on KevinMD.com.
- Unintended consequences of patient portals (kevinmd.com)
- Invasion of the Body Hackers? Wireless Medical Devices Susceptible to Attacks (tjantunen.com)
- Mobile Security Requires More Than Secure Wireless Devices (aviatnetworks.com)
Dr. Paul Farmer, Dr. Jim Kim and professor Michael Porter
Boston, Mass. (July 28, 2011) –Today, the Global Health Delivery Project and Harvard Business Publishing released 21 teaching case studies examining the principles of health care delivery in resource-poor settings. The multidisciplinary body of work spans 13 countries and addresses the complexity of delivering life-saving health care technologies and care. These 21 teaching case studies are available to global health educators, students and practitioners at no cost through Harvard Business Publishing. To access the case studies, visit: www.ghdonline.org/cases.
Dr. Paul Farmer, chair of the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School, said, “The publication of these cases—online, and freely accessible to the practitioners, students and educators who will benefit most from them—is an important step toward closing the know-do gap in global health. Increasingly, our feedback loop of research, teaching and service is directly strengthening the care we deliver on the ground and our ability to replicate and scale successes.”……
Want to know how a medication might affect your breast milk? Got a question about a disability, aging, mental health?
There’s an app for all that—and a whole lot more.
The variety and availability of smartphone applications—or apps—have exploded in recent years as multi-tasking consumers increasingly use their phones to keep up with the latest on news, finance, and health. Apple says its iPhone App Store has more than 350,000 apps, and Android, BlackBerry, Windows, and other smartphones account for tens of thousands more. With so many apps on the market, it’s no wonder the number of health care related apps has also spiraled.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is now proposing guidelines that outline the small number of mobile apps the agency plans to oversee—medical apps that could present a risk to patients if the apps don’t work as intended. The proposed guidelines were posted on the Federal Register website Thursday.
Consumers may weigh-in on the guidelines during a public comment period that ends Oct. 19
For more information, visit FDA’s Mobile Medical Apps page.
FDA policy advisor Bakul Patel says some of the new mobile apps are designed to help consumers manage their own health and wellness—like the National Institutes of Health’s LactMed app, which gives nursing mothers information about the effects of medicines on breast milk and nursing infants.
Other apps are aimed at helping health care providers improve and facilitate patient care—like the Radiation Emergency Medical Management (REMM) app, which gives health care providers guidance on diagnosing and treating radiation injuries. There are even apps to aid diagnosis of rashes and heart irregularities.
FDA has already cleared a handful of mobile medical apps used by health care professionals, such as a smartphone-based ultrasound and an application for iPhones and iPads that allows doctors to view medical images and X-rays.
There’s an app for that!
“There are advantages to using medical apps, but consumers and health care professionals should have a balanced awareness of the benefits and risks,” Patel says.
Apps can give consumers valuable health information in seconds and are opening innovative ways for technology to improve health care, Patel says. However, the small group of mobile medical apps FDA proposes to oversee present a potential risk—these apps may impact how a currently regulated medical device (such as an ultrasound) performs, he adds.
FDA is proposing to oversee mobile medical apps that:
- Are used as an accessory to an FDA-regulated medical device. For example, an app could enable a health care professional to view medical images on an iPad and make a diagnosis;
- Transform a mobile platform into a regulated medical device. For example, an app that turns a smartphone into an electrocardiography, or ECG, machine to detect abnormal heart rhythms or determine if a patient is experiencing a heart attack.
If you want to provide input on FDA’s proposal, you can submit your comment online athttp://www.regulations.gov/ or in writing to: Division of Dockets Management (HFA-305), Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, Rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852.
“We want to hear from as many consumers, advocacy groups, health care professionals, and software creators and distributors as possible to help us finalize the proposed guidelines,” Patel says.
This article appears on FDA’s Consumer Updates page, which features the latest on all FDA-regulated products.
Posted July 19, 2011
Please Note Well!—At this time it seems that consumer health apps (as Mobile MedlinePlus) will not be covered in the regulations.
From the press release
AHRQ has released a new brief, The Patient-Centered Medical Home: Strategies to Put Patients at the Center of Primary Care, highlighting opportunities to improve patient engagement in primary care. The brief focuses on involvement at three levels: the engagement of patients and families in their own care, in quality improvement activities in the primary care practice, and in the development and implementation of policy and research related to the patient-centered medical home (PCMH). Strategies to Put Patients at the Center of Primary Care provides a clear and concise definition of the patient-centered medical home and outlines six strategies that can be used to support primary care practices in their efforts to engage patients and families. This brief and other resources, including white papers and a searchable database of PCMH-related articles, is available from AHRQ’s online PCMH Resource Center at PCMH_Patients at the Center of Primary Care (PDF File, PDF Help).
- Health-care model improves diabetes outcomes, health (eurekalert.org)
- More On The Synergies Between the Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) and Remote Telephonic Disease Management (diseasemanagementcareblog.blogspot.com)
From an email alert by Holly Burt at NN/NLM GMR (National Network of Libraries of Medicine/Greater Midwest Region)
The National Library of Medicine has released Chemical Hazards EmergencyMedical Management (CHEMM) http://chemm.nlm.nih.gov/ .
Chemical emergencies are high risk events that require first responders to quickly make a series of complex decisions to minimize the risk of injury to their patients and themselves. The tools in CHEMM provide a comprehensive resource to help responders make safer decisions and provide them with the right information when it is needed most.
CHEMM enables first responders and other healthcare providers and planners to plan for, respond to, recover from, and mitigate the effects of mass-casualty incidents involving accidental or terrorist chemical releases.
