Dually Noted from around the web

March 14, 2016 § Leave a comment

Articles, commentary, research, and more from the past week

Treating mental illness like a chronic disease
According to a recent study published Health Affairs, many primary care physicians do not teach their patients with depression how to manage their care and many do not follow-up with patients. These tactics, which are common approaches to treating chronic conditions, have been found to be effective in treating mental illness, according to the study’s authors. Still, the report finds doctors “often fall short in treating depression because of insurance issues, time constraints and other factors.”

Software helps home health workers
An article in Kaiser Health News describes new technologies that help non-medical healthcare workers spot medical problems before they require hospitalization. For example, software developed by Care at Hand uses “predictive analytics to generate patient-specific questions,” and a program from eCaring “allows aides to note a patient’s well-being hour by hour,” then uses the data to “predict which patients might be at high risk and send an alert back to a care manager.”

Quantity over quality in senior healthcare
A report by the Dartmouth Atlas Project found that seniors often receive care that does not reflect their desire to maintain a high quality of life rather than live longer. Using Medicare data, the researchers looked at screening for breast and prostate cancer, late referral to hospice care, time in the intensive care unit in the last six months of life, and placing feeding tubes in patients with dementia. Overall, they found “many older people continue to receive treatments that don’t meet established guidelines or, often, their own goals and preferences.”


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