Search for: "German hospitals" - 730 articles found

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Health Innovation Night

Digitization: New therapy approaches for the patient 'hospital'

Digitalization offers great potential for hospitals: diseases can be detected earlier, internal processes more efficiently organized, health expenditure reduced and patients better cared for. Artificial intelligence, robotics, sensor technology, big data, additive manufacturing or augmented reality - the technologies for this have long been available.

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Microbiology & hygiene

HAIs are one problem – MDROs another

In view of the increase of multidrug-resistant organisms (MDRO), the World Health Organisation (WHO) has declared antibiotic resistance one of the biggest threats to global health. MDROs have become a major problem particularly in hospitals. Professor Dr Georg Häcker, President of the German Society of Hygiene and Microbiology (DGHM) and Director of the Institute for Microbiology and Hygiene at…

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Avoiding incidents

The digital early warning system

Staff shortages are among the most urgent healthcare problems. While digitisation might offer relief, unfortunately many hospitals lag behind in transforming their processes. As pressure mounts, the chorus is heard: ‘It’s high time for bold changes’. Indeed, this was the motto of the 2019 Western German Health Congress held in Cologne, an event that focuses on health policy and health…

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Photonics

Rapid tissue analysis: Laser light detects tumors

Cancer - this diagnosis affects almost every second German at some point in his life. It is the second most frequent cause of death in Germany. But the earlier the disease is diagnosed, the greater are the chances of surviving it. A team of researchers from Jena present a groundbreaking new method for the rapid, gentle and reliable detection of tumors with laser light at the leading trade fair…

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Infection control

Knowledge is one thing - implementation another

Insufficient knowledge of infection control, resulting in insufficient compliance, increases the risk of hospital acquired infections (HAIs) and multiresistant pathogens that put patients at risk. At the 2019 Annual General Meeting of the German Society for Hygiene and Microbiology e.V. (DGHM) in Göttingen, Professor Frauke Mattner, Senior Consultant at the Institute of Hygiene, Kliniken der…

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Wishlist

Cancer prevention scrutinised

The latest study by the German Society for Haematology and Oncology (DGHO), ‘Prognosis for population-based morbidity for common cancers in Germany – impact on provision’ has made it clear that due to demographic developments in Germany and to medical advances in oncology, the requirements for cancer patients’ care are ever more diverse. The increase in newly diagnosed cancer patients is…

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Differentiate and select

Myths and truths about antibiotics, antiseptics and vaccination

Sixty-two percent of Germans fear antibiotic resistance, according to a survey recently conducted by the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment. ‘Patients colonised by multi-resistant pathogens are particularly scared. But many of these fears are rooted in misunderstandings,’ explained Professor Mathias Pletz, Director of the Institute of Infection Medicine and Hospital Hygiene at…

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Beyond ecomics

How Axonlab puts social responsibility into practice

Since the firm was created almost 30 years ago, Roland Steger, the founder and CEO of Axon Lab AG, always regarded it as important for it to help resolve social challenges as well as achieving commercial success: “It was always clear to me that a purely economic, profit-focused business strategy is not sufficient in the long term. A spirit of partnership and cooperation, supporting projects…

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A look into the crystal ball

Experts debate predictive potential of AI

‘Hello, John? You are about to suffer a heart attack – please come to the hospital immediately!’ Will we, one day, be collected by emergency doctors even before we’re ill? If it was up to some AI experts at Medica 2018, this could be the case – soon. Held during the event, the Health IT Forum examined the predictive potential of artificial intelligence – although some obstacles must…

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Methods, quality assurance, commercial providers issues

Molecular testing takes a huge leap

In the terms of success in revolutionary cancer treatment, molecular genetic examination procedures have developed immensely over recent years. They now range from conventional polymerase chain reactions (PCR) or fluorescence-in-situ hybridisation (FISH) to Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) with analysis of the entire exome or genome (Whole-Exome, WES or Whole-Genome, WGS) and of the transcriptome…

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Progressing with a strong partner

Xenios and Fresenius Medical Care take the next step to multi-organ support

In October 2016, Xenios became a part of Fresenius Medical Care (FME), the world’s leading provider of products and services for people with chronic kidney failure. The integration of the expertise from FME and Xenios and thus the combination of the companies’ competences strongly enhances treatment options in critical care within the intensive care unit (ICU) of hospitals across the world.…

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High-performance tube sorting

Easy access: The new lightweight target bin with permanent display

More than 16 years of experience in the complex matter of workflows within clinical labs leads to the latest generation of ASP SortPro tube sorter. To make the investment in sorting devices efficient, these must be integrated perfectly into the workflow. The ASP team sold hundreds of tube sorters to clinical labs and hospitals worldwide. In all these installations the German engineers have…

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Elderly in the ICU

Can flu vaccine reduce stroke risk?

It appears that an influenza vaccine does not just work when it comes to influenza. A new study shows that elderly people who have been admitted to an intensive care units have less risk of dying and of suffering a blood clot or bleeding in the brain if they have been vaccinated. And this is despite the fact that they are typically older, have more chronic diseases and take more medicine then…

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Improvement of cardiac care

Rapid myocardial infarction verification

The use of troponin assays to rule in or rule out myocardial infarction (MI) rapidly is critical on several levels. The quick result can reassure the patient that they have not had a heart attack and can return home safely; or, in the event of MI, the relevant treatment can start very soon. It also ensures that clinicians can make the right decision with confidence. Troponin levels have been the…

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Hospital hygiene

Nosocomial infections: a positive trend, but...

Hospital hygiene and how Germany compares in a European survey is somewhat divisive. Some believe Germany does well, whilst others emphasise the need to improve and for a stronger alignment with countries such as the Netherlands. As hygiene specialist Professor Petra Gastmeier, at the Institute of Hygiene and Environmental Medicine in Charité University Medical Centre Berlin, pointed out:…

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Trade fair

MEDICA 2019 focuses on future topics and growth markets

As a result of the final phase of exhibitor registrations for the world’s leading medical trade fare MEDICA 2019 in Düsseldorf (running between 18 and 21 November), one thing is already apparent: Exhibitors have a positive view of the updated allocation of subjects to the trade fair halls and are aligning their participation to the new structure with regard to target group orientation and…

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Xpomet preview

A passion for value-based innovations in medicine

International leaders in medicine aim at analyzing, evaluating, and incorporating the major developments in the field into the ecosystem of Xpomet Medicinale. These leaders forming the Medical Board met on 20 March to discuss the trending topics and how to approach them regarding the structure and goals of the Festival. Christian Dierks, owner of the innovation consultancy for healthcare and life…

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Organs and qualified surgeons drop

Will transplant medicine have a future in Germany?

‘Do we want transplant medicine? And if yes, what are we prepared to change in public policy, society and medicine?’ This question characterises the current situation within this medical discipline. Since the 2011 transplant scandal, there has been a steady decline in organ donations according to the German Foundation for Organ Donation (DSO). Although there were some 1,200 transplant donors…

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Japanese and German surgeons seek answers

Smiles solidify a surgical team

Surgeons are growing older and the lack of junior surgeons is widespread – a situation acknowledged by most experts at the annual congress of the German Society of Surgery (DGCH) in Berlin, who debated whether the need is greater to increase specialists or, on the other hand, generalists. Both sides produced convincing arguments, but a third group took an entirely different tack. In the session…

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Surgical interventions

Technology and team spirit to ensure future talent

The number of surgical interventions in Germany over the last ten years has increased by around 30%, but it would be wrong to talk of a heyday – mainly due to a lack of young talent, says Prof. Dr. Jörg Fuchs. The president of the German Society of Surgery (DGCH) and director of the Clinic and Polyclinic for Paediatric Surgery and Paediatric Urology at Tübingen University Hospital talks about…

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Hematology

Recommendations on venous blood sampling

Pre-analytics, in particular venous blood sampling has a major impact on the quality of laboratory diagnostic results. An estimated 75 percent of all "lab errors" are caused by errors during pre-analytics. Thus, the German Medical Association’s national guideline on laboratory diagnostics includes detailed guidance on pre-analytics, in particular venous blood sampling. In their…

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Innovation award IERA

This robot destroys hospital bugs

The 15th Innovation and Entrepreneurship Award in Robotics and Automation (IERA) goes to the “UVD Robot” by Blue Ocean Robotics. The collaborative robot autonomously drives around hospitals while emitting concentrated UV-C light to eliminate bacteria and other harmful microorganisms. As a result, hospitals can guarantee a 99.99% disinfection rate – reducing the risk for patients, staff and…

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AI, IT, data management

Digital attack on cancer

Several research groups at Berlin Institute of Health (BIH) are working on digitally combating cancer. The main goal is to combine and jointly evaluate existing information. With 500,000 new cancer cases every year in Germany alone, it is worthwhile comparing experiences with different diagnostic and treatment methods, thus allowing more patients to benefit from the most promising approaches. In…

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Anti-infection strategies

Antibiotic stewardship programmes bear fruit

Today’s dilemma for hospitals and institutions are increasingly multi-resistant bacteria and decreasingly effective antibiotics to beat them. New substances to fight pathogens are not on the horizon. What can be done? Professor Constanze Wendt, microbiology and infection biology specialist at MVZ Labor Dr. Limbach & Kollegen GbR, in Heidelberg, Germany, describes current anti-infection…

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Management prize for German hospitals

A long overdue prize finally recognises successful management teams and concepts in German hospitals: the RFH Hospital Innovation Prize, jointly sponsored by the College for Applied Sciences, Cologne, and the Institute for Healthcare Economics and Medical Care Research. With 12,500 EUR the purse is not (yet) particularly stellar, but it's the thought that counts.

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The potential insights are invaluable; we should not waste this source

Medical data mining

The treasure trove of healthcare data waiting to be explored in German hospitals is immense and could provide invaluable insights. However, what about data security and privacy? Andreas Klüter, CTO of Empolis Information Management GmbH, a new business entry in healthcare IT, spoke with European Hospital about medical text mining and the need for ethics discussion.

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Long-term communication success in digitised healthcare

E-health in Denmark

The Danes have shown for some time how e-health can work successfully on a national level. The health portal sundhed.dk (= health), initiated in 2001 and launched in 2003, is part of the public healthcare system. As of January 2018, the Danish national strategy describes sundhed.dk as a national access point for personal health-related data for hospitals, general practitioners and communities,…

German hospitals fare well despite the economic crisis

In its sixth issue, the Hospital Rating Report, first introduced to the public in Berlin during the 2010 Capital City Congress for Medicine and Health, again examined the financial situation of German hospitals. The study shows financial improvement during 2009 and 2010, despite the economic crisis, but forecasts that it will deteriorate again from 2011.

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Medica 2018

The Czech med-tech market is thriving

The Czech Republic has a long tradition of ground-breaking medical innovations. At Medica 2018, the presence of Czech companies and traders underlined that medical devices and technologies from this country have continuing strength and value. Having recorded steady growth over the past few years, the Czech medical technology sector now produces a volume of around €870 million. 13,400 people…

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Generation Y in hospitals today

Could the widely predicted shortage of qualified staff in German hospitals soon lead to tough competition for members of Generation Y, ultimately resulting in a change in hospital structures and a revolution in the country’s total healthcare system? Perhaps. EH spoke with Professor Christian Schmidt, Medical Director and Head of the Board at Rostock University Hospital, and with consultant…

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Gaining ground: Modern financing instruments for hospitals

Cars, cranes, IT - leasing has become a very popular method of financing. And it is about to conquer the ICUs, ORs and imaging departments of hospitals and clinics. According to the association of German leasing companies (Bundesverband Deutscher Leasing-Unternehmen e.V.), in 2005 the leasing volume for medical technology increased by 20 percent compared to the prior year.

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Brain cancer

Typical mutation in cancer cells stifles immune response

The exchange of a single amino acid building block in a metabolic enzyme can lead to cancer. In addition, it can impair the immune system. It thus blocks the body’s immune response in the battle against the mutant molecule and also impedes immunotherapy against brain cancer. This finding opens new insights into cancer development and progression and it also suggests that rethinking antitumor…

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Cost-effective telemedical eye screening

Smartphones save sight

About one in ten people in southern India is diabetic. Around one in three suffers from a so-called diabetic retinopathy (DR), a disease of the retina caused by diabetes. Untreated, DR is often the cause of visual impairment and blindness. However, many of those affected have symptoms only in the late stages of the disease. Early detection is therefore all the more important in order to intervene…

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Germany´s university hospitals suffer economic crisis

Among Germany´s 2,087 hospitals, the country´s 32 university hospitals, employing 180,000 to care for up to two million patients, may appear to play a marginal role. However, their triad of research, education and applied medicine endow the university hospitals with enormous significance, for they not only represent medical science and research but also educate the nation's future physicians.…

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German hospital groups launch new quality initiative

The “quality medicine initiative” aims at ensuring and improving the quality of diagnostics and therapy. It was launched today by six German hospitals and hospital groups and will be supported by the physicians' association of Berlin.

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Ein aktueller Versuch

Could telemedicine cure Germany’s health system?

The term telemedicine has been around since the 1980s. Ten years later Deutsche Telekom demonstrated the first applications designed to provide medical services to people living remotely such as (based on American ideas) astronauts in space, workers on oilrigs or injured personnel in field hospitals. Since then, the concept of medical care across long distances via telecommunication has not…

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Endoprosthetics

Joint efforts: New guidelines for arthroplasty

According to the Swedish Knee Arthroplasty Register, knee arthroplasty – with a revision rate of five percent after ten years – is one of the most successful surgical interventions of the post-World War II decades. The most frequent reasons for revision are loosening or infections, whereas patient dissatisfaction is often caused by mobility impairment and pain. Since many adverse events are…

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Roadmap

The German IT security act

German hospitals, having ‘critical infrastructure’ components, are granted a two-year transition period to comply with the IT security act (ITSiG) the German Parliament adopted in June. Many hospitals are already bellyaching about the financial burden being too high with tran­sition period too short. According to the recently published Hospital Rating Report 2015, every sixth hospital in the…

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Nosocomial infections

Global-PPS: Hospital antibiotic resistance study tops 200k

BioMérieux and the Laboratory of Medical Microbiology at the University of Antwerp announced at ECCMID (European Congress of Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases) the 2018 results of the Global Point Prevalence Survey (GLOBAL-PPS), a study of antibiotic use and antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in hospitals around the world. Since its launch in 2015, this survey has been conducted in…

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Equipment for Iraq

Fulfilling a promise to Mosul with point-of-care ultrasound

Mosul, Iraq’s second city, is slowly rebuilding its healthcare infrastructure after years of war and destruction. Dr Henryk Pich, a consultant anaesthetist and intensive care physician at the University of Dresden, Germany, visited the region soon after the fighting had ended, supported by the independent aid organisation CADUS. Moved by the makeshift treatment centres he witnessed in the…

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Artificial Intelligence

AI allocates cases to the right radiologist

Synergy is key to ensuring Artificial Intelligence (AI) can play a critical role in helping radiologists raise their game. Integrating AI with innovative platforms to optimise workflow and make diagnosis more efficient, whilst also creating more accurate reports, offers enormous potential benefits to patients, clinicians and hospitals, according to industry specialist Tomer Zonens, Worldwide…

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No predicted boom in medical tourism

'The world at home in German hospitals' — thousands of wealthy foreign patients coming to boost budgets, this was the hope of many hospitals. Then along came a sobering study from Sozial und Seniorenwirtschaftszentrums GmbH (SWZ), conducted within the framework of Healthcare Export Projects, which are funded by the German Ministry for Education and Research to design, establish and market…

Hospitals cannot survive without IT

A study carried out this year by the VHitG e.V. (a German association of IT solutions providers for healthcare) produced the first complete market analysis of systems installed in hospitals, along with an evaluation of the use of IT through the subjective appraisals of the users. The objective of the standardised online questionnaire, in which 480 people participated, was to determine the trends,…

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Guest patient boom is a fizzle

"The world at home in German hospitals" - that was the hope of many German hospitals which wanted to attract well-heeled foreign patients to bolster their budgets. The high expectations of the business model "guest patient", however, were disappointed as a sobering study of the Sozial- und Seniorenwirtschaftszentrums GmbH (swz/IHT) conducted in the framework Health Care Export Projects shows.

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Hygiene and microbiology meeting

No all clear for nosocomial infections

Experts at the 70th Annual Meeting of the German Society for Hygiene and Microbiology, held in Bochum, exchanged information on newly discovered resistances. ‘Specifically, resistance against a class of antibiotics that has, so far, always been viewed as a reserve appears to be developing more intensively than previously assumed,’ explained Professor Sören Gatermann, congress president and…

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Surgeons ‘fire a warning shot’ over Germany’s hospitals

Are surgeons still opting for surgical procedures solely for medical need – or are economics forcing their decisions? That vexatious question, posed at the 129th Congress of the German, was spurned at the outset by Markus W Büchler MD, President of the Society and Medical Director of the Department of General, Visceral and Transplant Surgery at University Hospital Heidelberg. ‘We surgeons…

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Large hospital acquisitions in Germany

Fresenius subsidiary Helios on its way to become market leader. According to a study* of company mergers, with the privatisation of hospitals, Germany is in an exceptional position in Europe. No other EU country sold so many and such large hospitals so quickly as this country has done. The concept of selling entire university hospitals is unknown elsewhere in Europe.

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Cardiology III

Restrictive ruling on cardiac procedure

In the future, TAVIs can only be carried out in German hospitals with cardiac surgery departments and cardiac wards, as decided by the German Government’s Expert Panel on Health (G-BA) last January. An interim arrangement in force until 2016 is anticipated for Heart Centres that currently carry out the TAVI procedure without cardiac surgery departments on site. The Federal Ministry of Health is…

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Nosocomial infections

Hygiene begins between the ears

"Infection prevention and control is a matter of awareness and continuous education," says Dr Ernst Tabori, Medical Director of the German Consulting Centre for Hospital Epidemiology and Infection Control (BZH), at the University Hospital Freiburg, specialises in building hygiene in hospitals and outpatient healthcare facilities, as well as surgical units. Report: Anja Behringer

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Quality management

Quality management has been an integral part of the German healthcare sector for years. Doing without it is unimaginable, particularly in terms of increasing economical and competitive pressures on hospitals. Nonetheless, she asks: Does investments in quality management pay off?

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Well organised against EHEC

In late May, a particularly aggressive and new strain of enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) posed an enormous challenge for northern German hospitals. In Hamburg, the focus of the epidemic, more than 1,000 people fell ill, about 180 of them seriously, after getting into contact with the bacterium. Report: Meike Lerner

Post-menopause physical activity reduces breast cancer risk

The breast cancer risk of women who are regularly physically active in the postmenopausal phase is reduced by about one third compared to relatively inactive women, according to a study conducted by the German Cancer Research Centre (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ) and the University Hospitals of Hamburg-Eppendorf.

One of Europe's biggest e-health projects

Following an agreement between Wolfgang Pföhler, Chairman of the Management Board of German company Rhön-Klinikum AG, and Professor Erich R Reinhardt, Member of the Managing Board of Siemens AG and President of Siemens Medical Solutions, the hospital group is to install Siemens' WebEPA, an intra-facility electronic patient file, to link its 46 hospitals and respective medical care centres --…

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Launch of Optima CT660 at German Congress of Radiology

GE Healthcare has now announced the sales launch of the Optima CT660*. The new system is a modular, all-round computer tomography (CT) product for all applications that uses extremely low doses of radiation, is economical with electricity and is extremely cost-effective. It is especially suitable for use in clinics and general hospitals. GE Healthcare is unveiling the groundbreaking 64-slice CT…

One of Europe's biggest e-health projects

Following an agreement between Wolfgang Pföhler, Chairman of the Management Board of German company Rhön-Klinikum AG, and Professor Erich R Reinhardt, Member of the Managing Board of Siemens AG and President of Siemens Medical Solutions, the hospital group is to install Siemens' WebEPA, an intra-facility electronic patient file, to link its 46 hospitals and respective medical care centres —…

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DRUG resistance

Cut prescriptions and choose treatments wisely!

Prescribing antibiotics for a viral infection with fever, a cold and a cough? There is no point! This is the best-known example of over-use in medicine. There are also numerous examples of diagnostic procedures and therapies that are pointless, yet still being doled out in surgeries and hospitals – sometimes even harming a patient. This is set to change, according to the German Society of…

Second stage of German laboratory reform in force

Since 1 January 2008 laboratory groups have been invoicing their regional Associations of Statutory Health Insurance (Kassenärztliche Vereinigung - KV) directly — a measure meant to reduce lab costs, create more transparency and strengthen the role of on-site labs in doctors' surgeries. For physicians, this reform means that the decision that laboratory values will be requested has become more…

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Mobility IT

Medical notepads will soon be a thing of the past in doctors' offices and hospitals. More and more medical applications for smartphones and tablet PCs are coming onto the market, and many of them are introduced at Düsseldorf's MEDICA

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DICOM 2009

State of the art IT in a vintage venue: From 2 to 4 July 2009, venerable Waldhausen castle near Mainz, Germany, will host an expert forum on future-oriented developments in medical IT and medical technology in the German-speaking countries. DICOM 2009 is the ideal place to obtain first-hand and hands-on information on the newest trends in RIS and PACS as well as DICOM and IHE standards. Professor…

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New staining technology

Staining is an art – ColorAX2 will become your favourite artist

ColorAX2 with its new staining technology offers you low staining reagents consumption. The compact, lightweight and autonomous system features 10 independent staining chambers and allows easy and clean procedures. The unique technology of ColorAX2 prevents cross-contamination and significantly reduces the consumption of reagents and waste. Besides it helps you reduce your operation costs. The…

Berlin's treatment centres

Founded and managed by Prof Peter Schlag, the Charité Comprehensive Cancer Centre (CCCC) co-ordinates cancer diagnostics and therapies across all medical disciplines. Interdisciplinary tumour boards decide on therapies/strategies; cooperation is close with general practitioners, regional hospitals and clinics.

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New network could lower accidents mortality

Surgeons and radiologists unite to ease image transfers. Around 30-35,000 people a year are severely injured in accidents and need urgent, appropriate and competent care within minutes. The TeleCooperation TNW project, a new development in Germany’s medical care for severely injured patients, links with several hundred hospitals to ensure the rapid transfer of image data across the country.

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Malaria Treatment

Soon to be Simpler, More Flexible, and More Efficient?

Malaria infections may soon be treated much more efficiently than they are at present. Researchers at the Universities of Bayreuth and Jerusalem have developed a novel drug release procedure for this purpose. The procedure enables the active ingredient Artemisone to be administered reliably at quantities and time intervals that are tailored exactly to the patients’ individual needs. The…

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Nosocomial infections I

Microbes vs. viruses

In European acute care hospitals, on any given day, an estimated 80,000 patients – roughly six percent of all patients – receive antimicrobial treatment to fight a healthcare associated infection (HAI), according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). Report: Walter Depner

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Healthcare delivery on the move

The recent Swiss eHealth Summit, a Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) event supported by key organisations, drew 600 leaders from hospitals, policymaking and the industry. Among the key topics: how IT enables access to information in a mobile environment, referred to by speaker Uwe Buddrus as mHealth.

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Work analysis

The problem is ubiquitous: Due to their workload, medical teams cannot accomplish their tasks to everyone’s satisfaction during regular working hours. Is the solution to raise staffing levels? More politics? At a political level a framework could be created but its actual implementation must occur within a facility, because that is where work schedules are drawn up, writes Denise Hennig,…

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The first European Hospital Conference

Directed by the Gesellschaft Deutscher Krankenhaustag (GDK) the EHC will open with an examination of and debate on the current European health policy and the impact of the EU patients’ rights directive. Passed by the European Council of Ministers in February, these guidelines envisage patients having cross-border access to healthcare services, inclusive of a free choice of doctors and…

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Certificate

How Blue is your hospital?

Today’s hospitals must achieve sustained efficiency on an economic, ecological, qualitative and social level. However, only those that know their own weaknesses can act. Interviewed by European Hospital, Jens Schneider, head of Siemens Healthcare Consulting, introduces Blue Hospital certification, conceived to scrutinise an entire hospital. Interview: Sascha Keutel

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Digital health in Germany

Between revolution and slow-moving evolution

The spectrum of the Digital Health ranges from online information, to the digitisation of processes (e.g. clinical pathways in hospitals), the evaluation of big data (e.g. routine data/secondary healthcare data), medical technology, diagnostics and therapy to billing procedures of payers.

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POCT brings values

Bedside testing of parameters has been introduced in clinical practice much earlier than laboratory testing: In past centuries, not only were temperature or pulse rate taken at the point of care (POC), but also qualitative blood or urine analysis were performed right next to a patient’s bed

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2-D building navigation

People are confronted daily with finding their way in new buildings and building complexes. Generally these are intricate, have numerous sections distributed among different houses and/or floors. Whether in hospitals, rehabilitation clinics, airports, or other large building complexes, finding the way to a particular destination can be an extremely difficult or even an impossible undertaking.

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Restructuring in the hospital sector

The hospital sector has recently been facing increased competition law scrutiny, in particular in Germany. During the last few years the German Federal Cartel Office (FCO) has made it clear on a number of occasions that mergers between hospitals (private as well as public-law hospitals) are just as much subject to competition law provisions as any other merger cases.

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Successful start

TRUMPF’s youngest child exceeds all expectations. Since November 2012, the active assistance system ViKY has been a new member in the TRUMPF product portfolio. As many as 36 orders from Europe and the Middle East has the medical technology company received so far - five of them from Turkish hospitals solely.

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Siemens Biograph mCT PET/CT

Siemens Healthcare reported at the annual meeting of the European Association of Nuclear medicine (EANM) in Barcelona, Spain, that leading hospitals in England, France, Germany and Monaco have shown strong interest and adoption of the Biograph mCT, the worlds first molecular CT, to fuel advanced diagnostic capabilities and to drive greater workflow efficiencies.

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Breast Care Solutions from Siemens at the German Radiology Congress

Siemens Healthcare was presenting its latest solutions for the early detection and treatment of breast cancer at the German Radiology Congress in Berlin. These Breast Care Solutions include a variety of imaging procedures, such as ultrasound, mammography, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), supplemented by IT and laboratory diagnostic solutions. Siemens places special focus on the third…

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MEDICA 2009: Successful anniversary

The specialists from hospitals and doctors’ surgeries obviously did not want to miss out on the 40th anniversary of MEDICA. Over the four days of the event this, the world’s largest medical trade fair (from 18 to 21 November 2009), registered almost 138,000 trade visitors from over 100 countries (previous year: 137,000 visitors). 45% of visitors came from abroad (2008: 42%), a particularly…

GE Healthcare cooperates with AeroScout

GE Healthcare in Europeand AeroScout announced today that they have integrated GE’s AssetPlus™ application with AeroScout’s Wi-Fi RFID solution targeted for European markets. The combined solution adds real-time asset location information to GE’s Maintenance and Facility Management software and helps streamline key business processes. Additionally, the integration enables hospitals to…

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Do you know the right financing strategy for your hospital?

Since the beginning of the global economic crisis the question of whether and how much hospital managers should invest in updating medical technology has become more complicated. Fear of making the wrong decisions and insecurity around future budgets make it even more important to find trustworthy and competent financial solutions shaped to the specific needs of individual hospitals. VR Medico,…

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Radiology in Europe

A German or Swiss paradise?

The current political framework changes healthcare structures and competitive dynamics for medical services providers. These issues were raised at the 11th Management and Strategy Congress MARA (Management in Radiology) in Bonn, in autumn 2015. Dr. Martin Maurer, one of the congress organisers, explained: ‘The objective of the MARA Congress is not to hold pretty lectures but primarily to…

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Neurologists — an endangered species?

Irish and German neurology associations warn of an imminent shortage of neurologists. In Ireland, according to experts the situation is “lacking at best” and “catastrophic at worst”. German physicians as well detect increasing deficiencies in neurological care coverage primarily due to an aging population and concomitant morbidity.

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40th anniversary

As the German Society of Neuroradiology 40th annual meeting approached (Venue: Dresden. 31 August - 3 September), Professors Martin Schumacher (Freiburg), President of the German Society of Neuroradiology (GSN) and Rüdiger von Kummer (Dresden), the meeting's President, examine the history and potential in this medical field

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Care and patient safety

One of the major nursing congresses in the German-speaking countries is the Southern German Nursing Day which took place on 7 October 2008 at the University Hospital Munich. One focus of this year's event was the question whether and how modifications of and curtailing nursing services will impact patient safety.

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Transparency and benchmarking

Late last year, at the German Hospital Procurement Congress in Berlin, we met with Durral R Gilbert, President of the US firm Premier Supply Chain Services, who was presenting cost-cutting strategies that reach far beyond reducing consumables and equipment prices – strategies that might also help hospitals in Europe.

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Cardiology I

Chest pain units in Germany

The German care system for patients with acute and unspecific chest pain is unique in Europe. The closely knit and countrywide network of accredited Chest Pain Units (CPUs) ensures fast and targeted diagnosis of acute cardiac events. The German CPUs may soon serve as a blueprint for other European countries. The German Cardiac Society (DGK) has already accredited the first institutions – others…

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Bilateral initiation

Renowned French and German cardiovascular researchers gathered in October at the French Embassy in Berlin for a one-day symposium entitled ‘The Frontiers of Cardiovascular Research: From Basic Concepts to Novel Approaches in Therapy and Prevention’

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Ventilation-associated pneumonia

Every year in German hospitals about 15,000 patients acquire ventilation-associated pneumonias (VAP). This number, and the associated mortality, is striking enough to make it one of the topics at HAI 2010, the annual conference of the German Society for Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine (DGAI). Like many physicians, Dr Maria Deja, senior physician at the Charité Clinic for…

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Management I

Successful TopSharing

In the late 1990s, management consultant Julia K Kuark and Swiss communication consultant Hans Ulrich Locher coined the term ‘TopSharing’ – as in job-sharing but, in this case, to describe splitting a senior management role. In Germany, Dr Ulrike Ley, who coaches female doctors, considers the TopSharing model, expanded over a decade by Kuark, is a valid management model for hospitals.…

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Administrators struggle to find cost savings in hygiene and many other areas

‘Before each ward round my students and I wash our hands’ – so said Ignaz Philip Semmelweis in the mid-19th century, in his drive to reduce the hospital mortality rate. Today, the World Health Organisation states that ‘Clean care is safer care’ – and yet, particularly in recent times, the lack of hygiene in numerous hospitals has resulted in mortalities. Who is to blame? What can be…

eFA project gains accolades in Connectathon

The first Connectathon of `eFA´, a hospital-driven German electronic patient record (EPR) project was considered a success by health IT providers and hospital representatives. During the Berlin event, Siemens, iSoft, and Ispro received certificates for implementing basic eFA functionalities in their connected care solutions, writes Philipp Grätzel von Grätz

The pros and cons of hospital IT

A study* to assess the usability of hospital IT in Germany by focusing on effectiveness (functionality), efficiency (software ergonomics) and application support, has been published by the German association of manufacturers of healthcare IT solutions (Verband der Hersteller von IT-Lösungen im Gesundheitswesen – VHITG).

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Mammography screening arrives in Germany

The Kassenärztliche Vereinigungen (regional Associations of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians) are inviting women aged 50-69 years for mammography screening and, slowly but surely, the appointment books of the centres that perform this early detection examination are filling.

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Germany legislates for MRSA reporting

The UK, Denmark, Ireland, Sweden and the Netherlands already have it - an official obligation to report MRSA cases to their health authorities. Since 1 July 2009 German law has also required notification. Professor Herbert Hof, Director of the Institute for Microbiology and Hygiene at the University Hospital Mannheim, Germany, explained why such notification became essential.

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Radiology: a major player in cancer diagnostics and therapy

Today, radiology is much more than just “taking pictures”: due to the high resolution offered by modern equipment, imaging procedures are playing a key role in many medical disciplines. Per definitionem, so to speak, radiology is an interdisciplinary field and exchange with other specialists is part of the radiologist's daily routine. In particular with regard to tumor diagnostics and…

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MRSA - Keeping up with the neighbours

The border between Germany and the Netherlands in the so-called EUREGIO region is of no particular importance in the daily life of the people who live there. Every day, thousands commute between towns and cities in both countries, to work, shop or even receive medical treatment. The latter, however, presents Dutch hospitals with a problem.

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Do we need integrated care planning?

In October 2009 this question was posed to German, Swiss, Austrian and northern Italian experts at the European Health Congress. Speaking with Karoline Laarmann, Professor Günter Neubauer, Scientific Director of the European Health Congress, summarised the key features of good medical care and the different care models used in their four countries.

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Noroviruses

Lemon juice and human norovirus

Citric acid may prevent the highly contagious norovirus from infecting humans, scientists discovered from the German Cancer Research Center. Therefore, lemon juice could be a potentially safe and practical disinfectant against the most common pathogen of severe gastrointestinal infections.

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High quality care at low costs

Whilst participants at the ‘Boundary-less Hospital in Health Care Networks’ conference, organised by the Centre for Advanced Studies in Management (CASiM) at Leipzig Graduate School of Management (HHL) in mid-June agreed on the need as such, there was plenty of room to discuss exactly which changes could make the German healthcare system future-ready.

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How to overcome future staff shortages

The Medica Education Conference has been realigned and also tackles current issues from the worlds of politics and management, amongst others in a symposium on occupational and educational politics. In this context, Professor Ulrich Montgomery, President of the German Medical Association, will speak about the next generation of medical staff under the heading ‘Calling, a profession or a job?’…

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Enhanced archiving of patient data

Hitachi Data Systems Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd. (NYSE: HIT) and the only provider of Services Oriented Storage Solutions, today announced a German-wide partnership with d.velop AG. Together they will offer data storage and document management capabilities to provide cost-effective and reliable solutions for the health care sector.

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Procurement

Fundus screening enters shopping centres

Telemedicine is taking strides throughout Europe. While in Germany telemedicine projects appear to be off to a slow start (see the electronic health card), in other countries progress is going full throttle. In September, at the German-Dutch symposium ‘Using optimisation potential: Telemedicine and procurement management’ a number of Dutch approaches were presented. Report: Sylvia Schulz

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Austrian firm expands in Germany

The international laboratory group Futurelab Holding GmbH has moved into the German laboratory market following its recent acquisition of Medizinisches Versorgungszentrum (MVZ) 'Labor Dr Tiller&Kollegen'. Futurelab has a registered base in Vienna and is one of the largest suppliers of private medical laboratory services in central and east Europe (EEC countries).

The needs of migrant patients

In hospitals all over the world people of very diverse cultural backgrounds come together, whether as employees in various roles, or as patients. This means that hospital teams must deal with diverse needs, cultures and languages.

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Pharmacy storage and retrieval systems save costs

To optimise workflow and save costs in hospital pharmacies automating medication selection is increasingly popular. Since the 1980s, the firm Apostore, based in Gelsenkirchen, Germany, a subsidiary of KHT (Kommissionier- und Handhabungstechnik GmbH), has constantly extended its technological lead in this field of manufacturing, and the company reports that its Carryfix Pusher leads the market in…

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Vexing questions for anaesthetists

How can postoperative delirium and postoperative cognitive dysfunction be avoided? How is it best to address the problem of epilepsy? How can anaesthetists cope better with a patient death under anaesthesia? These difficult questions were among many addressed by specialists at HAI 2009, the annual conference of the German Society for Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine (DGAI). Report:…

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Manufacturers, please!

For 100% safety, medical product should be better labelled. While legislators, regulatory authorities and certification bodies stipulate that manufacturers should provide clear information, in reality this is not always the case, as explained by orthopaedic surgeon Jan A de Lint MD, of the Amphia Hospital in Breda and Kliniek Zestienhoven in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Since the German…

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Automated tasks

Fast, efficient, cheaper microbiology diagnostics

A fully automated clinical microbiology laboratory system went into service at Heidelberg University Hospital this April. Produced by medical technology firm BD Life Science, this first installation at a German university hospital will play a major role in a study exploring the potential benefits of lab automation in containing the spread of pathogens in a hospital.

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Education in surgery

Suffering permanent stress

‘There are still only 24 hours in a day – even for surgeons,’ said Professor Vogt MD during our interview. The Director of the clinic for plastic, hand and reconstructive surgery at Hanover Medical School and President of the DGCH (German Society of Surgery) is calling for solutions to the dilemma trainee surgeons face: undergoing high-quality specialist medical training while completing…

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Science

Alternative routes to immortality

Every time a cell divides, the ends of chromosomes – the threads of DNA residing in the nucleus – shorten a bit. Once the chromosome ends, called telomeres, become too short, cells normally stop dividing. Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) have now discovered how cancer cells make use of specific DNA repair enzymes to extend the telomeres. In this way, they escape the…

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Vascular surgery

'Alles im Fluss' is the slogan of the 22nd Annual Congress of the German Society for Endovascular & Vascular Surgery, to be held from 6-9 September, in Muelheim an der Ruhr.

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Wound management in practice

Marie-Luise Müller is President of Deutscher Pflegerat e.V. (German Care e.V) Council, and Chair of its Congress, which was held alongside the Capital Congress on Medicine and Health 2008 in Berlin this June. During our interview, we asked her whether there is too little German medical and political recognition of nursing as a health profession in its own right.

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Compressing without compromise

Whether it’s functional imaging via MRI or CT, dynamic angiography examinations or volume tomography -- new examination procedures deliver more, but also require more. The annual data increase in hospitals is 20-30% and the resulting requirements for the necessary storage capacity, or for digital data transfer, present a serious challenge. Accordingly, there is considerable interest in…

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Laboratory adoption

POCT – a critical review and perspective

Not long ago, POCT was a specialist diagnostic discipline used by only few laboratory staff. This has changed considerably over recent years. Initially, the main focus had been on determining electrolytes, blood gases, blood clotting and blood count, but further parameters, such as kidney function, cardiac enzymes, urine tests and testing for autoimmune diseases have now been added. Whilst the…

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Controversy

The question of who should manage intensive care was hotly debated at the 35th Annual Meeting of the German Society for Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery (GSTCVS); not always essentially, frequently aggressively, sometimes even insulting says EH Correspondent Holger Zorn

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Hospital technology

IT security: The user perspective

‘From an IT perspective, medicine is now networked to a very large degree, no matter which departments you look at,’ says Stefan Bücken, IT Security Officer at Erlangen University Hospital, Germany.

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Infiltrating tumors

Immune cells predict therapy response in breast cancer

When immune cells invade the tumor, this is usually considered a good sign because the body's own immune system appears to be responding to the cancer. In the case of certain types of breast cancer immune cells, namely so-called tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs), these can determine survival rates and predict the usefulness of chemotherapy. This was shown by the largest meta study on TIL…

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Stroke

Imaging in intra-arterial interventions

Stroke patients will first undergo a CT scan as they enter the hospital. Before any further imaging scan is carried out, the medical team must decide whether they need to intervene intra or extra cranially. ‘Imaging enables you to see which pathology you are dealing with and helps you select patients for either recanalisation or revascularisation or, in some cases, occlusion by embolisation,’…

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Display & software solutions

Whether in endoscopy, surgery, clinical diagnosis or just for viewing, the quality of the display has a significant impact on the result. In addition, the quality expectations for display systems are increasingly dependent on individual requirements in different hospitals or even departments. Over the years, MeDiSol, the medical division of Rein EDV, has specialised in flexible display solutions…

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When donors are not forthcoming

Expectations ran high when the German Transplant Law (TPG) was introduced in 1997. The government felt it had done its part to ensure more legal certainty for the donation, removal and transplantation of organs: the population could feel encouraged to sign up for organ donation and was supposed to follow suit. However, this did not occur.

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Bern Inselspital relies on consulting expertise from Hamburg

In the Bern Inselspital, one of Switzerland's most renowned university hospitals with a tradition of more than 650 years, change is underway: within the next six years the university hospital grounds are to be wholly replanned and restructured. An enormous task, as the colleagues from the University Hospital Hamburg Eppendorf (UKE) can certainly attest, since here they are already in the midst of…

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The DGU trauma network

German pre-clinical and clinical trauma care of severely injured people enjoys an excellent reputation nationally and internationally due to the country's intensive work in trauma surgery and related medical disciplines. Nevertheless, it should be pointed out that the current outcome of polytrauma care in Germany is extremely heterogeneous.

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Medical technology trends

As in past years, this year's MEDICA is one of the most important stages for the medical technology industry. International manufacturers will do a song and dance to dazzle the international clientele. As Managing Director of the German Electrical and Electronic Manufacturers' Association (Deutscher Zentralverband Elektrotechnik- und Elektronikindustrie e.V. - ZVEI), Hans-Peter Bursig, is well…

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Medical technology

As in past years, this year's MEDICA is one of the most important stages for the medical technology industry. International manufacturers will do a song and dance to dazzle the international clientele. As Managing Director of the German Electrical and Electronic Manufacturers' Association (Deutscher Zentralverband Elektrotechnik- und Elektronikindustrie e.V. - ZVEI), Hans-Peter Bursig, is well…

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iPhones and healthcare

January saw the release of a German language version of Radiation Passport, an iPhone application that enables patients to calculate estimated radiation exposure from diagnostic imaging procedures and keep a personal record of their examinations. Radiation Passport costs US$3.99; by the end of 2009 over 1,000 English language versions were sold.

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Hygiene

Care, human dignity and the management of excreta

It's a topic which is frequently marginalised and tacitly accepted – care recipients are given a nappy even though they're continent simply because it's awkward and time-consuming for them to get to the toilet. The medical service of the German Central Federal Association of Health Insurance Funds and the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Funds highlighted this problem in their…

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Risk of complications

Diabetes prolongs hospital stays

One in four patients in a university hospital suffers from diabetes (22 percent), and again as many suffer from prediabetes (24 percent), a current study finds. Furthermore, patients with diabetes have prolonged hospital stays and a higher risk of complications.

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Side-effects of global mobility

Multi-drug resistant bacteria: Dangerous travel companions

Trips around the globe, healthcare tourism, migration; we are mobile – and so are bacteria. Particularly dreaded are multi-drug resistant bacteria that ‘hop’ on their host during a hospital stay and are carried across the border. At MEDICA 2017 Labmed Forum Dr Andreas Ambrosch, Head of the Central Lab at Krankenhaus Barmherzige Brüder in Regensburg, Germany, will discuss these unwelcome…

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Image processing

dicomPACS, developed by the German manufacturer OR Technology in partnership with medical specialists, is now installed in 5,000 workstations globally, because, `It is set apart by a very clear and user friendly structure,´ OR points out.

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Diagnostic radiology solution

Going fully digital in a single key stroke

Installing a complete diagnostic radiology solution to network six sites of a hospital group, to process, manage and archive image data acquired across all modalities, is a ‘challenge’, acknowledged by Professor Dr Peter Landwehr, Medical Director of the Clinic for Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology of Diakovere Henriettenstift, Hanover, Germany. In 2010, he and his team overcame that…

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Lifebridge B2T

Worldwide interest in portable systems for cardiopulmonary support has grown significantly. While some systems are at the brink of market introduction, German company Lifebridge Medizintechnik AG reports that it is 'at the top of this medical technology market', for its smallest, lightest (18kg) system, Lifebridge B2T ('Bridge to Therapy') has been in clinical use since the beginning of 2008.…

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Implants

Screws that fit the body’s notches

Complex bone fractures are often set with titanium or steel screws and plates. However, if these remain in the body for some time, they can cause health problems. A new bioceramic screw nail has the capacity of replacing the currently used metal components. It can be easily introduced into bone and does not have to be removed.

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Predictive technology

New software enables early diagnosis of arteriosclerosis

Little exercise, fatty food and too many cigarettes – factors like these aid the onset of arterial calcification, also known as arteriosclerosis. If blood can no longer be pumped through arteries properly, this can lead to a heart attack or stroke. Doctors are typically only able to diagnose the disease once it reaches an advanced stage. Computer scientists at the University of Kaiserslautern…

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Side-effects

Will your tattoo put you at risk during an MRI scan?

Tattoos are increasingly popular. Every eighth person in Germany has already felt the sting of getting a tattoo. A recent representative survey of the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) revealed that nearly 90% of tattooed individuals considered them harmless to one’s health. Yet, if tattooed people are to be examined with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), the question often arises of…

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Stroke prevention

Ultrasound brings many advantages, but trained sonographers are too few

What is the role of vascular ultrasound in stroke prevention? Asked by Karoline Laarmann of European Hospital, Professor Christian Arning MD, Medical Director of the Neurology Department at Asklepios Klinik Wandsbek, Germany, and Deputy Chairman of the German Society of Ultrasound in Medicine (DEGUM), gave an unequivocal answer: crucial - but only if the sonographer is properly qualified.

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Manganese or gadolinium?

Promising first steps for alternative MRI contrast agent

NIH-supported researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) are studying an alternative to the contrast agents currently used for magnetic resonance imaging. In a recent study, they showed that the experimental alternative, a manganese-based compound, performs as well as approved contrast agents. Their study appeared online in Radiology. Magnetic resonance (MR) images are taken so that a…

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A very special juice

The patient blood management concept

'Blood is a very special juice’ – something even Goethe’s Mephistopheles knew. Medics have also known this for centuries, so it’s nothing new that the ‘juice’ and its properties receive a lot of attention in medicine. However, what is new is that dealing with the use of blood through patient blood management (PBM) is coming to the fore.

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Art meets science

The future will be aesthetic or, put another way, Art meets Science. With this motto, the 43rd Congress of the German Society for Endoscopy and Imaging Procedures e.V., jointly held in Munich with six other specialist associations, demonstrated that aesthetic means the brilliance of images generated by the latest generation of X-ray, CT, MRI and ultrasound equipment.

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Patient care

Robots will never replace human beings

As the number of patients and people requiring care increases, exacerbating the shortage of care staff for in- and out-patients, care robots might solve the problem. For menial tasks, many devices can contribute well; however, at the complex interactive human level of care, the idea that advancing technologies could replace human caregivers to alleviate staff shortages is clearly simplistic.

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Switzerland to adopt DRGs system

The Swiss hospital system is facing a radical change. Billing by Diagnosis Related Groups (DRGs) is about to be introduced. European Hospital's correspondent in Switzerland, Dr André Weissen,* approached Dr Carlo Conti, President of SwissDRG AG to discuss some of the controversial issues involved in the switch to DRGs

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Finances

Operating theatres efficiency impacts on quality care

Given mounting financial pressure, a hospital needs greater efficiency in medical service structures. Staff and materials for operating theatres (OTs) account for about a third of the overall expenditure. Working closely with all other hospital departments, OT efficiency can affect a hospital’s overall efficiency and costs.

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Booking a 2010 holiday?

During a 2nd conference in Germany to focus specifically on medical tourism, about a 100 physicians and representatives from the country’s Department of Economics, University of Applied Sciences Bonn-Rhein-Sieg, met in Sankt Augustin to discuss ways to augment their country’s healthcare attractions for international patients, particularly from the Arab and Russian regions.

International Cancer Genome Project starts in Germany

Brain tumors are the primary cause of cancer mortality in children. Even if a cure is possible, young patients often suffer tremendously from the stressful treatment which can be harmful to the developing brain. Therefore, there is an urgent need for target-oriented, gentle treatment methods. The most important childhood brain tumors are medulloblastoma, which is diagnosed in approximately one…

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Nosocomial infections

As in so many European countries, nosocomial infections have hit the headlines in Germany over and over again in recent years – as when three premature babies died in a Bremen neonatal clinic in 2011.

Politics

Call for urgent action to improve CDI management

CDI Europe, the European Hospital and Healthcare Federation (HOPE) and MEP Karin Kadenbach hosted an event at the European Parliament to highlight the urgent action needed to address the current issues relating to the management of healthcare-acquired infections (HAIs) and Clostridium difficile infection (CDI).

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Coming soon: MEDICA 2010

Looking ahead to MEDICA 2010 (17 to 20 November) the signs are good. The high number of registrations is a sign of optimism in the medical technology industry and the number of exhibitors has already seen a significant increase in comparison to last year. With six months left to go until the fair begins, some 115,000 square metres of exhibition space had already been booked.

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OPINION

Across Europe there are different answers to the question of who should manage intensive care. In Germany the issue is linked to a discussion on which medical field could claim surgical intensive care for itself.

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Patient data: ‘learning to walk’ across Europe

Europe would cope much better with some of its most urgent social challenges if it was to fully utilize the entire potential of information and communication technology. These challenges include the ageing population, rising healthcare costs and the integration of the disabled. This is stated in the European Commission’s digital agenda for Europe. The digital agenda 2020 is one of the topics at…

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Delayed diagnoses result in high mortality

Sepsis kills around 130 patients daily In Germany alone. This systemic disease is mostly caused by bacterial pathogens, and less frequently by fungal organisms or parasites. Professor Dr Frank M Brunkhorst of the Centre of Sepsis Control and Care (CSCC), at Jena University Hospital, Germany, is seeking strategies to combat such scary figures.

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Human Resources

Physicians will learn assertiveness

Most accidents result from ‘the human factor’ – long acknowledged in aviation. Thus all crew members receive regular safety training to help prevent errors on board and on the ground. Now experts at the German Society for Orthopaedics and Trauma (DGOU) with those from Lufthansa Flight Training have developed a similar training programme for physicians. This Interpersonal Competence Training…

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MRSA

Effective screening can kill several birds with one stone

The MRSA problem has been ignored almost stoically in many European countries for the past 20 years. Thus the number of resistant Staphylococci cases exploded from 1% in 1990 around 25% in 2010. However, the recognition that an infection can result in additional hospital costs of up to €10,000 has led to a change in thinking. The Netherlands, for example, declared war on MRSA with ‘search and…

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Slovakia

Slovakia was part of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire until 1918, when Czechs and Slovaks were brought together to form the Czechoslovak Republic. After World War II, and up to 1948, the country was still part of Europe, but then fell behind the 'Iron Curtain'. From 1989 it began 'knocking on the EU door' and entry was granted in 2003. Today Slovakia's population is around 5.38 million. To serve…

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Study

Sepsis cases are rising

Sepsis kills around a hundred and thirty patients daily In Germany alone. This systemic disease is mostly caused by bacterial pathogens, and less frequently by fungal organisms or parasites. The delayed diagnoses result in high mortality. Professor Dr Frank M Brunkhorst of the Centre of Sepsis Control and Care (CSCC), at Jena University Hospital, Germany, is seeking strategies to combat such…

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ESPEN 2012

The 34th Congress of the European Society of Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism 8-11 September, Barcelona, Spain

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The healing environment

The healing environment approach is a comprehensive concept targeting the elimination of stress factors for patients as well as their visitors that would otherwise minimise patient's wellbeing, impair the healing process, or even violate their dignity/privacy.

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EU project is financing the electronic nurse

Good news for overworked hospital staff: Maybe in just a few years they will be supported by little robots that could clean up the sickrooms, look for the doctor or show visitors the right way. A new EU project led by the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO should make this scenario possible.

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Key Trends in IVD, Medical Imaging, and Healthcare IT in/from China

Improving access to care in particular for the rural population - this was one of the major goals of the Five-Year Plan which recently ended; and it has made its way again to the top of the agenda in the People's Republic. Two factors are on policymakers' minds: social stability, and the increase in domestic demand which the Chinese economy needs to reduce its dependency on exports.

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High costs

POCT could lose economic attraction

In addition to physical examinations, medical history laboratory test results are critical in almost all medical decisions made in the hospital. The demand for adequate, fast measurements has increased exponentially over at least the last 50 years and may have increased 100-fold, or more, since the 1950s. This could not have been achieved without the introduction of partial or full automation, of…

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Welcome to Medica 2011

From 16 - 19 November 2011, the attention of health and medical care professionals from around the world will once again focus on Düsseldorf, as the world's largest medical trade fair, MEDICA 2011, World Forum for Medicine, and COMPAMED 2011, High tech solutions for medical technology, the leading international trade fair for the suppliers market in medical manufacturing, get underway.

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Be prepared

The WHO Surgical Safety Checklist

Following the launch of the Action Alliance on Patient Safety (High 5s) initiative, launched in 2006 by the World Health Organisation (WHO) Collaborating Centre on Patient Safety (Solutions), the World Alliance for Patient Safety and the Commonwealth Fund, in June 2008 the WHO introduced a Surgical Safety Checklist, as part of the Safe Surgery Saves Lives Campaign. Over 300 organisations,…

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Thoracic surgery

Stringent medical risk management

The precise number of adverse clinical events is difficult to ascertain. Several international studies estimate that medical errors happen in 3-5% of all hospital treatments and that around 30-50% of these could have been avoided. A hospital-acquired infection (HAI) is also considered a medical error. Report: Anja Behringer

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GCCA/GBCA safety

Gadolinium @ ECR 2018 – diverse and “disunited”?

Gadolinium-containing/gadolinium-based contrast agents (GCCAs/GBCAs) and their usage was a major topic at ECR 2018. Fuelled by the current debate a number of presentations focused on possible impact, risks and necessities. Some were highly specific, others took a broader view. The only consensus, however, seems to be the need for more research and the focus on safety. Three ECR speakers, Joseph…

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Where are we - and what lies ahead?

In a European Hospital interview Professor Herman Requardt, Head of Corporate Technology and CEO of Siemens Healthcare Sector, offered his views on current and future healthcare manufacturing needs as well as the market challenge arising from the dynamic economic ascent of other nations.

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Hygiene: Back to basics

Two statements from publications by Dr Stephanie Dancer, Department of Microbiology, Hairmyres Hospital, East Kilbride (UK) prompted Ralf Mateblowski to interview Professor Markus Dettenkofer, Acting Director of the Institute for Environmental Medicine and Hospital Hygiene, Freiburg University Medical Centre about environmental and infection control

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Diabetes management in the hospital

Diabetes mellitus is a lingering disease – for a long time it causes subjectively few complaints or no complaints at all. Despite this, it is life-threatening – especially if undiagnosed, or diagnosed too late. However, although diabetes is the most widespread disease it is often only discovered by accident in a hospital, where many hospital doctors feel that diabetology is the responsibility…

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Developing the electronic health card

For a number of years, both the Communications and Medical Solutions Groups of Siemens AG and the Bamberg-based firm DOCexpert Computer GmbH have been actively involved in creating IT-based end-to-end solutions for medical practices, medical care centres, clinics and integrated care networks.

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The Eisenherz project

Tobias Schaeffter PhD, Principal Scientist, Philips Research Laboratories, Hamburg, Arne Hengerer PhD, Director molecular MR, Siemens Medical Solutions, Erlangen, and Andreas Briel PhD, Eisenherz project manager, Schering Research Laboratories, Berlin, describe...

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Nuclear Medicine in Practice

Defining a role and routine differences

Before 2013, when Professor Dietmar Dinter became partner of Radiologie Schwetzingen, a multi-discipline group practice specialised in radiology and nuclear medicine, he was senior resident at the Institute of Clinical Radiology and Nuclear Medicine at University Hospital Mannheim (2003-2012) and head of its Nuclear Medicine Department (2009-2012). Was his work in nuclear medicine altered by the…

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The 2009 Organ Donation Congress

In 2008, EU organ transplants totalled 27,809, but, as of 31 December 2008, patients still on waiting lists numbered 63,283 and 3,812 of them died on that list. During 5th World Day and 11th European Day of Organ Donation held in Berlin this October, experts and patients from all over the world met to raise public awareness that, despite international transplants progress and successes, and…

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Work on ELGA continues

Significant improvements in the quality and efficiency of healthcare as well as better access to it: that’s what we expect from electronic health records (EHRs). However, their developers have recently suffered a number of setbacks.

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Meeting the needs of different cultures: Austria

Anna Köck, Dipl. Rel-Päd (FH), Catholic Hospital Pastor at Graz University Hospital, Head of the Centre for Graz Hospital Staff and Head of the Christians and Muslims in the Hospital symposium, discusses the legal position of Islam in Austria and examines the question of cooperation or conflict between Christians and Muslims in the hospital.

The 7th Villacher Hygienetag

Experts from almost a dozen European countries - including for the first time Russia, Bulgaria, Serbia and Croatia - will meet at the Villacher Hygienetag (Hospital Hygiene Congress) in October to discuss "Antibiotic resistance - development, consequences and concepts".

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Endoscopic submucosal dissection (ESD)

High resolution endoscopy triggers new approaches to the detection and resection of early-stage carcinomas. Zoom, Narrow Band Imaging and HDTV allow significant magnification of the endoscopic image and increasingly detailed rendering of the mucous membrane.

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Medica Closing Report

The manufacturers of medical technology and medical products have weathered the phase of economic and financial crisis well, now noticing a strong tailwind for their businesses and proving a driver for growth with their innovations.

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Human error – or a fault in the system?

Medication errors sit among the top ten causes of harm to patients. They can, of course, occur in any department, but it’s still a surprise that they happen as frequently in anaesthetics departments, considering anaesthetists’ expertise is in handling tricky medication. However, apparently they are not the fault of the professional, but of the nature of the processes. Report: Karoline…

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MEDICA and COMPAMED with new dates 2015

The world’s largest medical trade fair, MEDICA, and the leading international trade fair for suppliers of the medical technology industry, the COMPAMED, are always going to take place in November on the days running from Monday to Thursday from 2015 on.

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OrthoMIT

More than 30 clinicians, researchers and industry partners (including Siemens, Aesculap and SurgiTAIX, an RWTH spin-off) are working on OrthoMIT, Germany’s largest collaborative orthopaedic research project that aims to develop future strategies for knees, hip and spinal surgery. Anja Behringer reports

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Internationalising IT systems

Agfa climbs over language and healthcare practice barriers

In recent years, Agfa HealthCare has dramatically expanded its IT portfolio in line with its strategy to be an international leader in healthcare IT. At the recent ITeG exhibition in Frankfurt, the company's ambitions were clearly visible: Agfa very much focused on ORBIS, its leading Hospital Information System. Daniela Zimmermann interviewed Eric Maurincomme, Vice President Business…

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Purchasing diagnostic systems

The acquisition of large diagnostic imaging equipment is clearly expensive – but further costs also result from their energy consumption and maintenance, as well as hidden costs due to complicated, labour-intensive handling, removal and disposal of old equipment, etc. often not considered during purchasing. Report: Anja Behringer

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Clostridium difficile infection

The realisation that the fight against C. difficile needs its own specific hygiene management dawned relatively recently. Up to the new millennium a common perception regarding European hospital infection prevention and control was that this bacterium was under control; it was considered a marginal phenomenon, which is why C. difficile was not the focus of problematic pathogen monitoring.

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Clinical process management

Agfa HealthCare will present leading healthcare IT and imaging solutions, focusing on clinical process management At MEDICA this year, Agfa HealthCare is demonstrating a …"balanced mix of information about market-leading solutions and innovations for healthcare IT and medical imaging and plenty of opportunity to exchange opinions about market developments".

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Personnel deficits

Healthcare in Germany will suffer if doctors and nurses cannot delegate certain tasks to others. So warned Udo Janssen MD MBA, speaking at the recent Gesundheitsnetzwerker (health network) congress held in Berlin. Blaming the inflexibility of new labour models that make them difficult to implement, Dr Janssen believes they need to be reviewed.

European Investment Bank: financing opportunities for the hospital sector

The European Investment Bank (EIB), backed by the EU Member States, recently presented its financing options for public projects in the `human capital´ sector. Apart from investments in the education sector, this also expressly includes healthcare and hospital financing, to cover modernisation of old and construction of new facilities, plus equipment requirements (such as laboratory equipment,…

The Nations Healthcareer Alumni Meeting

If you ever thought that quality topics and certification issues might be boring, stressful or even harmful for any organisation, being in Frankfurt for this meeting (29 October) would have taught you otherwise.

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Anaesthesiology today

Ever since Boston surgeon John Collins Warren commented on the first successful ether anaesthesia at Harvard University with the now famous words, ‘Gentlemen, this is no humbug!’ anaesthesiology has developed into a separate and modern medical discipline.

31st Annual Cardiologists Conference

Every heart beat counts

The term “Cardiology” means the division of science that converses functions, diseases and health activities related to heart. It is also connected with blood, arteries and veins, as blood is the vital component of human body, upon which the heart works and for it we survive. The world cardiology market includes cardiac biomarkers, interventional cardiology and cardiovascular devices. The…

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Data handling

Blockchain: “Hype will fade but the technology will remain”

A new dimension in data handling is not only emerging, but is already a reality in our lives. However, political discourse about this often lags behind real events. We spoke with two experts who have an overview of clouds, decentralised data flows and the evaluation of personal data with IT help in various areas. Engineer Professor Alexandra Dmitrienko is a Secure Software Systems expert at the…

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3D & CHD

The changing face of imaging in cardiology

While the question is still debated as to whether MRI is the better CT, along comes a potential game changer – a new data based 3-D reconstruction method of heart anatomy and function that aims to replace diagnostic coronary angiography. In the near future not only adult patients with coronary heart disease could benefit from this new technique but also children with complex congenital heart…

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Lab shopping list

Marry (a LIS) in haste, repent at leisure

Buying a laboratory information system (LIS) means entering a long-term relationship with a software vendor. The selection criteria are many, but which, ask Markus Neumann, Harald Maier and Gabriele Egert, are just fashionable and which might be underestimated? The decision to buy a LIS – i.e. to form a relationship with one or more software vendors – is based on a slew of criteria, and…

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Community

Giving digitization a head start in terms of trust

Digital transformation is in full swing. Yet digitization remains theoretical in healthcare and not just in Germany. Given the influx of new information technology contributions, the subject of health definitely needs to be reevaluated. As a driver and creator of digital transformation, HIMSS has made this task its mission. The HIMSS Communities play an essential role in this. Report: Melanie…

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New modular roll stands on show

Physicians and nurses need flexible solutions to monitor and administer patient data, and the devices they seek must be ergonomically designed, easy to clean and made of high-quality materials, CIM med, specialist in carrier arms, points out.

