The pMD Blog

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pMD Blog...

where we cover interesting and relevant news, insights, events, and more related to the health care industry and pMD. Most importantly, this blog is a fun, engaging way to learn about developments in an ever-changing field that is heavily influenced by technology.

POSTS BY TAG | Health Care



Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  On Thursday, the Food and Drug Administration approved the first identical, generic version of the EpiPen. The device enables people who are experiencing potentially life-threatening allergic reactions to automatically inject epinephrine into the thigh. The cost and availability is said to improve significantly compared to the current EpiPen, made by Mylan.  Read More

•  Expect digital medicine to be reshaped by open APIs, FHIR, and cloud computing in the coming years. Big tech giants such as Amazon, Google, and Salesforce have publicly pledged to use HL7's FHIR and Argonaut specifications to advance health information interoperability. The biggest piece of this digital health revolution? Unleashing the power of consumerism.   Read More

•  On Thursday, NYU School of Medicine announced that it will be covering tuition for all its medical students regardless of financial need. It is the first and only top-1o ranked med school in the U.S. to offer this kind of financial assistance. The move is aimed to encourage students to pursue specialties such as family practice and pediatrics, which are much less lucrative and tend to have a shortage of physicians.  Read More

•  According to a new study, the more weight loss, the better. Study participants that were overweight or obese and who lost a higher percentage of weight presented a much lower risk for metabolic syndrome than those who maintained less than a 5 percent weight loss.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, MIPS registry, clinically integrated network, and care navigation software.


Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  In Q2 of 2018, there were 142 health care data breaches with over 3 million patient records compromised. The worst part about it? About a third of those breaches were caused by repeat offenders within the organizations. What does this tell us? It tells us that by not providing the proper training and reporting, an organization puts themselves at high risk of continued breaches. So how about that training manual?  Read More

•  How accurate are diagnostic health apps? As technology evolves in the health care space, more and more people are turning to websites and diagnostic health apps for answers to their health questions. The disadvantage to these frequently-accessed platforms? They're severely understudied and not as regulated as we'd expect.  Read More

•  Families of drug users have long been advised to practice tough love as a means of getting their loved ones through rehab. However, recent studies have shown that being empathetic while encouraging a voluntary treatment approach is an effective way of engaging drug users in their own recovery and keeping them alive.  Read More

•  Cockroaches, and ticks, and boxers. Oh my! How caught up are you with this week's health care news? Take this weekly health quiz to find out.  Take the Quiz

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, MIPS registry, clinically integrated network, and care navigation software.


Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  Squirting generous globs of that alcohol-based hand sanitizer? A recent study found that some bacteria are becoming tolerant of hand sanitizers that are used in hospitals. Scary! While these type of disinfectants help with battling staph infections in patients, rates of other infections didn't drop when sanitizing stations were used. In some cases, infections actually went up.  Read More

•  In an effort to combat the ongoing opioid epidemic, the NIC announced on Wednesday that the RxGov platform will be applying machine learning to prescription drug monitoring programs. The cloud-based platform will help track opioid prescriptions, integrates with EHRs, and includes data transparency.  Read More

•  AmeriCorps' latest service line, MedServe, allows pre-med students to work in health care clinics in underserved areas. Students gain more meaningful early-career experience while providing assistance in clinics in rural communities that are often short-staffed.  Read More

•  As doctors move away from prescribing opioids for pain, patients with chronic back pain are turning to a risky treatment - an injectable drug that, if used along the spine, can be dangerous. Depo-Medrol is an anti-inflammatory meant to be injected into muscles and joints but doctors who prescribe it have long been giving these shots close to the spine.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, MIPS registry, clinically integrated network, and care navigation software.


Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  Medicare covering the cost of air conditioning units? Sounds like a stretch but starting next year, these window units could be considered a "supplemental benefit" under Medicare Advantage plans for patients with asthma. For a third of those insured by Medicare under Medicare Advantage plans, they can look forward to some changes being made next year. Among the new benefits: eyeglasses, hearing aids, gym memberships, and adult day care programs.  Read More

•  When you get a warning from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, you know it's serious. Health care organizations are being warned of nation-state hackers and other cybercriminals who are targeting web-based applications designed to help organizations manage finances, HR issues, and other business activities. These systems are a treasure trove of personal data. How to thwart future attacks? Better patch management!  Read More

•  When you think about a rocket launcher, the last thing you'd associate it with is a concussion. But many Marines who fired powerful, shoulder-launched weapons during training have reported experiencing the symptoms of a concussion, like short-term memory problems, nausea, fatigue, and dizziness. The long-term effects directly correlated to firing rocket launchers are still up for debate but for many Marines, signs of brain damage are very evident.  Read More

•  Google is teaming up with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to create a biomedical database, aiming to give researchers more accessible, high-value biomedical data sets. Funding for this project is expected to reach $16 million, however NIH declined to confirm specific financials surrounding their partnership with Google.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, MIPS registry, clinically integrated network, and care navigation software.


Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  You might want to think twice before ordering that fifth beer at the bar. A new study found that death rates from alcoholic cirrhosis and liver cancer have soared among people in their mid-20s and mid-30s.  If you're unfamiliar, alcohol consumption is one of the many causes of Cirrhosis, which is the irreversible scarring of the liver that can lead to its cancer or failure, and ultimately can be fatal. So, what was that about another round?  Read More

•  Patient safety is important. Super important. One would think that with all this new technology, health care systems should be able to address patient safety. Well, in order to improve it, hospitals need to optimize their Electronic Health Records by strategically pacing the rollout of new features and functionalities. Basically, be realistic about rolling out new functionalities because if user experience suffers, so do the patients. Doesn't take much!  Read More

•  Ever felt like decisions were being made for you? That's exactly how many Medicaid patients should be feeling or at least aware of when being prescribed drugs by their doctors. That's because drug options under Medicaid are heavily influenced by drugmakers, even to the point where drugmakers use payments and perks to get doctors to prescribe its drugs, among other tactics. So what'll it be? The blue pill or the red pill?  Read More

•  Lower health care costs? Sounds like an oxymoron, right? Policymakers are pushing the agenda of value-based care payment models, which they believe are the key to lowering costs in health care. These models center on patient outcomes and incentivize providers for the quality of care they provide as opposed to the traditional fee-for-service payment models.  Happy patients. Happy providers. Lower costs.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, MIPS registry, clinically integrated network, and care navigation software.

Image: Thn Rocn Khosit Rath Phachr Sukh /EyeEm via Getty Images

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  After a video showing a sea turtle with a straw stuck up its nose went viral, the move to ban plastic straws has swept the nation. While trendy campaigns like #StopSucking have gained considerable traction in an effort to rid the ocean of straws, not everyone is on board. For many people with disabilities, being without plastic straws can be a matter of life or death. Alternatives such as paper or reusable metal straws often pose safety risks to those with disabilities.  Read More

•  According to a new report, health care startups benefited from $10.6 billion in venture capital investments in the first half of 2018. If this pace continues, health care investment will reach a record high this year. The health care sector has already made its way into second place among industries attracting VC investments.  Read More

•  The Justice Department's efforts to combat the epidemic of opioid abuse is expanding to drugmakers. A proposal from the Drug Enforcement Agency may require drugmakers to cut back on the amount of drugs produced in a given year if their opioids are being misused. The hope is to reduce the availability of potentially addictive drugs and for manufacturers to become more aware about how their drug is being used.  Read More

•  Some studies have suggested that spending time in lush forests might reduce stress and blood pressure, improve heart-rate variability, and lower cortisol levels. It has also been shown to improve one's mood. So, next time you're feeling stressed, indulge in a forest bath and take in the smells, sights, and sounds to boost your mood!  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, MIPS registry, clinically integrated network, and care navigation software.

Image: Antenna/fStop/Getty Images

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  In the summer "trauma season", emergency rooms are scrambling to find alternatives to much needed medications that are out of stock. Patients feel the effects of shortages the most as some must suffer through the pain or risk unusual reactions to the alternative drugs. The drug shortages have become severe enough that the Food and Drug Administration has allowed Pfizer, one of the main drug suppliers, to sell products that would normally have been recalled.  Read More

•  The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services recently proposed a rule that would allow home health providers to include the costs of remote patient monitoring in the home health agency's cost report.  In the proposed rule, home health providers will not be directly reimbursed for installation and use of equipment, however, these cost reports will help CMS determine if home health providers are appropriately being paid.  Read More

•  More and more nurse practitioners are turning to voluntary residency programs to help prepare them in dealing with the growing number of patients with complex health issues.  Mentored clinical training is a major part of many of these programs and can also include formal lectures and clinical rotations in other specialties.  Read More

•  The American Hospital Association (AHA), among other organizations, have asked the FDA for standards and support measures surrounding medical devices. The AHA outlined steps hospitals take to improve cybersecurity, however, can be vulnerable to medical devices running on legacy systems. Some additional recommendations from industry organizations: creating a central repository of all device patches and requiring manufacturers to implement secure device configurations with a recognized standard.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, MIPS registry, clinically integrated network, and care navigation software.

