Wednesday, February 29, 2012

How to Make a Hearing Aid More Child-Friendly


One of the best things about a hearing aid is the fact that it is created in such a way that even children can benefit from it. However, because of peer pressure, low self-esteem, and the bullying threat they face every day, wearing one of these devices proves difficult.
One of the ways you can make your child feel more accepted with their hearing aid is to let them know the benefits and how it can help them enjoy things like being around their friends. Most kids want to fit in and be accepted. At school, pizza parties, during recess, or even while they're at a slumber party, people are constantly conversing, chatting, or even playing games. In order to feel like they belong, they are going to want to hear what is going on without having to struggle or miss out on something that their friends might have said. If this happens, they would have to keep asking people to repeat themselves, which can cause aggravation.
Another way to help your child is to allow them to have fun with their hearing aid. These devices don't just come in the brownish or tan color that most people are used to seeing. There are several different colors like red, blue, green and even pink. There are even different designs like polka dots, stripes or squares. So, if you allow them to pick their favorite color or some designs that they like, it will make them more likely to want to wear it instead of it being something that they dread putting on.
The last way that you can make your child feel more accepted with their hearing aid is by making sure that you always work to make them feel accepted. Don't focus on their issue. Don't always make comments to them about their not being able to hear or don't make them feel like they are aggravating you if they ask you to repeat yourself. Focus on them as a person or the good things that they do. Children have enough to deal with at school, worrying about people teasing and bullying them is more than enough pressure. They shouldn't have to deal with the same type of issue when they go home.
Children can be extremely sensitive creatures. So, as a parent one of the things you want to do is make sure you always do your best to make them feel good about themselves. So, when it comes to wearing a hearing aid, there are several different things you can do to make your child feel like less of an outcast.

Friday, February 24, 2012

What Are Joules And Calories?


Energy is a fundamental concept in physics just like work. It is described as the capacity of a certain system to do work. The system may either be a small boy carrying a heavy load of books or a seed slowly turning into an oak. It can also be an ocean wave crashing gently crashing into the shore or a group of kids playing ball on the field. Every living thing in the planet that moves and grows does work and is using energy. The energy that we have comes from the food that we eat or in the case of plants through photosynthesis. There is whole lot of forms of energy. There is mechanical energy which comes from machines, potential energy which is energy at rest. There is also radiant energy which is energy coming from the sun and hydrothermal energy which is energy coming from the ocean. Kinetic energy which is energy from moving matter, electrical energy which is energy coming from moving electrons and electromagnetic energy which is energy coming from light waves and etc. Energy can take on any endless form. Just like all other physics concepts, the amount of energy is measured in certain units.
There two popular units you can use in measuring energy. One is Joules while the other is Calories.
Joules was first proved by an English physicist James Prescott Joule and was subsequently named after him. Although Mr. Prescott discovered the value of Joule during his work it was not he who first introduced the term but Dr. Mayer of Heilbronn. A joule is a unit of energy used in the System Internationale which refers to the amount of energy needed for you to perform a certain kind of work when you apply a force of 1 Newton over a distance of 1 meter.
Joule should not be interchanged with Newton-meter (N.m) since the latter is used as a measure of torque while the Joule is used to describe heat and electricity. The abbreviation for joule is J in capital since it is derived from a proper name.
Meanwhile, calorie is the amount of heat that is needed to raise the temperature of 1 gram of water from 15 to 16 degrees Celsius. Calorie is typically used to measure your energy requirements and the energy content of your food. But the calories referred to in food are usually kilocalories which is equal to 1000 calories. You cannot hear the usage of calories anymore in Physics, if so you will only seldom hear it since it's considered to be outdated in contexts.
Joule now is the primary unit generally used to measure energy. For 1 joule there are 1 0.239005736 calories while for 1 calorie there is 4.2 Joules.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Himalayan Sea Salt - A Natural Remedy for Common Ailments


