Jan 28 2016
This week, the Zika virus has taken over news headlines across the globe. Zika is coming to light shortly after the great Ebola scare of 2014, leaving many to wonder if it is our next global health crisis.
The virus, which is spread to people through mosquito bites, has already been found in 24 countries in the Caribbean, North and South America. While the symptoms of the Zika virus are mild for adults, it could change the life of an unborn child.
Zika infections during early pregnancy have been linked to microcephaly, a condition in which babies have small heads and incomplete brain development. Expectant mothers are now being advised to avoid travel to the affected countries, and women living in these areas are being told to avoid getting pregnant entirely while the virus remains an issue.
Earlier this week, the World Health Organization (WHO) has warned that the virus is likely to spread across nearly all of the Americas, and cases have already been reported in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Zika virus will continue to spread…
Jan 15 2016
While The 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans continue to gain traction in the media and blogosphere, it is pretty obvious that the egg and meat industry are pleased with the outcome of the final guidelines, while the produce folks continue to be in a great position when it comes to health. However, a few other industries are sharing their enthusiasm for some of the newer recommendations in this year’s report.
Jan 14 2016
Every five years, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) releases Dietary Guidelines for Americans—they’re supposed to be a resource for health professionals and policymakers as they design and implement nutrition programs, like the USDA’s National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program.
According to the HHS, about half of all American adults—117 million people, if you’re doing the math—have one or more preventable chronic diseases, many of which are related to poor quality eating patterns and physical inactivity.
That’s not a cheap problem to be facing—in 2012, the total estimated cost of diagnosed diabetes alone was $245 billion. That’s including nearly $180 billion in direct medical costs.
If you’re a marketer for a food or healthcare company, pay attention here. These guidelines are not just for health professionals and policymakers. This is a significant opportunity for you to help consumers not only understand the report, but also understand how they can integrate the changes into their own lifestyles.
Take a look at the new 2015-2020 Guidelines below.
Jan 7 2016
The Biggest Healthcare Trend in 2016 and Its Impact on Three Other Trends
Consumer is the Word…it’s got groove, it’s got meaning.
The big trend in 2016 (and potentially a contender for a future healthcare office buzzword Bingo game) is…CONSUMER. True, the industry has been talking about the evolution of patients into savvy consumers for more than a decade. But this is one trend that has finally arrived. Driven in part by unsustainable pressures in payment and reimbursement models, the need for patient financial responsibility has grown and as a result, patient segments are being forced to act like consumers. Other patient segments are choosing to be consumers.
So, who are these consumers? You can almost picture it: an ethereal land of sublime beauty where healthcare consumers use technology and information to improve their quality of life and select cost-effective, outcome-based care.
But then, there’s the healthcare consumer operating in the realities of our 2016 world. No image needed, just think of your most recent visit to the doctor or pharmacy. Did the experience leave some room for improvement?
Don’t confuse my sarcasm as negativity. Healthcare consumerism will be good for…
Dec 17 2015
It’s December which means it’s the season of trend reports and 2015 roundups galore. To add to the mix, I’m taking a walk down the Buzz Bin memory lane. In case you missed them, I’m counting down the top 5 most read health Buzz Bin posts of 2015
5. King v. Burwell: Your 5 minute study guide: In preparation for the Supreme Court’s ruling on King v. Burwell, which eventually ruled to uphold Affordable Care Act subsidies, Kim Blake gave us a quick tutorial on the basis of the case and what it could mean for consumers and health systems.
4. Negative press happens. Are you prepared for it? Alyse Brunella provides some important tips for responding to negative press. Often times your response can…
Dec 10 2015
After discussing recent reports from McKinsey and the Advisory Board with our health practice leaders, I am more convinced than ever that the future of healthcare delivery will be determined by you – and me. But, we probably don’t realize it. The initial results of consumer responses to healthcare delivery changes will likely tell us a lot about what to expect next.
How are consumers responding when employers reduce employee work hours to eliminate the company’s requirement to provide health insurance plans? They are turning to insurance coverage through the Affordable Care Act – and becoming more familiar with the concept of shared costs.
How are consumers responding to the growing number of medical clinics popping up at CVS, Walmart, Walgreen’s and other retail locations? By all measures, consumers seem open to retail care when receiving inoculations, immunizations and episodic care when convenience is the priority.
How are consumers accepting the technology that plays an ever-growing role in monitoring and maintaining our health? Sales of Fitbit and the Apple Watch are expected to be high this holiday – but these devices are only the…
Dec 3 2015
As 2015 comes to a close, it’s time to take a look back at what health news topics had the most people clicking – and sharing! According to Medical News Today, the following health news stories were the most popular this year:
In October, Dr. Sergio Canavero’s plans for the first human head transplant started to become a reality when a 30-year-old Russian man with type 1 spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) volunteered to be the first person to undergo the procedure.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently published research stating that dog ownership has been linked with increased physical activity, healthier body mass index (BMI) and lower stress levels in children in Australia and the UK.
Researchers at the University of Washington’s School of Pharmacy in Seattle discovered a significant link between high use of anticholinergic drugs, such as popular non-prescription sleep aids and the antihistamine Benadryl, and increased risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease…
Nov 19 2015
Do hospitals and physicians really want to improve the patient experience, or are they just studying to the HCAHPS and CG CAHPS tests? While this is only my experience, I am fairly confident my experience is all too common.
I was having significant pain on the left side of my neck and shoulder. And I had nerve pain shooting down my left arm. It was back.
Five years ago I was diagnosed with a herniated disc in my cervical spine. That time, I had no idea what was going on. I just knew I had uncontrollable pain that couldn’t be relieved by ibuprofen, ice or heat. And I had numbness and tingling in my arms and fingers. Fortunately, I was able to resolve the issue with physical therapy.
So back to my current diagnosis. While my doctor’s office was able to get me in pretty quickly and start a course of medications to relieve the pain and swelling, it took a week to schedule my MRI, and another several days after that before I could actually have the scan. Earlier appointments were available, but…