Archive for the ‘New Research’ Category

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Below is a new infographic from GlaxoSmithKline: A Healthy Community | From a State of Mind to a State of Being.  It’s based on a recent National Community Health Survey <http://atlanticlive.theatlantic.com/pr/CommunityHealth/PollResults.pdf>  from The Atlantic, in collaboration with GlaxoSmithKline, that found most Americans do not think their communities provide sufficient access to key resources for good health. It outlines the health resources Americans say are most important to support community health and compares their perceived level of access to the resources. The national survey, conducted by Penn, Schoen & Berland from January 12-20, 2013.

The survey found there continues to be a rapid evolution in how technology is changing the way people access healthcare. The survey suggests Americans want technology to become a bigger part of the healthcare system with 64 percent using online health resources and 94 percent of those saying the health/medical information they find online is important to their health. And yet only 12 percent of respondents have emailed or sent a text message to a physician regarding a health question.

According to the study, the younger population, in general, are far more prone to embrace and utilize health information technology (not surprising); however, this group also tends to place greater emphasis on removing face-to-face interaction with healthcare professionals and self-diagnosing their conditions.

Additional findings include:

  • More than 1 in 3 young Americans are willing to have primarily online interaction with doctors. Young people (defined as those under age 30), Hispanics and upper-income Americans are most open to communicating with their doctor mainly through text messages or e-mails.
  • Young people and Hispanics are eager to use web applications to help improve their health.
  • 40 percent of Americans who use online resources self diagnose.
  • 32 percent of Americans under 30 who use online health resources act on the information they find without consulting a medical professional.
  • And significant proportions use health websites for purposes that would otherwise require doctors’ visits.

Healthy Community Survey Infographic[1]

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Late last week I was contacted by Matthew Raynor of the Institute for Health Technology Transformation. He is trying to get the word out about a new research report they are releasing today titled: “A Roadmap for Provider-Based Automation in a New Era of Healthcare.” The research project was done in collaboration with an impressive array of healthcare thought leaders including Alide Chase, MS, Senior Vice President for Quality and Service, Kaiser Permanente; Robert Fortini, Vice President and Chief Clinical Officer, Bon Secours Health System; Connie White Delaney, PhD, RN, School of Nursing Professor & Dean, Academic Health Center Director, Associate Director of Biomedical Health Informatics, and Acting Director of the Institute for Health Informatics, University of Minnesota; Richard Hodach, MD, MPH, PhD, Chief Medical Officer, Phytel; Paul Grundy, MD, MPH, Global Director of Healthcare Transformation, IBM; Margaret O’Kane, President, National Committee for Quality Assurance; Andy Steele, MD, MPH, Director of Medical Informatics, Denver Health; and Dan Fetterolf, Principal, Fetterolf Healthcare Consulting.

The Institute for Health Technology Transformation released findings from its Automating Population Health Research Project today, which seeks to educate the healthcare industry on how best to apply technology in meeting the challenges of population health management.  The report finds that population health management requires healthcare providers to develop new skill sets and new infrastructures for delivering care. To make the transition from fee-for-service reimbursement to accountable care, which depends on the ability to improve population health, providers will need to automate many routine tasks, ranging from identification of care gaps and risk stratification to patient engagement, care management, and outcomes measurement.

For more information about the Automating Population Health Management Research Project, go to http://ihealthtran.com/PopulationHealth.html. Beginning today, the report will be available for download from the Institute for Health Technology Transformation website at no cost.

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BRANDfog Survey Reveals that CEO Engagement on Social Media Positively Impacts Brand Image, Trust and Purchase Intent

As a CEO who blogs and is active on social media, I was interested in the results of this study by BRANDfog reporting that c-suite executives who are engaged in social media are perceived to be better equipped to lead their companies and champion their brands. If you click here you will find a link to download the report.

The purpose of the survey was to better understand the connection between C-Suite engagement on social media, and the attitudes of customers and employees toward the brand. BRANDfog’s survey findings overwhelmingly confirmed that C-Suite executives who engage in social media are viewed as better equipped to lead a company, communicate values and shape a company’s reputation in today’s changing world. Specifically, the survey found that more than 80% of respondents believe that CEOs who engage on social media are better equipped than their peers to lead companies in a Web 2.0 world. What’s more, 93% of respondents believe that CEO engagement on social media helps communicate company values, and grow and evolve corporate leadership in times of crisis.

