Apple Watch and HealthKit: A new age of virtual health care The practice of medicine and health care in general has become an electronic and increasingly mobile interaction. Patients are better informed, more engaged, more connected and have a much greater virtual presence. In fact, according to Pew Research, the fastest growing demographic on Twitter are those who are in the 45 to 65 age bracket.   Nearly 50 percent of all ...

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Thousands of people have travelled from West Africa to the U.S. in the last 6 months.  While the CDC and others throughout the Obama administration continue to reassure everyone that the U.S. is 100 percent prepared for an outbreak,  potential cases and exposures continue to surface all across the country. In Dallas, the first confirmed case of Ebola has passed away.  Even more concerning is the fact that the patient initially ...

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MedPage Today recently tackled a very controversial issue in medical practice.  The piece explored the ongoing battle between dermatologists and allied health professionals (AHPs) over the performance of dermatologic procedures.  As independent NPs and PAs begin to bill for more and more procedures (thus potentially talking revenue away from board certified dermatologists) specialists are beginning to argue that the AHPs are practicing beyond their scope of practice. According to the 
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It is clear that patient compliance with prescribed medications is critical to success in the treatment of any chronic disease process.  In addition, patient engagement and co-management of their disease has been proven to improve outcomes.  A new study from the Annals of Internal Medicine suggests that any changes in the appearance of a medication may result in a decrease in compliance; when a pill looks differently patients often simply ...

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There is no doubt that Affordable Care Act has changed the landscape of medicine in the U.S.  Now, private practice is becoming a thing of the past. Financial pressures, increasing regulatory requirements, electronic medical records and outrageously complex coding systems are forcing long time private physicians to enter into agreements with academic centers and large hospital systems in order to survive. As a result, medicine today is more about increasing patient ...

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For scientists and researchers who are developing new treatments for disease, Data is power.  For patients, Data can mean empowerment.  Devices that track health indicators are readily available.  These devices can track heart rate, blood pressure, blood sugar and even respiratory rate and body temperature. In the Wall Street Journal, the medical applications of the Fitbit device are explored.  The Fitbit is a basic pedometer that tracks movement, steps taken, calories consumed ...

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As a child, I often watched science fiction movies and television shows wondering how much would become reality in my lifetime.  From space travel in Buck Rogers and Star Trek to time travel in Back to the Future, I often imagined growing up in a world where the impossible became probable.  Bionics and the repair of human tissues was captivating and the Six Million Dollar Man became a hit series. Now, much of what was thought to be ...

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For physicians, the applications of tablets are endless Medicine is becoming mobile.  Physicians, nurses and other health care providers must be able to quickly assimilate and react to an overwhelming stream of data.  Tablet technologies, such as the iPad, have been incorporated into the workflows of many clinics, emergency rooms and hospitals.  Medical schools and residency programs are quickly adapting the technology for teaching.  While tablets do present some ...

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Health care reform is a reality.  The ACA and its associated mandates have forever changed the landscape of medicine in the U.S. today.  The Obama administration touts the goals of reform as providing affordable, cost effective, high quality care for all Americans.  Certainly these are noble and lofty goals: But have we completely missed the mark? Today, many remain uninsured and the majority that have signed up for the exchanges are simply ...

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The digital age of medicine is upon us.  Recently at the opening plenary session at the annual Heart Rhythm Society meetings, we heard Dr. Eric Topol and others tell us that we must embrace social networking in order to engage patients and improve care.  The Affordable Care Act has now changed the landscape of medical practice in the US: We must do more to focus on preventative care and work harder to curtail costs. ...

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