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4 Apps That Are Changing Healthcare

4 Apps That Are Changing Healthcare

Technology continues to improve the way in which we do things in society. This is especially true within the healthcare industry. Nowadays, having a doctors appointment via video call and getting a prescription through an app is normal. Below you will find the top four apps that are continuing to change Healthcare.

Doctor on Demand

This unique app gives you the ability to consult with your doctor from anywhere of your choosing.  During a video appointment, your doctor can answer any medical questions that you have have or even write you a prescription. A video session with a doctor will cost you around $40 a session. This app already has more than 1,000 licensed physicians, in all 50 states, available at your fingertips.

Microsoft HealthVault

The microsoft healthvault is a valuable mobile app that allows you to keep all of your medical records in a safe and secure place. You will be able to share these records with your doctors or anyone else of your choosing. This app is great for people with health conditions that need to be looked at frequently because it will allow for you and your doctor to stay on top of all your healthcare needs.  It is extremely valuable tool that microsoft provides at no cost to you. That’s right, the healthvault is absolutely free!

Text4Baby

For all women who recently had a baby or those who are currently pregnant, listen up.  If you have any health related questions, concerns or advice, you can now turn to Text4Baby, organized by National Babies Coalition, for your answers. All you will need is a basic cellphone with SMS messaging capabilities. To get started, text BABY (or BEBE for Spanish) to 511411. When you get a reply, you are asked to provide your due date and zip code. Everyone remains unknown and their identity is kept confidential. Once Text4Baby has your due date it will provide you with relevant information.  Another thing to keep in mind is that you may leave the service at any time.

Vida Health Coach

Do you want have your own personal health coach? Well, if you do not mind paying $15 a week, he or she is all yours. Once you sign up, you let your health coach know what you are looking to accomplish. They will come up with a personalized plan to help you achieve your goal. The health coach gives you ways to track progress in weight loss or even fat intake. These coaches have best interest in mind, and are available to help in any way that they can. You will speak with them via video call or on a conference call once week to go over progress and what are some next steps.

For more information about these apps and more,  please check out this article  

AT&T makes a big move in the healthcare industry

Recently, AT&T has announced a huge move in the healthcare industry. Next month, AT&T Foundry of Connected Health will be opening at the Texas Medical Center Innovation Institute in Houston. This is also the largest medical center in the world, so this is truly big deal for the healthcare industry. According to Vice President of Ecosystem & Innovation at AT&T the whole idea of AT&T Foundry is to bring ideas from concept to commercialization faster than previously possible, and nowhere is that mission more important than in healthcare. This foundry innovation center will solely be focusing on the healthcare sector, as AT&T has six other foundry’s around the world focused on different sectors. These other foundry’s have enjoyed numerous success over the years and they hope this one will too.  This particular one will help provide companies ways to enhance digital innovations that the connect caregivers and patients via wireless monitoring. How awesome is that?

This is not AT&T’s first gig in the healthcare industry. Back in 2012, they launched a remote patient monitoring system. This unique system gave bluetooth enabled devices the ability to measure weight, blood pressure and blood oxygen. Once this is was completed, all the information was then shared to doctors in the facility to examine after a hospital visit. Over the past few years, this new and innovative technology has monitored over a 1,000 patients. Impressive, right?

Chris Penrose, who is  a senior vice president, Internet of Things Organization at AT&T Mobility is very confident healthcare sector will continue to enjoy success. He said “We really do believe that health care has a ton of opportunity to be transformed,” “The ability to deliver remote care involves connectivity, and that’s a great tangential area where AT&T can add great value.”

Things To Consider if You Are a Primary Care Doctor

Things To Consider if You Are a Primary Care Doctor

Patients are very important

Every time you meet your patient you must understand that the health of that person is very important. To start, it can be a good idea to have plan in mind before you meet your patients.   Also, being available before or after your patients visit can be beneficial in case there is something the patient needs.  It can also be a good idea to let them have a say on what they feel could help them because it is a good way to have them involved when deciding what the next steps are in a visit.

Building Relationships

Building relationships with people in any profession is important, especially in Health Care. It is extremely important for the patient to have complete trust in their primary care doctor. If you can build a relationship with them things can go much more smoothly during visits and phone calls. The more trust you have in the primary care doctor the more you will feel confident about overcoming any issues that may be concerning to you.

Listen

Listening is a key trait to have as primary care doctor. You want to make sure you are giving your patient 100% of your attention. It is vital that when you are speaking with your patient either on the phone or in person that you are listening attentively and taking notes. These notes can be beneficial when going over things in future appointments or even if you have to reference something from previous phone calls and appointments. It shows the patient that you pay very close attention to what they are saying and are willing to do anything to help them.

