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Technology News: May 2011

Health Application in Demand

Straub Clinic and Hospital and Kauai Medical Clinic becomes the first healthcare facility centre to allow patients to access their medical records from an iPhone, iPad or iTouch using a new, free mobile app called My Health Advantage. This application allows patients to view test results, send secure messages to their physicians, manage appointments and review a list of their medications. They can also receive health reminders and manage their families’ healthcare information. The aim of this application is to change the way healthcare is provided and to really put patients in control of their own information. The best advantage of this application My Health Advantage is to improve communication between patients and physicians. Patients with a medical question can send messages directly to their doctor and could receive a response in minutes. The problem still lies that the application is expensive, so the providers have to find ways to reduce the cost and improve efficiency by making it more convenient and accessible for patients and doctors. This application “My Health Advantage” can be downloaded for free from the iTunes App Store.

Digital patient records implemented

A health information technology provider, Verizon and MEDfx, announced to implement a digital format for paper records. This program although faced a lot of issues regarding the complexity and cost of adopting an electronic system, and the incompatibility of many health IT systems. Whereas, the main aim of the program was to undertake health information exchange-based demonstrations to integrate two key federal government health IT initiatives to improve care management through secure, two-way exchange of patient health information. The federal guidelines for health IT adoption and secure electronic data exchange actually work; this pilot program is leading the way to the widespread adoption of electronic medical records and the transformation of the U.S. health care system. The portal transfers the care-management documents, making them accessible on a wide variety of health IT systems.

High Speed network for telemedicine

The broadband network has now promised to provide high speeds to meet day to day healthcare needs. The telehealth experts are waiting for the new technology to save a lot of money and time. The tech savvy people will now get their healthcare facilities with the upgrading technology. Local nurse uses broadband technology to get an urgent online consultation from a specialist in Melbourne for a seriously ill nine-month old baby boy. There was a huge decrease in white cell count has come through as 20,000 over the video link-up, with the baby visible to a specialist on his screen. Based on the symptoms seen and heard down the line, the specialist decides to take no chances. The specialist now advises the parents about the serious infection treatment and is to be taken to a specialist as soon as possible. Even with the current slower speeds, doctors can already see the benefits in saved travel time. The technology has got to a point in telehealth where you can have a high definition video conference; you can have it stay up. It won’t drop out and you basically end up in a situation where the clinicians are starting to accept it as a technology, as a tool of trade.

Patient Info goes online

Google and Microsoft let NHS patients in England to host their medical records with companies under proposals detailed by the Department of Health’s CIO. The patients can view an electronic version of their medical records are generally restricted to viewing their Summary Care Records through the NHS Healthspace website. The use of private services to store health records made healthcare services a commercial entity such as Google Health and Microsoft HealthVault as a cheaper alternative to viewing records through the NHS Healthspace website. The market is expected to provide these tools rather than the DoH. The Healthspace site was criticised earlier this year after figures revealed that fewer than 3,000 people were using the portal to view their medical records. Department of Health will publish an information strategy setting out how the department would bring about a “free flow of information in the health system”. Another way of improving information sharing that is being considered, to share information online about their experiences of a particular hospital, GP surgery or medical procedure.



Carestream Sells 100th DIRECTVIEW Vita CR System

Carestream Health India sold its 100th DIRECTVIEW Vita CR System, which was launched in Oct., 2010. Carestream Health’s engineers used innovative design methods and components for the desktop Vita CR platform, which combines high image quality with reliability, a compact footprint and an affordable price tag. Globally, Carestream Health has shipped 1000 DIRECTVIEW Vita CR Systems till date & counting “Sales have exceeded our expectations and our company has boosted production capabilities to keep pace with worldwide demand. The company’s Vita CR system is being purchased by independent imaging centers, clinics, multi-physician offices and orthopedic facilities who want an affordable, compact CR system that is also easy to use. “These facilities want to implement digital imaging technology and many are choosing the Vita CR platform to make that conversion,” Mr. Chatterjee added. Carestream Health features a comprehensive portfolio of CR.

Sun Pharma joins with Merck for Drug Delivery Systems

Sun Pharmaceutical Industries and U.S.-based Merck & Co. of a joint venture has nearly tapped the increasing demand for affordable high-quality medications for chronic diseases, such as heart ailments, diabetes and hepatitis in emerging market countries. The companies will develop certain drugs which will be manufactured and Merck will help in clinical development through a global network. The companies say the opportunity is huge. And 75% of that growth is expected to come from branded forms of generic drugsthe kind that the joint venture plans to sell. The new delivery systems for copies of existing drugs allows them to sell them under their own brands in emerging markets where intellectual property laws which develop markets in US and UK. For its drug delivery system projects the firm needs about two billion rupees ($44.85 million).

Sonography, a useful diagnostic method

Soft tissue foreign bodies are a common cause of orthopedic consultation in emergency departments. It is difficult to confirm their existence because conventional radiology only detects radio-opaque foreign bodies. Sonography can be a useful diagnostic method. The aim of this study is to uate diagnostic accuracy of sonography in detection and localization of non-opaque foreign bodies. A single radiologist performed all examinations with six years’ experience in musculoskeletal Sonography. We detected and localized the presence of the foreign body in the soft tissue as guidance for facilitating the surgery. Surgery was performed in 39 patients and 44 foreign bodies were removed. Sonography is a useful modality in detection and localization of radiolucent foreign bodies in soft tissue which can avoid misdiagnosis during primary emergency uation.

Bio medical procedures reinvented

Scientists have discovered that low energy electrons could damage the DNA. The experiments were conducted on liquid face of thin films of DNA indicated that low energy electrons may cause single strand or double strand breaks in the DNA. Researchers shot ultra-short pulses of high-intensity laser light through a quartz tube containing a mixture of DNA molecules and water. The strong laser light created hot plasma (like in the sun) and broke water molecules into various constituents including electrons and hydroxyl (OH) radicals, which reacted with the DNA to alter it. The DNA, on exposure to the laser beam got fragmented and became a linear entity showing breaks in the DNA structure. Such experiments are giving good results as per researchers as the findings would have implications in reducing the damage caused by lasers used in biomedical applications, genetic engineering and biotechnology.

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