Himalayan Salt Lamps are an organic, natural remedy for Asthma and Allergies. This scientifically proven method of cleansing the air in the home of pollens, mold spores, dust and pet dander, among many other environmental pollutants, may ease the symptoms of respiratory problems such as Asthma and Allergies. In fact, many Asthma & Allergy suffers have reported experiencing relief of their symptoms almost immediately after placing salt lamps in their homes and office areas. Aside from this health benefit salt lamps also emit a relaxing, tranquil glow that benefits emotional wellbeing by reducing irritability & depression, especially during the cold, darker winter months.
Now, we all know that there are Air Purifiers on the market, scientifically proven to help with Allergies & Asthma because they ionize the air. However, these products can be problematic & lack the emotional benefits of a Himalayan Salt Lamp. For instance, the standard ionic air purifier may be too noisy for a child to sleep with while on, so it ends up turned off for the night, when the child would be exposed to the cleansed air for the longest portion of the day and thereby benefit from it the most. The standard air purifier also lacks the benefits of the natural, relaxing glow of a Himalayan Salt Lamp which provides naturally cleansed air silently, without a sound and with the benefits of a warm, steady, relaxing glow! These lovely, natural air purifiers are beginning to grace hotel lobbies, resorts, spas, restaurants and homes across America and around the world with their refreshing health benefits and natural ambiance!
Meanwhile, the natural health benefits of unprocessed Himalayan Pink Sea Salts are being put to good use in the kitchens and baths of the world as a healthier alternative to processed table salt & a natural, healthy, rejuvenating alternative to commercially produced bath salts & bath therapy products! Due to the long history of the use of salt in centuries old folk remedies to stimulate circulation, lower blood pressure and remove toxins and heavy metals from the body, health professionals, spas, and chefs around the world use the various forms of unprocessed Himalayan Sea Salt for its healing effects on the body and relaxing effects on the mind. Unprocessed Himalayan Pink Salt Cooking techniques have been featured on The Food Network's Iron Chef America, while resorts such as The Casa Laguna Inn & Spa and The Blue Ocean Resort offer Himalayan bath salts for sale or complimentary 15 minute Himalayan Salt Sole Baths with their select Spa Packages!
Whether you are looking for a natural remedy for Allergies and Asthma, a healthier alternative to table salt or a natural, tranquility bath salt to add a more soothing effect to your next bath, Himalayan Salt may be the solution for you!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Using Patient Portals to Achieve HIPAA Compliance and Drive Patient Satisfaction


HIPAA and HITECH (The ACTs)
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) enacted in 1996 includes the requirement to protect the privacy and security of health information of individuals, defined as "protected health information" (PHI). The HIPAA regulation applies to "covered entities", which include healthcare providers, health plans and healthcare clearinghouses.
The 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) passed by the Obama administration, includes a section called the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act. The HITECH Act promotes adoption of "electronic health records" (EHRs) to improve efficiency and lower healthcare costs. Anticipating that the widespread adoption of electronic health records would increase privacy and security risks, the HITECH Act introduced new security and privacy related requirementr for covered entities and their business associates under HIPAA.
Further, the fines for non-compliance with the HIPAA privacy rule have increased significantly with the introduction of the HITECH Act. Smaller practices are being fined tens of thousands of dollars and large provider organizations are being fined millions of dollars based on some recent landmark cases. To this point, the government has found that performing HIPAA compliance audits is a significant revenue generation opportunity. As a result, it has hired additional audit staff and plans to significantly increase the number of HIPAA Compliance Audits. For providers, this means a heightened risk of significant financial penalties, should you be found to be non-compliant.
Complying with these ACTs (HIPPA + HITECH are collectively referred to as the ACTs) requires an investment in the adoption of HIPAA Compliance Plans, training of staff and attention to the particular details of the ACTs. Note that the ACTs do NOT require the use of technology, although HITECH in combination with ARRA does heavily promote and incentivize the adoption of EHRs. The purpose of this document is to help healthcare providers understand how patient portals help achieve HIPAA compliance. There are numerous approaches to the broader compliance topic that range from hiring HIPAA compliance consultants to adopting HIPAA Compliance Plans that have been written for similarly situated organizations. These topics are beyond the scope of this paper.
Role of the Patient Portal in helping healthcare providers comply with HIPAA and HITECH
The patients of today's healthcare providers have an insatiable desire for electronic access to information. Many are heavy users of email, social media and other forms electronic communication and they are demanding to communicate this way with their healthcare provider. But this is where the problem begins and where patient portals can help. Due to the inherent lack of security of internet based email, email is not deemed an acceptable form of communication if the message involves PHI. And exactly what is PHI? In the broadest interpretation it is any communication that includes personally identifying information (name, email address, phone, address, etc) along with health information. I have heard some practices argue that if a patient chooses to communicate this way (email) that the patient is effectively "waiving" HIPAA and therefore the practice is not in violation. Most healthcare attorneys do not support this view since HIPAA is a federal act that does not have any provisions that allow patients to "waive" the protections of the ACT. Thus, taking this posture is a risky bet and the fines for non-compliance are steep.
So how do practices meet the insatiable desire for electronic communications to deliver patient satisfaction, yet comply with HIPAA and HITECH? Patient portals are definitely part of the answer. Simply put, patient portals are healthcare related online applications that allow patients to interact and communicate with their healthcare providers. The functionality of patient portals varies significantly but may include secure access to patient demographic information, appointment scheduling, payments, bidirectional messaging and access to clinical data if the portal is being provided by the EHR provider.
Today in practice, we find patient portals being provided by EMR/EHR providers, firms providing "Practice Management" (PM) solutions and even third parties that are promising patients eventual access to all of their health information in one portal. These are typically referred to as "Personal Health Portals" and many consider "Microsoft Health Vault" to be the leader in this space. Since the personal health portal does not directly interact with the practice, these portals typically only contain clinical information that is available through the myriad and increasing number of healthcare data exchanges.
Clearly, patient portals can help practices concurrently achieve HIPAA compliance and patient satisfaction at the same time. But there are several adoption challenges broadly summarized below that are slowing the movement to patient portals: 
  • Change Management. This issue impacts small and large organizations undertaking major system implementations. Comprehensive systems implementations require redefinition and remapping of business processes by all members of an organization. The issues and significant challenges involved with taking on these types of projects are well documented and beyond the scope of this paper, but they are real issues that are slowing the adoption of new technologies