CHEMM enhances and builds on the successes of the suite of Emergency Medical Management tools that began with the Radiation Emergency Medical Management (REMM; http://www.remm.nlm.gov/) web-based resource, which provides information for health care providers about clinical diagnosis and treatment of radiation and other injuries anticipated following radiological and nuclear emergencies.
CHEMM is a web-based resource that is downloadable in advance so that it is available during an event if the Internet is not accessible. It provides evidence-based information and guidance on a wide variety of topics, including quick chemical identification, acute patient care guidelines, and initial event activities.
CHEMM and REMM are the result of collaborative efforts between the United States Department of Health and Human Services, the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) – Office of Preparedness and Emergency Operations (OPEO), the National Library of Medicine – Division of Specialized Information Services (NLM/SIS), as well as many medical, emergency response, toxicology, industrial hygiene, and other experts.
- Preparing for Disaster and Response (aa47.wordpress.com)
- New Online and Mobile Versions of REMM (Radiation Emergency Medical Management) (aa47.wordpress.com)
- New Knowledge Path [Resource Guide]: Emotional, Behavioral, and Mental Health Challenges in Children and Adolescents. (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
New Knowledge Path [Resource Guide]: Emotional, Behavioral, and Mental Health Challenges in Children and Adolescents.
The MCH Library at Georgetown University presents a new knowledge path, Emotional, Behavioral, and Mental Health Challenges in Children and Adolescents. The knowledge path points to a selection of resources that analyze data, describe effective programs, and report on policy and research aimed at improving access to and quality of care for children and adolescents with emotional, behavioral, and mental heath challenges.
View the path online at http://www.mchlibrary.info/KnowledgePaths/kp_Mental_Conditions.html.
A new set of companion resource briefs are available, as follows:
Child Maltreatment http://www.mchlibrary.info/guides/maltreatment.html
Substance Use http://www.mchlibrary.info/guides/substanceuse.html
Suicide Prevention http://www.mchlibrary.info/guides/suicide.html
MCH Library at Georgetown University
Web site: http://mchlibrary.info
Are you a digital reader? If so, you might be interested in the following news. On June 2nd, the National Academies Press (NAP) began offering the PDF versions of their reports and books as FREE downloads.
Who is the National Academies? The National Academies is a collection of four private, nonprofit institutions: the National Academy of Science, the National Academy of Engineering, the Institute of Medicine, and the National Research Center. Each year, the NAP publishes over 200 authoritative books and reports that address science, engineering, and health topics.
More the 4000 NAP titles are now freely available to download. Users can choose to download entire books or individual chapters. To download a book, visit the NAP website at http://www.nap.edu/. Select a topic to browse (for example, Behavioral and Social Sciences, Education, Food & Nutrition, and Health and Medicine) and explore the available titles. Once you select a title, look for the DOWNLOAD FREE PDF option. To complete the download, you will need to create an NAP user account or register as a guest.
The following list comprises a small sampling of NAP titles:
The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health (2011)
Leading Health Indicators for Healthy People 2020: Letter Report (2011)
The Public Health Effects of Food Deserts: Workshop Summary (2009)
The Science of Adolescent Risk-Taking: Workshop Report (2011)
Understanding the Demand for Illegal Drugs (2010)
Informed Caring is a portal to information resources for health professionals, created and maintained by the State of Wisconsin AHEC (Area Health Education Center) System.
It is designed for those working outside of hospitals where access to needed health care information may be problematic.
However, much of the information is freely available to all.Some materials are restricted to Wisconsin residents or University of Wisconsin residents. In these cases, check with your local public or academic library to see if the resource is available to you.
Most of the resources are selected for the health care professional in mind.
A listing of resources by topic may be found here and includes the following areas:
- Clinical and Primary Care Databases
- Cultural and Diversity Issues
- Evaluating Health Information
In The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, the Babel Fish was a fish you stuck in your ear that allowed you to understand any language spoken to you. We’re not far off.
Google recently released a new version of their (free!) Google Translate app for Android phones, featuring conversation mode, which allows you to have a back and forth conversation with someone who speaks another language (currently just English/Spanish is supported). Translation companies should be shaking in their boots.
I created a quick little demo below, on how you could actually use this (or a future version) in your clinical practice.
It’s pretty incredible. (Also, a quick shout out to the web version of Google Translate, which will allow to translate any text or website into your native language (not just English/Spanish). Very useful for typing up basic discharge instructions for languages with which you’re not familiar.)
- Using Google Translate in medicine (kevinmd.com)
Information is the lifeblood of high quality healthcare. There have been huge technological advances about how it can be used and by whom, which have been under utilised by the NHS. It is now possible to give people control over their own data. If this were done, it would have the potential to revolutionise healthcare delivery for patients, their families and carers.
This discussion paper sets out seven practical ways and examples, each of which the Young Foundation believes would transform health care delivery. These could improve patient experiences, reduced errors and omissions, improve communication and make healthcare more efficient and effective.
+ Direct link to document (PDF; 2.4 MB)
- Personalized text messaging in healthcare is the new antidote to healthcare costs (textually.org)
- The Drive to Patient Safety – New HealthLeaders Media Intelligence Report Available (prweb.com)
Health care research typically focuses on final outcomes such as cure or death overlooking the fact that health and illness are dynamic states that evolve and change over time. A special collection of articles on health trajectory research is now available in a supplement to Nursing Research***, official journal of the Eastern Nursing Research Society and the Western Institute of Nursing. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer Health.
The special supplement presents a series of original studies and commentaries on the development of nursing intervention science focused on the “promotion, maintenance, and restoration of health over time.” It reflects a growing interest in studying the ways that health care interventions can affect health trajectories at different stages of life…
…Several types of health trajectories can be affected by nursing interventions. Developmental trajectories refer to normal physiologic changes such as puberty, menopause, or aging or even life transitions such as marriage or retirement. Acute illness trajectories have to do with illnesses that tend to resolve or improve over time, while chronic illness trajectories are associated with illnesses that aren’t curable, but can still have positive health outcomes. Other categories include disability trajectories and end-of-life or dying trajectories. “Having a better understanding of these various health trajectories and how they can be shaped through interventions will help clinicians provide better care for individuals and families at all stages of their lives,” Drs. Wyman and Henly write.
Articles in the special issue present the nursing science perspective on health trajectory research and important theoretical considerations in studying health and illness over time including advances in statistical modeling that support this area of research. The supplement also includes a series of original studies illustrating the health trajectory perspective in health and illness; in community, hospital, and laboratory settings; and across time scales ranging from seconds to years. Topics include:
– Changes in functioning of the parasympathetic nervous system related to feeding in newborns after surgery for major congenital heart abnormalities.
– Changes in patterns of condom use by sexually active teens participating in a pregnancy-prevention program.
– Changes in anxiety related to mechanical ventilation in critically ill patients.
– Changes in patterns of pain (claudication) during treadmill testing in patients with peripheral artery disease.
– Changes in gastrointestinal symptoms in incontinent patients being treated with fiber supplements.
– Changes in burden and depression in caregivers of spouses with dementia as they transition to nursing care.
Studies Evaluate Criteria For Detecting Potentially Inappropriate Medications In Older Hospitalized Patients
Using the Screening Tool of Older Persons’ potentially inappropriate Prescriptions (STOPP) criteria was associated with identification of adverse drug events in older patients, according to a report in the June issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. The article is part of the journal’s Less Is More series.
According to information in the article, adverse drug events (ADEs) are a significant issue in the older population, and are thought to represent an important cause of hospitalization and account for substantial health care expenditures. Some ADEs are associated with potentially inappropriate medications (PIMs): agents that may cause problems in older patients “because of the higher risk of intolerance related to adverse pharmacodynamics or pharmacokinetics or drug-disease interactions.” During the last two decades, the Beers criteria for judging whether a medication is appropriate for use in an older patient have become the leading standard. Nevertheless, the authors write, research into whether the Beers criteria are associated with avoidable ADEs has not generated consistent results….
…According to the authors, the results suggest that STOPP criteria were more likely than Beers criteria to reveal ADEs in general, avoidable or potentially avoidable ADEs, and ADEs that may have factored into the patient’s hospitalization. “We believe that this finding strengthens the argument for the use of STOPP criteria in everyday clinical practice as a means of reducing the risk of ADEs in older patient,” they write. …
shift toward more conservative medication-prescribing practices would serve patients better, according to a review article published Online First today by Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals***. The article is part of the journal’s Less Is More series.
As background, the article notes that the majority of patients under age 65 years receive at least one prescription drug annually. However, according to the authors, not every patient visit needs to result in a prescription. They point to “the recent spate of revelations of undisclosed and unexpected adverse effects of drugs in multiple therapeutic categories” as just one reason to take a more measured approach to medication usage…
…Among the steps they recommend for conservative prescribing:
- Think beyond drugs. Would other interventions help? Would a medication simply mask symptoms without treating the problem? Can a condition be prevented instead of treated? Would waiting to see if the symptoms self-resolve be wise?
- Practice more strategic prescribing. Do you have a solid understanding of medication choices? Is there a valid reason to switch to a new drug? Is it the right drug for your patient? Can you avoid using multiple medications?
- Maintain heightened vigilance regarding adverse effects. Do you check with patients about potential drug reactions? Do you teach them the warning signs? Are the drugs you’re choosing prone to withdrawal symptoms or relapse?
- Approach new drugs and new indications cautiously and skeptically. Where do you get your information about new treatments? Can you wait until a new drug has had a longer track record? Does the drug actually help resolve the core problem? Is it actually indicated for this problem? Does it deliver what it promises? Do studies tell the whole story on a drug?
- Work with patients for a more deliberative shared agenda. Can you persuade patients not to demand drugs they have seen or heard advertised? Is a patient’s noncompliance with therapy the source of the problem? Has the patient already tried this drug without success? Can you encourage healthy skepticism in your patients?
- Consider longer-term, broader effects. Would a different therapy be less likely to cause future harm? Can you find a way to make the prescribing system better?
This three-part Web conference series provided an overview of grey literature and approaches to searching the grey literature for health services research; a consumer’s guide to conducting advanced searches of grey literature; and a producer’s perspective on the “searchability” of grey literature and how to effectively produce and distribute research.
- Grey Literature in Public Health Web Conference Series 2011 (openmedicine.ca)
1) Video Consults on Your Smartphone
Using new technology, some doctors — particularly in rural areas — are doing video office visits. A number of companies have sprung up, such as MDLiveCare, that offer consultations via real-time video….
2) Tablet Computers
Touch-screen tablet computers are creating a new class of totally cool and incredibly useful gadgets and applications that are helping to make life easier for physicians and their patients….”Whenever you’re in a remote environment, it’s much easier to draw things up than to try to explain on the phone,” …
3) Speech Recognition Programs
…”The beauty of real-time mobile speech recognition is that the physician no longer needs a keyboard,”
0) Social Networking
Facebook has captured the imagination of the world, claiming 500 million active users, half of whom log in on any given day. You can be sure that plenty of physicians are among those masses. But where do you go when you want to discuss medicine or simply connect with other doctors?
LinkedIn, a business-focused networking site, has at least 100 million users worldwide, but there are several social and professional networking sites just for healthcare professionals, some of which offer secure communications suitable for colleagues who already know each other to discuss specific cases. (Medscape’s discussion boards are popular landing spots for physicians).
For patients, there’s an emerging field called participatory medicine. A group called the Society for Participatory Medicine defines it as “a cooperative model of healthcare that encourages and expects active involvement by all connected parties (patients, caregivers, healthcare professionals, etc.) as integral to the full continuum of care.” Patients facing serious health challenges have been flocking to sites such as Organized Wisdom and PatientsLikeMe.
- A market driven success story of participatory medicine (kevinmd.com)
- The Rise of Social Media & Participatory Medicine (ehealth.johnwsharp.com)
- Participatory medicine and evidence from medical journals (kevinmd.com)
- Mobile Medical Software for Physician (healthadvisory.typepad.com)
- Parsing a new Pew report: 3 ways the Internet is shaping healthcare (radar.oreilly.com)
- iOS 5 Speech Recognition Concept (crenk.com)
- Listen to the Patient and Let Him Lead the Way (brassandivory.org)
- Best iPad Apps for Medical Professionals (brighthub.com)
- WebMD the App – WebMD (itunes.apple.com)
- iPad 2 – just another disappointing love affair? | Roz Kaveney (guardian.co.uk)
- Nobody Needs a Tablet. So Why Are We Gobbling Them Up? | Gadget Lab (icemanbaldy.com)
Partnering to Heal is a computer-based, interactive learning tool for clinicians, health professional students, and patient advocates.
The training highlights effective communication about infection control practices and what it means to help create a “culture of safety” in healthcare institutions.
From the press release
The HHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health released Partnering to Heal: Teaming Up Against Healthcare-Associated Infections, an interactive learning tool for clinicians, health professional students, and family caregivers. The training videos include information on basic protocols for universal precautions and isolation precautions to protect patient, visitors, and practitioners from the most common disease transmissions. The training promotes six key behaviors: teamwork, communication, hand washing, vaccination against the flu, appropriate use of antibiotics, and proper insertion, use, and removal of catheters and ventilators. Learn how five characters can contribute to—or prevent—risk of several healthcare-associated infections, including surgical site infections, central line-associated bloodstream infections, ventilator-associated pneumonia, catheter-associated urinary tract infections,clostridium difficile and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. These resources support the new Partnership for Patients, a new national public-private partnership with hospitals, medical groups, consumer groups, and employers that will help save lives by preventing millions of injuries and complications in patient care over the next 3 years. Select to read the HHS press release.
- Partnering to Heal: Teaming Up Against Healthcare-Associated Infections (thielst.typepad.com)
- Patient Safety Resources (aa47.wordpress.com)
- CDC issues updated bloodstream infection prevention guidelines (physorg.com)
…Listening, saying sorry, and validating the complaint by repeating the complaint word for word – or least paraphrasing – can solve the majority of the problems and diminish the need for fights. Sometimes people just want to be heard…hear their complaints and gripes about life validated. Doesn’t mean necessarily you’re wrong and they’re right….they just need to blow off steam. Also, for some people after hearing their complaint repeated back it makes them realize they’re making a mountain out of a mole hill….they’re being unfair, unreasonable, and even silly. ….
..Source: Sorry Works! (“advocacy organization for disclosure, apology (when appropriate), and upfront compensation (when necessary) after adverse medical events.”)
- 10 steps to a successful complaint (telegraph.co.uk)
- How to talk about prescriptions
- Wise Use of Dietary and Herbal Supplements
- Using Antibiotics Appropriately
- Safe Storage and Disposal of Medication – New
- Reducing Medication Errors
- “Make Notes & Take Notes” to Avoid Medication Errors (B&W)
- Prescription Pain Medicines: What You Need to Know
- Your Medicine: Play It Safe
Since 1982, the National Council on Patient Information and Education (NCPIE) has been working to “Educate Before You Medicate”. Over 3.5 billion prescriptions are dispensed yearly, yet easy to understand information about prescription drugs is hard to find. The NCPIE website provides information for consumers, special populations of consumers, and those health care workers who work with patients directly. The “Educational Resources” link has both free and pay publications. The free pamphlets, such as “Priorities & Approaches for Improving Prescription Medicine Use by Older Adults” and “Children and America’s Other Drug Problem: Guidelines for Improving Prescription Medicine Use Among Children and Teenagers” can be downloaded, and even previewed before downloading. The pay pamphlets have to be ordered, and some of them are in both English and Spanish. The “For Medicine Users” section is dedicated to the issues that represent a majority of inquiries to NCPIE. This section includes links to resources on talking about prescriptions, information about specific medicines, use of non-prescription medicines, and much more. [KMG]
- Public confused about ingredients in pain relievers, study finds (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
- Doctor’s Office Is Usually First Stop In Medication Mishaps (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
- Prescription meds misuse rampant, deadly: report (cbsnews.com)
Today (Tuesday 10 May), the (UK) National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has launched NICE Pathways at its annual conference in Birmingham. An online tool for health and social care professionals, NICE Pathways brings together all connected NICE guidance on a topic in a user-friendly electronic flowchart.
Previously there has been no easy way to see at a glance everything NICE has said on a specific condition, for example diabetes, across all its separate published guidance. For the first time ever, this digital resource will allow users to quickly view and navigate NICE guidance and other tools on any given topic across an entire care pathway. For example, the postnatal care pathway considers everything from the baby’s first 24 hours up until the first 2 – 8 weeks.
