News & Information
Exercise Might Slow Cognitive Decline
Written by Editor   
Wednesday, April 30, 2014 01:44 PM

Vigorous exercise can help preserve some aspects of cognition in older people without dementia, a researcher said here.

In a randomized controlled trial, at least 15 minutes of aerobic exercise a day led to significant improvement compared with sedentary controls.  After 15 months, the exercisers had better cognitive status and psychomotor speed, but did no better in episodic memory.  There is mounting evidence -- although usually with small effect sizes -- that supports the idea that aerobic exercise is good for cognition.

EHR – Watch OUT!
Written by Editor   
Wednesday, April 30, 2014 01:39 PM

Physicians can expect criminals to increasingly target their electronic health records (EHRs) for patient information that they can sell on the black market for $50 per chart, warns the FBI. 

The agency's Cyber Division issued a memo earlier this month.  Criminals see a golden opportunity in healthcare information technology. It's an opportunity born of the mandatory shift to EHRs, laxer safeguards in healthcare compared with those in the retail and financial sectors, and "a higher financial pay-out for medical records in the black market," according to the FBI.

Health Insurance Plans Scramble To Figure 2015 Rates
Written by Editor   
Wednesday, April 30, 2014 01:30 PM

With the results sure to affect politics as well as pocketbooks, health insurers are already preparing to raise rates next year for plans issued under the Affordable Care Act.

But their calculation about how much depends on their ability to predict how newly enrolled customers -- for whom little is known regarding health status and medical needs -- - will affect 2015 costs.

WellPoint, the biggest player in the online exchanges, is already talking about double-digit rate hikes for 2015.

"It is an actuarial nightmare to try to guess what you're going to get,"

Top 5 Reasons Why Medical Internists Are Sued
Written by Editor   
Wednesday, April 30, 2014 01:25 PM
Researchers set out to find the reasons why internists were sued for medical malpractice and to determine how successful the lawsuits were. 

"These data confirm that internists are vulnerable to claims related to what they do commonly -- evaluation and management activities -- and for the commonly fatal diseases that they are expected to diagnose, such as acute myocardial infarction and lung, colon, and breast cancers," the authors wrote.

The five most common reasons internists were sued were:

Do SSRI Doses Affect Suicide Risk?
Written by Editor   
Wednesday, April 30, 2014 01:20 PM

By the time you read this, there's a good chance you will have seen articles in consumer media saying that high antidepressant doses in teens and young adults increase their risk of suicide. Watch out, it's not that simple.

The study on which those articles would be based is actually a pretty good one.  It found that rates of "deliberate self-harm" (including suicide attempts as well as lesser self-injuries such as cutting) were about twice as highin those in the 10 to 24 age group who were started on selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressants at relatively high doses, compared with those taking "modal" or "below-modal" doses Moreover, that hazard ratio reflected adjustment for a self-harm propensity score, which the authors calculated from a set of known risk factors that were tallied in the claims data.

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