Posts tagged ‘USA’

December 23, 2013

Obamacare’s signup deadline on Monday has its exceptions


(Reuters) – For most Americans who don’t have health insurance, Monday is the deadline to sign up for coverage starting on January 1 under President Barack Obama’s healthcare law.

For others, it’s not a deadline.

There is a “hardship” exception for some that permits them not to sign up any kind of health insurance at all without facing a penalty – the hardship being problems they’ve encountered with Obamacare and its malfunctioning website

There will also be a “good faith exception” for others, according to a senior Obama administration official.

“We’ll have a special enrollment period,” the official said last week, for “all those who make a good faith effort to get enrolled by the deadline” but fail to do so.

The official did not say how the government would determine whether or not the effort was made in good faith.

Still others may simply get a break from insurance companies, which the administration has urged to be flexible with people who miss the deadline.

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from Pharmaceutical Industry digital vision

November 18, 2013

U.S. Mobile Health Audience Reaches 95 Million Adults

95 million Americans now count on their mobile phones to access health information and related mHealth resources.

That’s according to Manhattan Research‘s Cybercitizen Health U.S. 2013 study, the findings of which have now been published.

The data presented indicates that the number of Americans using mobile phones for health-related purposes is up 27 percent from just one year ago.

Smartphones have become, for many, an indispensable source of healthcare information, as 38 percent of online smartphone users agree that the device is “essential” for finding health and medical information.

Not surprisingly, the research also shows that mobile health adoption, activities and attitudes vary greatly among the patient audiences tracked.

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From Pharmaceutical Industry digital vision

November 14, 2013

Top health industry issues of 2013

PwC’s Top Health Industry Issues report includes feedback from 1,000 consumers regarding their point of view on several issues related to reform and their healthcare experience.

It is almost a cliché to observe that healthcare in America is changing rapidly. Yet the pace of the transformation is certain to quicken in 2013 with the effects of technology, consumerism, budgetary pressures and the Affordable Care Act (ACA) converging on a sector that represents nearly one-fifth of the economy. An industry that had grown accustomed to uncertainty now has a clearer picture of its future and how to better serve consumers, who are demanding the speed, convenience, transparency and results they get in other service industries.

For this year’s Top Health Industry Issues, HRI polled 1,000 consumers about a range of healthcare topics.

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November 4, 2013

Le smartphone devient essentiel dans l’écosystème médical américain | L’Atelier: Disruptive innovation

Les patients nord-américains s’habituent, non plus seulement au passage par la recherche en ligne pour vérifier les symptômes, mais aux applications mobiles.

45% des patients atteints de maladies chroniques aux États-Unis considèrent qu’Internet est devenu un outil indispensable pour la gestion au quotidien de leur système de soin, selon l’étude Cybercitizen Health 2013 menée par la société Manhattan Research. “Nous avons atteint un point d’inflexion dans la façon dont Internet est utilisé dans la santé, les patients vont au delà de la recherche de simples informations vers l’utilisation d’outils et services permettant de gérer le quotidien des soins.” expliqueRory Stanton, Analyste de Manhattan Research. Au delà des patients atteints de maladies chroniques, ce sont dorénavant 44% des individus interrogés qui reconnaissent la nécessité d’utiliser Internet dans la préparation de leurs choix médicaux. Ce besoin se répercute sur l’utilisation des applications de santé mobile. Que ce soit la recherche d’information, ou l’utilisation d’applications médicales dédiées, le smartphone est en train de devenir un des principaux outil dans le renouvellement de la relation de l’individu, patient ou non, au monde médical.

Environ un quart de la population américaine

En effet, en parallèle à cette évolution des usages Internet vers un support aux soins médicaux, la pénétration des smartphones et de la couverture en haut débit permet à l’équipement mobile de prendre une place importante comme médium d’information. 38% des utilisateurs en ligne définissent ainsi comme “essentiel” leur smartphone dans la recherche d’informations médicales. Or ces utilisateurs sont en nombre croissant depuis la fin des années 2000. Si en 2012, l’étude Cybercitizen Health avait dénombré 75 millions de ces utilisateurs au sein des USA, l’analyse des informations obtenues en 2013 table déjà sur une augmentation de plus de 27%, portant ce chiffre à un peu moins de 100 millions de personnes. Le smartphone n’est plus seulement pertinent en tant qu’outil mobile, de ce que les rédacteurs de l’étude appellent l’utilisation “on the go”, mais comme outil préféré aux équipements fixes traditionnels, même au sein du domicile. En l’occurrence, ce sont particulièrement les applications de gestion de symptômes qui s’avèrent importantes. L’étude a ainsi dressé un classement des maladies portant à l’utilisation de ces applications mobiles, comme la cystique fibreuse, l’acné, ou la déficience d’hormones de croissance.