The 18 pathways launched today cover alcohol-use disorders, anaemia management in chronic kidney disease, breast cancer, chronic heart failure, chronic kidney disease (CKD), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), dementia,depression, diabetes, diabetes in pregnancy, diet, glaucoma, neonatal jaundice, physical activity, postnatal care, smoking, stroke, and venous thromboembolism (VTE) prevention.
Covering the whole range of different types of NICE advice, including health technology appraisals, clinical guidelines, public health and social care advice, quality standards and implementation tools, this is part of a wider move to provide a more personalised, audience-focused way of looking at NICE guidance. …..
- When a Loved One Has PTSD (everydayhealth.com)
- How Trauma Leads to Depression (everydayhealth.com)
- Depression and Anxiety After a Natural Disaster (everydayhealth.com)
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder: Diagnostic Criteria (brighthub.com)
- Help for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (everydayhealth.com)
- Child soldier trauma in Uganda shares similarities with Northern Ireland (eurekalert.org)
- Psychological Scarring to Palestinian and Israeli Children when Exposed to War (hellerbrittani.wordpress.com)
- Teachers-based intervention provides stress resistance in war-exposed children (eurekalert.org)
- How to Help Children Cope With a Dangerous World (health.usnews.com)
What are the most popular [ mobile resources used by Harvard Medical School students] in 2011?
Dynamed – a clinical reference tool created by physicians for physicians and other health care professionals for use primarily at the ‘point-of-care’ .
Unbound Medicine uCentral – a collection of popular titles including 5 Minute Clinical Consult, A to Z Drug Facts, Drug Interaction Facts (an interaction checker), Review of Natural Products,Medline Table of Contents Alerts, and Medline Auto Alerts.
VisualDx Mobile – a visual decision support tool. VisualDx merges medical images with a problem-oriented findings-based search.
Epocrates Essentials – an all-in-one mobile guide to drugs, diseases, and diagnostics which includes Epocrates Rx Pro, Epocrates SxDx, and Epocrates Lab.
iRadiology – a compendium of over 500 unique images demonstrating classic radiological findings.
From the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) press release
A new online resource, designed to give health care providers easy access to evidence-based information on complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), was unveiled today by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) of the National Institutes of Health.
With this new resource, providers will have the tools necessary to learn about the various CAM practices and products and be better able to discuss the safety and effectiveness of complementary and alternative medicine with their patients….
- links to relevant clinical practice guidelines
- safety and effectiveness information
- links to systematic reviews
- summaries of research studies
- scientific literature searches
- programs for continuing education credit
- patient fact sheets
- NCCAM’s Time to Talk tool kit on communicating about CAM.
Americans annually spend nearly $34 billion out-of-pocket on CAM products and practices. Surveys show that nearly 40 percent of American adults and 12 percent of American children use some form of CAM. Other surveys show that patients do not regularly discuss these practices with their health care providers. In fact, a recent study of Americans aged 50 and older found that overall two-thirds of respondents had not discussed CAM with their health care provider.
“NCCAM is charged to study and provide evidence-based information on the safety and efficacy of CAM health practices that are readily available and already used by a great number of people,” said Josephine P. Briggs, M.D., director of NCCAM. “As a physician, I understand the need to have easily accessible and accurate information on all health practices. This Web resource is a way for NCCAM to share this valuable information with all providers.”
To use this resource, please visit nccam.nih.gov/health/providers/.
NCCAM’s Time to Talk campaign encourages patients to tell their providers about CAM use and providers to ask about it by offering tools and resources—such as wallet cards, posters, and tip sheets—all of which are available for free at nccam.nih.gov/timetotalk/.
The mission of the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) is to define, through rigorous scientific investigation, the usefulness and safety of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) interventions and their roles in improving health and health care. For additional information, call NCCAM’s Clearinghouse toll free at 1-888-644-6226, or visit the NCCAM Web site at nccam.nih.gov.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH)—The Nation’s Medical Research Agency—includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit http://www.nih.gov.
Natural & Alternative Treatments
Contains detailed information on almost 200 different conditions and the conventional and natural treatments used to treat them, over 300 herbs and supplements, plus drug-herb and drug-supplement interactions for more than 90 drug categories.
Drugs and Supplements (sponsored by the Mayo Clinic)
Somewhat lengthy drug and over-the-counter medicationinformation with these sections: description, before using, proper use, precautions and side effects. From Micromedex, a trusted source of healthcare information for health professionals.
Herb and supplement information includes information on uses based on scientific evidence as well as safety and potential interactions with drugs, herbs, and supplements. From Natural Standard, an independent group of researchers and clinicians
Prescription and over-the-counter medication information contains answers to many general questions including topics as what a drug is used for, precautions, side effects, dietary instructions, and overdoses. From the American Society of Health System Pharmacists
Herb and supplement information includes information on uses based on scientific evidence as well as safety and potential interactions with drugs, herbs, and supplements. From Natural Standard, an independent group of researchers and clinicians.
- Let’s do some real science for a change! The NCCAM Strategic Plan 2011-2015 (scienceblogs.com)
- Herbal Medicines: ‘Natural’ Doesn’t Always Mean Safe, Says Royal Pharmaceutical Society (medicalnewstoday.com)
- Health-Care Providers Are Prescribing Nontraditional Medicine (Medical News Today, 10 May 2011)
- Integrative medicine, spirituality improves outcomes in urban adolescents with asthma (eurekalert.org)
- Audio File About the NCCAM Health Care Provider Portal (NCAAM)
- Study Questions Giving Babies Botanical Supplements, Teas (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
Moving patients through hospitals in an efficient manner can increase staff satisfaction, patient safety and even your bottom line, according to one industry insider.
It’s a familiar sight in most US hospitals: patient overcrowding, a lack of medical staff and long wait times for both emergency and elective procedures.
Eugene Litvak, President and CEO of the Institute of Healthcare Optimization (IHO), says demand for health services now exceeds capacity in many countries. “But here in the US, the situation is even deeper. Because of the healthcare bill, we are going to add another 30 million to the demand.”
Litvak points to an increase in demand from baby boomers as one reason, along with the problem of uneven patient flow. “When we have a peak in patient demand, that doesn’t just impact the throughput of waiting time. It also affects patient safety and staff satisfaction. What happens when we have a peak? We don’t have enough staff, because no hospital staffs to the peak 24 hours a day every week.”
Litvak says there are two ways of addressing the issue: “The first is to go to government and say, ‘Give us more money so we can staff through the peak’. This is not always a feasible solution, especially with the current situation in the US. The second solution is to challenge the nature of those peaks by drilling deeper and finding out how to get rid of them.” …
….CFO Healthcare US Summit 2011 is an exclusive C-level event reserved for 100 participants that includes expert workshops, facilitated roundtables, peer-to-peer networks and co-ordinated meetings.
For more information, visit this page.
My NCBI Redesign (Personal Search Saving & More Tool for PubMed searches)
The National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) is pleased to announce that an improved user interface will be released for My NCBI. The new interface will eliminate complexities and provide a streamlined interface, robust performance, and intuitive navigation. The most visually significant enhancement is that all functions are viewed.
[Editor’s note: Sections affected include the home page, saved searches, collections (saved searches that can be run at future dates), and a personlized My Bibliography]
For detailed information about My NCBI, please see My NCBI Help.
- PubMed Mobile Beta (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
- PubMed Health Provides Disease and Treatment Information for Consumers (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
- PubMed Toxicology Subset Streamlines Biomedical Searches in the Professional Literature (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
- National Library of Medicine Updates (aa47.wordpress.com)
- Downloading PubMed Articles (aspenbio.wordpress.com)
- PubMed MeSH database changes (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
- Follow, Fan and Connect with NLM (nlm.nih.gov)
- Gladstone: Predicting with PubMed (samsnyder.com)
- Access Full Text Life Science and Healthcare Texts Using A New NCBI Bookshelf Homepage (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
ScienceDaily (Mar. 25, 2011) — An orphan drug** originally used for HIV treatment has been found to short-circuit the process that results in additional sensitivity and pain from opioid use. The study by researchers at the Indiana University School of Medicine is reported in the March 25, 2011 issue of Brain, Behavior and Immunity***….
For related drug information resources, please see my previous posting Drug Information Product…
- Orphan Products: Hope for People With Rare Diseases
- FDA basics – Orphan Drugs
- Developing Orphan Products: FDA and Rare Disease Day(Food and Drug Administration)
- New drug restores responsiveness to morphine (news.bioscholar.com)
- Pain-killing drug more potent, longer lasting than morphine: Study (news.bioscholar.com)
- Prison term for Snohomish nurse who watered down morphine (seattlepi.com)
PubMed® Mobile Beta provides a simplified mobile friendly Web interface to access PubMed***. PubMed Mobile includes the same basic search functionality and content as Standard PubMed; that is, all search terms and fields work similarly (see Figure 1).
Simply enter your search in the search box and click “Search” (see Figure 2).
The inital (Summary) display includes the article title, first author’s name, journal title abbreviation, and year of publication.
Click “Free Full Text” or “Review” on the Summary search results page to filter your results. Click “Next” to go to subsequent search result pages.
Click the article title to display the Abstract format (see Figure 3).
Not all data provided on the Standard PubMed Abstract format are included (for example, MeSH® vocabulary); to see complete data use the link to Standard PubMed.
Related Citations display below the abstract. On the abstract page, click “Previous” or “Next” to navigate to other citation abstracts. Click the “Back to results” link to redisplay the Summary search results (see Figure 4).
A link to Standard PubMed is available at the bottom of all PubMed Mobile pages.
PubMed Mobile does not include specialized search pages, such as Limits and Advanced search, or added features, such as My NCBI, Clipboard, or LinkOut/Outside Tool. To use these and other PubMed features, display your retrieval in Standard PubMed via the link at the bottom of the screen.
By Kathi Canese and Edward WelkerNational Center for Biotechnology Information
***PubMed is the largest indexer of the biomedical literature in the world. It can be rather intimidating to search the first few times because there are many options to refine your search in order to get tailored relevant results. Believe me, it is worth the effort!
If you would like expert personalized PubMed search advice, please do not hesitate to contact (preferably call ahead!) a reference librarian at your local academic, medical, or public library.
Many academic and medical libraries offer some degree of personalized reference service to the public. These services are largely offered by professionals with a Masters degree in Library Science who have many years experience providing relevant research articles and other resources to a wide variety of health professionals and others. They enjoy teaching both formally and informally.
Please feel free to email me (jmflahiff at yahoo.com) with any questions. I would be happy to work on a question for up to 2 hours and reply within 3 days. No charge.
