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Oct. 19, 2011
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New high-tech UCSD training facility puts doctors to the test
KPBS-TV/FM    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The practice of medicine is constantly evolving, and medical schools have to stay on the cutting edge. That's not a problem at the University of California, San Diego. The school just opened a four-story state-of-the-art medical training center. Students at the new facility work with $150,000 electronically-controlled dummies, which make simulations as realistic as possible. But it's the facility's Center for the Future of Surgery that's the real eye-opener. More

Call for abstracts
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AMSA Foundation is now accepting submissions of abstracts for the 17th annual AMSA Foundation Poster Session to be held at the AMSA Annual Convention in March. Abstracts can be submitted through Nov. 1 in one of four categories: Translational Projects; Patient-Oriented & Epidemiology Projects; Curriculum Development & Educational Projects; Community Development & Service Projects. Cash prizes in each category will be awarded, along with a member's choice award. For more information and for the submission form, click here. Do not miss this opportunity to present at a national event and showcase your research or project.

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College admissions officials turn to Facebook to research students
U. S. News & World Report    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
When a prospective student applies to college, it is expected that his or her application profile will be judged — whether it be on grades, standardized test scores or a combination of factors. A growing trend among college admissions officers, though, involves a different profile check of an applicant: a Facebook profile. Facebook has become a vital source for admissions professionals looking for background information on prospective students. In a recent survey of admissions officers at 359 colleges and universities, Kaplan Test Prep revealed that 24 percent of respondents reported using Facebook or other social networking pages to research an applicant. More

Program improves scores, knowledge retention for 3rd-year residents
Medical News Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
An analysis by University of Cincinnati faculty members shows that a multiple-choice testing program coupled with a novel yearlong clinical experience helps internal medicine residents improve their scores on the Internal Medicine In-Training Exam. These findings, published in the advance online edition of the Journal of General Internal Medicine scheduled for print in November, validate the benefit of this and similar programs in improving internal medicine resident education at UC and possibly at other institutions. More

KNALIJ exploration engine
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The KNALIJ exploration engine ( addresses the challenges and opportunities posed by "big data" with a new generation of information visualization tools. It offers medical students a visual interface with capabilities to rapidly discover and gain insights from the copious amounts of information being made available from the National Libraries of Medicine, through its data repositories such as PubMed. KNALIJ recognizes the "connections" linking biomedical and life sciences research and researchers around the world, and visualizes those linkages. This makes them clear, intuitive and even playful by providing interactive "information communities" for exploration, analysis and education. KNALIJ maps can be shared by email and through most social networks. Further, KNALIJ gives researchers and students the all-important resources to read, save and share abstracts, along with full-text articles when available.

Winner of Challenge.Gov's competition for innovative uses of NLM data, KNALIJ intends to become the visualization source for big data across the Internet. Follow Knalij on its blog, or via Twitter and Facebook.

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The enduring impact of healthcare reform
U.S. News & World Report    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail
We've all heard something about healthcare reform in recent months; we also know that the present U.S. government has set healthcare reform as one of its priorities during its current term. However, for various reasons, new reforms could end up affecting many patients in unexpected ways. Due to the many intricacies of healthcare reform, the proposals that made it through a contentious Congress permitted certain exceptions that were thought to be concessions to some opponents. The result of many of these exceptions could affect not only Americans' access to healthcare, but also trainees' medical school and residency training experiences. More

HHS launches innovation program as part of reform law
The Hill    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Health and Human Services Department recently launched a new component of its effort to make healthcare better and more efficient. HHS announced its "Innovation Advisors" program, through which it will select as many as 200 experts to work with doctors and other providers on ways to improve the healthcare delivery system. The program was created by healthcare reform. HHS said the innovation advisors will help build new areas of expertise in their communities while also providing feedback to HHS. More

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4 priority strategies for hospitals of the future
FierceHealthcare    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Hospitals and health systems are adapting to the changing healthcare climate in "curves," or waves of strategic priorities, with one foot on the dock and the other on the boat, according to a recently released report from the American Hospital Association Committee on Performance Improvement. The report identifies strategies hospitals should prioritize as major initiatives in the coming decade. More

Program that pays student loans brings more healthcare professionals to Rhode Island
Student Loans Blog    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A newly-expanded federal program that repays the student loans of healthcare professionals is drawing more doctors, dentists and mental health providers to underserved areas of Rhode Island. Under the National Health Service Corps, a big chunk of student loans for healthcare professionals are repaid by the government in exchange for agreements to practice in underserved rural and urban areas of the country. The program repays up to $60,000 in exchange for two years of service. More

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Demand is high for pretend patients
The Washington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Ted Bell knew his portrayal of a depressed, elderly patient was convincing when the medical student who was examining him broke down in tears. Her instructors had to call a timeout because his flat monotone and unkempt appearance reminded her too much of her father, who had similar symptoms. With six major medical schools in the region near Washington, D.C., annually training tens of thousands of students seeking to be doctors, nurses, pharmacists, social workers and other healthcare professionals, demand for "patients" is high. More

Medical identity theft a growing problem
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One-third of healthcare organizations, including physician practices, insurers and pharmacies, have reported catching a patient using the identity of someone else to obtain services, according to a report from the professional services firm PwC. The report said the problem — and consequences — of medical identity theft could get worse as electronic sharing of patient data increases. More

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Government website lists rates of surgical complications, infections and other problems
Kaiser Health News via    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Medicare has begun publishing patient safety ratings for thousands of hospitals as the first step toward paying less to institutions with high rates of surgical complications, infections, mishaps and potentially avoidable deaths. The new data, available on Medicare's Hospital Compare website, evaluate hospitals on how often their patients suffer complications such as a collapsed lung, a blood clot after surgery or an accidental cut or tear during treatment. More

How HIT can make care transitions safer
HealthLeaders Media    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
So much can go wrong during so-called transitions of care. Lack of communication and coordination with primary care physicians when a patient is discharged from the hospital, for example, can compromise patient safety, lead to ED visits and readmissions, and cause a host of other problems. So how can health information technology make care transitions safer and more seamless? More

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Those scan results are just an app away
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Even in the vast world of apps, Dr. Patrick J. Gagnon has one with an unusual distinction: it had to be cleared for use by the Food and Drug Administration. Gagnon, a radiation oncologist, uses the app when he sees patients in his Fairhaven, Mass., office. He pulls his iPhone out of his pocket, and then he and a patient, side by side, can view images on it and discuss treatment. The app he uses, called Mobile MIM, made by MIM Software, can turn an iPhone or an iPad into a diagnostic medical instrument. More

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