Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

[Report] Most Consumers Encounter Challenges Using New Types of High Tech Devices, Accenture Survey Finds | Full Text Reports…

Most Consumers Encounter Challenges Using New Types of High Tech Devices, Accenture Survey Finds | Full Text Reports….

From the press release

NEW YORK; Jan. 5, 2015 – Most consumers experience challenges using several new types of smart high tech devices, according to a new report from Accenture titled Engaging the Digital Consumer in the New Connected World.

Overall, 83 percent report various problems when they use new device types such as wearable fitness monitors, smart watches, smart home thermostats, in-vehicle entertainment systems, home connected surveillance cameras and security systems, and wearable health products.

The biggest challenges consumers face are that the smart devices are “too complicated to use” (21 percent), “set-up did not proceed properly” (19 percent), and “did not work as advertised” (19 percent).

“For these new connected device categories, high tech companies need to go back to the drawing board and rethink their product development approaches to focus on the entire customer experience,” said Sami Luukkonen, managing director for Accenture’s Electronics and High Tech group. “They should make fundamental strategic changes that no longer focus on product feature differentiation but rather holistic, digital experience differentiation.”

 

Related resources

      • Set realistic expectations
      • Avoid apps that promise too much
      • Research the developers
      • Choose apps that use techniques you’ve heard of
      • See what other users say
      • Test apps before committing
  • Sources of Trusted, Reviewed and Evaluated Apps
    iMedical Apps   –Mobile medical app reviews, commentary by medical professionals
    Gallery of Mobile Apps and Sites – from the US National Library of Medicine
    Mobile Resources Selected by the MSKCC Library for Patients and Families   from the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center LibraryInformation For Patients from the University of Michigan LibraryGuide-Health Sciences Mobile Device Resources – Resources by Subject
     Scroll down in the right column of this guide until you get to Information for Patients

     

March 3, 2015 Posted by | Consumer Health | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Solve the outbreak!

Public Health--Research & Library News

CDC_SolveappDo you want to be a disease detective?  the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have released a new app, Solve the Outbreak.

New outbreaks happen every day and CDC’s disease detectives are on the front lines, working 24/7 to save lives and protect people. When a new outbreak happens, disease detectives are sent in to figure out how outbreaks are started, before they can spread.  with this new, free app for the iPad, you can play the role of an Epidemic Intelligence Service agent. Find clues about outbreaks and make tough decisions about what to do next: Do you quarantine the village? Talk to people who are sick? Ask for more lab results?

With fictional outbreaks based on real-life cases, you’ll have to puzzle through the evidence to earn points for each clue. The better your answers, the higher your score – and the more quickly you’ll save lives…

View original post 33 more words

March 22, 2013 Posted by | Educational Resources (High School/Early College(, Health Education (General Public) | , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Future of Healthcare is Already at Your Fingertips [INFOGRAPHIC]

From the 8 August 2012 post at Mashable Lifestyle

The mobile healthcare industry has made significant strides within the healthcare provider community. Rock Health found 75% of small and medium size medical and dental offices will purchase tablets within the next year. And almost 40% of physicians use medical apps on a daily basis.

The digital healthcare field is also alleviating the costs of patientcare and increasing the scale at which doctors and nurses can help people. The healthcare industry is already strained, Ziegler says, and a shortage of primary care physicians in years to come will only exacerbate the problem. She says mobile apps can bridge that gap.

But patients have been slower to realize the impact apps could have, Ziegler says, potentially because the apps force people to take notice of their health.

“No one wants to actively track what they are always doing, so we really want to make the experience passive,” she told us, adding, they are working to make tech and apps that “provide incentives for people to manage health more efficiently.”

Consumers are also generally unaware of how quickly the space of mobile health is growing, David Tao, Chief Research Officer at Greatist, tells Mashable. He says once consumers realize the vast industry already accessible, more consumers will begin utilizing the products.

“Mobile health isn’t a replacement for healthcare, it’s a supplement,” Tao says. “These companies aren’t replacing doctors’ keen eye or experience, but the apps are just bettering communication between doctor and patient.”

Related Resources

  • Health and Wellness Information and Tracking Apps (Flahiff’s Health/Medical Resources site)
  • Health and Fitness Tracking Apps (Flahiff’s Health/Medical Resource site)
  • And these may be helpful when selecting health apps
    • How to Choose A Better Health App (by LEXANDER V. PROKHOROV, MD, PHD  at KevinMD.com on August 8, 2011) contains advice in the following areas
    • Set realistic expectations
    • Avoid apps that promise too much
    • Research the developers
    • Choose apps that use techniques you’ve heard of
    • See what other users say
    • Test apps before committing
  • iMedical apps has mobile medical app reviews and commentary by medical professionals. Most apps are about  apps geared toward professionals and are not free.
  • The iMedical app forum now includes a medical librarian corner, with some patient/consumer apps
  • Evaluating Health/Medical Information
    • The Penn State Medical Center Library has a great guide to evaluate health information on the Internet.
      • The tips include
        • Remember, anyone can publish information on the internet!
        • If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
        • If the Web site is primarily about selling a product, the information may be worth checking from another source.
        • Look for who is publishing the information and their education, credentials, and if they are connected with a trusted coporation, university or agency.
        • Check to see how current the information is.
        • Check for accuracy. Does the Web site refer to specific studies or organizations?
    • The Family Caregiver Alliance has a Web page entitled Evaluating Medical Research Findings and Clinical Trials Topics include
        • General Guidelines for Evaluating Medical Research
        • Getting Information from the Web
        • Talking with your Health Care Provider
    • Additional Resources
    • And a Rumor Control site of Note (in addition to Quackwatch)
      • National Council Against Health Fraud  National Council Against Health Fraud is a nonprofit health agency fousing on health misinformation, fruad, and quackery as public health problems. Links to publications, position papers and more.

October 30, 2012 Posted by | health care | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

We Can’t App Our Way Into Better Health or Healthcare – Health Is Social

We Can’t App Our Way Into Better Health or Healthcare

From the 9 March 2012 post at Health is Social

It’s cool and all that we can track our every step, our every weight, our every heartbeat, our every glucose reading.

Cooler still is to receive relevant feedback based on all the tracks.

Cooler yet is to gain proper interpretation of what the feedback means.

Even cooler is for us to get healthier and to deliver better care with all this tracking.

That last sentence – it’s not *just* cooler: it’s crux.

We can build all kinds of mobile applications. We can track all sorts of things.

But if we track the wrong things, we’ll simply railroad ourselves – or at least hop on the wrong train.

It’s not enough to track all those pushups and all those marathons.

In fact, how do you know that all those sweaty visits to the gym aren’t slowly making invisible tears in your muscles – how do you know that all those tears aren’t inducing a chronic state of tiny inflammatory processes that one day will lead to a myocardial infarction?

You see, the problems in front of you aren’t the problems in front of you: for an app that tracks your gym activity *might* be blinding you to some other problems.

Building and using more and more apps won’t convey us into better health or healthcare. Yes, they can help nudge and guide us – and that’s important as long as the contexts and processes into which those nudges and guides are the right ones.

An app is a module.

Health is a whole.

 

April 11, 2012 Posted by | health care | , , , , | Leave a comment

Patience Patients – Are e-Patients Waiting for e-Docs?

Patience Patients – Are e-Patients Waiting for e-Docs? 

From the 25 January posting at Eye on FDA

Patients are changing.  They are accessing medical information differently, they are storing it differently and they are consuming it more voraciously.  This access to medical information and tools means that many patients are more medically conversant and knowledgeable than the patient of just five years ago.  Medical literacy is likely on the rise.

