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Public Policy is social agreement written down as a universal guide for social action. We at The Policy ThinkShop share information so others can think and act in the best possible understanding of "The Public Interest."

Is your doctor happy? With Poll from: Gallup.Com

When you visit your doctor does (s)he look happy?  At the end of the day healthcare is a one on one personal experience.  All the insurance coverage or fancy machines in the world won’t improve medical care if the doctor patient relationship is not optimal.

So what is our healthcare system doing to address physician happiness?  The Gallup organization took a closer look at hospitals, one place where physician practice is defined and sustained–for better or for worse…

“When doctors are frustrated, patient care and hospital revenues suffer. Heres how hospitals can engage their physicians — and make a positive impact on patients and the bottom line.”

via Gallup.Com – Daily News, Polls, Public Opinion on Politics, Economy, Wellbeing, and World.

Filed under: ACA and Medicaid, Behavioral Health Outcomes, Blogosphere, Cancer Treatment & Success, Health Literacy, Health Policy, Healthcare Reform, Maternal and Child Health, Medicaid, Medicaid Expansion, Medical Research, Medicare, New American Electorate, Polls and pollsters, Public Health

Popular Article on Healthcare: Views on End-of-Life Medical Treatments | Pew Research Center’s Religion & Public Life Project

An aging America may not necessarily be a quiet and content America.  People born in the post war boom, challenged religion, government and authority in all their forms.  As an aging generation, they want the healthcare system to take care of them.

Baby boomers have grown up in what can be termed the age of technology and optimism, with mankind at the center of the universe and economic progress an ever churning engine.  Much of the healthcare conversation in America is not about doctors and patients but about costs and insurance.  Americans spend a great deal of money on healthcare.  All the recent talk about healthcare seems to be impacting expectations on the role of doctors and healthcare outcomes.  Americans expect doctors to save lives.

One of the challenges of healthcare in America is getting people to understand it, to connect their behavioral choices with healthcare outcomes and to value wellness over consumption.  Feeling good does not always lead to feeling well.  America can be an indulgent society and today’s youth want it all and they want it now.  Americans do not value their healthcare until it is a problem they can feel or until they understand what is happening to them as something that can threaten their mortality.  Americans want to live for ever and their attitudes regarding the role that a physician should play regarding preserving life is moving in that direction.

“At a time of national debate over health care costs and insurance, a Pew Research Center survey on end-of-life decisions finds most Americans say there are some circumstances in which doctors and nurses should allow a patient to die. At the same time, however, a growing minority says that medical professionals should do everything possible to save a patient’s …”

via Views on End-of-Life Medical Treatments | Pew Research Center’s Religion & Public Life Project.

Filed under: Aging, Blogosphere, consumers, Death and Dying, Demographic Change, Health Policy, Healthcare Reform, Medicare, News, Public Health, Public Policy

In U.S., Less Than Half Look at Restaurant Nutrition Facts | Gallup Poll

The Policy ThinkShop is expanding its policy analysis and research resources in response to the current  healthcare reform challenges faced by the states and communities.  We will be posting periodic articles and resources addressing the numerous variables that define the nation’s current healthcare challenges which go well beyond putting a health insurance card in a person’s hand.

Visit our health policy and research blog at:

http://healththinkshop.com

for more health specific resources and to share with us which areas of health you want us to address for your daily health administration, policy and planning needs.

The restaurant industry can be seen as fitting into a continuum.  At one extreme are the restaurants that focus on providing easy to make menus, easy to store foods, easy to please customers.  By easy to please we might mean people who are looking for the basic satisfying elements producing the classic “addictive” flavors from sweets, salts and fatty foods.  At the other extreme, difficult to call it “extreme” since it is probably the more reasonable in terms of healthy lifestyle, there is the fresh vegetables, fish and light fowl, moderately portioned cuisine  served in prestigious and select culinary establishments for the educated palate.  Home cooking has historical and culturally embedded positive meaning in our culture but truth be told most home cooking is not very healthy either…  In this case, it probably goes outside our initial restaurant continuum because cooking at home requires skill, time and appropriate ingredients.  Of course, in the available ingredients we find the most difficult challenge.  Keeping fresh vegetables, fish and fowl on hand is to often cumbersome and expensive.  Although budget is often the decisive factor here, time, a more universally unavailable commodity, is often the thing that makes or breaks home cooking.

Aside from the mechanics, logistics and administrative aspects of culinary efficacy there is, perhaps equally decisive as time, health literacy.   That is, knowledge of the relationship between food and health.  That is not the only aspect of health literacy but it just as well aught to be.  According to the Gallop Poll, knowledge about what we eat is woefully missing in the American culinary mind.