However, the reality is that most CEOs are not engaged in social media. “Despite high levels of brand participation across various social channels, CEOs are still slow to adopt social media as a key communications vehicle. Only 50% of survey respondents stated that their CEO was engaged on Twitter, 47% listed LinkedIn, 45% listed Facebook, and 38% listed a corporate blog. Notably, 25% of respondents reported that there was no social media engagement at all from their CEO.” (Source: BRANDfog 2012 CEO, Social Media and Leadership Survey.)

I encourage you to download the report and perhaps share it with your leadership. Below are some of the findings from the BRANDfog report in the form of infographics:

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According to a recent article in FierceBiotechResearch, a study from researchers at Thomas Jefferson University’s Kimmel Cancer Center found that one of the ingredients commonly found in curry seasoning has been found to slow the growth of prostate cancer cells, both in mice and in petri dish tests. Of course, I’m excited by the news because I love curry and I’ve always believed that South Asian cuisine has medicinal qualities. Putting my love of Indian and Thai food aside, it looks like the practical application of this finding will be found in the development of new drugs that harness the power of curcumin.

“The scientists believe that curcumin, an element of the turmeric spice, could form the basis of a drug that helps block androgen receptor signaling, something that could be used along with androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) to help boost its effectiveness. Androgen is a male hormone that fuels prostate cancer growth, and it turns out that ADT can’t always keep the prostate cancer from spreading.”

So, it looks like a new treatment for prostate cancer will not include eating massive doses of Indian food. However, it does look like curcumin could lead to a new food-based drug of real significance. To access the story on FierceBiotechResearch, go to http://tinyurl.com/6q54cmh.

Here’s the body of the Press Release announcing this exciting new finding:

Curry spice component may help slow prostate tumor growth

Data supports use of curcumin in combination with androgen deprivation therapy to reduce castrate-resistant prostate cancer cell and tumor growth


PHILADELPHIA – Curcumin, an active component of the Indian curry spice turmeric, may help slow down tumor growth in castration-resistant prostate cancer patients on androgen deprivation therapy (ADT), a study from researchers at Jefferson’s Kimmel Cancer Center suggests.

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Reporting in a recent issue of Cancer Research, Karen Knudsen, Ph.D., a Professor of Cancer Biology, Urology and Radiation Oncology at Thomas Jefferson University, and colleagues observed in a pre-clinical study that curcumin suppresses two known nuclear receptor activators, p300 and CPB (or CREB1-binding protein), which have been shown to work against ADT.

ADT aims to inhibit the androgen receptor-an important male hormone in the development and progression of prostate cancer-in patients. But a major mechanism of therapeutic failure and progression to advanced disease is inappropriate reactivation of this receptor. Sophisticated tumor cells, with the help of p300 and CPB, sometimes bypass the therapy.

Thus, development of novel targets that act in concert with the therapy would be of benefit to patients with castration-resistant prostate cancer.

For the study, prostate cancer cells were subjected to hormone deprivation in the presence and absence of curcumin with “physiologically attainable’ doses. (Previous studies, which found similar results, included doses that were not realistic.)

Curcumin augments the results of ADT, and reduced cell number compared to ADT alone, the researchers found. Moreover, the spice was found to be a potent inhibitor of both cell cycle and survival in prostate cancer cells.

To help support their findings, the researchers also investigated curcumin in mice, which were castrated to mimic ADT. They were randomized into two cohorts: curcumin and control. Tumor growth and mass were significantly reduced in the mice with curcumin, the researchers report.

These data demonstrate for the first time that curcumin not only hampers the transition of ADT-sensitive disease to castration-resistance, but is also effective in blocking the growth of established castrate-resistant prostate tumors.

“This study sets the stage for further development of curcumin as a novel agent to target androgen receptor signaling,” said Dr. Knudsen. “It also has implications beyond prostate cancer since p300 and CBP are important in other malignancies, like breast cancer. In tumors where these play an important function, curcumin may prove to be a promising therapeutic agent.”

Contact: Steve Graff



Thomas Jefferson University

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Guest Post by Katie Matlack, Medical Market Analyst, Software Advice

An interesting article over at Software Advice discusses ways doctors can use social media to enhance the practice of medicine. You may have heard about the September survey from QuantiaMD and the Care Continuum Alliance, which reported over half of all doctors use social media because of the benefit it can add for marketing and business development purposes. Beyond this marketing utility, however, other research has shown that getting information from a doctor after an in-person consultation can make patients more likely to take medicine properly and follow their physician’s instructions.