Patients are never wrong

One of the top things to know as a primary care doctor is that the Patients are never wrong, even when you feel they might be. When things may not go the way as planned, you want to make sure that you can provide them with a solution to fix the issue rather than playing the blame game. It is likely that both of you may be upset on some of the outcomes, but it is extremely important to work together to overcome the issue.

Have Fun

One of the things many people ask you about your job is, do you enjoy what you do? Now, if you can’t answer that with a yes, then you should maybe find another profession. It is very important to enjoy what you do especially in this field. You are working with patients frequently and you want to give them the insurance that you love what you do and are willing to do anything to help them.

Wearable Tech’s Past, Present and Future

Wearable Tech’s Past, Present and Future

The health technology field deliberately and progressively matures, and as the industry ages, it welcomes the development of new mechanisms, pharmaceuticals, vaccines, organizational systems and procedures to boost quality of lives and iron out health problems. Let’s take a look at the (recent) past, present and future of health technology, particularly wearable tech.

Within recent years, tech has played a truly impressive role in improving health. Wearable technology (ex. Fitbit)  and mobile customized applications that focus on mental health (ex. ThriveOn) have been wildly successful, and the creation of valuable devices has translated to lives saved and crises averted.

The past year alone witnessed the development of truly tremendous tech. Years prior brought us the Suspnd shoe, produced by Plantiga, a Canada-based company. The impressive “bio-sensing” shoe technology is one that offers it’s users real-time data regarding weight distribution and movement patterns. That data can be used in collaboration with other mobile applications, yielding diagnostics that focus on improving sports performance. Additionally, this footwear can also be instrumental for those who suffer from plantar fasciitis, musculoskeletal problems, as well as a number of other conditions.

The year 2014, also introduced the devices such as Sensible Baby, Scanadu Scout, and Kinsa, which is used in tandem with a smartphone to provide degree-by-degree changes in temperature, as well as insight on the health issues popular within a particularly community. However, fortune 500 companies and new startups alike brought innovations in health technology in 2015, such as Holograms and Nanobots. However, you might wonder what are some predictions for the future?

Forbes wrote a lengthy piece on healthcare predictions for 2016, indicating the next generation of medical or clinical wearables, with its advanced analytical and sensory abilities, will become a $6 billion market. This is very likely, particularly with the upcoming release of  Kokoon in-ear sleep headphones and the rebranded Google Life Science application. Also, interesting fact, approximately 74 percent of online American adults will likely purchase health and fitness technology in the next 12 months.

Holograms and Nanobots. Yes, Really.

Holograms and Nanobots. Yes, Really.

Healthcare and technology are perfect compliments. As technological engineering propels us further into the future, the healthcare industry can incorporate them to keep us healthier than ever before.

So, with all many lists of the best music and books and movies of the year dominating our reading list, I’m going to introduce you to the best healthcare tech developments of 2015. Referralmd gets really in depth, so I encourage you to check it out! Meanwhile, here are two that really jumped out at me.

Holographic Imaging

When Tupac appeared at Coachella a couple years ago, the public began to wonder about all the practical uses holographic images could have in our daily lives. We had always imagined it as a staple of future technologies, but suddenly it just felt closer than ever. And it delivered, in the form of… keyboards?

Yes, it seems like a trivial upgrade. But take a step back and consider just how unsanitary keyboards are. In hospitals, where many of the sick are already dealing with weakened immune systems, there are a reported 2 million hospital-originating infections each year. Of those, 100,00 people die in the place they hope to get well. Holographic keyboards reduce contact and transmission of germs when a healthcare worker is dealing with a patient and data entry. Pretty smart move.

Nanobot Technology

Unlike holographic imaging, nanobot tech is still a ways off. But it’s not at all a vague future— science is just working to get there. Ideally, they would be able to function as white blood cells to eradicate infections. The bots would also be scaled to their full size counterparts and complete complicated tasks. For instance, nanobot tech could allow us to deliver chemotherapy to cancer patients in a much more efficient— and less physically demanding— way than current radiation therapy.

Increasing Number of Patients Are Opting For Electronic Medical Records

Increasing Number of Patients Are Opting For Electronic Medical Records

As electronic medical records continually find their place in news coverage, a new article from EHR Intelligence is reflecting how health care consumers are accessing their medical records at a growing rate. These findings also show that the healthcare industry’s goal f

A recent study by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health reported that nearly four in 10 surveyed individuals  who were surveyed were offered accesses to their electronic health records in 2014. This increase is substantially higher than  from 2013 where only 28 percent of survey respondents reported being offered electronic access to their health records.

Here’s an interesting video on EHR and security

One important point to note, half of the individuals who reported being offered access to their records actually checked them, and 81 percent of those individuals considered the information they accessed to be helpful and informative.

Despite the increase in the  individual access to electronic health information, challenges remain in the  gaps in information exchange. The ONC reports that between 2012 and 2014, total reported information gaps dropped from 39 to 36 percent, which the ONC states is not a statistically significant difference. Experiencing a gap in information exchange meant a patient had to bring his or her test results from one provider to another, had to recall his or her own health information because it was not on record, having to repeat a test that had already been administered, or had to wait for test results for longer than he or she believed reasonable.

According to the ONC,  “this growth in patient-accessed electronic health information may be a result of various policies and initiatives fostering health information exchange and interoperability. For example, in 2014 about half of primary care providers and hospitals had their own view, download, and transmit (VDT) capabilities. This is notably higher than in 2013, prior to the start of Stage 2 Meaningful Use, which had specific provisions regarding the sharing of electronic files with patients.”

EHR’s when safe and protective of users information, can be very helpful to hospital administration and patients alike.

To learn more about the increasing number of patients opting for electronic medical records, visit this article by EHR Intelligence

Security Hacks: EMR Inconvenience or Expected Feature?

Security Hacks: EMR Inconvenience or Expected Feature?

With scandals like the SONY and Ashley Madison fiascos, experts and the general public alike are wondering how secure their electronic medical bills really are? An article entitled,“How secure are your medical records?” from NBC4i provides insight into what exactly is going on with this new practice in the medical industry.

hto_keyboard_with_privacy_button

In 2013, it was recorded that 78% of physicians had switch to electronic health record. In 2001, this was at 60%. The increase is courtesy of the federal Affordable Care Act known as Obamacare.

The Ponemon Institute conducted a 2012 study which discovered that 94% of the 80 health care organizations they polled had experienced at least one breach in their systems during the past two years. It was estimated that around 3,000 documents and records were stolen during each of these breaches. This adds up to $2.4 million worth of damages as names, birthdates, addresses, and social security numbers were compromised.

The study further determined that info was obtained from stolen computing devices, employee mistakes, and third parties.

“Just think of all the different places where your health care information may eventually end up. It’s not secure. You should assume that at this point. We have this tension in our society about wanting doctors to know everything about us, wanting to know everything about us to provide care, but then having this tension with privacy as well” said Jim VanderMey, an innovation officer at Open Systems Technology.

Another problem can come from how you access your information. The expansion of technology has created a few problems. People are filling out forms and accessing their medical accounts from computers, smartphones, laptops, tablets, etc.

All of these details should make you aware that anything online is probably not secure, and if it’s out there, it’s vulnerable to hackers. Change your passwords frequently and research other ways to help protect your identity and personal information. EMR’s have created convenience and allowed for physicians’ employees to put their time elsewhere, but it’s important to discuss and find solutions to the growing issue of hackers in the cyber world.

The Benefits of Electronic Medical Records

The Benefits of Electronic Medical Records

Gone are the days when doctors would sieve through file cabinets looking for a patient’s record, to what some would call a waste of time and hospital resources. That method proved to be inefficient and a clear time waster. Today, there is a mass exodus from old record keeping to the use of electronic medical records systems in domestic and global hospitals.

Healthcare providers at many physician practices and health systems across the United states, rely on EMR’s to give a seamless use of critical data to the patient, family members and medical team. EMR’s have become the golden boy and poster child for the debate on hospital care information. The advantages are obvious, access is easier, patient tracking is also easier. Health care providers also credit the rise in EMR’s for efficiency in tailored patient care and appointment scheduling.

Meditouch

The advocates and critics, if left to decide, will bring up numerous points on the pros and cons of EMR’s in the medical space. One notable con of EMR’s is the possibility of many health care providers losing funding if they don’t adopt this system. Critics view this as a way to force federal administration on private institutions who follow their own processes. No suprise here, but critics also see grave security dangers and the potential of hacking and exposing user information with the proliferation of EMR’s in healthcare administration. As one learning more about EMR’s and how they can be beneficial in the hospital care system, here are some highlights on the pros of adopting this recording system

 

According to US News and World Report, here are some of the Pros and Cons of adopting EMR’s in the healthcare system.

Pros

Improved Data Recording

With electronic medical records, errors made in spelling mistakes or poor number recording from handwriting can be eliminated. EMR’s also allow for more information on a patient to be included in a database without the limits of paper space.

Enhanced Communication and engagement

These days, families, patients and medical teams can access patients information through smartphones and mobile devices. This way looking up medical history and lab results, just became easier.

To learn more about EMR’s and their pros and cons, visit the US News and World Report article here