It also changes the way physician and patient communicate.  Five years ago, I never would have considered the need for email between my physician and myself, thinking it impractical.  Today, I think a physician needs to have some portal of access for the exchange of data and information.  Here are my readings – blood pressure, blood sugar, whatever… – for the week.  The medical record will reflect information not just gathered at an exam in the office, but that gathered by my apps when I am not in the office.  And when I’m diagnosed with a new condition, I fully expect either the physician or someone in his or her office to not only prescribe some medication, but to pull out an i-Pad to steer me to some good resources, including apps.  If the condition is one where there are few treatment options and I’m expected to consider a clinical trial, the i-Pad should have a clinical trials app that lets us look at what’s available together….

  • eHealth: patients are changing, but not (yet) the Physicians (scienceintelligence.wordpress.com)
  • From Pinterest and Septris to the Patient of the Future (Science Blog)
    “Are ePatients self diagnosing too much ? Too many people are not going to see their doctors on a regular basis and they need to be educated on why that is a bad idea.  No printed or interactive forum can replace a trained medical professional. The Patient of the Future Like many “self-quanters,” Smarr wears a Fitbit to count his every step, a Zeo to track his sleep patterns, and a Polar WearLink that lets him regulate his maximum heart rate during exercise. Stanford University’s Septris app …”

February 29, 2012 Posted by | health care, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Top 10 Youth Health 2.0 articles of 2011

Top 10 Youth Health 2.0 articles of 2011

From the 26 December Youth Health post by Dr. Kishan Kariippanon (@yhpo)

1. #9 cool public health and social media articles

2. Is technology to blame in cybersafety?

3. Stanford Medicine 2.0 Conference 2011 – The Report Card (Guest blog by Prajesh C)

4. iPhone Apps for STI/HIV Prevention

5. Mark Scott (ABC) on social media leadership

6. Social media and Indigenous culture

7. Youth Health 2011 Sydney conference presentation

8. Sexual health iPhone Apps

9. Wanted: a Social Media Expert?! (Guest Blog by Kate Nelson)

10. A simple QR code evaluation

December 27, 2011 Posted by | health | , , , , | Leave a comment

“Show Off Your Apps” Winners of the NLM software development challenge

From the NLM (National Library of Medicine) Web page

Show Off Your Apps Winners And Honorable Mentions

 

175th Anniversary Video ContestThe 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!

 

Winners

 

GLAD4U

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.

 

iAnatomy

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.

 

KNALIJ

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

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

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.

 

Honorable Mentions

 

BioDigital Human Platform

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

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

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

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

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.

November 2, 2011 Posted by | Educational Resources (Health Professionals), Professional Health Care Resources | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Personal Feedback May Aid Fitness Progress & Some Related Apps

HealthDay news image

Researchers show that daily reinforcement helps adults stick to their exercise goals

From the 12 August 2011 Health News Today article by Robert Preidt

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 10 (HealthDay News) — Using personal digital assistants (PDAs) to give daily feedback to adults about their fitness progress helps them stick with an exercise program, a new study says.

University of Pittsburgh researchers followed 189 overweight adults for six months. The participants were assigned to one of three self-monitoring programs — paper records only, PDA without daily feedback messages, or PDA with daily feedback messages.

An example of a message for participants who met their exercise goals for the day: “Super job on the physical activity. Try to repeat this tomorrow.”

For those who didn’t achieve their daily goal, the message might have said: “Don’t get disheartened; you still have time to meet your physical activity goals. Hint: Take a walk; it will pay off!”…

Read the entire news article

Some related apps
(Go to Fitness and Web 2.0 on Webicina.Com for more Apps and related  fitness social media links (support groups, news, podcasts, etc,)


August 12, 2011 Posted by | Consumer Health | , , , | Leave a comment

Webicina – free access to curated online medical resources in social media for patients and medical professionals in over 15 languages.

Webicina provides curated medical social media resources in over 80 medical topics in over 17 languages.
It is now also available through a free iPhone application and also a free Android application 

Webicina is a free resource, with entry points at the home page for medical professionals and empowered patients

The topics for medical professionals are constantly being added. At this time they include oncology, bioinformatics, dermatology, emergency medicine, genetics, nutrition, public health, and surgery.
The topics or empowered patients are also constantly being added. At this time they include allergy, sleep, diabetes, fitness, stem cells, weight loss, and transplantation.

