Tag Archives: better heathcare

Is Dutch Healthcare Ready for Self-measurements?

Dutch version >

The Nictiz* publication ‘self-measurements in Dutch Healthcare’ makes clear that these activities are not correctly implemented in the mainstream healthcare process. Self-measurements have two different starting points; initiated by healthcare professional or by a patient/person. To ensure that self-measurements are used correctly, Nictiz presents several recommendations;

  • The introduction of self-measurements in the usual care process is helpful and offers many opportunities to improve treatment efficiency. We confirm this statement. We provide tools and services so that many persons can measure and send their bio-sensor information in a fast and easy way.
  • There’s a big need for standardization of data to accomplish a better exchange of information; international standards like HL7, IHE and Continua Health Alliance, are the starting point.
  • Specific certification is needed for self-measurement devices; especially for the devices (sensors, mobile devices and apps) that save data, to ensure that the data is absolutely reliable.
  • Besides healthcare industry and consumers, healthcare professionals also need to make a move. One move should be that care professionals must gain more knowledge about self-measurements.

Healthcare community and industry are partly ready for further implementation of self-measurements, but it is clear that we still need many improvements.

Author: Indy Kavelaars @ Vitaphone Netherlands

Source: Whitepaper ‘Zelfmetingen en de Nederlandse gezondheidszorg’ door Nictiz

*National IT Institute for Healthcare in The Netherlands

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Connecting pharmacists with healthcare insurers, an improvement?

“There’s a missing connection in the health insurance exchange debate that could push mHealth to the forefront: pharmacists.” This is a valid point of Robert Oscar, president and CEO of RxEOB. Pharmacists help people with healthcare questions when they’re not in a doctor’s office. They are the ones that have data on medication adherence. Adherence to medication predicts how well treatment will work and if future (health)problems can be expected.

More and more pharmacists are looking for ways to achieve better services. These are services next to the medication adherence support. Monitoring blood pressure is a way to check effectiveness of the provided medication. The pharmacist can discuss the results with the physician and optimise the therapy (if needed). Better results stimulate patients to adhere, so it cuts both ways. Pharmacies and insurers should be connected to make rewards possible for pharmacies that achieve the best support on monitoring and adherence. Insurers and pharmacies become more aware that they need to cut into the nation’s healthcare bill and that they must provide tools to optimize patients treatments.

Do you think that pharmacies and healthcare insurers should work together more intensively? Please leave your comment below!

Author: Indy Kavelaars @ Vitaphone Netherlands

Source: mHealth News

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Infographic: Population Health Management

Another hot topic, intensively discussed in the healthcare community: Population Health Management(PHM). This HIN Infographic shows the benchmarks of their study. It’s no surprise to read the conclusion that successful PHM starts with the data and the data analysis. That means you need structured data and a system that understands the info that is gathered. See it as telemonitoring with a mobile ECG device: first you need to get the info (ecg) in, than you need to understand the data (is it an arrhythmic heart). Next step is a well-defined workflow to respond to the information. Example: after a brief contact with the patient it’s clear that the medication wasn’t taken in the way it should. With the PHM approach, 61% of the healthcare respondents expect an improvement of the medication adherence.

Don’t search any further for an easy way to improve medication adherence and the PHM approach; the PICO medication adherence support system….

Infographic Health managementSource: HIN

Author: Indy Kavelaars @ Vitaphone Netherlands

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Chronic diseases threaten to overwhelm Europe’s healthcare system

The goal of this research was to pinpoint where the problems and solutions are to tackle chronic diseases and to extend healthy life years. Some very interesting results of this research:

  1. Between 70% and 80% of European healthcare costs are spent on chronic care, amounting to €700bn in the EU. Chronic diseases account for over 86% of deaths in the EU. This is huge and growing every day! To change this evolution, we need to change our mindset on delivering care
  2. Scientists believe the disease burden can be prevented and substantially delayed. “The four basics” of primary prevention are already known: a healthy diet, regular exercise, avoiding smoking and avoiding excessive alcohol intake
  3. Not only primary prevention plays an important role in reducing the burden of chronic diseases also secondary (early diagnoses) and tertiary prevention (early intervention) activities are crucial. Vitaphone has several solutions to support people’s healthcare, especially on secondary and tertiary prevention
  4. It’s never too early to tackle chronic diseases. We agree: the earlier the diagnose, the better the disease control
  5. Chronic conditions are very different as acute conditions and so the care needs to be accordingly different organized. Vitaphone is offering solutions to manage chronic diseases in an adapted and affordable way
  6. Integration of medical services and other services such as mental health, in-home sanitary care, and instruction in self-monitoring and self-care methods are crucial components of creating an integrated, patient-centered chronic care system. I could not say it in a better way
  7. As part of patient-centered healthcare, patients should be encouraged to do as much as possible for themselves, with appropriate support from a variety of providers. Vitaphone thinks that reimbursement of healthcare needs to be changed dramatically to reach that goal