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Molecular Imaging – Challenges for the Young Generation at the Dawn of Clinical Translation

Molecular Imaging (MI) emerged in the early 21st Century as a discipline at the junction of molecular biology and in vivo imaging to enable the visualisation of the cellular function and the follow-up of the molecular processes in living organisms. Modalities available for MI encompass MRI, CT and ultrasound, PET, as well as Optical Imaging, and are by nature frequently experimental.

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Crisis threatens access to health and social services

According to leading economists, the current crises will hit the private sector heavily in 2010. Especially housholds in countries with poor social security networks will be affected heavily and are facing the danger of poverty. For healthcare systems this means an extra challenge additional to the burden of the demographic change. So the global economic crisis poses a massive threat to the…

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ALPINION Medical Systems

The goals are ambitious: Although in the market merely four years, the start-up firm Alpinion Medical Systems states its intention to become one of the prime providers in the ultrasound segment with superior imaging and unique transducer technologies. In an interview with Daniela Zimmermann of European Hospital, Thomas Roth, Alpinion’s Managing Director, explains his corporate strategy and…

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Laboratory Medicine

‘Kissed by Europe’

They are not such strange bedfellows, say Walter Depner (Frankfurt) and Professor Norbert Gässler (Hildesheim), who find themselves ‘kissed by the European lab muse’ and were prompted to ask: What links literature and laboratory medicine at a European level? Commentary: Walter Depner, Prof. Norbert Gässler

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1st class though 2nd hand

The purchasing and distribution of refurbished equipment was left to specialist retailers for years, until leading manufacturers - for reasons of quality as well as image - established themselves in this business sector. The difference is that these manufacturers not only sell used equipment but also extensively refurbished systems.

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IT

Smart watch promises smarter medication

While Swatch and Rolex count the hours until their smart watches overwhelm the time market, medical informatics researchers have already been working on solutions to improve healthcare. Some demonstrated their work on a medication reminder application during the Medical Informatics Europe conference in Madrid. Report: Mélisande Rouger

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First hand experience

Improving point-of-care ultrasound training in intensive care medicine

Dr Sven Ballnus is Director of the Department of Intensive Care Medicine at the Hospital Centre Biel/Bienne, Switzerland, and an active member of the European Society of Intensive Care Medicine. Formerly a chief consultant in intensive care medicine at Westküstenkliniken in Heide, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany, he oversaw the development of an ultrasound course focusing on the specific needs of…

European Health Forum Gastein

600 international politicians, economists, scientists, NGOs and healthcare organisations will discuss the effects of the global economic crisis on European healthcare systems during this autumn's European Health Forum Gastein (EHFG).

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Surveillance

Big Data may stream­line epidemic control

It’s a race against the clock; every hour counts in efforts to halt the spread of a disease, but identifying anyone with whom the infected patient has had contact is time-consuming, with Contact Officers generally collecting data on paper. Now, however, scientists from the Nigerian Field Epidemiology Laboratory & Training Programme, the Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research, the Hasso…

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Radiology around the world

In a 'travelogue' of clinical practices, Carestream turns up some unique solutions to shared challenges. Responsible on a global scale for sales and marketing development with Carestream, Todd Minnigh does a good bit of travelling around the world. Report: John Brosky

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Austria's ground-breaking ion-therapy and research centre

Not long after the first earth was moved on a site in Wiener Neustadt (Vienna's Newtown), in the County of Lower Austria, and tests were carried out to ensure the long-term stability of a particle accelerator and weighty equipment in treatment and research facilities, we spoke with Professor Ramona Mayer, Medical Director at EBG MedAustron GmbH, about the firm's planning and future operation of…

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The Surgical Planning Unit

Surgical planning is complex. Today’s surgeons can utilise information from various sources – including CT and MRI images, as well as f-MRI, PET or electro-physiological signals. For minimally invasive surgery (MIS) these additional imaging data are of particular importance, in that they enable precise navigation within the body.

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Touching

Robotic surgery - haptic feedback is a possibility

Robot-assisted surgery still meets with considerable skepticism even though Intuitive Surgical’s Da Vinci system has been around for more than a decade. However, few surgeons and researchers are seeking ways to expand the surgical toolbox. Not so the members of the working group ‘Surgical technology and training’ at the General, Visceral and Transplantation Surgery Department, University…

Infections

Recommendations for improved management of CDI

A first of its kind expert consensus report on Clostridium difficile infection (CDI), contributed to by more than 1,000 healthcare professionals across Europe, has been presented today at the Healthcare Infection Society (HIS) International Congress in Lyon, France. The consensus report aimed to identify a set of expert views on CDI management, in order to determine attitudes to diagnosis,…

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From film to cloud - and even open to ‘crowd sourcing´

These are exciting times for Carestream. The former film supplier is morphing into a genuine IT provider. Since its incorporation in 2007, the company has been investing many resources in the development of its portfolio with products that include systems for medical and dental imaging, IT solutions, molecular imaging and digital X-ray as well as digital products for non-destructive testing.

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New healthcare products for the environmental portfolio

Siemens has incorporated three further healthcare products into its environmental portfolio: The Somatom Definition Flash computer tomograph, the Axiom Luminos dRF fluoroscopy system and the Ysio X-ray system have successfully completed both internal evaluation and an external audit. Backing up their clinical performance and energy efficiency, the devices present a convincing case thanks to their…

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Therapy

Molecular imaging mines deeper

The view across the Atlantic – it fills Professor Fabian Kiessling, Chair of Experimental Molecular Imaging at the RWTH Aachen (Rhine-Westphalia Institute of Technology Aachen), with optimism. The USA offers more opportunities for molecular imaging. Only recently, new tracers for Alzheimer’s were accepted as reimbursable in some centres, whilst the development of new diagnostics in Europe…

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Radiologists are turning into diagnosticians

Rapid advances in medicine and technology have led to a change in the job description for radiologists. With image acquisition and evaluation increasingly carried out by machines, there is a need to find new fields of activity. However, the required rethink is happening far slower than the pace of development in science and technology, believes radiologist and healthcare management expert…

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And then there was light!

Pin-sharp outlines instead of a flurry of speckles, three-dimensional bodies instead of two-dimensional cross sections: Modern ultrasound scanners now deliver images of a quality that would have been inconceivable just a few years ago. This new generation scanners have made ultrasound diagnostics more reliable, reproducible and much easier to use for doctors

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Recession fears penetrate RSNA 2008

Chicago, November - At first glance, the 94th Scientific Assembly and Annual Meeting of the Radiological Society of North America appeared to be bigger than ever and impervious to the massive economic recession of its host country. RSNA 2008 ate into every inch of Chicago's McCormick Place trade centre. To reduce crowd congestion, technical exhibitions had been expanded to include a third massive…

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Discovering Toshiba

Toshiba Medical Systems Corporation is a global medical solutions company covering research and development, manufacture, sales and service for medical diagnostic X-ray systems, CT scanners, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), ultrasound, nuclear medicine systems, as well as healthcare IT systems and radiation therapy equipment. Daniela Zimmermann, of European Hospital, recently visited Toshiba's…

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The economics of laboratory medicine

Over the past decade, laboratory medicine developed rapid, accurate tests that help in diagnoses, prognoses, treatments – and the overall theragnostics; but is it economical? This November, at the Journées Internationales de Biologie (JIB) meeting in Paris, that question will shape the medical economics session Medical biology: a key factor in the healthcare effectiveness, organised by the in…

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Diagnosing from a distance

An echocardiography system that conveniently slips into a coat pocket, this kind of miniature device is now commercially available. Portable ultrasound has been around for about a decade, but until recently the machines were about the size of a laptop rather than that of a smart-phone

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Easy breathe - new tools for prolonged lung support

Often a life-saving intervention, mechanical ventilation also has some serious drawbacks: the need for sedation, the risk of ventilator associated pneumonia, intubation or tracheostomy related complications. In 1972, Donald Hill from Pacific Medical Centre, Los Angeles, reported the first successful long-term mechanical lung assist device with extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO).

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Slovak's private radiology institute

First came state-of-the-art equipment, then patients. Now, says Peter Bor×uta, patience is also needed, before perhaps the chance to carry out research becomes a reality. Peter Boruta MD PhD is Professor of Radiology and Head of Radiology at Slovak Medical University, in Bratislava, and Director of the Diagnostic Imaging Institute in Trnava.

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The pulseless life

New pulsatile heart pumps (ventricular assist devices - VAD) can remain in the body as a permanent heart support.

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Zincmolybdat

The sustainable pathogen killer

Professor Peter Guggenbichler is only too aware of infection prevention and control issues in hospitals. Prior to his retirement in 2013, from the Children’s Hospital at Erlangen University Hospital, in Germany, he led the Infectiology and Preventive Medicine Department, for 25 years. ‘After countless nights on the intensive care ward I realised that the staff does not adhere to infection…

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AI & EHR

Savana goes data mining

Artificial intelligence (AI) has taken centre stage during the Medica Academy sessions. While talks focus on initiatives made in Germany, European Hospital took a look at Spain and spoke with Ignacio Hernández Medrano, a neurologist recently elected as one of the most influential people in healthcare (HC). At just 34 years old, Medrano has already founded two flagship AI projects, one of which…

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Embedded computing

Sensing and communicating our ups/downs and many needs

The power of computing grows more pervasive as it is increasingly integrated into everyday items within our immediate environment, as in smart toothbrushes, for example, or a vortex whistle for managing chronic lung function via smartphones. This September, scientists, developers and designers from around the world met in Heidelberg, Germany, for two parallel events: ACM International Joint…

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Portable intelligence

Creating a new breed of panel computers

Taiwan-based firm Adlink specialized in providing medical solutions with the highest computing power, increased safety and maximum user comfort. Employing 1,800 people, and with design and technology centres in the USA, Pacific Rim regions and Germany, the company currently supplies electronic solutions to more than 40 countries in five continents. Its goal: providing optimum patient care.

Contrast agents

MultiHance receives approval for use in MRI of the whole body

Bracco Imaging S.p.A., a global leading company in the diagnostic imaging business, today announced the approval of the use of MultiHance® (gadobenate dimeglumine) in Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) of the whole body in adults and paediatric patients (> 2 years). The approval was obtained through a Mutual Recognition Procedure, with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency…

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Guidelines

Reprocessing - staff qualifications are vital

The reprocessing of medical devices in Europe is very inconsistent, according to a European Commission survey that was carried out in the 27 EU member states among politicians, medical device manufacturers and reprocessing companies, as well as doctors, hospitals and related professional parties

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Emergency Imaging

Forensics identify victims and terrorists

‘I am sorry, the electricity will be cut off because we’re going to simulate an attack, or emergency exercise, this morning,’ explained Dr Wim Develter, when he suddenly delayed his interview with Mélisande Rouger of European Hospital. They were about to discuss computed tomography, and its role not only in advanced healthcare and other more unexpected areas, such as the arts and…

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Opinion

The value of point-of-care

Some significant changes in the European hospital sector have occurred over the last 20 years. ‘The necessity to contain the exploding costs in particular has led to a reduction in the number of hospitals and hospital beds, and staffing levels have also been affected by the many cost cutting measures. This has not been without its consequences, as we now know,’ writes Ludwig F Rutten.

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Aid

Bringing point-of-care ultrasound training to West Africa

Dr. IlyasTugtekin, a consultant anaesthetist from Ulm University Clinic in Baden-Wuerttemberg, Germany, recently travelled to Kumasi in Ghana to help establish an ultrasound training centre for doctors all over West Africa. Funded by the Else Kröner-Fresenius Foundation (Else Kröner-Fresenius-Stiftung, EKFS) – a non-profit organisation dedicated to supporting medical research and related…

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Histopathology

Everything a modern laboratory needs

In the 21 years since its launch in Germany, Kugel medical has become a leading manufacturer of histopathology equipment on a global level, with a presence in laboratories, forensic centres, universities, anatomical institutes, pharmacy firms and veterinary pathologies.

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Antibiotic resistance

A strain of multidrug-resistant Escherichia coli is on the rise

Antibiotic resistant bacteria lead to infections that are difficult to treat, particularly in hospitals. Multidrug-resistant Escherichia coli bacteria which have developed special enzymes that render antibiotics ineffective frequently cause such infections. DZIF scientists from Gießen University examined these bacteria more precisely and discovered a strain of Escherichia coli that has been…

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The digital broadband MR experience

Ingenia 3.0-T, the digital broadband MR system launched by Philips at RSNA 2010, is today used in almost 200 hospitals worldwide. Eight months after the installation of an Ingenia at Germany’s Bonn University Hospital, the radiology department’s managing physician Dr Winfried A Willinek sums up her experience with this new technology that is increasingly competing with whole body CT and pet-CT…

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Integrating surgical image management

With most radiology departments using digital equipment, smoothing image and data mnagement, CEOs and medical heads of departments aim to achieve those benefits – and particularly paperless systems – across their hospitals. HCI, a consulting and implementation company based in Brilon, Germany, specialises in integrating systems in, for example, operating theatres. Formerly employed in key…

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Diffusion weighted whole body MRI

Malignant diseases rank second in mortality rates in Germany. These patients thus receive a major proportion of ambulant and hospital care, with apparent socioeconomic consequences. To optimise treatment planning, for all solid tumour entities it is mandatory to delineate or stage the primary extent of tumour invasion and spread prior to therapy as precisely as possible.

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Bed pans fresh as rainwater

Horst Michael Arndt is sometimes called a technology freak. His enthusiasm is largely the reason why rainwater flows through bedpan washers and flush toilets in hospitals in Ruppin (Brandenburg) Germany.

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Re-inventing the hospital

Medical services About 90% of hospital income is generated in the 35 weekly working hours of regular day shifts. However, due to new work time regulations fewer and fewer physicians are available for these productive shifts and much of the work time is spent in the 133 working hours of the 'unproductive' night shifts.

Hyperpolarised Helium MRI of the lungs

Only few imaging modalities lend themselves to imaging of the lungs. Conventional chest radiography is the most commonly used tool in the investigation of pulmonary pathology but yields the perhaps most difficult, plain radiographs to interpret.

