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Showing posts from July, 2013

Healthcare in the News

Recently I read an article in Wired about the ideal hospital of the future. It is based off of a project called "Patient Room 2020" where a non-profit design firm called NXT made a proposed vision of the ultimate hospital room in the year 2020. As a patient, I must say, I'm impressed. If I have to go inpatient in the future, sign me up for this place. 

First of all, I'd love the view this room has, as well as how open and airy it looks. There is nothing worst  than feeling trapped and cooped up in a small hospital room with a bad view. Also, this room is so full of technology that it looks like the Apple store. Three things were noted in the article: 

When caregivers enter a room LED lights make the sink glow red reminding them to wash their hands, when properly disinfected the sink turn green.

A patient's dinner tray can be flipped over, so that the patient can turn on the lights, call their nurse, review their progress, and play games/use it like an iPad. 

Last but…

We Are Type 1: A new organization to support

For all of us with chronic illnesses, we can appreciate non-profits who are dedicated to helping those who are sick and struggling, and a new wonderful organization just popped up, called "We Are Type 1". I saw it mentioned on a good friend's social media page, and was surprised to hear from her that there are no organizations purely dedicated to Type 1 diabetes and most of the research/funding goes into Type 2 Diabetes. With about 26 million Americans with diabetes, there needs to be more support for this growing chronic illness! I was surprised to find out that only 5% of people with diabetes have Type 1, which used to be called Juvenile Diabetes. It is often diagnosed in children and adolescents, but people can live with it forever. 

This new organization hopes to build its membership and connect those with Type 1 Diabetes, and also educate and advocate for them. To meet people on the site, you need to make a profile and then you will be able to pick your age range. Ca…

Acceptance: Part 1

I was trolling recent research publications and came across a 2012 study where the authors had designed a new questionnaire to measure acceptance in people living with Irritable Bowel Syndrome.  The idea of acceptance is pretty straightforward in that we no longer try to control, avoid, or fight our situation but rather engage in a "willing contact" with everything that comes with it.  In the case of a chronic illness, we do all that we can to get the right treatments and improve its symptoms as much as we can but also accept that there will be times we don't feel well - and that's OK.

There's an entire field of psychology called Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, or ACT, pioneered by psychologist Steven Hayes in the 1980s, that is gaining in popularity.  ACT comes from the cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) theory, but is different in several ways.  I've used some ACT principles with some of my clients, especially those who are really struggling with accept…

Guest Post: Navigating the World of Disability

Today's post is a guest article written by Molly Clarke of the Social Security Help blog on how to go about obtaining social security disability benefits.  I hope that none of our readers ever have to go down this road because of their condition, but it's good to know some of the basics.  Having spent some time working for the government, I understand the layers of bureaucracy to be expected.  I've also had some clients go through this process and know it's critical to be fully informed and have support, whether it's a knowledgeable friend or family member, or a professional.  Now, on with the post.

Full disclosure:  The Social Security Help website is part of a network of disability attorneys who provide services to those in need of assistance.

Chronic Illness and Social Security Disability Benefits 

Chronic illness can affect every aspect of a person’s life. In addition to battling pain, fatigue, and other debilitating symptoms, individuals with chronic illness ma…

Research Roundup July 2013

Hey, it's July!  Summer is in full swing and it's time for another installment of our critically acclaimed Research Roundup.  This month we look into issues of public health and consumer protection.

In an attempt to combat research bias, post doctoral fellows at leading universities in the U.S. are pushing pharmaceutical companies to release detailed data from their clinical trials for public scrutiny.  This partially comes from increases in drug recalls and other "black box warnings" that have happened in recent years.  We all have heard that the US leads the world in healthcare expenditures, even though we rank well below #1 in healthcare quality.  An interesting article sheds some light on what may be causing this, and the answer is kind of surprising.  Expensive surgeries?  Nope.  Rampant obesity-related illness?  Not that, either.  Colonoscopies?  Disco!Roughly 50% of Americans will experience a mental illness at some point in their life.  Depression and anxiety …