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Military Culture Enables Tobacco Use
HBNS STORY | December 4, 2014
A new study in the American Journal of Health Promotion finds that U.S. military culture perpetuates the notion that using tobacco provides stress relief. Previous studies of tobacco use for stress relief among soldiers have produced no evidence supporting the theory.
Medicaid Payments for Office Visits Impact Cancer Screening Rates
HBNS STORY | November 20, 2014
New research in the journal Cancer finds that Medicaid recipients are more likely to undergo cancer screening tests when their doctors receive higher reimbursements for routine office visits rather than for the tests themselves.
Health Care Shortfalls for LGBT Young Women
HBNS STORY | October 28, 2014
Young sexual minority women, including those identifying as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT), were found to have higher elevated odds of adverse health conditions than heterosexual young women. They also have lower odds of receiving a physical or dental examination, according to a new study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Nearly Half of Older Americans Need Support With Daily Routines
HBNS STORY | October 23, 2014
About 18 million Americans age 65 and older require help with routine daily activities like bathing, handling medications or meals, finds a new study in Milbank Quarterly. The research shows a growing need for improved services and support for older Americans, their spouses, their children and other "informal caregivers."
Expanding Medicaid Increases Rural Health Care Access and Use
HBNS STORY | October 2, 2014
A new study in Health Services Research reveals that expanding Medicaid to cover more adults boosts health care access and use in rural populations.
Only Half of U.S. Adults Over 45 Are Screened for Diabetes
HBNS STORY | September 25, 2014
A new cross-sectional study in American Journal of Preventive Medicine finds that only half of adults in the U.S. were screened for diabetes within the last three years, less than what is recommended by the American Diabetes Association (ADA).
Online Social Networking Linked to Use of Web for Health Info
HBNS STORY | September 16, 2014
The use of social networking sites like Facebook may have implications for accessing online health information, finds a new longitudinal study from the Journal of Health Communication.
A Preventable Medical Error Hits Home
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | September 16, 2014 | Darla Dernovsek
My 77-year-old parents were recently impacted by a medical error. The good news is that the story ends happily. The bad news is that it could have been averted simply by checking the date on lab tests...
Stress Is US
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | September 8, 2014 | Jane Sarasohn Kahn
"Reality is the leading cause of stress among those in touch with it," Lily Tomlin once quipped. So it's no surprise, then, that one-half of the people in the U.S. have had a major stressful event or experience in the last year. And health tops the list...
Poor Health Habits Linked to Financial Insecurity
HBNS STORY | September 4, 2014
Financial hardship, or feeling that one can’t make ends meet, may be more predictive of health risk behaviors than actual income levels for people with low-incomes, finds a recent study in the American Journal of Health Promotion.
Getting Bumped to First Class Health Care
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | September 4, 2014 | Lawrence LeMoal
I am writing this post while seated comfortably in a motorized leather recliner with a window view and lots of other perks. What a legacy we would leave Saskatchewan citizens if we could figure out how to extend this first-class patient care to all patients and their families wrestling with chronic disease...
Facing a Serious Diagnosis? 'AfterShock' Now an App
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | July 31, 2014 | CFAH Staff
Receiving bad health news can spark great upheaval. It is a time when nothing is certain and the future looks dark. The new, free app 'AfterShock: Facing a Serious Diagnosis' offers a basic roadmap through the first few days and weeks, providing concise information and trusted resources to help you regain a bit of control during this turbulent time...
When Does a Patient Need to Be Seen?
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | July 28, 2014 | Anne Polta
You need a refill for a prescription that's about to run out. You've taken the medication for years without any problems and can't think of any reason why the prescription can't just be automatically continued. But the doctor won't order a refill unless you make an appointment and come in to be seen. Is this an unfair burden on the patient or due diligence by the doctor?...
Don't Let the Sun Shine Down on Me (It's Too Complicated!)