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Aquilion 16 - A new CT concept in optimized patient care

Two university hospitals in Germany and Japan were the first worldwide to receive the Aquilion 16 high resolution computed tomograph (CT) from Toshiba Medical Systems for simultaneous recording of 16 body slices with extremely high image resolution. A computed tomography Aquilion 16 was put into operation on October 7, 2002 at the central campus of Charite Berlin (Figure 1). This is the third…

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Central Patient Admissions - the new Task and Challenge for Ultrasound

In Germany, a comprehensive reimbursement system designed around Diagnosis Related Groups (DRGs) was introduced following the Health Reform Act of 2000. The previous method of payment, wherein the number of treatment days was multiplied by the amount allowed per treatment day, was discarded. The new DRG-based payment system requires the optimization of patient treatment, from admission to…

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Germany’s healthcare IT is ‘average’

‘Germany has realised that something must be done,’ Professor Britta Böckmann of Dortmund University of Applied Sciences and Arts, concludes, referring to a 2012 study from Accenture that showed this country to be only average in expandable healthcare networking compared with other countries. Report: Chrissanthi Nikolakudi

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MRSA in US hospitals

Arlington Medical Resources (AMR), a pharmaceutical market research firm, found that the number of patients treated with an antibiotic associated with MRSA-infections within U.S. acute care hospitals has increased 8 percent by the last year. But the average time MRSA-patients had to stay in hospital decreased by 10 percent.

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Medical Engineering and IT

"The problem between information technology and medical engineering may stem from sequential processing and intermeshing", Peter Gocke, MD, said. Sounds difficult? But the real difficulty in the “Cooperation between IT and Medical Engineering (ME)” is something seemingly mundane: “At the end of the day collaboration is the target achievable”, Gocke, who is IT director at the University…

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Germany's early detection programme and research

In 2002, Germany implemented an early detection programme for breast cancer. The digital Reference Centre For Mammography at the University Hospital Münster is one of five such centres in the country - and it's one of the most modern, providing digital systems for imaging and results evaluation as well as a mammo-PACS.

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Baltic Conference on E-Health in Hamburg (Germany)

On September 21 the Baltic Conference on E-Health will take place at the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce. Representatives from hospitals, governments, health insurance organizations, service providers and media throughout Europe find a cross sector forum to discuss the common challenges associated with affordable quality care.

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low radiation

High resolution detectors to create safer X-ray diagnosis

A European health consortium is developing a set of low radiation, low cost, flat panel X-ray detectors that use novel photonics technology to make diagnosis safer for patients, hospital and dental staff, generating some of the highest resolution images ever seen in rapid moving body functions, such as malicious growths or the beating heart of a baby.

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The Warsaw International Healthcare Exhibition 2016

This will be the 4th edition of the Warsaw International Healthcare Exhibition: WIHE 2016. This year, the EXPO XXI WARSZAWA venue at Prądzyńskiego No. 12/14 will welcome renowned healthcare specialists (including representatives of state institutions, associations, and the media) from all over the world, as well as telemedicine innovators and leading manufacturers of medical supplies,…

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Clinical practice

LC-MS/MS enters the medical laboratory

Over the last four years, Dr Thomas Stimpfl and his team have integrated mass spectrometry into routine analysis. The analytical technique liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry (LC-MS) combines the physical separation capabilities of liquid chromatography (or HPLC) with the mass analytical capabilities of mass spectrometry (MS). LC- and MS procedures were not originally developed for…

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TAITRA presentation

Taipei hits highs in Medica 2017

3-D visualisation, augmented reality, automated tumour classification – today, the Republic of China produces cutting-edge medical technology and it’s a long time since ‘Made in Taiwan’ stood for inferior, copied products. Over recent years, this island state has successfully morphed into a productive and, above all, innovative manufacturer of medical technology available on the world…

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Point-of-patient

App accelerates deployment of first responders

Point of Care Diagnostics (POCT) has been established for 20 years. Comprehensive smartphone coverage and shareconomy technology are now helping to push the development from previous business models towards a point of patient model. The question is whether medical apps will have the same benefit as those employed for everyday use. Report: Anja Behringer

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Equipment fair

KIMES 2018 - Korean concepts show strengths

Held in Seoul, this March, the 34th annual KIMES (Korea International Medical & Hospital Equipment Show) proved to be the largest in the event’s history, hosting 1,313 companies from 34 countries. Achieving this milestone clearly demonstrates the increasing significance of this show to the world’s leading medical device manufacturers and service providers, who recognise the importance of…

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Epidemics

Open Science to track virus outbreaks

In recent years, we have witnessed multiple epidemics of viral diseases such as Ebola or Zika. Rapid targeted intervention is key to containment. Real-time data integration and analysis can help public health authorities to maximize efficacy of intervention strategies. Dr. Richard Neher from the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology, Germany and Dr. Trevor Bedford from the Fred…

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The MAGiC

One Scan. Six contrasts. Triple Speed.

SIGNA Pioneer, a new 3.0 T ­Magnetic ­Resonance Imaging (MRI) system, ­embodies the exploration and expansion of modern medical imaging and blazes a trail to the future of MRI. Dr. Ahlers, general manager of radiomed, shares his experience with SIGNA Pioneer recently installed at radiomed practice in Wiesbaden, Germany – one of the ­first installations worldwide.

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Procurement

Good money for good products?

Whether they are wireless pacemakers or catheter-guided heart valve implants, new, really innovative products must reach patients – somehow. Thus manufacturers need to ensure that the hospitals that buy their products will be reimbursed. New diagnostic and treatment methods are not captured by a system based on the analysis of older methods. Holger Zorn spoke with Nicole Eisenmenger, Director…

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Networking

Improvements in efficiency and quality through digitalisation

Increasing requirements for specialisation and diagnostic quality in pathology on the one hand and the importance of pathology findings for treatment planning on the other hand call for new solutions in pathomorphological diagnostics. One important starting point is the fast-paced opportunity for digitalisation along with communication systems which facilitate the storage and transfer of large…

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Communication

Is PACS ready to expand beyond radiology images?

Nine out of 10 hospitals in western Europe have a fully operational picture archiving and communications systems (PACS) to manage and exchange medical images. The integration has become so routine that now other physicians are asking why they can not as easily share with others the images they generate with non-radiology devices. Report: John Brosky

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To pulse or not to pulse

Whether mechanical, temporary cardiac assist systems should pulsate in the same way as a biological heart is a discussion topic, which raises the pulse rates amongst all those involved within the industry and in hospitals.

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When helpers need help

Violence from patients or their relatives is no longer unusual in hospitals, with A&E doctors and nurses particularly affected, as confirmed in the recent study Violence against Staff in the A&E Department.

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MRI powerhouse breaks new ground in medical research

At RSNA 2012, Siemens is launching its new MRI addressing academic research centres and university hospitals. According to Bernd Ohnesorge, the Magnetom Prisma 3.0 T enforces the company’s major commitment to advancing research, bearing testimony to Siemens’ innovation leadership in the field. In Chicago, the CEO of the Siemens MRI business unit presented the 3 T system for which the company…

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The contact killer

Bacteria, viruses and fungi are killed on copper surfaces within seconds. This powerful germicidal effect, termed ‘contact killing’, is increasingly noted by hospitals due to several recent studies that confirm its antimicrobial effects.

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Sepsis – a Global Medical Emergency

The Global Sepsis Alliance (GSA) is urging healthcare providers, patients and policymakers worldwide to treat sepsis as a medical emergency. “Tens of millions of people die from sepsis each year, making it the likely leading cause of death worldwide. Sepsis kills regardless of age, ethnicity, location and access to care,” said Konrad Reinhart, M.D., Chairman of the GSA and director of the…

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Of mounting importance

They are rarely noticed but nevertheless they carry a lot of weight in a hospital: intelligent mounting solutions for medical equipment and monitors. While the eyes of physicians, nurses and patients alike tend to be fixed on the device, hardly anybody ever looks at the way, the device is fixed to the wall or the ceiling. The engineers of CIM med, based in Munich, Germany, however did have a…

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The network is the backbone for healthcare transformation

Networked communication is a critical factor in healthcare modernisation worldwide. A reliable, secure infrastructure and pplications adapted to the needs of care providers are essential in the transformation towards accessible, efficient, quality-driven care. Networking technology is Cisco’s core business. Newly appointed as Director of Sales, Public Sector, Cisco Germany, Cécile Willems is…

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EHFG 2011 - ‘There are too many unnecessary operations!’

Participants at European Health Forum Gastein 2011 (EHFG) agreed: the tendency in Germany and Austria is to operate far too soon (particularly for hip, knee and disc surgery), and many surgical interventions are unnecessary, posing a particular and increasingly urgent problem especially in industrialised countries. Hans-Christian Pruszinsky reports

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Referral management and referral cooperation

‘New market dynamics’ in healthcare, with characteristics such as crowding out, internationalisation of medical services, increasing transparency of services due to the media, and price-oriented reimbursement systems, enforce quality promoting and cost-reducing labour divisions as well as cooperation of all players in healthcare provision. Professor Wilfried von Eiff, from the Centre for…

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The role of hospital management consultants

‘Public hospitals are not yet acknowledging the necessity of engaging management consultants in the same way as private institutions. Management and organisational consultancy is particularly important in hospitals as it is not just undertaken for the benefit of staff but also the benefit of the patients’’ explains Verena Krassnitzer, Vienna-based management consultant and supervisor,…

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High-end ultrasound at Sahlgrenska University Hospital

Sahlgrenska University Hospital provides emergency and basic care for the 700,000 inhabitants of the Gothenburg region. It also provides highly specialised care for the 1.7 million inhabitants in Sweden’s west because, in this country, endoscopic ultrasound examinations are only provided in university hospitals. Thus Sahlgrenska’s physicians receive referrals of difficult diagnostic cases…

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Papworth Hospital: A constant continuing success

Recent events have again underlined the reason why Papworth Hospital in ambridgeshire, England, maintains a enowned international reputation for cardiac and thoracic procedures. As Britains largest specialist cardiothoracic hospitals, over 2,000 major heart operations were performed there in 2010. In the year ending 1 April 2011, 824 patients had coronary bypass operations, including urgent,…

Logistics - GSI standards in Europe

Clear transparency of the flow of products and information in hospitals not only results in increased patient safety but also, because the documentation of treatments and recording of products used ensures compliance with legal requirements. The ability to retrace all steps is also an economic asset in terms of comprehensive cost control over product consumption.

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Ethianum in Heidelberg with future proof infrastructure

The Ethianum in Heidelberg is one of the first clinics in Germany to align itself consistently according to sustainability criteria, thus making it a hospital in keeping with the spirit of Siemens' Green+ Hospital Program. Working in partnership with the Ethianum, Siemens has developed and implemented comprehensive solutions: These include energy management, patient care, and the communications…

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Enzyme extended-spectrum beta-lactimase

ESBL: A greater danger than MRSA?

In hospitals, MRSA is considered Public Enemy Nr 1, and the increase in nosocomial infections, worldwide, has drawn universal attention to this ‘superbug’. However, Staphylococcus aureus is not alone – other pathogens are proving their resistance to antibiotics, in the last decade, gram-negative enterobacteria, which form the enzyme extended-spectrum beta-lactimases (ESBL), have joined the…

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The quality of paediatric nurse training

"Children are no small adults. That remains true no matter how often it is repeated. And it is particularly true in paediatric nursing," says Andreas Wachtel, vice chairman of the GkinD (Germany's association of children's hospitals and paediatric departments, and Elfriede Zoller, chairwoman of the BeKD (the country's professional association of paediatric nurses).

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Cross-enterprise electronic healthcare records (eEPA) in Europe

The creation of standardised cross-enterprise healthcare records in Germany will be increasingly promoted in numerous national initiatives and projects spanning several manufacturers, e.g. by the eFA initiative for the electronic case file headed by the Fraunhofer Institut ISST. By Jens-Uwe Thieme, Business Line Manager HIS & ERP Systems, iSoft Health GmbH

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Nosocomial and community MRSA infections

First emerging at the beginning of the '60s, Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus as a nosocomial infection - healthcare associated MRSA (haMRSA) - has become an increasingly prevalent infection control problem in many countries.

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Re-inventing the hospital

Over the past few years, hospitals in Germany have been faced with ever new challenges. However, the solutions offered so far are not sufficient. On the contrary - rather than solving problems, they tend to create new ones. A change of paradigm in the organisation of hospitals is imminent and hospitals have to change radically, argues Holger Richter

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Toshiba invits experts to discuss the advantages of state-of-the-art technology

Toshiba's pre-opening ECR event on Wednesday evening attracted around 120 radiological experts who wanted to learn more about the company's technology in daily practice. Toshiba invited several highly-regarded radiologists and cardiologists from Austria and Germany who not only presented the diagnostic possibilities of the firm's products offers, but answered critical questions asked by the…

Legionella

UNIQA, Austria's leading health insurer* recently initiated a preventive inspection of the technical water lines and systems at around 40 of the hospitals it insures, to identify any possible contamination by Legionella bacterium. Following the inspections many of the hospitals opted to undergo TÜV certification. Their motivation is not only medical concern, but also economic and legal issues.

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The value of tomosynthesis in breast diagnostics

The MVZ RNR Leverkusen Am Gesundheitspark (Germany), part of the RNR MVZ GmbH Association, is one of the most important breast diagnostics centres in the region, treating tens of thousands of patients annually. In line with this full capacity utilisation, the equipment at the practice is of the highest standard. Recently, tomosynthesis was installed, enabling the centre to offer patients the…

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Planning the Hospital of the Future

The first decade of the 21st century has ended and the time has come to make up some minds about what hospitals should look like in the near future to fulfill the requirements of modern medicine and demographic changes.

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Polish blood banks counting on Ortho Clinical Diagnostics

The newest laboratory system from Ortho Clinical Diagnostics is a big success: 32 VITROS 3600 immunoassay systems are going to be used in 15 of a total of 21 blood banks in Poland in the future. They will enable roughly 800,000 blood tests to be carried out each year. This next-generation diagnosis platform is based on VITROS technologies, the best in the world, thus meeting the demands of modern…

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Simplify information access for medical professionals

Dell announced a Mobile Clinical Computing (MCC) solution that addresses the unique challenges of hospitals when balancing the need to make patient information available to medical staff at the point of care and securing the information in the data centre to promote compliance with stricter compliance and patient data confidentiality regulations.

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USP Hospitales de Marbella

USP Hospitales is a prominent Spanish hospital group with a network of 31 facilities in Spanish cities. The group also owns a 25% share in Hospitais Privados de Portugal, the hospital affiliate of the Portuguese bank Caixa Geral de Depositos. USP Hospitales acts as a consultant for the bank's six hospitals in Lisbon, Oporto, Sanghalos, Lagos and Faro. USP Hospitales recently founded the company…

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Hospital quality reports

Professor Matthias Schrappe, Chairman of the Gesellschaft für Qualitätsmanagement in der Gesundheitsversorgung e.V. GQMG - (Association for Quality Management in Healthcare) and Medical Director of the Philipps University Clinic, Marburg, Germany, discussed quality management issues during an interview with Denise Hennig, of European Hospital

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3D USCT nears reality

Back in the 70s, when scientists first speculated on the development of 3-D ultrasound computed tomography (3-D USCT) the available technology could not equal their dreams. Now, before the end of 2007, a prototype at Germany's Karlsruhe Research Centre will be used for the first in-vivo tests.

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Biometric authentication

Biometry, or the technical recognition of physical characteristics, is playing an increasingly important role in clinics and hospitals. By Thomas Bengs, Product Manager for Vein, Fujitsu Europe Limited Group

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Attracting foreign patients

Czech hospitals maintain a very high standard of medical care, and their charges are more than affordable for foreign patients. However, local hospitals still lag behind in attracting them; foreign patients are just 0.5% of all clients - a dismal situation.