The Policy ThinkShop is expanding its policy analysis and research resources in response to the current  healthcare reform challenges faced by the states and communities.  We will be posting periodic articles and resources addressing the numerous variables that define the nation’s current healthcare challenges which go well beyond putting a health insurance card in a person’s hand.

Visit our health policy and research blog at:

http://healththinkshop.com

for more health specific resources and to share with us which areas of health you want us to address for your daily health administration, policy and planning needs.

“Even as more U.S. restaurants list nutritional information on their menus, less than half of Americans, 43%, say they pay a “great deal” or a “fair amount” of attention to it. Americans are much more likely to take note of nutritional labels on food packages, with 68% saying they pay at least a fair amount of attention to this …”

via In U.S., Less Than Half Look at Restaurant Nutrition Facts.

Filed under: access to education, Aging, Behavioral Health Outcomes, Blogosphere, Health and Exercise, Health Literacy, Health Policy, Healthcare Reform, Medicaid, Medicaid Expansion, Medical Research, Medicare, News, Policy ThinkShop Comments on other media platforms, Public Health, Public Policy, , , , ,

States’ Policies on Health Care Exclude Poorest – NYTimes.com

It is dumbfounding!   It paralyzes the brain, the heart and almost all hope–without need for audacity.

Ph.D.s, advocates, health professionals, and good old moms and dads come to the agreement that healthcare needs changing and that sick people should get help–especially those who have difficulty getting it.  Presumably, it is logical and reasonable to think that many of these people are what we, all of us for hundreds of years, have called “the poor.”

Yet for as long as there have been those with and those without, those with often have the efficacy to get more and those without, perhaps by definition, get even less–always…

So here we are well into healthcare reform and the NYT is sounding the whistle on the haves once again–millions have been spent and the poor are somehow invisible once again when it comes to targeting the needs of those who are hurting and are having a difficult time getting good, reliable, continuos, patient centered, medical home care!  Go figure… or better yet, go read the New York times…

“The refusal by about half the states to expand Medicaid will leave millions of poor people ineligible for government-subsidized health insurance under President Obama’s health care law even as many others with higher incomes receive federal subsidies to …”

More via States’ Policies on Health Care Exclude Poorest – NYTimes.com.

Filed under: access to education, Aging, Behavioral Health Outcomes, Blogosphere, Children and Poverty, consumers, Death and Dying, Economic Recession, Feminization of Poverty, Health and Exercise, Health Literacy, Health Policy, Healthcare Reform, Maternal and Child Health, Medical Research, Medicare, News, Parenting, Policy ThinkShop Comments on other media platforms, Public Health, Public Policy, Public Service, WeSeeReason, , ,

Could Statins Raise Diabetes Risk? – WebMD

Drugs have serious, and sometimes fatal, side effects and too often unintended consequences.  But we are sick, and health professionals somehow perform a cost benefit analysis and risk assessment and recommend that we take this drug or that to help us deal with our health condition or else.

Medicine is evolving, medicines are just one variable in a complex medical intervention process and people simply do not behave well or as needed very often.

Like variables that are introduced to repair a broken swiss watch, drugs enter our body system and fix some things yet disturb others.

Medical interventions, as drug therapies, change our blood chemistry and many of the vital functions of our major organs and personal health processes in some way…

As our body systems and organs fail under the weight of heredity, diet, behavior, etc., scientists perform research and through trial and error attempt to produce substances that can be introduced into our sick body systems to address a needed substance or desired cause and effect to make us better.

Our lives and bodies are similar, so research  has some success, in a controlled experiment, showing that symptoms can be changed or controlled.  However, implementing these medical solutions in the daily routine of our unique yet complex lives is another story.

Diet, exercise and behavior in general are also modified when we become sick and our body changes due to powerful drugs we are advised to take.

As each of us goes through life experiencing disease, we benefit from therapies, if we are “lucky” enough to have access to them, in varying ways.

“Certain statins — the widely used cholesterol-lowering drugs — may increase your chances of developing type 2 diabetes, a new study suggests.

The risk was greatest for patients taking atorvastatin (brand name Lipitor), rosuvastatin (Crestor) and simvastatin (Zocor), the study said.

Focusing on almost 500,000 Ontario residents, researchers …”

More via Could Statins Raise Diabetes Risk? – WebMD.