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | June 18, 2014 | Jessie Gruman
I'm impressed by how much we struggle with seemingly simple health decisions when faced with sorting through too much information. Every week we view diverse arrays of products with health, convenience and cosmetic claims competing for our attention. Think yogurt, Gatorade, running shoes, breakfast cereal...Given the ubiquity of such products and the swirl of marketing and science- or non-science-based information surrounding each, I'm wondering three things...
Psychological Distress Affects Tobacco Use Differently for Men and Women
HBNS STORY | June 17, 2014
A new study in the American Journal of Health Behavior finds that women are more likely than men to use tobacco products after experiencing severe psychological distress.
Shared Decision Making Missing in Cancer Screening Discussions
HBNS STORY | June 12, 2014
A national survey of patients reveals that physicians don’t always fully discuss the risks and benefits of cancer screening, reports a new study in American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Don't Forget the Hefty Price We Pay to Engage in Health
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | June 12, 2014 | Jessie Gruman
Media-fueled flip-flops and research breakthroughs on lifestyle and health behaviors are wearing down my usual patience with the provisional nature of science. Even simple dietary recommendations like lower fat/salt recommendations have become complicated as old truisms are overturned by new evidence. So I'm asking: To whom should I turn for meaningful guidance about modifying my risk for illness and boosting my health?
Life-Changing Events Can Lead to Less Physical Activity
HBNS STORY | June 5, 2014
Adults tend to engage in less leisure-time physical activity after changes in both lifestyle and physical status, finds a new study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Cancer Screening: Understanding 'Relative Risk'
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | June 3, 2014 | Kenny Lin
I have offered before a few reasons for eligible patients to consider not getting screened for lung cancer. I concede, however, that reasonable people might conclude that the potential harms are outweighed by the benefit of reducing one's risk of dying by one-fifth. The next critical question that needs to be asked is: one-fifth of what?
Vitamin D with Calcium May Prevent Bone Fractures for High-Risk Seniors
HBNS STORY | May 29, 2014
For seniors over the age of 65, taking a daily supplement of vitamin D with calcium—but not vitamin D alone—can offer some protection against the risk of common bone fractures, according to an updated review from The Cochrane Library.
Caring for the Whole Patient
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | May 27, 2014 | Carolyn Thomas
When I was discharged from the intensive care unit in cardiology, not one of the nurses, residents or cardiologists asked if I'd be able to afford the fistful of expensive new cardiac meds I'd been prescribed. Not one asked if there was anybody at home to help take care of me there, or if there was anybody at home who needed me to take care of them. Not one asked if I'd be returning to a high-stress job, or even if I had enough banked sick time or vacation days to take sufficient time off. Such real-life issues are simply not the concern of most of our health care providers...
People with Low Incomes Less Likely to Use Healthy Weight Loss Strategies
HBNS STORY | May 22, 2014
Poorer people of all ages are less likely than wealthier ones to follow recommended strategies for weight loss, finds a recent study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Social Support May Prevent PTSD in Heart Patients
HBNS STORY | May 20, 2014
Having a good social support system may help prevent the development of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in patients with heart disease, finds a study published in the American Journal of Health Promotion.
Obese Employees Cost Employers Thousands in Extra Medical Costs
HBNS STORY | May 13, 2014
A new study in the American Journal of Health Promotion finds that, on average, a morbidly obese employee costs an employer over $4,000 more per year in health care and related costs than an employee who is of normal weight.
How Much Is a Patient's Peace of Mind Worth?
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | May 12, 2014 | Anne Polta
If something is medically useless, does it still have value if it gives the patient (and perhaps the clinician as well) some peace of mind? To many patients, this is no small thing. Unfortunately, it's also often abetted by consumer marketing that plays up the peace-of-mind aspect of certain tests while remaining silent about the limited benefit, the possible risk and the clinical complexity that may be part of the larger picture...
Weight Loss Efforts Start Well, but Lapse Over Time
HBNS STORY | April 8, 2014
Learning you have an obesity-related disease motivates many to start a weight loss program, but troubling health news is often not enough to sustain weight loss efforts, finds new research in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Costs Complicated Dad's Cancer Care
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | March 31, 2014 | Laura Sander
"I walked in a person, and out a cancer patient," my dad said as we filed home. Crossing this threshold, we found ourselves on the other side of medicine – the side on the exam table or gurney, as opposed to the one standing over it. In time, it became clear we were running out of money...
Is a Daily Dose of Many Pills in Your Future?
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | March 17, 2014 | Andrew Schorr
I recently had breakfast with an aging cousin, Walter, who has become infirm in his senior years. I knew he had several doctors and took medicine. It wasn't until breakfast time, however, that I realized how many medicines Walter took – and I was bowled over...
Better Benefits Help Medicaid Recipients Quit Smoking
HBNS STORY | March 6, 2014
Expanded smoking cessation benefits offered under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) should give more people the opportunity to quit, finds a new study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Hospitalization Increases Risk of Depression and Dementia for Seniors
HBNS STORY | February 27, 2014
People over age 65 who have been hospitalized are at significantly greater risk for dementia or depression, finds a new study in General Hospital Psychiatry.
Getting Help for Depression
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | February 20, 2014 | Be a Prepared Patient
Depression affects nearly one in ten Americans yet many people often go untreated. In fact, a recent study found that 70 percent of people surveyed with symptoms of depression received no treatment of any kind. Here's advice on how to get help...
Health Inequalities Seen in Gays and Lesbians
HBNS STORY | February 11, 2014
People who identify as homosexual have several health disparities relative to their heterosexual peers, finds a new study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Men, Elderly, Minorities Not Getting Treated for Depression
HBNS STORY | February 6, 2014
Depression rates are increasing in the U.S. and under-treatment is widespread, especially among certain groups including men, the poor, the elderly and ethnic minorities, finds a new study in General Hospital Psychiatry.
N=1: My Experience With Cost, Care and Insurance
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | February 3, 2014 | Robert Fogerty
During my senior year in college, with medical school acceptance letter in hand, I was diagnosed with metastatic testicular cancer. Early in my treatment I received a letter that my health insurance had been exhausted and I would no longer receive any health benefits. Needless to say, this was a problem...
Contradictory Nutrition News Creates Consumer Confusion
HBNS STORY | January 28, 2014
Exposure to conflicting news about nutrition often results in confusion and backlash against nutrition recommendations, finds a recent study in the Journal of Health Communication: International Perspectives.
Sticking With Resolutions Is All About Preparation
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | January 27, 2014 | David L. Katz
Relevant research and conventional wisdom alike suggest that, despite their irresistible perennial tug on our collective conscience, New Year's resolutions generally have about the staying power of Champagne bubbles. In contrast, the science of sustainable behavior change tips convincingly toward "don't go until ready."
Gap in Life Expectancy Between Rural and Urban Residents Is Growing
HBNS STORY | January 23, 2014
A new study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine finds that rural residents have experienced smaller gains in life expectancy than their urban counterparts and the gap continues to grow.
NBC Vastly Exaggerates the Potential Benefits of Lung Cancer Screening
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | January 16, 2014 | Gary Schwitzer
When we talk about a consistently clear pattern of news stories that exaggerate or emphasize benefits while minimizing or ignoring harms, we are talking about stories exactly like this one...
What Does It Take to Get 'Better Living Through Medications' These Days?
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | January 15, 2014 | Jessie Gruman
Lately, the public's faith in the safety of prescription and over-the-counter drugs has been making me uneasy. Why do so many of us continue to purchase pills that are not effective in causing weight loss, swallow syrups that promise to cure diabetes, and fiddle with our medication-taking regimens?...
Few Primary Care Practices Provide Effective Weight Management Care
HBNS STORY | January 14, 2014
Only a quarter of U.S. primary care physicians surveyed are doing a thorough job of helping patients achieve and maintain a healthy weight, finds a study in the American Journal of Health Promotion.