Rapid growth in wearable wireless monitoring

Wireless networking, already widely adopted by healthcare facilities across Germany, France and the United Kingdom, is set for "rapid growth", according to a report by the global market consultancy firm Frost & Sullivan (F&S). More emphasis on home care, plus heightened awareness of the benefits of remote monitoring, and technological developments that improve patient…

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Boosting hospital budgets

From 'pyjama' concept to full-dress teleradiology Ten years ago, Professor Maximilian Reiser, of Munich University Hospital, Germany, caused a stir when he presented his (then) futuristic concepts for teleradiology. Today, this valuable service is not only a reality, but also a fairly widespread practice. By providing external radiological support to other hospitals and private practices, Munich…

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Aurelius acquires healthcare business of Tieto

The investment company Aurelius Group, based in Munich/Germany, has closed a deal to acquire Tieto’s divisions Healthcare, Systems Integration & Consulting, and Product Engineering Solutions as well as related activities in the Netherlands, Poland, and India.

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IT helps ensure patient safety in the ICU – and beyond

Integrated information management reduces risks and cuts cost, Finn Snyder reports. Intensive care units (ICUs) are vital in healthcare. ICUs in US hospitals, for example, treat six million of the sickest and oldest patients annually, according to a document recently published for the Massachusetts Technology Park Corporation, which states that choices about how to manage them carry high stakes:

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Innovations in non-invasive diagnostics

Although the 17 lectures delivered at this year‘s Medical Technology Congress in Berlin, Germany, focused on topics ranging from experimental and clinical research to routine daily diagnostic methods, the pervading interest was in the improvement, development and distribution of non-invasive imaging devices and corresponding software.

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Molecular Imaging for Alzheimer’s Disease May Be Available in Hospitals Within One Year

Researchers the world over are advancing positron emission tomography (PET) as an effective method of early detection for Alzheimer’s disease, a currently incurable and deadly neurological disorder. Three studies presented at SNM’s 58th Annual Meeting are providing new insights into the development of Alzheimer’s disease while opening the door to future clinical screening and treatments.

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Treatment options for atrial fibrillation to prevent a stroke

Neurocardiology – especially atrial fibrillation (AF) – was the key topic during a press conference held during the 55th Annual Congress of the Germany Society for Clinical Neurophysiology and Functional Imaging (DGKN) this March. For good reason: Worldwide, there are around six million AF sufferers -- and it is one of the most common causes of stroke because this cardiac irregularity can…

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No more machines!

For many ICU patients, entering the Kloster Grafschaft, in Schmallenberg, Germany, a hospital specialised in pneumology and allergology, is a last resort. On average, they have been in an ICU for seven weeks and have failed three attempts to be weaned from the ventilator. They have been deemed ‘unweanable’.

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The Global E-Health Forum 2010

The Global E-Health Forum, which will take place on October 25-26, 2010, in Hamburg, Germany, will address the main challenges healthcare systems all over the world are facing: demographic shifts, the impact of globalization and an increased burden of chronic diseases and expensive treatments.

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Semiconductors

During the Forum MedTech Pharma (30 June to 1 July, Nuremberg, Germany)Texas Instruments discusses the impact of semiconductor innovation on the development of medical equipment. ‘As an integrated circuit (IC) provider we sell both analogue and digital solutions to system houses, which then integrate the product,’ explained Dr Karthik Vasanth, Medical Business Unit Product Line Manager at…

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Treating obesity surgically

Professor Rudolf A Weiner, head of the surgical department at Sachsenhausen Hospital, Germany, reports that some developing procedures result not only result in weight loss but also in the systematic elimination of metabolic disorders, and that many new developments in the field promise hope for both the obese and their doctors

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Courses for future hospital managers

Today hospital managers have to meet varied and complex requirements. Their field of activities covers multiple disciplines and the decisions they make are of far-reaching significance for the future positioning and economic viability of their hospitals or hospital group.

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The 10,000th Alphamaquet

This June, the 10,000th Alphamaquet surgical table made by Maquet GmbH of Rastatt, Germany, will be delivered to the department of thoracic surgery at Barmherzigen Brüder Hospital, Regensburg, along with other Maquet medical technology on order.

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conhIT 2010

The volcanic ash creating widespread no-fly zones had no significant impact on the success of conhIT, Germany’s largest healthcare IT event; for three days in April some 3,500 experts were there to discuss current trends in their field and visit the IT trade fair to assess new solutions and products. One topic central to this year’s event was the convergence of IT and medical technology,…

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The Hospital Management Symposium 2010

What a success! On 6 March, ECR meeting room K was filled to capacity when congress president Professor Małgorzata Szczerbo-Trojanowska opened the Hospital Management Symposium 2010 (HMS). The number of pre-registrations bore witness to HMS’ high reputation. Many ECR participants had immediately the HMS time bracket in their agendas in order not to miss the new developments in “Management,…

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RIS/PACS in practice

A coopetition study carried out by the CKM (Centre for Hospital Management) has shown that RIS/PACS technologies can contribute towards an increase in diagnostic quality, acceleration of processes and a sustainable cost cuts, writes Professor Wilfried von Eiff, of the Centre for Hospital Management, Westphalian Wilhelms-University Muenster, Germany.

We need greater compatibility!

As medical images are increasingly digitized, their management, compression and retrieval is increasingly challenged. According to new analysis* from Frost & Sullivan, which examined medical image storage solutions markets in the United Kingdom, France, Spain, Germany, Scandinavia, Benelux and Italy, the total European storage requirement in 2007 was 106,044 terabytes (TB).

KIHE 2009

KIHE, Kazakhstan's leading healthcare exhibition has a strong international flavour. Last year, this event drew 6,000 visitors and 180 medical products manufacturers hailing from 21 countries, including Russia, Turkey, China, India, Egypt, France, Italy, and Poland. Special stands rented specifically to present a country's products included those of Germany and Pakistan.

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4 steps to successful staff planning

Most hospitals must now report on the origin, cost and usage of all equipment and supplies. However, far less is known about a hospital's most important and expensive* asset: employees. Despite financial pressures, DRGs, and the EuGH judgement, which aims to end stress (particularly for junior doctors) discussion of the economical and effective use of personnel is frequently avoided, or can evoke…

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Intervention

Hybrid ORs: not equally beneficial for all facilities

The hybrid operating room is one of the most innovative developments in the surgical sector. The combination of interventional and minimally invasive surgical procedures is exciting for many clinical disciplines. The room design, intraoperative imaging techniques as well as interdisciplinary collaboration play a pivotal role in this.

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Futuristic

Humber River Hospital is oh so smart

‘Humber River Hospital, Toronto, Canada, could come straight out of a science fiction series that provides Star Trek-like healthcare services with hall-cruising robots delivering food, medications and supplies to staff, electrochromic windows, video conference capabilities at patients’ bedsides and real-time location systems, to name but a few futuristic features. Yet, this is now and for…

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Trends

The beauty of radiology

The trend in radiology is towards an increasing split into subspecialties such as interventional radiology, paediatric radiology or neuroradiology, which, with the growing complexity of this field, are becoming more independent of each other.

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Robotic

The Swiss Army knife of radiology

Not all innovations marketed as ‘world premieres’ actually make a significant impact on the world. However, the new robotic X-ray system ‘Multitom Rax’ (Robotic Advanced X-ray) introduced by Siemens Healthcare and the University Hospital Erlangen is one innovation in the world of medicine technology that deserves this label, the manufacturer reports. ‘With the combination of robotic and…

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Medication

Where pain relief is a matter of luck

Access to pain relieving medication varies greatly within Europe. ‘The availability and reimbursement of certain pain relieving medications for patients depends less on medical criteria than luck – living in the right country,’ declared Professor Hans Georg Kress, past president of the European Pain Federation EFIC, speaking in Vienna this September at the 9th EFIC Congress. Report:…

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Facility

Reaching into the core of process rationalisation

‘Facilities management is the integration of processes within an organisation to maintain and develop the agreed services that support and improve the effectiveness of its primary activities.’ According to the European DIN-Norm (DIN EN 15221), this defines facility management (FM). As a control tool, FM encompasses all supportive processes within a company, in this case referring to a…

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Lab2Go

POC test detects myocardial infarction

Philips Minicare delivers rule-in/rule-out readings for heart attacks in 10 minutes. It takes a lot of hard work to make things easy. Biomedical experts at Royal Philips have spent more than 10 years developing a simple test for the emergency department that, in less than 10 minutes, may indicate whether a patient suffering chest pains is having a heart attack.

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CAD

Seeking CT’s role

Coronary artery disease (CAD) is the major killer worldwide. Its early detection can save the lives of many. Computed tomography (CT) has shown tremendous results in this area, but its advantage over more invasive techniques remains to be demonstrated, especially in patients with low to moderate risk.

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Siemens Computed Tomography

40 Years at the cutting edge of technological development

40 years after the launch of its first series model, Siretom, Siemens Healthcare is looking back on the successful development of its computed tomography division. With innovations such as Spiral, Multislice, and most recently Dual Source technology, Siemens has been driving the CT market and clinical diagnostics for decades. Today, three patients are scanned with a Siemens CT system every…

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Infections following joint-replacement surgeries

How to optimize prevention and therapy strategies

For all the advances being made in this discipline, postoperative infections remain a great challenge for orthopaedists and trauma surgeons. More than 7,000 experts from around the globe are gathering in Prague for the 16th EFORT Congress to consult on ways to optimise prevention and therapy for these dreaded complications.

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QUALITY CONTROL

Made to measure laboratories

In 1995 Claudia and Robert Karl risked self-employment in a sector already dominated by experts. Those manufacturers, however, sold standardised products. The Karls, with backing from a stainless steel producer, decided to produce tailor-made solutions to fit customers’ needs. To that end they attended international medical equipment exhibitions from Dubai through to Malaysia. Today, Claudia…

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Mobility

Faster First Aid for Catastrophe Victims

A new system aims to speed up the triage of victims during mass casualty incidents: Instead of colored paper tags, first responders use colored electronic wristbands. These serve to locate victims and transmit vital data to emergency response control centers. FIT also demonstrates an app for Android smartphones that lets victims buried alive under a collapsed building contact rescue teams even…

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Teleradiology and education

Given the ever more complex radiological examinations, the need to provide care in sparsely populated regions, or new labour law provisions such as the EU working time directive, radiologists are under increased pressure to find solutions to provide imaging services during off-hours.

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Male and female Doktors

Whether it was a constitution of sorts writ on cavernous rock at the dawn of mankind no one knows. What is clear is that since the inception of the first rudimentary societies the male always expected to rule and the female to follow and obey.

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Enhancing the patient experience

When it comes to hospital choice, patients no longer rely on their doctor’s advice alone. Improved health literacy and a growing awareness of potential risks (e.g. hospital acquired infections, medical errors) are encouraging patients to choose carefully by considering the quality of care delivered, patient satisfaction scores, patient safety and comfort in general.

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MERS-CoV: Global action needed?

The World Health Organisation (WHO) recently formed an international emergency committee to decide whether Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) should be ascribed Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) status, amid reports of a lack of information from the worst affected countries.

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The time machine

While the benefits of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) as a temporary respiratory support for adult patients are still debated, it is undisputed that for many infants ECMO is the only chance to survive, because it provides them with time to strengthen their lungs

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Crisis as an opportunity

Rarely have the topics at the EHFG been so relevant to the current international economic crisis – reason enough for EH correspondent Christian Pruszinsky to interview the Forum’s founder and outgoing President Professor Günther Leiner.

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A new name and new focus

Medica Media has done a good job. For years, the section in the world’s largest international medical trade fair has provided a meeting place for representatives from medical care, research and manufacturing organisations.

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MBAs versus MDs

Are physicians poor managers? Do trained managers kill humanity? EH sought answers from Dr Markus Schwarz from the international executive search consultancy Egon Zehnder. Report: Michael Krassnitzer

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A Plethora of Techniques‘ emerging for thoracic intervention

“On a day-to-day basis, each of us in thoracic imaging is dealing with a large number of patients with pulmonary metastasis or lung cancer,” said Christoph Engelke, MD. “These patients have been targeted by different chemotherapies and surgical therapies. Yet the prognosis in advanced lung cancer stages has not been changed.”

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Teleradiology use in Europe

A new survey brings fresh insight into radiologists’ thoughts on teleradiology in Europe. Conducted by radiologist Dr Erik Ranschaert from the Jeroen Bosch Hospital, Den Bosch, The Netherlands, the findings were presented in March to a Special Focus Session at the European Congress of Radiology in Vienna. Mark Nicholls reports.

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Proven Benefits of ShearWave Elastography

Radiology and European Radiology Journals Report High Reproducibility and Significant Improvement of Breast Ultrasound Specificity. The much anticipated results of the largest clinical breast study ever sponsored by an ultrasound manufacturer have recently been published in the prestigious peer reviewed Radiology and European Radiology medical journals.

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Cloud computing

The storage and retrieval of an ever increasing volume of imaging data is raising hospital IT managers’ interest in sharing computing resources via the Internet, thus saving on storage space, hardware and software costs and concerns over data security. Mark Nicholls spoke with Saskia Groeneveld, Carestream’s Regional Marketing Manager (Healthcare Information Solutions), about the company’s…

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Hospital Build Europe

In Berlin, from 24-26 April visitors to this international congress and trade fair will hear of medical imaging, process optimisation and facility management, and the latest construction, operation and equipment trends The event will run alongside Euro ID, a trade fair for automatic identification, and conhIT, an IT healthcare industry tradeshow.

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Dysglycaemia

Dysglycaemia is a new term in critical care that recognises the vital importance for glucose monitoring of patients in the intensive care unit (ICU). Beyond the clinical consensus over this word for grouping critically ill patients with hyperglycaemia, hypoglycaemia or high blood sugar, there is no broad agreement on how best to manage these patients. Report: John Brosky.

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Robotic walking aids for paraplegics

In the animal kingdom exoskeletons provide stability and protection for many creatures, such as crustaceans and insects. They are also an inspiration for scientists working at the interface of bionics and medical technology to develop fascinating orthopaedic aids, Anja Behringer reports

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All in one and on the wall

Recognised globally for its hand-held instruments, Welch Allyn launched the Connex Electronic Vital Signs Documentation System and portable vital signs monitor at Medica last year. This year the firm is showing its Connex Integrated Wall System, an advanced vitals management and physical assessment solution combining all necessary examination tools in one neat, accessible wall unit. Using it,…

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Global E-Health Forum - Hamburg 2011

Improving the quality of healthcare, increasing the efficiency of the systems and ensuring patient empowerment - these are the common goals worldwide when discussing the necessary transformation of the systems in order to guarantee a sustainable healthcare delivery in the future. The Global E-Health Forum - Hamburg 2011 will represent major stakeholders involved in designing personalized…

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Trends in cardiac pacing

‘Sacrilegious meddling with divine providence’ was the charge brought against New York cardiologist Alfred Hyman in the 1930s when, after successful animal experiments, he applied the first cardiac pacemaker – then still a cumbersome external device – in human patients. A quarter of a century later the first cardiac pacemaker, mounted in a shoe polish tin and covered by epoxy resin, was…

Representing User Interests – on a Partnership Basis

Delivering software for the exchange of information, based on standards – this is the aim of TianiSPIRIT GmbH. The software specialist with headquarters in Austria emerged from the PACS manufacturer Tiani Medgraph AG; the dynamic team focuses on solutions for Health Information Exchange in compliance with the guidelines of the initiative “Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise” (IHE).

