Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

IBM Watson in a Clinical Setting: Replacing Physicians?

ScienceRoll

I’m a geek and you know how much I support the inclusion of digital technologies in medicine, healthcare and medical education. At the same time, I always highlight the fact that doctors will be needed for practicing medicine, robots cannot do their job. I know Vinod Khosla thinks otherwise.

Now, after watching the video demonstration of how Watson could help a clinician, I have doubts about a future. We will see how it gets integrated in everyday medicine. I support the IBM Watson project very much, but I hope medical professionals, humans, will always play the major role in the practice of medicine.

See also the Medgadget report.

View original post

March 22, 2013 Posted by | health care | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Some questionable medical marketing practices via HealthNewsReview.org

A laparoscopic robotic surgery machine. Patien...

A laparoscopic robotic surgery machine. Patient-side cart of the da Vinci surgical system. Into the sealed Computer God Robot Operating Cabinet, as a Frankenstein slave, at night. Da Vinci Surgical System. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

One pitch states “This is a good time to have it done so you can recover while spending a couple of days on the couch watching hoops with your wife’s approval.”

The editor soberly concludes that “more players in the health care field have learned that lesson and are acting on it all the time – “with appropriate marketing” you can make almost anything a trend.  Full body CT scans…prostate cancer screenings in mobile vans….Botox parties…

The article outlines how robotic surgery is touted as a great way to quickly recover from surgery so one can resume daily graveside visits to a recently lost spouse.

  • Plastic surgeon with nose for news has PR, YouTube video, and now – ethics investigation

    Some journalists recently received this news release: Miami Plastic surgeon –“Dr. Schnoz” offering a nose job, trip to Miami to the winner of a video contest March 8, 2012 – Dr. Michael Salzhauer, leading Miami Plastic Surgeon at Bal Harbour PlasticSurgery Associates, announced today “A Nose Job Love Song Giveaway.” Dr. Salzhauer’s contest involves creating […]

     

March 21, 2012 Posted by | health care | , , | Leave a comment

A disconnect between medical resources and health care delivery

Universal health care

Image via Wikipedia

by  at KevinMD.com (November 27, 2011)

Imagine what health care in the United States could look like if we devised a system that was based on sound medical practice and proven cost effectiveness.  What if we put our brains, energies and passion behind designing the smartest health care system possible?

That was the question that kept poking through my train of thought as I read a study that appeared in the most recent issue of Pediatrics, the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics.  Thestudy, out of UCLA, examined the association between length of well-child visits and quality of the visits, including things like developmental screening and anticipatory guidance.  No big surprise that the longer the duration of the well child visit, the greater the likelihood that the content of the visit was aligned with recommended practice guidelines from the AAP.  The discouraging news however is that one third of visits were reported as being less than 10 minutes in duration; these occurred to a greater degree in private practice.  Longer visits of 20 minutes or more made up 20% of the encounters, and were more likely to occur in community health centers.

 

The big winners in the pinch for time?  Guidance on immunizations and breastfeeding were offered in 80% of even the shortest visits.  The biggest loser: developmental assessments, which don’t even achieve a mediocre occurrence of 70% until we pass the 20-minute mark for visit duration….

Our fee for service approach to health care dictates that procedures and tests pay well while addressing a child’s emotional problem gets a doctor little more than a backed up waiting room.   From the patient’s view, underinsured children have to rely too much on emergency rooms, while insured parents can only get basic child rearing advice from someone with a medical degree. Health insurance companies and the pharmaceutical industry shape medical practice – and our collective health – through their reimbursement policies, marketing and aggressive lobbying.  So 25% of US children are on chronic medications, while half the children in pediatric practice are not receiving basic screening and advice. The obsolete business models that the health care industries rely on are like the tyrannosaurus-rex in the room, emphasizing expensive, short term quantity rather than cost-effective long term quality, while cognitive care – a high level of skill and expertise delivered face to face in a personal manner – is what is becoming extinct.

November 26, 2011 Posted by | health care | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

   

%d bloggers like this: