Tag: health care

Tablets: The Future of Care Coordination in Home Health?

It may not be a 1-size-fits-all solution, but least 1 fairly large home health care agency thinks it may have hit upon the technology that can best coordinate care, reduce costs, and minimize privacy concerns: the 7-inch mobile tablet.

A recently published case study from the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHiME) tells the story of Sutter Health at Home, a division of Northern California-based Sutter Health. With a program that employs about 1,300 caregivers who make home visits to nearly 100,000 patients across 23 counties, Sutter was on the lookout for technologies that could improve coordination of care and reduce costs.

Full story of home health care at APTA

AHRQ Names Falls Prevention Policy Kit a ‘Quality Tool’

A resource for advancing falls prevention at the state policy level has been designated a “quality tool” by the federal Agency for Health Care Research and Quality (AHRQ) and included among offerings on the AHRQ website. The toolkit is a product of the National Council on Aging’s (NCOA) Falls Free Coalition, whose members include APTA.

The toolkit outlines 8 policy goals that will help advocates establish innovative falls prevention policies and practices in states, communities, and organizations. Each goal is accompanied by suggested policy changes, and includes examples of advances that are possible through education and engagement of key stakeholders.

Full story of AHRQ at APTA

Technology, prevention will move health care costs down

In 2014, expect a flurry of changes to continue to bend the health cost curve down, accelerated by the Affordable Care Act, experts say.

Even die-hard believers in the connection between the economy and how people spend on medical expenses are saying this may be the year that proves them wrong, as providers and insurers rush to make changes to keep profit margins high in light of changes in how they’re billed. They’ll be led by improved technology that helps them see how to improve quality; preventive programs that have proven they can save millions in long-term costs; and an acknowledgement that consumers hold the purse strings.

“There is a considerable level of consensus based on several recent studies about how to keep costs down,” said David Blumenthal, president of The Commonwealth Fund, whose report looking at recent research was released Wednesday in the New England Journal of Medicine. “I think there’s a lot of work to be done.”

His research highlighted several areas that have seen progress — both before the health law was enacted and because of the law — but that still have further to go:

Full story of technology and health care costs at the Montgomery Advertiser

Backache a real pain for nearly 80% of adults

ON ANY day in Australia, one quarter of the population suffers back pain, according to the University of Sydney.

At the same time, nearly 80% of adult Australians will experience back pain sometime during their lives.

In fact back pain is the leading cause of lost work days with 25% of sufferers in the 18-44 age group taking 10 or more days off per year.

This costs Australia about $4.8 billion each year for health care.

If you suffer from chronic or acute back pain, you may be tempted to visit your GP for painkillers and for x-rays and these may indeed be necessary.

However, conquering back pain may require a more comprehensive approach, including physiotherapy, osteopathy, daily exercises, adjustments to your work station, a different sleeping and standing posture and more.

Taking classes in Alexander Technique may also help you learn to use your body differently, while Pilates classes can help strengthen your core muscles to support your back.

Full story of back pain among adults at the Daily Mercury

Morning Rounds: Obesity isn’t only cause of diabetes (VIDEO)

CBS News chief medical correspondent Dr. Jon LaPook and CBS News contributor Dr. Holly Phillips joined “CBS This Morning: Saturday” to discuss the major medical stories of the week.

Academy Award-winning actor Tom Hanks surprised a lot of folks when he shared some information about his health with David Letterman.

“I went to the doctor, and he said, ‘You know those high blood sugar numbers you’ve been dealing with since you were 36? Well, you’ve graduated. You’ve got type 2 diabetes, young man,'” said Hanks on the show.

The 57-year-old actor is known for taking on roles that require him to gain and lose weight. He packed on 30 pounds to play baseball coach Jimmy Dugan in 1992’s “A League of Their Own.”

Years later, he dropped from 225 pounds to 170 pounds for “Castaway,” a dramatic transformation to portray a man stranded on a deserted island.

Hanks’ diagnosis surprised many because of his slim stature as most people think obesity is the sole cause diabetes. However, other factors can impact getting the disease.

In fact, LaPook told the “CBS This Morning: Saturday” co-hosts that 15-20 percent of people who get this disease are of normal weight.

“It’s felt to be a combination of genetics, lifestyle, and then there’s aging,” said LaPook. “You don’t have to be obese, aging itself can make the pancreas less able to produce insulin and that can block the body’s ability to react to insulin.”

Full story of obesity and diabetes at CBS News

Facing a Traumatic Brain Injury and Debt. What Do We Do?

Traumatic Brain Injurie and Debt“Dear Steve,

My husband has a traumatic brain injury and currently in therapy. He was on the job and he does get the workman’s comp pay each week.

I have been told that when my husband goes back to his job they plan to fire him asap. He will not be able to do the job he had before the injury so they will have to find him something to do.

Not sure when he will be returning back to work and it has been 5 months since his injury. I’m worried sick about our bills the house payment. I’m the caregiver for my husband I wasn’t working when he was injured due to taking a family medical leave for my mother who has since passed away.

We are behind on our house payment via 2 months due to extra expense and a big car repair. Mortgage company has send me paperwork to sign stating they can help and I have agreed to a payment plan with them to get caught back up.

Husband is a 20yr Navy Vet. Are there any sources that can help us get caught back up on our house note … maybe with the military or some other resources I have seached on the internet and haven’t found anything.

Full story on TBI and debt at Huffington Post

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