  • Cost/Time to Implement. The government recognized the cost part of this issue and with the ARRA is providing up to $44,000 per practice for implementing an EHR solution and meeting all of the yet to be defined "meaningful use" criteria. But in many practices, time to implement is still a big hurdle as practitioners are busy seeing patients all day every day and these systems invariably take weeks and months of training and lost productivity due to the learning curve of the new technology

  • Existing EHR Solution meets core requirements but patient portal is not available. This is a very common issue, especially for larger and/or very specialized providers where systems have been developed and customized to meet the complex clinical requirements, but were not designed to address patient communications and other patient facing requirements of today. Due to this complexity and customization, adoption of a new solution is very impractical and wholesale replacement is not deemed an option by many of these providers
Broader Issues with delivering Practitioner-level clinical information to patients
Beyond the adoption issues stated above and many other unstated ones, there is a broader issue with the use of practitioner-level patient portals for clinical information. To understand the author's perspective on this issue, consider that one of the real benefits of electronic health information is that in theory it is easily shared, aggregated, disaggregated and exchanged. The reality is achieving these benefits is still a few years away, maybe more. The establishment of statewide healthcare exchanges marks an important milestone but much work remains to be done to achieve interoperability of clinical data. Microsoft Health Vault is pushing hard to be the platform that securely delivers the complete set of clinical data to patients that incorporates data from all of its providers, pharmacies and lab results in a single easy to use portal.
At best, then a practitioner-level patient portal providing clinical data only presents a single provider view, yet many of the patients that need this information the most have multiple providers engaged in their care. For example, a single patient may have a family physician, an internist, a cardiologist and an endocrinologist all engaged in their care. Looking at the data from any single practitioner would not give a complete picture. For this reason, the author believes that clinical data is best delivered as a single portal to the patient by a third party that can make arrangements to aggregate data from all sources and deliver it to the patient in a single portal.
"Standalone" Portals
Given the adoption challenges of the EHR/PM-centric (patient) portals, and the broader issues with delivering clinical data in practitioner-level portals, there is a role for "standalone" portals. By standalone portals, we mean portals that provide direct patient access to the creation and editing of patient demographic information, bidirectional secure messaging, appointment scheduling, payments and other non-clinical features. These portals do not provide access to the clinical data. But standalone portals offer healthcare providers the ability to quickly join the digital revolution, meet the insatiable desire of patients to communicate electronically in a way that is secure and HIPAA compliant, allow online self-registration and drive multiple efficiencies at the same time.
If the standalone patient portal vendor also offers HL7 integration, it should be relatively easy for the vendor to provide HL7-based demographic data integration to existing systems avoiding any duplicate data entry issues and keeping the data in sync.
And while most of the patient portal offerings are tied to a complete EHR/PM offering, there are a few vendors in the market that offer well-architected standalone patient portals that can easily be integrated into legacy environments. Undoubtedly, there will be new entrants as the market demand for these capabilities increases, but for now small and large providers have at least a few viable products to meet the requirements of their stakeholders.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Weight Loss With TRX Suspension Training System