Filed under: Aging, Behavioral Health Outcomes, Blogosphere, Cancer Treatment & Success, consumers, Death and Dying, Health and Exercise, Health Literacy, Health Policy, Healthcare Reform, Medical Research, Medicare, News, Public Health, , , , , , , ,

Obama Wins New Term as Electoral Advantage Holds – NYTimes.com

America’s has chosen to stay on the path to fairness, embracing diversity and the working person … The 47% wins!

The New York Times reports Obama victory as “Mr. Etch a Sketch” goes down hard and for ever!

Mitt Catches Bad Loss … America’s 47% wins big!

“Barack Hussein Obama was re-elected president of the United States on Tuesday, overcoming powerful economic headwinds, a lock-step resistance to his agenda by Republicans in Congress and an unprecedented torrent of advertising as the nation voted to give him a second …”

More via Obama Wins New Term as Electoral Advantage Holds – NYTimes.com.

Filed under: access to education, African American, Arab Spring, Blogosphere, Culture Think, Demographic Change, Discrimination, Economic Recession, Education Policy, Education Reform, Election 2012, ethnicity in politics, Latinos, Medicare, Middle East Freedom, Minority Males, News, Public Policy, symbolic uses of politics, symbols as swords, Tax Policy, Teacher Power, The 47%!, The Western Imagination, Unemployment, Using Social Media, Vote, waging war, WeSeeReason, Women's rights, ,

Reverse Mortgages Costing Some Seniors Their Homes – NYTimes.com

The very loans that are supposed to help seniors stay in their homes are in many cases pushing them …

More via Reverse Mortgages Costing Some Seniors Their Homes – NYTimes.com.

Filed under: Aging, Blogosphere, consumers, Culture Think, Election 2012, Feminization of Poverty, Gender Policy, Medicare, Mortgages, News, , ,

Kaiser’s Monthly Update on Health Disparities – Kaiser Family Foundation

Kaiser’s September Update on Health Disparities

This free, monthly update synthesizes news coverage from hundreds of print and broadcast news sources related to health and health care issues affecting underserved and racial and ethnic communities.

The update also summarizes recent journal articles and other research developments in the field and features a data slide from a relevant Kaiser Family Foundation publication.

DISPARITIES IN THE NEWS

1. The Effects Of Discrimination Could Last A Lifetime

2. Study Involving Birmingham Kids Finds Health Disparity Between White, Black, And Hispanic Children

3. How Well You Sleep May Hinge On Race

DISPARITIES IN RESEARCH

4. Temporal Changes In Socioeconomic Influences On Health: Maternal Education And Preterm Birth

5. Socioeconomic Status And Adolescent Mental Disorders

6. Prevalence, Disparities, And Trends In Obesity And Severe Obesity Among Students In The Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, School District, 2006-2010

7. Fundamental Causes Of Colorectal Cancer Mortality: The Implications Of Informational Diffusion

DISPARITIES DATA SPOTLIGHT

No Personal Doctor/Health Care Provider Among All Minority Men, by State, 2006-2008 (v1.0)

via Kaiser’s Monthly Update on Health Disparities – Kaiser Family Foundation.

Filed under: Blogosphere, Election 2012, Health Literacy, Health Policy, Healthcare Reform, Medical Research, Medicare, News, Public Policy, ,

Republican Troops Keeping Ryan’s Budget Plan at Arm’s Length – NYTimes.com

Even as Mitt Romney and Representative Paul D. Ryan exhort Republicans to embrace their proposed Medicare changes and spending cuts, the party’s rank and file is growing less enthusiastic about the …

MORE  via Republican Troops Keeping Ryan’s Budget Plan at Arm’s Length – NYTimes.com.

Filed under: Blogosphere, Congressional Activity, Election 2012, lobbying, Medicare, News, political plots, Public Policy, Public Sector, ,

Paul Ryan Accepts Republican Vice-Presidential Nomination – NYTimes.com

Representative Paul D. Ryan of Wisconsin, whose budget plans have come to define conservative opposition to President Obama’s governing philosophy, accepted the Republican vice-presidential nomination on Wednesday as his party embraced the …

MORE  via Paul Ryan Accepts Republican Vice-Presidential Nomination – NYTimes.com.

Filed under: Blogosphere, Election 2012, Health Policy, Healthcare Reform, Medicare

Paul Ryan: Romney makes his choice | The Economist

IN THE polarized world of American politics, achieving bipartisan agreement on any topic is a rare feat nowadays. So perhaps it’s worth celebrating the fact that, had it been put to a vote, the pick of Paul Ryan as Mitt Romney’s running-mate likely would’ve …

MORE via Paul Ryan: Romney makes his choice | The Economist.

Filed under: Blogosphere, Election 2012, Medicare

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