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November 16, 2012
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News for physicians caring for the seriously ill

  Top Story 
  • Elderly patients need end-of-life information on ICDs, study says
    Consent forms and discussions with elderly patients about the risks of having an implantable cardioverter defibrillator rarely cover the potential for painful shocks at the end of life, according to a study from the University of Kansas School of Medicine. Researchers said patients need to know that they have the option of deactivating the device in palliative care "so that its function does not interfere with the natural dying process." News-Medical.Net/medwireNews (11/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Palliative & Hospice Care Update  
  • Palliative care communication doesn't translate exactly
    Cultural differences had to be taken into account when a Canadian booklet on palliative care decision-making was translated into Italian, Dutch and Japanese, researchers from the Netherlands wrote in the Journal of Medical Ethics. The main message of the booklet was that dementia is a terminal disease and palliative care applies, and translations took into account differing policies and perceptions of patient needs. News-Medical.Net/medwireNews (11/14) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Patient & Family Perspective  
  • Some people prefer not to be defined by caregiver label
    Being labeled as a caregiver can lead to a perceived loss of true self, so some people prefer to define themselves in other terms, writes Mayo Clinic health education outreach coordinator Angela Lunde. An ability to see beyond the caregiver role reflects "an inner sense that you matter, that you deserve to be healthy and whole just as much as the person you're caring for," she says.'s blog (11/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Medical Research  
  • Physicians, patients don't always have same treatment goals
    Physicians may not understand or may ignore what patients want for medical treatment, Dartmouth researchers reported in the journal BMJ. For example, a study showed dementia patients put less emphasis on staying alive with declining mental functions than did their physicians, and another study found patients may change their minds about treatments when they can weigh the benefits and risks. HealthDay News (11/9) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Analysis finds racial disparities in survival in kidney cancer
    White patients with renal cell carcinoma were more likely to survive at least five years than their black counterparts, according to a study in the journal Cancer. A higher prevalence of localized cancer, smaller tumors and less aggressive kidney cancer among black patients, however, should point to better prognosis. Differences in surgery rates and underlying health conditions could be among the factors behind the difference, researchers said. HealthDay News (11/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Health Policy & Practice  
  • Group asks HHS, DOJ on ways to boost EHR, billing compliance
    The American Hospital Association has presented a letter to HHS and the Justice Department seeking to clarify how hospitals could bolster EHR use when billing Medicare and Medicaid. Creating national guidelines for hospital assessment and management services coding, having more discussion of compliance concerns, and improving knowledge of functionalities embedded in EHRs are three areas that hospitals and the government must work on so billing requirements can be met, the AHA's president and CEO said. (11/14) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Trends & Technology  
  • Poll finds 50% rise in EMR use among U.S. physicians
    A Health Affairs survey showed a 50% increase in EMR use among primary care physicians in the U.S., although use is outpaced by that of some other countries where EMR use is nearly universal. Researchers also found the capability for electronic sharing of patient data is mostly concentrated in bigger practices and those that are part of integrated health systems. (11/15) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  AAHPM News  
  • AAHPM Physician Compensation and Benefits Survey -- 2010 Report
    If you've been looking for reliable compensation and benefits information, you'll find it in this report. It examines HPM physician demographics, workload, salary and other earnings, benefits, and perquisites for a number of physician roles, including medical directors, academic program chiefs, fellowship directors, department and program directors, team physicians, clinician educators, and staff and contract physicians, in both palliative care and hospice settings. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
One thing I am convinced more and more is true and that is this: The only way to be truly happy is to make others happy. When you realize that and take advantage of the fact, everything is made perfect."
--William Carlos Williams,
American poet and physician

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