Let’s change our strategy on chronic healthcare!

Author: Indy Kavelaars @ Vitaphone Netherlands

Source: Abbot Report, Never too early: Tackling chronic disease to extend healthy life years

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Infographic – Ways to address the non-adherence problem!

Non-adherence to medication is a global problem; in the US, about 125.000 deaths are linked to medication non-adherence.

Specialists suggest three ways to address this problem:

  1. Offer immediate rewards
  2. Educate people
  3. Engage people

Additional remarks to optimize adherence:

  • Pre-packaged medication for each intake moment
  • Notify people when they forget to take their medication

The PICO; Medication Adherence Support System, packs all these optimizations together. Which ways do you think are viable to improve medication adherence? Please comment below.

Take a look in the infographic why people don’t take their medication.

Ways to improve medication adherence infographic

Author: Indy Kavelaars
Source: HIN

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Changing the world of healthcare

Some time ago I wrote a blog about the cardiologist and healtcare visionary Eric Topol. Like Eric, Vitaphone understands that patients need to take initiative to change the healthcare industry.

This week, Eric states that “it is the most exciting, momentous time in the history of medicine. For the first time, we can rapidly and affordably sequence a human genome. We have sensors that can remotely track virtually any physiologic metric, from vital signs to glucose to intraocular pressure. Medicine is thus poised for its biggest shakeup ever as it transforms to a more precise, individualized, and democratized model”. With Mr Topol’s appointment at Medscape he will help capture this excitement, the changes and opportunities, along with the challenges and the need for validation.

Professor, we hope you will follow us too because we have some solutions which are on the verge of changing the world of healthcare.

Source: Medscape

Author: Indy Kavelaars

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Too much spill of medicines

Pharmacies are signaling that there is too much spill of medicines through the provision of excessive packaging and quantities. This problem has come to daylight through a survey among 1084 pharmacies in the Netherlands. Changes in prescriptions and non-adherence to therapy are also leading to spillage. We think we have to do something against this. Our PICO solution will reduce the non-adherence to therapy and the medication is pre-packed personally for each patient so there will be no excessive quantities. The US is realizing how imported patient adherence and compliance is. The budgets to improve adherence are quickly rising. The patient adherence budgets already rose 281 % from 2009 to 2012. So the averaged budget in 2009 was $400,000 and it reached in 2012 a whopping $1,525,000. Such a huge budget is not even necessary for PICO implementation: it generates no extra costs.

Sources: BusinessWire & Pharmamarketeer

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Patients need to take initiative to change healthcare

The digitalization of the healthcare industry is questionably the biggest shakeup in the history of medicine according to cardiologist Eric Topol, a professor of genomics at The Scripps Research Institute in San Diego and author of “The Creative Destruction of Medicine: How the Digital Revolution Will Create Better Health Care”. The opinion of Mr. Topol is that the public will be key in the change of a slow reacting to a more responsive healthcare to new IT trends. We need to take initiative and ask our physicians why they’re using old tools or sending us for outdated tests.

We, at Vitaphone, agree that healthcare is on the verge of a digital revolution. Our experience confirms the statement that it’s “slow moving”. But if a healthcare professional eventually starts to use our solutions like our ECG loop recorders, the change will be more rapid. In this way they can diagnose more patients, more quickly and more accurately. Often the patients don’t have to be at the hospitals to diagnose them anymore. Patients can send important and accurate information about their symptoms through modern technologies. And as soon as patients recognize these advantages, they will certainly start asking for it. And the digitalization takes a new step…

What is your opinion about the influence of patients on the speed of the digitalization? Leave a comment below.

Source: FierceHealthIT

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