Fall Issue November 2010
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Better Living Through Technology

In an effort to further the shift to personalized health care, the “Personalized Health Manifesto” has been released. This manifesto was prepared with input and endorsement from life science leaders representing medicine, business, government, patients, law and the media. Its unveiling at the annual Translational Medicine Alliance Forum was hailed as a “call to arms and action plan for a new age of health care.” The manifesto organizers hope to acquire the endorsement of at least 500 life science leaders by the end of the year by having them add their names to the list of endorsers. Translational medicine is an emerging view of medical practice and interventional illness prevention processes that lead from traditional evidence based medicine to sustainable solutions for public health problems. It is hoped that the manifesto will be a catalyst for conversation leading to better and quicker ways to get cures to patients amid the billions being spent on research and drug development.

Other features in this TMIS Fall eNewsletter:

* The Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California, home to the largest international collection of computing artifacts in the world, is expanding its exhibit space and Web presence for “Revolution: The First 2000 Years of Computing.” CHM's curatorial staff, working with historians and experts throughout the world, hand-picked materials for "Revolution" from the Museum's vast collection of more than 100,000 artifacts and 5,000 linear feet of archived documentation to illustrate the most complete picture possible of computing. The compelling display of technological icons selected for "Revolution" includes the Abacus, Hollerith Tabulator, Nordsieck Differential Analyzer, ENIAC, UNIVAC, SAGE, IBM System/360, IBM RAMAC disk drive, Cray-1, PDP-8, Moore's Law, Shakey the Robot, Xerox Alto, Utah Teapot, Pong Prototype, Apple II, IBM PC, Palm Pilot, Google Server Engine and more. “Revolution” will open physically and in cyberspace in January 2011.

* The Joint Commission, the nation’s oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in healthcare, has just released its new set of recommendations, “Advancing Effective Communication, Cultural Competence and Patient-Centered Care: A Roadmap for Hospitals.” Many of the recommendations included in the “Roadmap for Hospitals” originated during the development of The Joint Commission’s new patient-centered communication standards. The patient-centered communication standards were released to the field in January 2010 and compliance with these standards will be included in the accreditation decision by January 2012. The Roadmap provides methods, example practices and “how to” information to help hospitals comply with the new standards, hoping to inspire hospitals to integrate effective communication, cultural competence and patient-centered care into their organizations. The complete text of the “Roadmap for Hospitals” can be accessed at The Joint Commissions website.

* An abundance of conflicting information on the Web can lead the average websurfer to a panic called “cyberchondria.” According to an article in “Florida Medical Magazine,” this panic will lead a patient to believe they actually have whichever affliction they researched. The search for medical information ranks third among the most popular searches on the Internet behind checking email and shopping online. The point, according to a leading medical website design and medical marketing solutions provider, is that it is vital for a physician’s website to provide valuable and accurate information for their patients. A doctor should have the ability to confirm a patient’s self-diagnosis, and a well-constituted website will offer just enough information to encourage the patient to come in for an evaluation.

* A leading healthcare IT company that provides the medical community with products and services designed to help, create, manage and share medical information has acquired another company who provides cutting edge technology for the automated digitization process and the associated time and expense involved with traditional paper records by seamlessly integrating a digital form with Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems. Already, the reception in the marketplace to the technology has been overwhelming.

I am grateful to be in a collaborative business with many talented and skilled professionals. Additional feedback and recommendations for our products and services at TM Information Services are always welcome.

- Mary M. McLaughlin

From the Front Page of TMIS News
Click on links below to view Full Stories.

Call to Arms and Action Plan for New Age of Health Care
Washington, DC

Despite the promise of a new era of health care in which medicine has shifted from treating conditions to emphasizing prevention fueled by individualized care, a significant gap remains in realizing its benefits because of outmoded attitudes, protocols and procedures targeted for treating mass populations. Such is the core argument and motivation behind the "Personalized Health Manifesto," released to kick off the 2010 Translational Medicine Alliance Forum at the Mandarin Oriental.

