Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Archive for the 'Information' Category

The value of adherence information

A study titled “Estimating the Value of New Technologies That Provide More Accurate Drug Adherence Information to Providers for Their Patients with Schizophrenia” was just published in the November edition of JMCP.  This is work with co-authors Taylor T. Schwartz, Darius N. Lakdawalla, and Felicia M. Forma.  The abstract is below.  Go check it out!   […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Does comparison shopping work in health care?

According to a recent study in JAMA, the answer may be no.  High-deductible health plans aim to not only reduce the use of unnecessary services, but to make consumers more price sensitive and search for high quality, low priced care.  The latter goal, however, depends crucially on whether patients have access to information on accurate […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Will a robot conduct your next cancer screening?

Machine learning programs have made dramatic steps in recent years.  For instance, AlphaGo beat a world champion Go player recently.  Playing games is great, but can machine learning improve health care?  Science Daily reports that machine learning algorithms may help improve cancer screening accuracy. Every state in the United States requires cancer cases to be […]

Read the rest of this entry »

The future of mental health?

Nature has an interesting article on how mobile technology is being used to treat mental illness. Estimates suggest that about 29% of people will experience a mental disorder in their lifetime1. Data from the World Health Organization (WHO) show that many of those people — up to 55% in developed countries and 85% in developing […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Meaningful Use is dead! Long live Meaningful Use!

In a nutshell those are the comments made in January by Acting Administrator Andy Slavitt at the J.P. Morgan Annual Health Care Conference. The Meaningful Use program as it has existed, will now be effectively over… You can now hear physicians groups burdened by the inflexible EMR mandate rejoicing.  But then Slavitt continues. and replaced with […]

Read the rest of this entry »

A super EMR?

Sources of health care data are proliferating.  The previous standard–medical charts–are being augmented with information from digital sensors, patient reported outcomes, and genetic information. Wouldn’t it be nice to have all that information in one place?  That is what Salesforce is thinking.  Fortune reports: Salesforce announced on Wednesday a new patient relationship management platform that […]

Read the rest of this entry »

EMRs and the Medical Alphabet

Here at the Healthcare Economist, I have noted that electronic medical records (EMR) are not the cure-all for healthcare delivery.   EMRs have a number of problems in and of themselves.  However, I do certainly acknowledge that going from a medical alphabet (see below) to a regular old English alphabet is a huge advance.   […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Why doesn’t the US have an integrated EMR

Why doesn’t the US have a single integrated electronic medical records system for sharing patient information. The promise from an integrated EMR is clear.  In an interview for Marketplace, Dr. Neal Weinberg says: Not having immediate, accurate information in one chart can lead to complications for the patient, they could die, they could be pretty […]

Read the rest of this entry »

The end of wearables?

Wearable technology is all the rage.  There was even a recent paper in JAMA about wearable technology.  However, will wearables soon to be old news?  What is the future?  Joe Kvedar gives his thoughts on the topic: Thus, we have plentiful pedometer apps…We’ve also solved how to run these apps in the background without disrupting the […]

Read the rest of this entry »

Government IT

Information technology without a doubt is helping to restructure the very fabric of society, business and government.  However, these changes do not come without challenges.  For instance electronic health records (EHR) may harm the patient-physician interaction and are susceptible to hacker attacks. A recent Fiscal Times article demonstrates how government programs often do not invest in IT infrastructure efficiently. Meanwhile, […]

Read the rest of this entry »