Experts set sights on a more effective flu vaccine | BMI, waist circumference do not always agree, study says | ICU nurse staffing linked with in-hospital death risk, study finds
January 23, 2015
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Experts set sights on a more effective flu vaccine
The low efficacy of this year's flu vaccine has cast a spotlight on the challenges and opportunities to develop a better approach to immunization. Drugmakers and public health experts are exploring a number of avenues, including faster manufacturing, streamlined distribution -- one option may be a skin patch that does not require refrigeration -- and new ways of attacking the virus that would be more reliable. Bloomberg (1/22)
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BMI, waist circumference do not always agree, study says
A study in the American Journal of Cardiology found disagreement between BMI and waist-circumference measures in about 30% of patients. Canadian researchers said variability in visceral adiposity within BMI categories may be the reason. News (1/19)
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The Key To Positive Cash Flow
Every business is cyclical with cash flow ups and downs. The key is to find a way to keep the cash coming in as predictably as possible. Seem impossible? Well it's not. There are systems and processes that make it easier to collect the cash you've earned so your small business can grow. Learn how these small-business owners set up their businesses for success.

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ICU nurse staffing linked with in-hospital death risk, study finds
An analysis of data involving 13,696 adults at 1,265 intensive care units found that having more nurses per patient was associated with reduced risk of in-hospital death. The study in Critical Care Medicine found that the nurse-to-patient ratio at ICUs in North America was higher than in Western Europe and Latin America. "The study reinforces the importance of having good staffing, especially in the ICU where you have your most critically ill patients," said Ruth Kleinpell, one of the authors of the study. MedPage Today (free registration) (1/21)
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Nurse practitioners' ranks nearly double in past decade
An American Association of Nurse Practitioners report found that the number of licensed nurse practitioners in the nation increased to 205,000 in 2014 from 106,000 in 2004. AANP President Ken Miller said the trend underlines the continuous demand for accessible and high-quality patient care. (1/21)
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Transformational Journeys: Modern Business Planning
Harvard Business Review explores why CFO's and their finance organizations must adapt to the changing landscape of their markets and how big data, organizational collaboration, and new cloud-based planning and analysis technologies are driving successful change.
Click here to access the report.

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Study: Proactive post-surgery care may reduce Crohn's recurrence
Researchers report in The Lancet that patients with Crohn's disease who got a more proactive management protocol after surgery had a lower risk of recurrence than those getting the usual care that included medications. Patients in the active treatment group had a colonoscopy six months following surgery, and those who had a recurrence were prescribed a stepped-up medication regimen. Medscape (free registration)/Reuters (1/20)
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Report: Smoking tied to higher sudden infant death risk
A report by the Public Health Wales revealed 25 of 45 babies who suffered sudden infant death lived in homes that had smokers. Sleep position, low birth weight and co-sleeping were also among factors that raised the risk of sudden infant death, researchers said. BBC (1/20)
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How to Achieve IT Agility: A Survival Guide for IT Decision Makers
When business teams add new apps and services to already-strained networks, IT departments are accountable for making everything work. Is your team ready for this challenge? Read this eGuide to learn how IT teams are automating their networks, why they're utilizing Ethernet fabrics and SDN, and what success looks like as they regain network control and business relevance.

Emerging Trends
Device stimulates nerve to manage Parkinson's symptoms, boost balance
University of Gothenburg scientists in Sweden are testing a device they designed that controls symptoms of Parkinson's disease and helps improve patients' balance. The tool uses electrodes to send a targeted electric noise signal to a nerve in the ear that controls balance. The study team is already putting together an advanced, smaller, portable version of the device. (1/21)
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Pharma News
Supreme Court turns away generics risk labeling case
The Supreme Court will not take a case regarding state requirements for generic-drug-makers to update labels before reference product labels are updated. The FDA is writing rules that would allow independent updates to generics labels. The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model)/Pharmalot blog (1/21)
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Novartis drug for plaque psoriasis gets FDA nod
Novartis has obtained the FDA's approval to market its monoclonal antibody drug Cosentyx, or secukinumab, for the treatment of moderate to severe plaque psoriasis in patients who are candidates for phototherapy or systemic treatment. The injectable drug was approved for the same indication in Europe earlier this month. Medscape (free registration) (1/21), Yahoo/Reuters (1/21)
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Policy Watch
McCoy to become ONC's first CHIO
Dr. Michael James McCoy was appointed to be the first chief health information officer of the ONC. In his new role, set to begin Jan. 26, McCoy will serve as the ONC's interoperability expert and oversee the agency's clinical policy for standards and regulatory plans. McCoy's health IT experience includes serving as the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists' HIT specialist. Healthcare Informatics online (1/21)
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Stakeholders weigh in on year 2 of open enrollment
At the Health Insurance Exchanges Forum, March 12 and 13 in Washington, D.C., academics, consultants, health plans and states will bring to the table what they've learned through analysis and implementation of the exchanges. Register today.
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The next best thing for your organization
Become an AHIP Affiliate Organization member to get enhanced exposure to health plan decision makers and receive exclusive benefits that promote your solutions and services. Benefits include free conference registrations, access to valuable resources and a personal AHIP account manager. Get connected today and learn more!
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New spotlight opportunities for your business solutions
Have great thought leadership? AHIP's webinars are a unique opportunity to put your business solutions in front of key health plan decision makers. Contact our Business Development Team to learn more about sponsorships and bundling options.
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