Written by journalist and best-selling author David Ewing Duncan and funded by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, the manifesto is "an old-fashioned call to arms and action plan for a new age of health care" that takes direct aim at the challenges of integrating and implementing personalized health care in the United States and seeks to accelerate the incorporation of personalized health into the current health care system.

"Making this shift to personalized health is a formidable task that will take many years to accomplish, but having scientists and health care leaders sign on to a comprehensive plan is a powerful place to start," Duncan said. "Launching a new era of personalized health will not require the creation of a radical new blueprint for change. We can use existing plans and reforms that individuals inside and outside of government have already proposed."

"The manifesto is a fitting catalyst for conversation about how we can better and more quickly get cures to patients amid the billions being spent on research and drug development," said Lesa Mitchell, vice president of advancing innovation at the Kauffman Foundation. "It directs us to focus on what we need to treat a patient, what we need to change in policy, what do we need to change in process, and how we need to more broadly share data to get the patient what he or she needs."

The manifesto's "action plan" aims to set a new direction for health care, emphasizing prediction, prevention, individualized care and healthy wellness to ensure that the best medicines make it to the marketplace and optimize patient care. By focusing on the whole human organism, the manifesto challenges the prevailing use of drugs and protocols to target populations and averages rather than individuals. It further outlines the necessary groundwork for speeding up the process of moving from research to new drugs and other products and treatments by introducing more effective models that will ultimately improve health and reduce health care costs.
Full Story

"Revolution" Is Coming: Computer History Museum Will Launch Signature Exhibit Spanning "The First 2000 Years of Computing" in Early 2011
Mountain View, California

The Computer History Museum, the world's leading institution exploring the history of computing and its ongoing impact on society, is going to start a "Revolution" in January 2011. The Museum formally announced the plans for its new signature exhibition, "Revolution: The First 2000 Years of Computing." The exhibition will be the world's most comprehensive physical and online exploration of computing history, spanning everything from the abacus and slide rules to robots, Pong, the Internet, and beyond. Presented in a fresh, fascinating way, the $19 million expansion will appeal to a wide range of visitors including families, tech enthusiasts, gamers, and anyone else interested in learning how computing came to be and has shaped the way we live today.

In addition to expanding CHM's physical exhibit space by 50 percent, "Revolution" will be an on-site and online experience. The web exhibit will showcase an expansive collection of one-of-a-kind artifacts, engaging stories, never seen before interviews with pioneers and dozens of videos produced exclusively for this exhibition.

Currently under construction, "Revolution" is a 25,000-square foot wonderland of more than 1,000 artifacts alongside the people and stories that illustrate the social impact of computing. It includes 18 originally produced mini-movies and more than 40 oral histories on interactive personal viewing stations. Visitors will engage in a variety of sensory experiences, from picking up a 24-lb Osborne computer and playing vintage computer games like Pong, Spacewar!, Adventure and Pac-man to surfing the Web in the 1990s.

"We are delighted to bring to life the world's premier historical exhibition on the Information Age," said John Hollar, President and Chief Executive Officer of CHM. "Revolution represents nearly a decade of work by hundreds of people in consultation with our professional staff. The result is an accessible, multi-layered approach to storytelling that suits a variety of learning styles, both on site and online. People of all computing generations will be engaged in unexpected ways when they see how the devices and software they used over the years, and use today, originally came to be."
Full Story

Joint Commission Publishes New Guide for Advancing Patient-Centered Care
Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois

A free monograph released by The Joint Commission, entitled "Advancing Effective Communication, Cultural Competence, and Patient-and-Family-Centered Care: A Roadmap for Hospitals," provides recommendations to inspire hospitals to address unique patient needs and comply with new standards for patient-centered communication.

