“What’d I miss?” – Week of May 17, 2010

As usual there were a lot of things that happened during the week, and not all of it was pharmacy or technology related. Here’s a quick look at some of the stuff I found interesting.

Iron Man 2 was #1 at the box office last weekend. My family and I saw it last Friday. I thought it was a great movie, not as good as the first, but definitely a great movie. If you haven’t seen it, make sure you stay until the very end when you do.

– How about a Shrek ebook for the iPad? Seems appropriate since Shrek Forever After opens this weekend. Video below.

Software Advice: “We’re hearing more and more questions about Mac compatibility from physicians interested in electronic medical records (EMR systems). Many providers, notably smaller offices, are choosing Apple computers over PC-based systems to run their practice. Their reasons are the same reasons consumers choose Mac products: stability, simplicity and “coolness.”” – It looks like Apple is really starting to make its way into healthcare. The success of the iPad and speedy adoption among healthcare professionals is testament to it. The article above goes on to describe EMR systems available for the Mac platform.

– Earlier this week I posted on the new Motion Computing tablet PCs. One of the readers of the post pointed out that although the battery life on the new C5v was improved it was still only around four hours. While it’s true that current tablet PC battery life is poor, it’s only a matter of time before tablet PC and Android tablet makers are forced into building devices with at least eight hours of battery life. Based on the Wind U160DX netbook by MSI with a reported battery life of 15 hours, and the Toughbook C1 at 10 hours, things are looking up.

– Android 2.2, a.k.a. Froyo, looks pretty exciting. Learn more about it at Engadget.

– This is interesting. The MSI SketchBook looks like an ordinary laptop, but the keyboard flips over to reveal a pen driven graphics tablet. Neat.

– When will people learn that you should never, ever store confidential patient information on laptops. Earlier this week FierceMobileHealthcare reported that “The Department of Veterans Affairs said that a laptop stolen from an unspecified contractor’s car April 22 contained unencrypted, personally identifiable information of about 644 veterans.” – The solution: storing data in the cloud.

GottaBeMobile: “Using what they call ITSO (Integrated Through Screen Optics) Sensing Technology, their [Evoluce ONE] surface computing system can recognize and respond to objects up to one meter from the screen. The demo video (below) shows three-dimensional manipulation of large on-screen objects. No fine manipulation shown and I’d guess the precision is less than direct touch, but adding the third dimension of depth opens some terrific possibilities.” – This is amazing technology that I can see getting some use in healthcare. I’ve decided that I not only want one of these, but I need one. I started collecting pennies last night. <smile>

RxInformatics has an interesting post on the the recent bar-code technology article in the New England Journal of Medicine. The post includes the Podcast audio from an interview with Eric Poon, the lead author of the study. Interesting stuff. Make sure you take a few minutes to listen to it.

– In the no-duh category, results from a trial in The Annals of Pharmacotherpy May 11 issue shows that “Implicit measurement of actual inappropriate prescribing predicted ADE risk, an important clinical outcome. This finding helps confirm the validity of prior studies that have relied on explicit measures to link potentially inappropriate prescribing to adverse health outcomes. “ – The article addresses the use of drugs on the Beers list in elderly veterans.

SciGuy’s: “New Milestone in Optic Technology Allows better Data Transmissions – Using optical-fibre-optic cables, Alfred Leitenstorfer’s group at the University of Konstanz in Germany has found a way to boost data transmission significantly.  By reducing the amount of light needed to represent a 1 or 0, binary transmissions can be sent with higher efficiency.” – Will this be the answer to bigger and faster data transfer in the future? I hope so because it would mean better access to centralized data storage.

You sometimes forget how much information you digest on a weekly bases. Like all people in my profession I get bombarded with information at a rate that I can’t possibly handle, and the stack of articles “to read” is always larger than the stack of “read”. Anyway, below are some items I read this week that you might find interesting as well. Some are freely accessible, while others require subscription. I apologize for the ones that require a log-in or paid subscription, but I am fortunate to have access to a medical librarian. It’s like magic, I just say “Hey Karen, I need blah, blah, blah” and poof, it shows up in my inbox. Enjoy:

1. Ketelhut DJ, Nelson BC, Clarke J, Dede C. A multi-user virtual environment for building and assessing higher order inquiry skills in science. British Journal of Educational Technology. 2010;41(1):56-68.

2. Caruba T, Colombet I, Gillaizeau F, et al. Chronology of prescribing error during the hospital stay and prediction of pharmacist’s alerts overriding: a prospective analysis. BMC Health Services Research. 2010;10(1):13.

3. Poon EG, Keohane CA, Yoon CS, et al. Effect of bar-code technology on the safety of medication administration. N. Engl. J. Med. 2010;362(18):1698-1707.

4. Poon EG, Cusack CM, McGowan JJ. Evaluating Healthcare Information Technology Outside of Academia: Observations from the National Resource Center for Healthcare Information Technology at the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association. 2009;16(5):631-636.

5. Ryzner KL. Evaluation of Aminoglycoside Clearance Using the Modification of Diet in Renal Disease Equation Versus the Cockcroft-Gault Equation as a Marker of Glomerular Filtration Rate. Ann Pharmacother. 2010;44(6):1030-1037.

6. Williams D. Medication errors. J R Coll Physicians Ednib. 2007;37:343-346. (PDF)

7. Forni A, Chu HT, Fanikos J. Technology utilization to prevent medication errors. Curr Drug Saf. 2010;5(1):13-18. (PDF http://www.omnicell.com/Resources/Reprints/Technology-Utlization-to-Prevent-Medication-Errors.pdf)

8. Leape L, Berwick D, Clancy C, et al. Transforming healthcare: a safety imperative. Qual Saf Health Care. 2009;18(6):424-428. (http://qshc.bmj.com/content/18/6/424.long)

9. Asamoah AK, Sharfstein JM. Transparency at the Food and Drug Administration. New England Journal of Medicine. 2010. Available at: http://healthcarereform.nejm.org/?p=3440&query=OF [Accessed May 19, 2010].

10. 1. Amarasingham R, Plantinga L, Diener-West M, Gaskin DJ, Powe NR. Clinical Information Technologies and Inpatient Outcomes: A Multiple Hospital Study. Arch Intern Med. 2009;169(2):108-114.

11. Design Guidance – Displaying Adverse Drug Reaction Risk. This is a very interesting document prepared by Microsoft. I’ve read through it before, but stubble upon it while I was looking for another article in my files. It’s worth taking the time to browse through.

3 thoughts on ““What’d I miss?” – Week of May 17, 2010”

  1. Android is looking better and better. I am happy to see some competition for the iPhone. Now that I have an iPad, honestly I wouldn’t mind swapping to a DROID or similar running 2.2. A good industry level viewpoint from John Gruber:


    Let Mortal Kombat begin. In the end, it can only mean cheaper, more innovative products for us.

  2. I’m happy with the Android OS and my DROID, but still enjoy the integration between my iPhone and my desktops machines at home, i.e. music, video, photos, etc. I’m very excited about the “cloud-to-service” messaging planned for Android 2.2. In my opinion the desktop piece is currently missing from the Android experience. Maybe the Chrome OS will change all that; it’s await and see game at this point.

    The article by Gruber is great, thanks for the link. I’m in complete agreement about the outcome of the battle. The next 12 months should be interesting.

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