“What’d I miss?” – Week of October 25th

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.

Paranormal Activity was #1 at the box office last weekend.

ModernHealthcare.com has released a list of best places to work in healthcare. Alas, my current employer isn’t on the list, but several hospitals are.

HER Bloggers: “One of the biggest challenges for linking together different health information systems is the inconsistency in referring to a given individual – be that a physician, a patient, or whomever. One system, for example a lab system, may refer to “Patient x” one way (using their own arbitrary internal patient identifier number), while a different system (for example, a hospital) may use a completely different identifier. Between ambulatory EHRs, each one will also likely refer to a given patient with different, internal methods. Cross-linking these systems so that a unified dashboard can be created that displays all the information from all these systems is made much more difficult as a result.” – Exactly! See my post on a similar issue from yesterday here.

DeepDyve is a search engine for scientific papers where you can “rent” the article for 99 cents per day. Of course they offer frequent flier plans for people who like to read a lot more; $9.99 for 20 articles per month or unlimited for $19.99 a month. It’s a nice service if you don’t have your very own medical librarian at your fingertips.

– The October 2009 issue of Laptop magazine has a review of Twitter applications for your mobile phone. The top Twitter clients were:

  • iPhone = TweetDeck
  • Android = twidroid
  • BlackBerry = UberTwitter
  • Windows Mobile = Twikini
  • webOS = Spaz Mobile
  • .
    – How about a dual screen netbook? I’m not sure about you, but in my opinion the size of the thing kind of defeats the purpose of a netbook; not to mention that it’s just ugly.

    TEDMED2009 took place in San Diego this week. “TEDMED celebrates conversations that demonstrate the intersection and connections between all things medical and healthcare related: from personal health to public health, devices to design and Hollywood to the hospital.” You can find some third party information on the event at medGadget or by simply searching Twitter for TEDMED.

    – The Bay Bridge closed earlier this week following a piece of the cantilever section snapping and falling onto the upper deck. More than 280,000 cars travel across that bridge each day. Wow, I can’t imagine the problems that has caused in the bay area.

    – Google rolled out “Google Music Search”. Is there anything these guys can’t do?

    – The BlackBerry Storm2 is now available at Verizon Wireless. I haven’t had a chance to play with one yet, but I’m reading good things.

    – Check out the new Dell Latitude XT2 XFR rugged convertible tablet PC in the video below. It has a 12.1” LED capacitive multi-touch display and can be had for the low, low price of $3599. The video shows the XT2 XFR taking some serious abuse. Cool

    – Here is an interesting interview with Edwin Webb, PharmD on Medscape Today. “Healthcare Reform Has Potential to Improve Pharmacist-Patient Relations: The bill that came out of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions committee and the bill that is currently under consideration by all 3 committees of the House of Representatives both have provisions that would support the concept of pharmacists’ clinical services in the medical home model, a big element of healthcare reform that has received a lot of attention. One of the Senate bills would initiate a grant program to establish community health teams, including access to pharmacist-delivered medication-management services. Another section of that bill would provide funding for grant programs to implement medication-management services as collaborative interprofessional services in a team-based approach to managing chronic diseases for targeted individuals. Those are 2 provisions that are consistent with the efforts we’ve been making for many years to reform the Medicare Part B payment rules that provide for payment for physician and nurse practitioner services. We would like pharmacist services to be recognized under that provision.”

    – “Update on Antibiotics for Infection Control in Cystic Fibrosis”. Cystic Fibrosis (CF) is a devastating genetic disease that typically causes severe chronic respiratory tract infections that often lead to an early death. From a strictly pharmacologic standpoint, CF is an interesting disease because of the affect it has antibiotic kinetics. When I was a pharmacy student at UCSF we had several CF patients on our medicine service, and I can tell you it pulls at your heart strings.

    – Annals of Pharmacotherpy (Vol. 43, No. 11, pp. 1781-1786): “A pharmacist-run osteoporosis service significantly improved short-term compliance with guidelines, including appropriate DEXA scan frequency, pharmacotherapy, calcium and vitamin D supplementation, and nonpharmacologic education.” – Pharmacists strike again.

    TechCrunch: “Ever since Twitter announced it is working on a new Lists feature a month ago, users and developers have been awaiting its broad rollout. Over the past few weeks, Twitter has been expanding the number of people in the Lists beta, but now it appears that a full rollout is under way.”- I have access to lists, but really haven’t figured out how to use them. I guess I’m just not tech-savvy enough.

    medGadget: “The modular TransHospital system allows for the creation of a clinical facility from six beds up to just about any size imaginable. Each unit can be setup within four hours by a six man crew and can then function autonomously for 72 hours. Add a source of power and water and setup a supply line, and you’ve got yourself a real hospital during emergency situations.” – Reminds me of the old TV series, M.A.S.H. I loved that show.

    modular_hospGigaOM: “Microsoft once again is touting its speech-recognition technology, predicting on its site this week that “talking to a computer may soon be as natural as using a mouse.” But while voice is a natural fit for mobile phones and some other platforms, when it comes to traditional computing — using a laptop, desktop or even a netbook — the use-case scenarios for speech recognition are more limited. It will take quite an effort to convince users to talk to their laptops instead of typing on them.”- I disagree, I think there are some practical uses for speech-recognition. Like any new technology it must be modeled into something you want. My thoughts on subject can be found here.

    – Check out this video by Bill Koslosky of  the Wireless Doc in which he demonstrates using Google Voice on an HTC Hero smartphone to perform a medical search. It’s really quite impressive.

    – The Barnes & Noble Nook e-reader has been getting quite a bit of press lately. It’s a nice looking device and offers 3G, Wi-Fi, 2GB of storage and access to over 1 milliion electronic book. I’m impressed enough with it that I’m going to pre-order one. As long as the Nook doesn’t befall some catastrophic failure I think it will give the Amazon Kindle a run for its money.

    – Top search phrases that brought people to my sight this week: jerry fahrni (hey, imagine that), xcelodose, dell xt2 keyboard, jaansun capsule machine, where is tony north of talyst (this is my favorite), d&d surface table, pharmacokinetics iphone, talyst autopack supplies, talyst users group, pyxis parx system.

    – Please stop the agony that is the Major League Baseball season. For those of you that don’t know, we’re still playing the World Series and it will be November before it’s over. It’s football season!

    Have a great weekend everyone.

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