In August 2008, The Joint Commission, with funding from The Commonwealth Fund, began an initiative to advance the issues of effective communication, cultural competence, and patient-and family-centered care in hospitals. The project was directed by Paul Schyve, M.D., senior vice president, The Joint Commission, and Amy Wilson-Stronks, M.P.P., project director, Division of Quality Measurement and Research, and principal investigator for The Joint Commission study Hospitals, Language, and Culture. The focus of the project was to develop accreditation standards for the hospital program and a monograph to help hospitals better meet patient needs. The Joint Commission collaborated with the National Health Law Program to develop the Roadmap for Hospitals.

"We want to inspire hospitals to integrate effective communication, cultural competence, and patient- and family-centered care into their organizations," says Dr. Schyve. "By giving hospitals this Roadmap, we are providing them with the methods to begin or improve upon their efforts to ensure that all patients receive the same high quality care."

Effective communication, cultural competence, and patient-and family-centered care are not stand-alone initiatives. A hospital must embed these practices in the core activities of its system of care delivery to truly meet the needs of the patients, families, and communities served. The recommendations in the Roadmap for Hospitals do not encompass every aspect of these three areas, but represent key issues that hospitals should consider to meet the unique needs of each patient. Practice examples and recommendations address various issues including race, ethnicity, language, culture, health literacy, other communication barriers, mobility needs, and the concerns of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender patients. The Joint Commission encourages hospitals to adopt a combination of the practices discussed and to use these examples as a foundation for creating processes, policies, and programs that are best suited for their organizations.
Full Story

"The Doctor is (Logged) In"
Garrison, New York

Aurora Information Technology, a medical website design company, speaks about what it knows best in Florida Medical Magazine's Winter 2010 quarterly edition: the power of Internet medical marketing for the healthcare industry. The issue, which focused on the "e-Patient," challenged doctors to become "less paper-dependent and more computer and web-reliant." Aurora IT has long acknowledged that the Internet is destined to become a larger part of doctors' practices. They share their wisdom in an article entitled "The Doctor is (Logged) In: Physician websites have evolved from virtual placeholders to dynamic patient service tools."

With a quarterly circulation of more than 15,500 readers, Florida Medical Magazine, reports on contemporary topics so that their readers can remain up-to-date on the changing trends of practicing medicine. In the article, CEO Daniel Gilbert noted that the general attitude of medical website marketing has moved from "reluctance to enthusiasm" as physicians embrace the power of the web in promoting their business. Patients want to walk into an office and know as much as they can about the doctor they have selected and their background. As Gilbert noted, "A website should reflect a physician's depth of knowledge in his or her specialty."

The search for medical information ranks third among the most popular searches on the Internet behind checking email and shopping online. This is why Florida Medical Magazine claims, "For many Americans who are feeling ill, the laptop is the first stop, not the waiting room." An abundance of conflicting information is dangerous to the average web surfer, which leads to a panic called "cyberchondria," as noted in the article. This panic will lead a patient to believe that they actually suffer from the affliction they have just researched.
Full Story

Digital Pen plus MD Form Manager Provides Traditional Documentation Approach of Pen and Paper to EHR
New York, New York

MedLink, a leading provider of Electronic Health Records and practice management solutions, is pleased to announce the acquisition of Health Informatics, Inc. a provider of cutting edge clinical data digitization technology that simplifies and streamlines the adoption of Electronic Health Records.

The Health Informatics Digital Pen, in conjunction with MD Form Manager, is the flagship offering of the Company. The Digital Pen looks and feels like a normal ball point pen, however, the Digital Pen contains an integrated infrared digital camera, an advanced image microprocessor and a mobile communications device for wireless connection. The camera records the precise location of ink strokes as it moves over a uniquely constructed grid of microscopic dot patterns. These dots provide the pen with exact co-ordinates of its position, which, through MD Form Manager, are designed to interface directly with the MedLink EHR to collect discrete data elements that electronically populate the patient chart. The solution provides doctors and their staff with the traditional documentation approach of pen and paper, but the advanced ability of digitally documenting and capturing the data required to provide 'meaningful use' and other quality data reports.
Full Story

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TMIS Partners

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