Monday, May 28, 2012

Evasive Action to Overbearing Healthcare Reform

With the June 28, 2012 ruling by the Supreme Court of the United States in declaring the Affordable Care Act constitutional, very important personal decisions need to be made by Joe and Jill Citizen as to how they will deal with the changes as it relates to their conscious health decisions. For instance, in order to keep the plan as cost effective as possible steps may be implemented to limit doctors in the types of treatments they can provide their patients. Is this something Joe and Jill Citizen is ready to contend with?
In the likelihood of that type of scenario affecting millions of people, there lies enormous potential for aware and free-thinking individuals to take more responsibility for their own health and well being. Preparing for the worst is, if not should be, a natural-born instinct for every human being. We prepare for bad weather by having candles or flashlights on hand should there be a power outage, going to a cellar in case of a tornado, having road salt and snow shovels on hand before the blizzard of the decade hits. Wouldn't it make sense, in the case of our health, to make preparations as well? In fact, one would say that it makes much more sense to take preventative measures to ensure our good health endures for as long as humanly possible.
The looming threat of being denied a critical medication or procedure to provide a work-around for a current ailment is a frightening prospect, even more so if your life depends on it. Scientific study has shown that many of today's sicknesses and diseases could easily be prevented with proper nutrition. Much of these findings were derived from the field of animal husbandry which, these days, is very big business. And as in any business if you have damaged product (diseased animals) your customers will not buy and you go out of business. One can quickly understand why reversing the sickness and disease in livestock would be very important to that particular business. The same applies to human health only with greater consequences if you, the product, is damaged due to nutritional deficiency.
Take, for example, the debilitating disease arthritis. For over 50 years those in the business of animal husbandry have been curing arthritis in their livestock with natural trace minerals found in the mineral blocks scattered in fields all over the world. Does it not make sense that the same concept of supplementing the diet with essential trace minerals would apply to the arthritic joints of human beings? We can readily see, in this example, the great benefits of taking preventative steps to curtailing the painful prospect of degenerative arthritis. It would be hard to believe that a free-thinking individual would prefer to wait and see if the care they may require would be granted or denied based on the cost effectiveness to a health care program. What factors would determine if treatment should be granted or denied? Age? Weight? Tax revenue generation of the patient?
Answering the call to take control of our personal health situations can be an intimidating concept to many people but it could not be more critical than it is at this moment. With certain aspects of the health care changes being put into place, the old proverb "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure," couldn't be more true.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Risks of Developing Vaginal Infection

Urinary tract infection in women (commonly known as UTI) is a bacterial infection which is known to occur when bacteria invades the sufferer's urinary tract system and multiply all through the urinary tract system. Like vagina infection, vaginal infection can cause severe symptoms like burning and or pain upon passing urine.
The urinary system helps the body filter and remove liquid waste and consists of the bladder, kidneys, urethra and ureters.
About half of the female population in the world will have at least one vagina infection in her life time, while a lot of women may suffer through several infections all trough their lifetime. A woman is much more susceptible to urinary tract infection than a man. Thankfully, infections can be easily treated using antibiotics. But, some women are prone to having recurrent UTI's than other women, and this can be pretty frustrating.
What Is the Cause of Urinary Tract Infection?
The most well known cause of urinary tract infections is bacteria from the bowel that live on the skin that is located near the vagina or rectum, which can then spread and then enter the urinary tract via the urethra. As soon as these bacteria gain access through the urethra, they then journey upward; thus causing infection in the bladder and other parts of the urinary system.
Women who have multiple sexual partners or start having sex much more frequently may also experience vagina infection more often the women who are in monogamous relationships or are celibate.
Waiting too long to pass urine is another cause of urinary tract infection. The bladder stretches to hold the urine and then contracts when urine is passed. If you wait too long to pass urine, the bladder will stretch past its capacity. Over a period of time, this can cause the bladder muscle to become weak. When the bladder is weak, it may not be able to pass out the urine totally and will contain some urine. This may increase the risk of vaginal infection.
The other risks of developing vaginal infection include:
• Diabetes 
• Pregnancy 
• Menopause 
• Having a UTI as a child

Unlike many vagina infection symptoms that are quite difficult to spot, you will be glad to know that UTI symptoms are very easy to notice, this include a really strong urge to pass urine that cannot be held; which is followed by a rather sharp/ discomforting pain or burning sensation in the urethra when you pass urine. Most times, very little urine is passed and may also be tinged with blood. You may also notice a strong urge to want pee fairly quickly and soreness may occur in the back, sides and lower abdomen

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

What Is a Holter Monitor?

A Holter monitor is a portable device that records the electrical activity of your heart for about 24 hours. Hence it is sometimes called a continuous ECG. While an ECG or an electrocardiogram also monitors the electrical activity of the heart, it provides a picture of the heart's health only for a few seconds, in fact for the time it is administered. If doctors suspect a problem, they advise that the Holter monitor be used to study the heart's electrical activity for a longer period.
Why is this test performed? 
Doctors use this monitor to further investigate arrhythmias or irregular heartbeats. The heart may beat too fast (tachycardia) or too slowly (bradycardia) or irregularly.
The Holter monitor is also deployed to detect myocardial ischemia. When this occurs, not enough oxygen rich blood is reaching the heart due to blockages in the arteries. Myocardial ischemia can also be the cause of irregular heartbeats.
How is the test performed? 
A technician will place electrodes in different parts of your chest. If sweat or chest hair prevents the electrodes from sticking to the chest, the hair will be shaved. These sensors will be connected with wires to the monitor. You can carry the device in your pocket or around your waist. You will be asked to carry on normal activities throughout the duration of the test. You will be given a form or a diary to record any abnormal events like dizziness, irregular heartbeats, or chest pain. You will be asked to note the time of such events.

You will be advised not to shower during the duration of the test. Upon completion of the test, the monitor will be returned to the cardiac center. The data is analyzed by the technician and the results forwarded to your physician.
Your physician will analyze the results and compare them to any untoward events you may have recorded in the form you will submit to the physician. 
The doctor may be able to diagnose your cardiac problems after examining the results from the Holter monitor.

Abnormal results could include arrhythmia or irregular heart rhythms or a heart block. If this device fails to show any abnormalities, then further tests may be ordered.
There are no risks to the patient wearing a Holter monitor. There may some inconvenience to you since you will not be able to shower while the monitoring of the heart is under way. While wearing the device, patients are advised to avoid metal detectors, magnets and electric blankets. is an international distributor and global provider of Portable Handheld ECG EKG Monitors and other health care products for the home, hospital, emergency and specialist environments.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

What Is An EHR Consultant?

The federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (PPACA) contains provisions to make Electronic Health Records (EHRs) the industry standard in maintaining patients' protected medical information in electronic format rather than on paper, which has been the standard until now. While the law contains provisions to exclude smaller medical practices from adopting its EHR provisions in the near future, all health care providers in every specialty should be aware of the implications of EHR standardization as it progresses.
An EHR consultant is a professional who can advise on the mandates established by the PPACA as they are enacted by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the federal agency charged with overseeing implementing the act's provisions. CMS is working in tandem with private health insurers, who are obligated to adopt applicable standards, as well as with individual state Medicaid agencies. The health care industry is undergoing major changes in how it maintains protected health information (PHI), and it is incumbent on providers in every health care setting to comply with these changes.
An EHR consultant understands the IT limitations of available software systems on the market, and can advise which products will best meet a health care facility's needs. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) already established safeguards and restriction on how PHI can be used. PPACA builds off HIPAA, extending patient rights and safeguards into the digital realm. New guidance and regulations are issued by CMS on a regular basis. A professional EHR consultant keeps abreast of this fluctuating regulatory atmosphere in order to offer the most current guidance on using digital PHI meaningfully and effectively, while adhering to applicable statutes and contractual obligations.
CMS has established standards of meaningful use to ensure that EHRs are developed and used according to the intent of the law. EHR management is meant to ease the transparent access of PHI through electronic media to improve patient care. This includes sharing PHI between healthcare providers to improve patient outcomes, such as electronic prescribing, as well as the format and storage requirements of digital media. An EHR consultant can recommend appropriate management protocols to control access, to encrypt data, and to provide mandated protection of patients' rights to privacy.
While medical coding and billing are a component of EHR utilization, and these operations directly the financial operations of a health care facility, CMS offers other financial incentives for providers who implement meaningful EHR technology. When providers report their progress in implementing EHRs in their practice, they are eligible for extra reimbursement depending on their performance. A professional EHR consultant will help ensure that reports are accurate and that the information provided conforms to the definitions required by CMS.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Exercising Your Way Through Pregnancy: A Guide for Expectant Mothers

Although a lot of women associate pregnancy with being lethargic and feeling heavy or unable to move, this does not mean that you should stop exercising. Doing exercises is good for anyone and is even more beneficial for expectant mothers.
The Benefits of Exercise 
Other than the obvious health benefits for both the baby and mother, there are a lot of benefits which you can get from exercising during pregnancy which you may not have initially known. Some of these great benefits can include:
• Keeping your spirits high - Pregnancy is a time of hormonal changes and body changes. Some women look gorgeous when they are pregnant but they do also put on weight. The weight gain is normal but in some cases can make a lot of mothers feel insecure. Exercise releases happy hormones which can help you feel more confident even if you look bigger than you want to
• Helping constipation - Constipation is common during pregnancy. Unfortunately, this can't really be helped but you can still relieve the symptom with regular exercise
• Help make it easier for you to deliver your baby - Delivery is one of the most painful occurrences in life. It puts tremendous strain on your body, including your joints and your heart. Since there is really no way to tell how long your labor will last, you have to be prepared and a good heart means much better endurance. In addition, exercise helps to improve our health and makes it easier to go through labor. Exercise also helps to build your resistance to pain, something which you definitely need to get you through labor.
What are the best Exercises to Do When You are Pregnant?
Not all exercises are suitable for pregnant women and there are techniques which you should follow in order to make sure that in your quest to stay fit and healthy during pregnancy, you also keep it safe for the baby. Here are a couple of exercises that are generally safe for women and can provide a pretty good work out too:
1. Swimming - Swimming is recommended for pregnant women and overweight women because it does not put as much strain on the body as other forms of exercise. The buoyancy of the water helps keep you light which in turn ensure that you don't put too much strain on yourself. In addition, because it is cardiovascular, it is good for strengthening the heart and building endurance
2. Walking - This is one of the safest forms of exercise for women and can be done whatever trimester you are in. The advantage to walking is that it doesn't put added pressure on your knees, something that is easy to do when you are pregnant because you are carrying a lot of added weight. It is important however, to make sure that you have the right shoes with good support.
3. Stretching - The trick to a good exercise routine is being able to use some of your body's natural resistance. Stretching helps you do this and at the same time helps keep your joints limber; something that is really important during child birth.
Just because you are pregnant, it doesn't mean that you have to stop exercising. Keeping yourself healthy is crucial during pregnancy and especially crucial for both you and your baby during birth.