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A new strain of MRSA discovered

While researching bovine mastitis (an S. aureus infection that occurs in the cows’ udders), researchers led by Dr Mark Holmes at the University of Cambridge, UK, identified a new strain of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) which occurs both in human and dairy cow populations.

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ECR 2011 prelude

Vienna - For the 23rd time, the European Congress of Radiology (ECR) is opening its doors to welcome 19,000 participants from over 90 countries. The scientific exchange of knowledge and the presentation of the latest developments in the field of radiology will again be presented right in the heart of Europea. In an inaugural press conference on March 3rd, the hot topics of the congress were…

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Imaging is undergoing massive changes

Although developments in molecular imaging still do not reach the high expectations placed upon them, the change in imaging is very obvious. Having been limited to the imaging of morphology, nowadays information on tissue characteristics, blood vessels or the metabolic behaviour of tumours provide many more insights, for example into response behaviour.

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The 3rd Annual General Meeting of the Austrian Society for Laboratory Medicine and Clinical Chemistry

Different tests bring different results, and results of the same types of test vary from laboratory to laboratory. "In the case of test procedures for autoimmune diseases there are incredible discrepancies," confirmed Professor Manfred Herold, head of the Laboratory for Rheumatism at the University Clinic for Internal Medicine One, Innsbruck. The reason: "There are no standards for…

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New driver of innovation and efficiency in radiology

Philips is ushering in a new era in radiology science with Imaging 2.0, a concept fueled by integration of technology, clinician and patient. Showcasing its commitment to pioneering innovative, cost-effective solutions, Philips is highlighting technologies that focus specifically on the patient, in addition to advanced networking tools that facilitate greater collaboration between radiologists…

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Ingenia, the first-ever digital broadband MRI system

At the 96th annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) in Chicago, Philips showcased Philips Ingenia, the first-ever digital broadband magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) solution. Driven by Philips’ commitment to developing innovative patient care solutions, Ingenia MR delivers exceptional image clarity, scanning efficiency and scalability. The Philips Ingenia MR system is…

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Turning data into knowledge

What connects these: dementia research; the development of a procedure for fast, cost efficient gene sequencing; protein research; modern IT infrastructures, and the determination of reimbursement structures for medical procedures? Answer: Two extremely small common denominators: Bits and bytes. This means data and, increasingly, mass data, which now forms the foundation of medicine. The question…

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Global E-Health Forum

Approx. 250 delegates from more than 30 countries followed the invitation to the inaugural Global E-Health Forum on October 25 + 26, 2010 in Hamburg. In presentations, workshops and discussion forums, the attendees learned about e-health strategies, solutions and services from all over the world.

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MPR 3-D echocardiography

A cardiologist at a UK hospital has become the first in the world to develop a technique to ‘slice’ 3-D images of the heart into intricate sections using computer software. The method, devised by consultant congenital cardiologist Dr Joseph Vettukattil at Southampton General Hospital, is known as multiplane review (MPR) 3-D echocardiography. This allows cardiologists to identify heart defects…

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Radiology services: In or out?

How does a hospital decide what to do about in-house radiology if, for example, its consultant retires? Select a ‘new broom’ to brush out earlier practices, or make this an opportunity to redefine its radiology department’s services and objectives? In the latter case, outsourcing to receive diagnoses from an external radiologist might be potentially interesting. However, Dr Winfried…

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French biologists resist invasion by legions of labs

Facing the risk of an invasion by big international operations, French medical laboratories drew inspiration for their defence from a national hero - Asterix. While the newly launched reform of the French laboratory system will bring the traditionally independent medical labs into conformance with international quality standards, the law builds an elaborate defence against foreign operators to…

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Negative pressure wound therapy

Quality in wound care no longer centres only on a successful healing process but is taking a more holistic, patient-orientated approach. Wounds cause pain, impair quality of life, and make treatment far more complex for medical teams. Approaches that facilitate a painless change of dressings and less wound trauma are therefore welcome – and advancing.

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Surgical site infections

Post-operative wound infection occurs after an estimated 17% of surgical operations – sometimes with devastating consequences for the patient. The list of preventive measures is manifold and long. However, one strategy is increasingly moving into the spotlight: the use of antibacterial coated sutures. Ethicon Products is at the cutting edge in this field. Sandra Rasche, head of this Business…

TROCAR is on track

The 3-year Translational Research On Combating Antimicrobial Resistance (TROCAR) project, a consortium of 14 European institutes, has completed its first year of molecular study of high-risk antibiotic-resistant bacteria. With expertise ranging from medical microbiology to computational analysis, this network of excellence is on track to identify and target the resistant and multi-resistant…

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New weapons enter the un-ending war against MRSA

A decade ago the battle against hospital-acquired MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus bacterial strain) infections appeared to be lost, or at least without end. However, today, we see very important science-to-business achievements in this field. Report: Rostislav Kuklik

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“Health IT is as important as water or electricity”

The Nordic countries have a reputation for being among Europe's avant-garde in the field of digital healthcare solutions. HealthTech Wire talked to Arto Ryymin, executive Vice President of Tieto's healthcare and welfare business, about what the rest of Europe can learn from the Nordic countries and about how health IT companies can support the standardization efforts under way in Europe.

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Biograph mCT

At Medica 2008, Siemens introduced its latest generation PET-CT, the Biograph mCT. During a European Hospital interview, Markus Lusser (ML), worldwide Head of Distribution and Marketing for Molecular Imaging at Siemens, outlined the advantages of the new hybrid system, which aims to extend the spectrum of medical imaging to 'molecular computed tomography'

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Despite the poor market outlook Medica 2008 proved a superlative event

Dusseldorf, November — Medica's anniversary had many significant facets: in its 40th year, and for the 40th time, this spectacular international medical trade fair broke its previous year's record in visitor numbers — but, only just. The event was not only struck by the snow and ice of a sudden winter onset, but also by a storm that brought a level of chaos to Messe Dusseldorf's outdoor…

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The whole diversity of breast cancer diagnostics

'Diagnostics is not diagnostics, not even when it relates to a specific indication such as breast cancer,' says Professor Walter Heindel MD (right), who heads the Munster Mammography and Breast Centre Reference Centre at Munster University Hospital, focusing on the dissimilarities among patient groups and their peculiarities.

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Ideaworks

Many years ago, five self-made millionaires were interviewed about their work. The last question posed was: ‘Is there one thing to which you could attribute your enormous success?’ Without hesitation, four answered: ‘Energy!’ The fifth quipped, ‘Luck’. By the law of averages energy is thus a vital ingredient. However, there are many other essential assets and luck is the least of them.

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The USB health card

Entrepreneur Dr Gunter Pollanz was a central figure in the build-up of charter flights to Israel and in the foundation of MAOF Airlines in Tel Aviv. Later, he also developed important export structures from Israel to Europe. However, in 1997 his life took a dramatic turn when he was diagnosed with lymphoma. Prognosis: Although 54 years old he faced just three more months of life. Today, Dr…

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World of Health IT 2010

The World of Health IT Conference & Exhibition (WoHIT) 2010 will for the first time be held in conjunction with the European Union’s annual High Level eHealth Conference and is being organised by the European Commission, HIMSS Europe, the Spanish Ministry of Health and Social Policy, the Regional Government of Catalonia and Foundation TicSalut.

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Breast screening in the Netherlands

The Dutch screening programme, which began in 1990, invites women aged 50-75 years for mammography screening every two years. Today, the national programme is undergoing considerable regional re-organisation. As one of a team of 12 radiologists at the Alkmaar Medical Centre, Dr Shirley Go is responsible for Mammography and Screening in a large Dutch region. Daniela Zimmermann, asked Dr Go about…

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Strengthening portfolios and customer relationships

After Agfa split its core business units to form three legal entities under the Agfa-Gevaert Group, in January this year, Christian Reinaudo became President of Agfa HealthCare. Speaking with European Hospital representative Gabriela Eriksen, he explained the implications of the business split and future aims for the division he now heads.

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Apply Proven Ideas from Industry to Hospital Management, Recommends Siemens Healthcare Executive.

“P to the power of 3” was the formula that Siemens used to make the global corporation profitable and competitive again after a troublesome period in the 1990's. Britta Fünfstück, head of business development/strategy at Siemens Healthcare, told attendees at the Hospital Management Symposium that this formula represents a commitment to People working in a high performance culture, Process,…

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GE Healthcare expands expertise in mammography

GE Healthcare recently acquired Image Diagnost International GmbH, an IT provider specialised on developing integrated software solutions for mammography workflow and image processing. With this acquisition GE Healthcare expands its capabilities in offering clinicians and national screening services an even more expanded portfolio for the detection of breast cancer.

Glucose monitoring: from lab to POC?

According to estimates up to 450 million patients will suffer from diabetes in the year 2025 (currently 250 million). In view of this, glucose monitoring is of utmost importance. Scientific studies and practical experiences with glucose monitoring at the point of care (POC) were evaluated recently during a meeting of experts in Vienna.

MINDACT

Researchers around the globe are studying whether a genomic test, developed with micro-array technology, is superior to traditional methods in assessing aggressive breast cancer, and therefore could spare a considerable percentage of women from the onslaught of chemotherapy The Breast International Group (BIG) in Brussels, Belgium, manages TRANSBIG, an international network created to avoid…

Changing approaches to wound management

In recent years wound management has been primarily nurse-led, and not benefited from a multi-disciplinary approach. This must change, said Madeleine Flanagan, Principal Lecturer at the University of Hertfordshire's school of Post Graduate Medicine in the faculty of health and human science, where she runs the MSc in Dermatology and an MSc in Skin Integrity; she is also Principal of the European…

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Focus: hygiene and nosocomial infections

They are one of the major threats in today's hospital: tiny pathogens that hide out in catheters, in ventilation tubes, on instruments or on the keyboards of medical technological equipment only waiting to attack patients whose immune system is already weakened. This week, EH Online will take a closer look at nosocomial infections, their causes, their effects and the available ways and means to…

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More reliability in the lab

An innovative robotic sample management system developed by the SME-led PMS project carries out complex sample transport operations rapidly and with a high level of reliability. It includes a new transport system based on magnetic hover railway technologies, a new laboratory information system and a special selective analyser. PMS partners are now predicting a substantial market share for their…

Success for tele-stroke service

A telemedicine project is being used in rural areas of eastern England to enable stroke patients to receive clot-busting drugs within a critical three-hour time window. Adapting video-conferencing facilities, a telestroke service has enabled patients to receive a diagnosis from a stroke specialist, who can authorise thrombolytic drugs to be administered to those deemed eligible.

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The state of play in EU States

Waiting lists for organ transplants are lengthening in most European countries, forcing the need to increase donations higher up the medical and political agenda, Mark Nicholls reports. Spain continues to lead the way in organ donation with the so-called Spanish Model approach, while other countries, e.g. the UK, are debating whether to adopt 'presumed consent' and an 'opt-out' rather than…

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Breast screening in Belgium

Not so long ago this country, of considerable linguistic division, was a split into three regions, referred to as Flemish (with five provinces), Walloon (with five provinces) and the Brussels Capital. Each has its own parliament, with governments responsible for their individual region's affairs; these include health. Dr Catherine Breucq, head of the Breast Imaging Department at Brussels…

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Non surgical mitral valve repair: First enrollment in ACCESS-Europe study

Evalve, Inc., the leader in the development of devices for the percutaneous repair of cardiac valves, announced the first enrollment in the ACCESS-Europe study, a post-market observational study of the MitraClip therapy in Europe. The system is the first commercially available treatment option for non-surgical mitral valve repair for patients suffering from the effects of functional and…

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A new high-rise on New York´s horizon

Ten years ago, New York real estate entrepreneur Israel Green began a worldwide search for a cure for his wife´s lung cancer. A year later, the couple returned to New York empty handed. Just days before a risky surgery, they were happily stunned to be given a very different diagnosis: acid reflux.

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Spotlight on patient safety

Medical errors occur in any part of the treatment process and typically involve the wrong medication, improper treatment, or incorrect or delayed test results. At its annual partner meeting, which took place in Berlin, September 27-28, Philips reinforced its commitment to use its leading global position in healthcare speech recognition to drive technology advancements towards reducing medical…

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Clear goals - even though the priority is "family life"

A specialist in radiology and neuroradiology, Dr Birgit Ertl-Wagner is senior physician for teleradiology at the Institute for Clinical Radiology, in Grosshadern University Hospital, Munich. She studied medicine at Ludwig-Maximilians University, in Munich, and gained her doctorate for her thesis on neuroradiology at the Max-Planck-Institut Martinsried. She has worked in her profession in the USA,…

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Röntgen Prize for Marc Dewey

Berlin-based radiologist Marc Dewey will be awarded this year's Röntgen Prize for his work on the diagnosis of coronary heart diseases (CHD), one of most common and most dangerous heart conditions in the industrialized countries.

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New quick test for MRSA delivers results in just 5 hours

The methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is one of the most common causes of life threatening infections among hospital patients. What makes the bacterium that dangerous is the fact, that due to unspecific symptoms and long lasting testing procedures its detection takes too long. A new test that delivers results in just five hours now offers the possibility of a MRSA screening for…

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International philosophies and hospital construction

Philippe PIENS, Hospital Facilities Programmer at the Paris-based healthcare facility organisation and design feasibility advisory company HospiConseil, describes conflicting cross-border concepts and compromises, during the planning of a new, state-of-the-art maternity unit at the King Hamad General Hospital, Bahrain

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Improving garments

Now there are even garments for hospital visitors - a good thing, in view of MRSA and other pathogens.

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Infection source: water

That tap water carries pathogens such as legionella or pseudomonas aeruginosa is well known, writes Heidi Heinhold. However, new research results show that bacteria that were previously considered non-pathogenic, such as coagulase-negative staphylococci (CONS), can be present in hospital water and are transmitted by the water

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Spotlight on patient safety

Medical errors occur in any part of the treatment process and typically involve the wrong medication, improper treatment, or incorrect or delayed test results. At its annual partner meeting in Berlin Philips reinforced its commitment to use its leading global position in healthcare speech recognition to drive technology advancements towards reducing medical errors and improving patient safety…

Huge cost-savings for private insurers

According to an as yet undefined ruling of the European Court of Justice, EU patients whose names have been on long waiting lists for surgery in their homeland now have a right to be treated in another EU country, and this is to be reimbursed by their national health insurers.

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Paediatric radiology

Children are not small adults. As well as special technical requirements, their treatment needs particular handling by the radiology team.

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How much IT does healthcare really need?

The question is increasingly significant. Information technology (IT) has thrust itself into all corners of life — some argue for better, some for worse, largely because efficient electronic networking cannot happen overnight. Thus gatherings to share experiences are valuable, as seen in the Berliner Klinik-IT Forum, a two-day event in January, supported by the Charité Berlin. The theme was:…

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Tap water

Hospital acquired infections affect about half a million people annually, and water is a serious source of infection.

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Company Profile

In the spotlight: Schiller AG

Alfred E Schiller, founder and managing director of Schiller AG, based in Baar, Switzerland, describes the rise of his company and its place in today’s highly competitive intensive care market. Alfred Schiller founded Schiller AG in 1971 and three years later introduced his first product – a pocket-sized electrocardioscope, which has been built on successively over the years. The…