Last week, I attended the National Rural Health Association Quality and Clinical Conference. The NRHA has made the handouts from the conference available at http://tinyurl.com/l48pgb. Topics include electronic health records, telemedicine, and models for rural health care.
Archive for the ‘Hospital Libraries’ Category
Last week, I attended the National Rural Health Association (NRHA) Quality and Clinical Conference in Park City, UT. At the conference, Doug Romer, Executive Director-Patient Care Services at Grande Ronde Hospital in LaGrande, OR, gave a fascinating talk and demonstration of the “remote presence” telemedicine services provided by the hospital in conjunction with various partners.
The hospital uses an inTouch RP7 robot that can be controlled remotely by physicians not located at the hospital. The robot has a monitor, camera and audio system so that the patients and remote physician can see and hear each other.
At the conference, Mr. Romer conducted a live demo of the system using the hotel’s wireless Internet access — participants were able to communicate with a patient undergoing an ultrasound and see the results of the ultrasound live. We were instructed that the patient did not want to know the sex of the baby, so to please not reveal that information when we saw the ultrasound!
To see the system in action, view the video the hospital has made available on this page: http://www.grh.org/srvTelmed.html.
An interesting blog post from Google describing how the Google Health personal record system will work with NLM data vocabularies to ensure accuracy in patient’s personal records: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2009/04/listening-to-google-health-users.html.
The federal government has announced open source gateway software, called Connect, which will allow the electronic health records of various federal agencies (including the Defense and Veterans Affairs departments, and the Indian Health Service) to communicate with the Nationwide Health Information Network. See the Connect project site for more information: http://www.connectopensource.org/display/Gateway/2009/04.
The Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) conference is currently being held in Chicago, but even if you can’t attend, you can follow it online. Visit http://www.himssconference.org/ and click on “HIMSS09 Online Update.” You can visit the conference official Twitter feed at http://twitter.com/HIMSS. You can also follow comments about the conference using the #himss09 “Twitter hashtag” (a keyword that marks Twitter comments about a certain topic) — to see the updates, go to http://twitterfall.com/?trend=%23himss09!%23494234. Note that you don’t have to sign up for Twitter to view either for these since the updates are publicly published.
The March 31 issue of The Plain Dealer, a Cleveland newspaper, published an article describing early patient experiences at the Cleveland Clinic with Microsoft HealthVault. Patients with chronic conditions, such as hypertension, take regular measurements that are sent to to Cleveland Clinic’s EHR system via HealthVault. Doctors at the clinic can monitor the results and adjust the patient’s treatment as needed. The article gives a real-world example and includes a video. See http://tinyurl.com/dk9uj3 for the original article, and http://tinyurl.com/c49qzs for some interesting commentary about the article.
The International Journal of Medical Informatics has published an article entitled “The State and Profile of Open Source Projects in Health and Medical Informatics.” The study reviewed open source projects listed in the open source database SourceForge. The article concluded, “A wide range of OSS applications are in development, from bio-informatics to hospital information systems. A profile of OSS in health and medical informatics emerges that is distinct and unique to the health care field. Future research can focus on OSS acceptance and diffusion and impact on cost, efficiency and quality of health care.” Find a summary of the article at http://tinyurl.com/cezabw. [SD]
The Department of Health and Human Services is making $268 Million in Recovery Act funding available to support hospitals. Eligible hospitals are those that serve a disproportionate share of low-income or uninsured individuals and are known as Disproportionate Share Hospitals (DSH). States receive an annual allotment to make payments to DSH hospitals to account for higher costs associated with treating uninsured and low-income patients. This annual allotment is calculated by law and includes requirements to ensure that the DSH payments to hospitals are not higher than the actual costs incurred by the hospital to provide the uncompensated care. The Recovery Act increases the amount of allotments available to states from approximately $11.06 billion to $11.33 billion for 2009. You will find a list of hospitals on the state’s health services sites: Arizona, California, and Nevada. Hawaii is not slate for an increase in DSH funding for 2009.
[From HHS press release dated March 20, 2009]
March 27, 2009, is the deadline for qualified libraries to sign up for the Nature Publishing Group e-licensing opportunity. Libraries in non-profit California hospitals are eligible for this offer. A copy of the offer is available from Julie Kwan.