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August 18, 2013

Significant mobile health growth predicted in next 4 years –

The trend could be slowed, however, as app developers await regulatory guidance from the FDA.

Physicians should prepare for a dramatic increase in the number of patients using mobile devices to monitor and track their health. They also should be ready for mobile devices to become an integrated part of patient treatment plans.

This advice comes from a market report predicting that mobile health will become an increasingly important part of overall health care delivery. A report from research2guidance, a market research firm in Berlin, foresees that the mobile health market will grow by 61% to reach $26 billion by 2017. The majority of that growth will not come from app downloads, but rather hardware, including wearable sensors that will work in conjunction with downloaded apps. Also poised for growth are telemedicine services made possible through mobile devices. The report was published in July by the firm Research and Markets.

The report says mobile health is growing in three phases: pilot, commercialization and integrated. The industry is moving beyond the pilot phase and into the commercialization phase, which is described as a time when the industry will launch a variety of new applications and business models to support the growth.

Report author Ralf-Gordon Jahns, managing director of research2guidance, said physicians are starting to realize that there are great mobile solutions available to help them treat patients. The benefits of mobile technology for patient monitoring and behavior modifications have been cited in several use case studies, he said. Now physicians are looking for the best solutions to help patients. The report also said physicians will be delivering services such as remote consults through mobile devices.

America leads the way

Jahns said the U.S. is more advanced in the mobile health market than other countries because of its higher level of trust in mobile technology, as evidenced by the increasing interest in wearable sensors. A separate report in March from the San Diego research firm ON World also pointed to growth in the wearable sensor market. It said 515 million wearable sensors will be shipped globally by 2017, up from 107 million in 2012.

The integrated phase will involve the integration of mobile apps into traditional treatment plans. Insurers are expected to replace consumers as the primary purchasers of mobile health solutions. But, Jahns wrote, the biggest barrier to reaching the integrated phase is the lack of regulations. In the U.S., many are awaiting regulations from the Food and Drug Administration.

The FDA has indicated plans to regulate the mobile app market for certain apps, but hasn’t issued guidance on which apps will need oversight. The mHealth Regulatory Coalition said the lack of clarification from the FDA has left many developers in limbo. The coalition consists of organizations involved in or supporting mobile health as well as medical device and app developers who will be affected by FDA regulation.

“Right now, many companies are sitting on the sidelines and not developing higher-risk apps because the rules are unclear,” the coalition said in a policy statement published June 18. “They do not want to invest in developing a quality system, taking the time to develop evidence and submitting that evidence to the FDA as needed if their competition is going to be able to undercut them by not investing in FDA compliance.” The coalition is calling on the FDA to publish its guidance on mobile apps as soon as possible.

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From Pharmaceutical Industry digital vision

July 30, 2013

Walgreen Rebrands Clinics As Obamacare Launches

Walgreens, the nation’s largest drugstore chain, says it will rebrand its retail clinics currently known as Take Care and call them Healthcare Clinic.”(Image credit: Getty Images via @daylife) Walgreen Co.

Walgreen this morning said it would rebrand its more than 370 retail clinics as “Healthcare Clinics” in a move that better reflects the drugstore chains shift to a company providing medical care services.

Walgreens, which is replacing the current Take Care Clinic name, is moving aggressively into providing health care services, announcing earlier this year to the dismay of some doctor groups that it would begin managing chronic care conditions.

In April, Walgreens said its clinics, to be named “Healthcare Clinic,” and are staffed by advanced degree nurses known as nurse practitioners were expanding the scope of the health care services beyond routine maladies like treating strep throat or pink eye. The company did not disclose how much it was spending on the rebranding effort.

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