Image: Chiara Zarmati

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  Water from a canal in the Yuma, Arizona region has been linked to the deadly outbreak of E.Coli that tainted romaine lettuce this spring and killed five. The romaine lettuce had been distributed across the U.S. and sickened over 200 people in 36 states, according the Food and Drug Administration. The outbreak is officially over now.  Read More

•  On Thursday, Amazon announced it is acquiring virtual pharmacy PillPack, a New England-based startup that delivers medications and coordinates refills and renewals. Amazon paid just under $1 billion for the startup, sources say, however the terms of the deal have not yet been released.  Read More

•  The Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently proposed a new hospital payment rule that makes information sharing a "Conditions of Participation" (CoP). Many organizations support the proposed plan for the federal government to require data sharing among providers in order to participate in Medicare and include ACOs, insurers, patient advocacy groups, and health IT companies.  Read More

•  While much of modern life seemingly promotes connectivity through technology, it can actually have the opposite effect. Often times, these technologies can foster social isolation and loneliness, leaving many feeling depressed and anxious. The rate of persistent loneliness is not only high in young people but also affects more than a third of adults. What are some ways to combat loneliness in this age of modern technology? Experts urge people to engage in meaningful social connections such as joining programs and groups that pertain to your interests, simply meet a friend for coffee, or do something creative and nurturing to feel more connected and outside oneself.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, MIPS registry, clinically integrated network, and care navigation software.

ImageCreditZephyr/Science Source

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) still continues to experience staffing shortages and faces challenges in recruiting and retaining clinicians. Some of the more common reasons include not having enough qualified applicants, high turnover, and non-competitive salaries relative to the private sector.  Read More

•  With the future of medical devices already trending toward the expansion of the internet of things, manufacturers and hospitals are ramping up in security, clinical integrations, and data management automation, all for the improvement of the patient experience.  Read More

•  Researchers have found that children who are held in migrant detention facilities may experience increased, long-term health care needs. The stress of being separated from a parent can play a big role in lasting physical harm to children, leading to reduced immune system functioning, increased heart disease, diabetes or other long-term, chronic health issues.  Read More

•  New research offers compelling evidence that two types of herpes virus might be involved in how Alzheimer's develops and progresses. These types of herpes usually infect most people as infants and lie dormant for years. Scientists believe they play a significant role in driving the immune system in Alzheimer's, which could pave the way to new treatments and ways of screening for the disease.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, MIPS registry, clinically integrated network, and care navigation software.

Image: Dorling Kindersley/Getty Images/Dorling Kindersley

Here's The Latest in Health Care:


•  In a recent clinical trial by the Food and Drug Administration, it has been found that complications with Lasik are not uncommon. Nearly half of all people with healthy eyes prior to undergoing Lasik developed visual aberrations after the procedure. Yet many ophthalmologists insist that Lasik is the safest procedure done on the eye.  Read More

•  New payment models and health care reform call for better care coordination but true coordination has its challenges. Team-based care is most effective when the entire care team along with the patient are all on the same page. That's where mobile devices and remote monitoring play a key role in end-to-end care. By automating workflows, care teams can improve care coordination and in turn, patient care.  Read More

•  In a recent international study, there is strong evidence that vitamin D may protect against colorectal cancer and that risk of cancer increases if there is a deficiency.  Vitamin D can be obtained from foods such as egg yolks, salmon, trout, swordfish, tuna, sardines, and fortified foods such as cow's milk, soy and almond milks, some cereals, and some orange juices.  Read More

•  The Centers for Disease Control Prevention recently released a report that found that the U.S. suicide rate has risen in almost every state since 1999 and for about half the states by 30% or more.  This report comes in the wake of the shocking suicides of two high-profile celebrities, renowned Chef, Anthony Bourdain, and fashion designer, Kate Spade.  Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news. Brought to you by pMD, innovators in charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, MIPS registry, clinically integrated network, and care navigation software.