Here are some PubMed tutorials and guides
- PubMed Tutorial (National Library of Medicine)
- PubMed Online Training [Quick animated tours, Webcasts, detailed tutorial, Webcasts, and more] (National Library of Medicine)
- PubMed MeSH searching (sullivanlibrary.wordpress.com)
- PubMed Search Help Items (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
- PubMed Toxicology Subset Streamlines Biomedical Searches in the Professional Literature (jflahiff.wordpress.com
- PubMed Health Provides Disease and Treatment Information for Consumers (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
- Download PubMed Search Results Into a Spreadsheet with FLink (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
- How to obtain free/low cost medical articles in medical and scientific journals (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
U.S. Unprepared for Major Radiation Emergency: Survey
Lack of comprehensive response plans puts public health at risk in many states, experts say
TUESDAY, March 15 (HealthDay News) — Most U.S. states are poorly prepared to deal with a major nuclear plant crisis such as the one now unfolding in Japan, suggests a survey of state health departments.
- Thirty-eight (76%) state health departments responded to the survey, including 26 of the 31 states with nuclear power plants.
- Specific strengths noted at the state level included that the majority of states had a written radiation response plan and most plans include a detailed section for communicationsissues during a radiation emergency.
- In addition, more than half of the states indicated that their relationship with federal partners is sufficient to provide resources for radiation emergencies, indicating the importance states placed on federal resources and expertise.
- Specific weaknesses are discussed and include that most states had completed little to no planning for public health surveillance to assess potential human health impacts of a radiation event; less than half had written plans to address exposure assessment, environmental sampling, human specimen collection and analysis, and human health assessment.
- Few reported having sufficient resources to do public health surveillance, radiation exposure assessment, laboratory functions and other capabilities.
- [Editorial]Italo Subbarao and James J. James
- [Review Article] Andrea L. DiCarlo, Carmen Maher, John L. Hick, Dan Hanfling, Nicholas Dainiak, Nelson Chao, Judith L. Bader, C. Norman Coleman, and David M. Weinstock
- Andrea L. DiCarlo, Carmen Maher, John L. Hick, Dan Hanfling, Nicholas Dainiak, Nelson Chao, Judith L. Bader, C. Norman Coleman, and David M. Weinstock
Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness 2011 v. 5, p. S32-S44. [Abstract] [Full Text] [PDF]
Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness 2011 v. 5, p. S32-S44. [Abstract] [Full Text] [PDF]
- Evan B. Douple, Kiyohiko Mabuchi, Harry M. Cullings, Dale L. Preston, Kazunori Kodama, Yukiko Shimizu, Saeko Fujiwara, and Roy E. Shore
Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness 2011 v. 5, p. S122-S133. [Abstract] [Full Text] [PDF]
- Daniel Dodgen, Ann E. Norwood, Steven M. Becker, Jon T. Perez, and Cynthia K. Hansen
Japan Disasters Topic Page from the US National Library of Medicine (NLM)
From the NLM-TOX-ENVIRO-HEALTH-L listserv (Week of March 15)
A new page of links to information on Japan Earthquake, Tsunami, and Radiation Event – March 2011 is now available at http://disasterinfo.nlm.nih.gov/dimrc/japan2011.html.
The resources on this page may help with understanding the health issues related to the devastating Japan earthquake, tsunami, and possible nuclear power plant disruptions. Resources from the National Library of Medicine, US federal agencies, and other key resources are listed for responders, health professionals, and the general public.
A reminder of the clinician tools for radiation emergency management
Clinicians who need to learn about assessing and managing radiation emergencies are urged to use the Radiation Emergency Medical Management (REMM) web site at http://remm.nlm.gov. Selected key files from REMM are also available for downloading on mobile devices from http://www.remm.nlm.gov/downloadmremm.htm. The entire REMM web site can be downloaded to a laptop or desktop computer for use where there is no Internet connection.
- Emergency Access Initiative Activated for Japan (aa47.wordpress.com)
- Crude oil spills added to NLM Disaster Information Resources site (asawusch.wordpress.com)
- Japan earthquake – disaster relief information sources (openmedicine.ca)
WASHINGTON, DC, March 1, 2011 — The American Sociological Association (ASA) announced today that it has launched a new journal dedicated to research on the sociology of mental health and illness.
The Society and Mental Health (SMH) journal features original, peer-reviewed studies that apply sociological concepts and methods to the understanding of the social origins of mental health and illness, the social consequences for people with mental illness, and the organization and financing of mental health services and care. Sage Publications will publish the journal three times a year—in March, July, and November.
“The creation of this journal offers the ASA the prospect of asserting its intellectual influence on a spectrum of issues concerning mental health and illness from a sociological perspective that is distinct from solely biomedical, psychiatric, or psychological views,” said SMH Editor William R. Avison, a sociology professor at The University of Western Ontario.
SMH’s inaugural March 2011 issue includes studies touching on parenthood, mental health services, the stigma of mental illness, and developments in the diagnosis of major depressive disorder.
“Mental health and illness is an issue that impacts individuals, families, and communities as well as the health care system and its ability to serve the public,” said Sally T. Hillsman, ASA’s Executive Officer. “In that light, we felt it was essential to create a special outlet for high quality research on the sociology of mental health and illness.”
SMH is the journal of the ASA’s Sociology of Mental Health Section—one of the Association’s 51 special interest sections—and the third ASA section journal. The Association also has nine ASA-wide, peer-reviewed journals—including the American Sociological Review, the Journal of Health and Social Behavior, and Social Psychology Quarterly.
“We are confident that SMH will be a great addition to our already robust suite of sociology journals that advance scholarship and public well-being,” Hillsman said.###
More information about SMH can be found at http://www.asanet.org/journals/smh.cfm.
About the American Sociological Association
The American Sociological Association (www.asanet.org), founded in 1905, is a non-profit membership association dedicated to serving sociologists in their work, advancing sociology as a science and profession, and promoting the contributions to and use of sociology by society.
Child Trends is a non-profit, non-partisan research center, and is the “nation’s only independent research and policy center focused exclusively on improving outcomes for children.”
Research topics include “Child Poverty,” “Fatherhood & Parenting,” “Youth Development,” and “Health.” In each section, the research focus on that topic is explained in a brief introduction, followed by resources that include research briefs, executive summaries and full reports, fact sheets, and a publications archive of materials over three years old.
A feature that visitors shouldn’t miss is “What Works/LINKS,” which can be accessed via the left side menu. The data in this section is about “programs that work -or don’t- to enhance children’s development”. There are effectiveness charts, “Lifecourse Interventions that Work,” and a continually updated database on programs that work (or don’t).
Visitors who are “Program Providers” in policy, education, or the media will find the “Information for…” heading on the left side of the homepage useful for fulfilling their specific needs.
Two Health Data Tools for Research and Surveillance : Health Indicators Warehouse and Catalogue of Surveillance Systems
Two Health Data Tools for Research and Surveillance : Health Indicators Warehouse and Catalogue of Surveillance Systems
Resource to help researchers and practitioners more easily investigate childhood obesity in America. The catalogue describes and provides access to surveillance systems (national, state, local) that collect data related to childhood obesity.
This web tool provides a catalogue of existing surveillance systems that contain data relevant to childhood obesity research. It includes local, state, and national systems that provide data at multiple levels.
Surveillance systems for this Catalogue were identified by reviewing existing reports of available systems and soliciting expert review and suggestions. The systems were chosen because they provide access to publicly available raw data gathered in the United States.
Some systems have been in operation for many years; others are relatively new. All, however, contain data pertaining to the past 10 years.
The Search Page contains links to 77 systems, a search box, and limits (age groups, geographic divisions, racial/ethnic group, and more)
The Health Indicators Warehouse serves as the data hub for the HHS Community Health Data Initiative by providing a single source for national, state, and community health indicators. (Related February 11 HHS press release may be found here)
Access to high quality data improves understanding of a community’s health status and determinants, and facilitates the prioritization of interventions. The purpose of the HIW is to:
- Provide a single, user-friendly, source for national, state, and community health indicators
- Meet needs of multiple population health initiatives
- Facilitate harmonization of indicators across initiatives
- Link indicators with evidence-based interventions
- Serve as the data hub for the HHS Community Health Data Initiative, a flagship HHS open government initiative to release data; encourage innovative application development; and catalyze change to improve community health
The Indicators page allows one to search through and alphabetical list of filters including chronic diseases, health care, health behaviors, health risks, physical environment, and public health structure.
Community Health Status Indicators (HRSA, CDC, NLM, PHF)
This web-based tool provides local public health agencies access to county health status profiles for improving community health by identifying resources and setting priorities. Visit the CHSI home page to read about the data sources, definitions, and notes, and then explore the CHSI dataset file.
County Health Rankings (RWJF and University of WI)
This interactive website provides access to 50 state reports with rankings of each county within each state according to its health outcomes and health determinants. The County Health Rankings are a key component of the Mobilizing Action toward Community Health (MATCH) project. MATCH is collaboration between the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute.
Healthy People (HHS)
Healthy People provides science-based, 10-year national objectives for improving the health of all Americans. For 3 decades, Healthy People has established benchmarks and monitored progress over time in order to: 1) Identify nationwide health improvement priorities; 2) Increase public awareness and understanding of the determinants of health, disease, and disability and the opportunities for progress; 3) Provide measurable objectives and goals that are applicable at the national, State, and local levels; 4) Engage multiple sectors to take actions to strengthen policies and improve practices that are driven by the best available evidence and knowledge; and 5) Identify critical research, evaluation, and data collection needs. Healthy People 2020 contains 1200 objectives in 42 topic areas (923 with baseline data, 237 for which baseline data will be developed during the decade) designed to serve as this decade’s framework for improving the health of all people in the United States.
CMS has assembled measures from Medicare claims data at the state level and for 306 Hospital Referral Regions. The measures encompass a range of data for 2008, including: Utilization measures (e.g., Emergency Department Visits and Hospital Readmissions), Quality measures (e.g., Hospital Compare, Agency for Health Research and Quality (AHRQ) Prevention Quality Indicator (PQI), and AHRQ Patient Safety Indicators (PSI)).
Health and Well-Being in the Home A Global Analysis of Needs, Expectations, and Priorities for Home Health Care Technology
n both industrialized and transitioning countries, population aging and better survivability have led to a rapid increase of the prevalence of chronic disease and disability. As a result, there is growing concern about the financial sustainability of health care systems, which is compounded by capacity constraints and workforce shortages. Advanced home health care solutions promise to mitigate these pressures by shifting care from costly institutional settings to patients’ homes and allowing patients to self-manage their conditions. A global study of the needs, priorities, and expectations of key stakeholders regarding home health care in six countries (China, France, Germany, Singapore, the United Kingdom, and the United States) revealed that, despite their potential, such technologies face a number of barriers to adoption. Restrictive coverage and existing incentives for in-person home care create obstacles, as does limited patient readiness because of insufficient health literacy. Concerns about audience-appropriate product design and support and limited data on effectiveness and efficiency also impede uptake. Realizing the promise of telecare requires a concerted stakeholder effort, including creation of a conducive policy environment, design of convincing products, and development and dissemination of persuasive evidence.