If you’re ready to get social–social networking, that is–here’s the important part. To save time in the long run, you should prioritize knowing your audience and its habits first, before you ever log in to Facebook or LinkedIn. This involves knowing whether or not they even use social media, first of all. Then, you should figure out what they would like to learn about from you. An easy way to find this out might be to leave a quick paper survey in the waiting room for patients to fill out. Once you know that your patients are on social networks and know what kind of information they’d like, you should identify what kind of content will appeal to them:

Think about your audience. For example, if you’re a pediatrician, preteen patients will probably appreciate links to YouTube videos where Justin Bieber talks on the importance of an active lifestyle. But if you’re a physician serving largely college-aged patients, sharing the Bieber video would paint you as out-of-touch.

The next step is to create a schedule and publish regularly. Start out with a Facebook business page that links to your practice website. Then make the move up to LinkedIn, and create a strong profile that accurately reflects your experience, before you reach out to your current and former colleagues. After you’re publishing one to two times each week and feel comfortable at this rate, you can round out your social media presence with a Twitter account. If you approach social media with the intention of creating a two-sided conversation, and you know what kind of information your patients like to hear, you’ll be in good shape.

To read the rest of the article, you can check out the entire post on the Software Advice Blog.

Katie Matlack is the Medical Market Analyst for Software Advice, a company that helps people make choices on electronic medical records software and health information technology.

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Yesterday my friends at Path of the Blue Eye sent me an announcement about their new infographic, “What You Need to Know: Facebook, Privacy and Health.” This infographic is a part of a long-term research project they’ve been involved in “which is designed to provide health marketing communication professionals with insight and information about how people are really using Facebook for health and wellness purposes.” The graphic encapsulates information from their recently published research report titled “Just Between Us: Facebook, Privacy and Health.” You can find the infographic online at http://pbeye.info/facebookhealth.

Not familiar with Path of the Blue Eye and its Living The Path online community? “The Path of the Blue Eye Project is an initiative designed to encourage collaboration and knowledge sharing among health marketing communications professionals from around the world.” Part of the Path of the Blue Eye Project, Living the Path is a global online community for health marketing communications professionals. The community is open to consultants, executives, students, journalists, social marketers and others. It is about education, sharing knowledge and driving our understanding of healthcare marketing beyond where it is today. (Source: Path of the Blue Eye website) If you work in healthcare marketing, I recommend you check out what this group is doing. They are truly doing leading edge work.

Here’s a sneak peak at the infographic:

Post by Dan Dunlop, The Healthcare Marketer

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You know the old saying: Honesty is the best policy.  A study performed at the VCU Massey Cancer Center surveyed 27 patients with advanced cancers.  The study found that “hope is maintained when patients with advanced cancer are given truthful prognostic and treatment information, even when the news is bad.”  Dr. Winokur, a retired oncologist, speaks of the challenge for physicians to tell patients the truth about their prognosis in his post on The Health Care Blog http://www.thehealthcareblog.com/the_health_care_blog/2011/01/why-we-avoid-telling-patients-the-truth.html.

Dr. Winokur reflects in his post, “Rather than fearing that our patients may give up and stop treatment if they knew the truth, I wondered if the real reason why we avoid telling our patients the truth was because, as physicians, we can’t admit to ourselves that we can’t cure our patients or even extend their lives.”

The study indicates that physicians need to find the confidence to tell patients the truth even when the truth is grim. Yes, it’s difficult, but it’s better that a patient know what to expect from the get go then to have surprises later on down the road.

To read Dr. Winokur’s post on The Health Care Blog, click here: http://www.thehealthcareblog.com/the_health_care_blog/2011/01/why-we-avoid-telling-patients-the-truth.html.

To read the VCU study online, go to http://tinyurl.com/4cajhmw. Here is the abstract from that study:


Background: Oncologists often do not give honest prognostic and treatment-effect information to patients with advanced disease. One of the primary reasons stated for witholding this information is to “not take away hope.” We could find no study that tested if hope was influenced by honest clinical information.

Methods: We tested decision-aids in 27 patients with advanced cancer who were facing first-, second-, third-, and fourth-line chemotherapy. These aids had printed estimates of treatment effect and the patient’s chance of survival and being cured (always zero). We measured hope using the Herth Hope Index, which ranks patients’ responses to 12 questions and yields a maximum score of 48.

Results: The scores on the Herth Hope Index did not change and the patients remained uniformly hopeful about their future. The pretest score was 44.2 (SD 3.9), and it increased to 44.8 (SD 3.86; P = .55 by paired Student’s t-test).

Conclusion: Hope is maintained when patients with advanced cancer are given truthful prognostic and treatment information, even when the news is bad.

Post by Dan Dunlop with Stephanie Cohen, UNC-Chapel Hill student and Jennings intern

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