Each topic includes Web sites in the following areas, from carefully chosen reputable sites

  • News and Information
  • Blogs (websites with regular entries commonly organized in a reverse chronological order)
  • Podcasts (Audio files which one can download for immediate or future listening)
  • Community sites (including related Facebook groups and other forums)
  • Twitter and Friendfeed
  • Videos
  • Mobile phones (apps and software for smartphones)
  • search engines (more focused than Google, Yahoo, Bing…)
  • Slideshows
  • Clinical resources (medical professional section only — includes clinical cases and imaging)
Wish to keep up to date with just portions of Webicina?
Check out and sign up at the PeRSSonalized Medicine page (you may have to select a language)


August 1, 2011 Posted by | Consumer Health, Educational Resources (High School/Early College(, Finding Aids/Directories, Health Education (General Public), Librarian Resources, Medical and Health Research News, Professional Health Care Resources | , , , , , | Leave a comment

FDA Proposes Health ‘App’ Guidelines

FDA, U S Food and Drug Administration
From the press release

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.

http://www.fda.gov/MedicalDevices/DeviceRegulationandGuidance/Guidanc…


July 22, 2011 Posted by | Consumer Health, Consumer Safety, Educational Resources (High School/Early College(, Professional Health Care Resources, Public Health | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Health Hotlines App

From a National Library of Medicine  (NLM) news item

NLM’s Health Hotlines is now available as an app for the iPhone and iPod Touch (http://itunes.apple.com/app/health-hotlines/id376404746?mt=8). Health Hotlines is also compatible with the iPad.

Health Hotlines is a compilation of organizations with toll-free telephone numbers to assist the public in locating health-related information. It is derived from DIRLINE, NLM’s Directory of Information Resources Online, which contains descriptions of almost 9,000 health and biomedical organizations and resources. Some of the subject areas included in Health Hotlines are AIDS, cancer, diseases and disorders, maternal and child health, aging, substance abuse, disabilities and mental health.

Health Hotlines is also available on the NLM’s Web site http://healthhotlines.nlm.nih.gov.


September 23, 2010 Posted by | Health News Items | , | Leave a comment

Mobile Medical Resources Geared Towards Health Professionals (Lists, Guides, and More)

These resources may also be of interest to the general public. This guide, of course, is not all inclusive!
Some sites are fee-based.

Information, Lists

** Mobile Device Information (Medical College of Wisconsin)
Includes links to about 30 free mobile device resources and free iPhone & iPod touch Applications

**Kresge Library List (Scripps Clinic and Green Hospital)
Links to Medical RSS Feeds, Medical Podcasts, Mobile Ready Web Sites and Resources, PDF or PDB Format Materials,         Medical Apps, PubMed Search Apps, and Consumer Health and Medicine Apps.
Last updated December 2009.

**Smart Phone Apps (University of Maryland)
Sites are arranged by category (anatomy,cardiology, clinical tools, drug information, etc)

**Pepid Medical Information Resources (Pepid LLC)
Fee-based applications for health care practitioners (physicians, nurses, etc) and students

Includes Guides, Advice, and Reviews

**iMedical Apps online medical publication written by a team of physicians and medical students who provide commentary and reviews of mobile medical technology and applications (iPad/iPhone & Android)

**Medical and Healthcare iPhone Apps from the BMJ Group (British Medical Journal)
Includes (free) Student BMJ with articles, news, educational materials, blogs, and more.

**Mobile Device Resources for Clinicians (University of Kentucky)
Includes free resources, guide to apps for medical students, mobile device options

**Mobile Apps for Medicine (Mercer University)
Includes free resources, advice/reviews

Sources

**MedLib-L discussion list

** LibGuides

August 12, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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