Healthcare politics

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Embracing the digital age

France simplifies healthcare

Successful pilot scheme means TERR-eSanté will be rolled out for the whole of the Ile-de-France. The French have a reputation as early adopters of telemedicine driven by the desire to modernise healthcare by the judicious use of the latest technology. The first ‘carte vitale’ (national health card) with a microchip was introduced in 1998. Since 2011, the information stored on the cards has…

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Should I stay or should I go?

Brexit will be very bad for the NHS, say UK doctors

UK doctors think Britain’s exit from the European Union (EU), dubbed Brexit, will be very bad for the NHS, reveal the results of an anonymised survey of their political beliefs and voting patterns, published online in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health. As a group, they are predominantly left-wing and liberal-minded. But high earners tend to lean more to the right of the…

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Transformation

The USA’s digital healthcare revolution

The digital revolution in healthcare in the United States is marching steadily forward, spurred by federal government regulations and financial incentives, by technological innovations, and by the necessities of increasing healthcare treatment efficiency, of lowering its cost and economic impact, and of elevating communications among providers, patients and payers to the norms of the 21st…

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Hypertension

The 2018 European Guidelines for the treatment of high blood pressure

2018 European Society of Cardiology (ESC) and European Society of Hypertension (ESH) Joint Guidelines for the Management of Arterial Hypertension. A first look at the new European Guidelines for the treatment of high blood pressure was presented at the European Society of Hypertension meeting in Barcelona on June 9th 2018. These long-awaited guidelines have been jointly developed by clinicians…

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Unhealthy divorce

Brexit is bad for our health

Brexit is bad for our health and can be prevented, argue experts in The BMJ today. Public health doctors, Mike Gill and Martin McKee, together with Mark Malloch Brown of Best for Britain and Fiona Godlee, The BMJ’s Editor in chief, say “whatever our views as individuals, or how we voted in the 2016 referendum, we can no longer escape the fact that Brexit in any form so far discussed is bad…

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Mortality increase

What's behind the rising deaths in England and Wales?

Health chiefs are failing to investigate a clear pattern of rising death rates and worsening health outcomes in England and Wales, argue experts in The BMJ today. Lucinda Hiam at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and Danny Dorling at the University of Oxford say weekly mortality figures show 10,375 additional deaths (a rise of 12.4%) in England and Wales in the first seven…

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Across the pond

Why do Americans spend so much more on healthcare than Europeans?

High drug prices as well as the excessive use of imaging and surgical procedures, and excessive administrative burdens contribute the majority to America’s health care overspending compared to Europe, argues policy expert Ezekiel J. Emanuel, MD, PhD, chair of the department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, in an editorial…

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Antibiotic resistance

End animal growth drugs to tackle superbugs

A major summit meeting in London, Great Britain, has seen politicians, doctors, scientists, farmers and other experts come together in a bid to tackle the growing global antimicrobial resistance (AMR) crisis. Among these experts was Dame Sally Davies, England’s Chief Medical Officer, who described AMR as a ‘problem without a face’ because most patients are not told they have a resistant…

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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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Regulation

Implementing MDR is complex and expensive and holds little reality

By 2020 medical devices manufacturers must document the clinical effectiveness of their devices more extensively. The Medical Device Regulation (MDR) presents a fundamental impact on innovation and price calculation for medical devices. Since the faulty PIP breast implants scandal in France (March 2010), there have been frequent calls for tighter licensing regulations for medical devices within…

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Healthcare in Spain

Our education plan is completely obsolete

When it comes to radiographers, Spain has one of the shortest curricula in the world. But advanced imaging and the continuously rising demand for imaging studies require properly trained imaging graduates, and universities have a role to play in the debate, according to Salvador Pedraza Gutiérrez, Associate Professor of Radiology and Director of the School of Diagnostic Imaging Technicians in…

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Is the "American Dream" slipping away?

Drugs, alcohol and suicides contributing to alarming drop in US life expectancy

Drugs, alcohol and suicides are contributing to an alarming drop in US life expectancy, particularly among middle-aged white Americans and those living in rural communities, warn experts in The BMJ. They argue that the ideal of the “American Dream” is increasingly out of reach as social mobility declines, and fewer children face a better future than their parents.

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Profession

The growing role of a hospitalist

New words are consistently spun out in the USA and frequently assimilated into ‘American English’. Take the term ‘hospitalist’ (little used in European English), which was coined by the renowned academic physician Robert M Wachter (University of California, San Francisco) and his colleague Lee Goldman, in an article published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1996. Lisa Chamoff…

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eHealth event

Stepping into a digitalised future

According to a survey carried out by the WHO in 2016, 70% of EU Member States have a national eHealth policy or strategy and 84% of Member States have a national universal health coverage policy or strategy. The research identified funding as the most important barrier to fully implementing eHealth programmes. In the recent years, it has become a key asset for improving how health information is…

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Lesbian, gay, bi, trans

Should all patients be asked about their sexual orientation?

In late 2017, NHS England released guidelines recommending that health professionals ask all patients about their sexual orientation in order to improve services for non-heterosexual patients, but should they? Experts debate the issue in The BMJ today. After decades of campaigning from lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) charities, sexual orientation is now a protected characteristic that is…

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Value-based radiology

We have impact on value!

The movement to Value-Based Healthcare gives no value to diagnostic processes, including Radiology. ESR aims to establish a more holistic approach to help Europe’s single-payer systems shift to a new economic model. The organisers behind Value-Based Healthcare (VBH) are gaining ground in an effort to transition public and private payers toward value-based reimbursement.To date, the…

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