Saturday morning coffee [March 9 2013]

MUG_genericSo much happens each and every week that it’s hard to keep up sometimes. Here are some of the tabs that are open in my browser this morning along with some random thoughts….

The coffee mug to the right isn’t one of my personal mugs. Instead it’s the kind of generic mug you get in cheesy hotel restaurants. And that’s because I’m not at home. I’m in Las Vegas for my daughter’s volleyball tournament. In lieu of that, and the fact that I had to crawl off into a “quiet” corner to open my laptop, I’m going to make this quick.

Jack the Giant Slayer was #1 at the box office last weekend. Not a big surprise as again there was little in the way of competition at the box office for a second week in a row. Jack brought in a measly $27 Million on its opening weekend. Not too bad, but when you consider the $195 Million production budget that makes it a flop. Yikes! My family and I saw Jack over the weekend. We enjoyed it. Identity Thief continues to do well as it came in second place for weekend box office totals.

– Lifehacker is running a multi-part series on brewing the perfect cup of coffee. Part one, “The Case for Better Coffee” just lays the groundwork. “The Argument For Great Coffee: It tastes good. Really good, actually. A well prepared cup of coffee from freshly and expertly roasted beans sourced from growers who put real care into their crop stands head and shoulders and 10-gallon hats above the lower grade and typically stale alternatives that crowd the marketplace.“ It’s true you know.

– I didn’t mention this last week in Saturday Morning Coffee, but there’s an article in JAMIA that looks at reduction of medication errors in hospitals secondary to CPOE adoption (J Am Med Inform Assoc doi:10.1136/amiajnl-2012-001241). The reason I didn’t mention it last week is because I felt that it should go in the “ok-that’s-interesting-but-not-earth-shattering” pile of information. Unfortunately people are flocking to it in droves as proof that CPOE is the second coming. My thoughts on the article can be found here.

– And for the third consecutive week the most visited post at over the last 7 days was Why pharmacy continues to fail.

– The annual HIMSS conference and exhibition was this week (HIMSS13). I wasn’t able to attend this year’s conference, and I regret that. It was hands down the best conference that I attended last year. If you can only attend one healthcare IT related conference a year make sure it’s this one.

– This was a weird week for me. I seemed to always be on the go when someone needed something. I don’t like working from my phone, I much prefer a laptop with keyboard and mouse. A non-Wondows tablet, i.e. iPad or Android 7-10 inch machine, will do fine in a pinch because of the extra screen real estate, but I’m definitely a laptop guy when it comes to productivity. Anyway, I found myself having to do a fair amount of work from my Samsung Galaxy Nexus this week. Thank goodness for Documents To Go (full version) and SugarSync.  Those two applications saved me more than once. The weird part is that I hate what SugarSync has done on the desktop, but the Android application is first-rate.


– The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) is offering a Medications at Transitions and Clinical Handoffs (MATCH) Toolkit for Medication Reconciliation. “Medication reconciliation is a complex process that impacts all patients as they move through all health care settings. The process involves comparison of a patient’s current medication regimen against a physician’s admission, transfer, or discharge orders to identify discrepancies. Study data show that an effective process can detect and avert most medication discrepancies, potentially avoiding a large number of adverse drug events and related costs for care of affected patients.” It’s worth taking a look at. The PDF version can be found here.

– I came across an article in BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making 2013, 13:32 this week. The article title says it all: “Evaluation of drug-drug interaction: fax alert intervention program”. Healthcare and the fax machine, it’s all so 1980’s. Unfortunately this sums up the state of healthcare.

– It appears that web-based home monitoring is more effective than traditional care for helping patients with hypertension reach their blood pressure goals. Well, at least that’s according to a study published in the journal Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes. The best part of the whole thing? It was a pharmacist-led team. Booyah!

– Google Glass continues to be on my mind, but not all of it is serious. Here are a couple of videos that I think are spot on, and begs the questions: what’s going to happen when a group of high school/college guys get ahold of these? Bathroom scene…hilarious.

– This is not only cool, but is has application in pharmacy as well. Just think about it and it’ll come to you. MIT Technology Review: “Everpix does not use facial recognition, but in a demonstration at the company’s offices, Latour and cofounders Kevin Quennesson and Wayne Fan showed evidence that their software understands much more than the categories its software now exposes to users. The software can identify when an uploaded image contains plants, babies, animals, water, or snow, for example. A database of word meanings has been integrated into the system so it can understand other ways to refer to the label it’s applied to a photo.” Yeah, now you catch my drift?

– I saw an article this week about a website called I noted that they had a Pinterest account. I have a Pinterest account. So I subscribed to their board. Yikes, big mistake. Now I have a ton of images of OTC medication boxes in my feed.

– Ever heard of Fancy? It’s a place to “discover, collect and buy from a crowd-curated catalog of amazing goods, wonderful places and great stores”. I thought it was dumb at first. Now I think it’s cool. I find myself roaming around in Fancy and “Fancy’ing” things all the time. Try it, you might like it.

That’s it folks. I’m out of time. Have a great weekend.

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