Everyone wants to lose weight at one point or another, but this is a task is easier said than done, especially considering the high costs and inconveniences surrounding weight loss. Many choose to purchase a gym membership card in their quest to shed unwanted pounds, however the high monthly costs can quickly add up over time, and visiting a gym isn't always possible. Many men and women who are looking to lose weight also feel uncomfortable about working out in a gym full of people. Some may choose to purchase their own gym equipment, but unless there is an additional room or other area of space available, this will quickly clutter the home and make working out even more challenging. Even worse, since more than one piece of exercise equipment is needed to see results, the price can also be substantial. Fortunately, thanks to TRX suspension trainer, all that frustration can now be a thing of the past.
While the TRX suspension trainer has been around for several years, the machine is just now receiving the popularity it deserves after being featured on the reality show "The Biggest Loser." There are many benefits to using the suspension trainer, but one of the biggest perks is the size. The trainer is made to hook to the top of any door or frame and is extremely light at only 2 lbs. Best of all, as the "The Biggest Loser" is showing, anyone can use the TRX suspension trainer, even those who are out of shape or who have never worked out before.
Weight Loss with TRX system is easy. This is because the trainer works by using a series of resistant materials that allows the exercisers to use a combination of their own body weight and gravity as the perfect weight loss tool. All the exerciser has to do is slip their hands or legs into the specially designed handles, then complete any exercises as they would normally.
For example, instead of doing a traditional push-up, the TRX suspension trainer can be hooked on top of a door frame, then the exerciser can pull the handles and slip them around their ankle. Next, all the exercise has to do is get into the normal push-up position. Rather than feet being planted firmly on the ground, the handles in the TRX suspension trainer will suspend the feet a few inbhes above the ground. As the exerciser lowers himself up and down with his arms, the suspension trainer will use the natural gravity and weight of the body to pull on the abs, strengthening the core muscles in the body. This allows the exerciser to achieve dramatic results in a shorter period of time than if they were only doing traditional exercises.
The TRX suspension trainer is also able to do over 200 different types of exercises, all without needing any form of attachments or other pricey add-ons. This means that those who want to lose weight will no longer have to waste their money on expensive gym memberships or bulky equipment. Instead, all that is needed is a single piece of equipment that is small enough to fit on a door, yet strong enough that it can support the weight of even the bulkiest bodybuilder.
There have been dozens of other weight loss products designed around the same theory as the TRX suspension trainer, but only the TRX is made from industrial strength materials. Because exercisers will be working out against the resistance of gravity, TRX knows that the product can't fail mid-work out. If this were to happen, the exerciser could go flying, risking serious injury. For this reason, only the strongest materials have been put into the TRX suspension training device. There are no pulley systems, stretchable parts, or other forms of resistance bands because these simply aren't strong enough to give users a meaningful workout with drastic results.
In addition to being featured on "The Biggest Loser," the TRX suspension trainer has also been behng used by professional athletes and trainers all over the world. This is partly due to the fact that because there are over 200 different exercises that can be done, there is virtually no need for any other form of exercise equipment. Weight Loss with TRX system is easy because the multiple exercise choices prevent user from getting bored, which is one of the most common reasons exercisers stop short of their weight loss goals. The TRX suspension trainer also allows all parts of the body to be strengthened, so regardless of where any 'problem areas' are, the TRX can target and eliminate it.