Advice for People New to Health Insurance (Part 8): Who's Who In Your Doctor's Office
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | January 2, 2014 | Be a Prepared Patient
In the eighth and final part of our series, we explain who the various people are in your doctor's office, from nurse practitioners to lab technicians. Knowing their different roles can make your visit go more smoothly...
Advice for People New to Health Insurance (Part 6): 10 Steps to Making a Doctor's Appointment
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | December 31, 2013 | Be a Prepared Patient
In part six of our series, you'll find out what key pieces of information you need to know about your new doctor's office. Keep it handy with your personal health records or household files...
Advice for People New to Health Insurance (Part 5): Do You Need a Yearly Checkup?
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | December 30, 2013 | Be a Prepared Patient
In part five of our series, we look at the yearly check-up and offer resources for people who are trying to decide which preventive care services are right for them...
Who’s Who in Your Doctor’s Office
PREPARED PATIENT RESOURCE | Communicate With Your Doctors
Medical offices have a lot of staff but one common goal—helping you, the patient. Here are some of the people you may meet during your doctor’s appointment.
Minorities and Poor More Likely to Suffer from Restless Sleep and Chronic Diseases
HBNS STORY | December 17, 2013
The poor and minorities tend to suffer from poor sleep and chronic disease more often, but sleep does not appear to be a root cause of disease disparity, finds a new study in Ethnicity & Disease.
Massachusetts Residents Healthier After Health Care Reform
HBNS STORY | December 12, 2013
Residents of Massachusetts saw small gains in health status following the enactment of a state-wide health insurance mandate in 2006, finds a new study in the Milbank Quarterly.
A Better Health System for Frail and Disabled Elders
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | December 9, 2013 | Ken Covinsky
Let's stop telling the public that exercising and eating blueberries are guarantees for avoiding frailty and disability. Let's start talking about how to maintain our quality of life as we age and inevitably encounter health problems.
Better Diagnoses May Help Vets with Anxiety Get Treatment
HBNS STORY | December 5, 2013
Veterans who suffer from anxiety may not get appropriate treatment for want of a specific diagnosis, finds a new study in General Hospital Psychiatry.
Wellness at Work
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | December 5, 2013 | Health Behavior News Service
Is your company one of the many that are now offering "wellness programs"? Our latest Be a Prepared Patient article, Staying Well at Work, looks at a few of these programs in action and offers tips for maintaining a healthy work/life balance...
Seven Things I Wish I'd Known Earlier About Cancer Survivorship
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | December 4, 2013 | Jessie Gruman
It is challenging, in the years following a cancer diagnosis, to assemble health care that protects us from the lingering effects of the disease and its treatment and that alerts us to a recurrence or new cancer. I hope these reflections will help those who've been diagnosed with cancer live as long and as well as they can...
Color Us Stressed – How to Deal
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | December 2, 2013 | Jane Sarasohn Kahn
Coast-to-coast, stress is the norm for most Americans: 55 percent of people feel stressed in everyday life, and far more women feel the stress than men do. It will take a village to help manage stress, including but not limited to our doctors.
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | November 27, 2013 | CFAH Staff
It isn't breaking news that exercising and eating a healthy diet can help improve your overall health and fitness, but that doesn't make it any easier for most of us to follow suit. These resources from CFAH's 'Be a Prepared Patient' can help...
Alcohol Use Disorders Linked to Death and Disability
HBNS STORY | November 26, 2013
Disorders related to the abuse of alcohol contribute significantly to the burden of disease in the U.S., finds a new study in Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research.
Staying Well at Work
PREPARED PATIENT ARTICLE
More and more employers are offering workplace wellness programs-but do they work?
The Hard-Hitting Truth About Sports Concussions
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | November 11, 2013 | Conversation Continues
Final scores, rankings and rivalries aren't the only fall football traditions getting news coverage this season. Rates, effects and what to do about concussions are in the spotlight too.
Race a Bigger Health Care Barrier Than Insurance Status
HBNS STORY | November 7, 2013
Blacks, Hispanics and Asians are less likely than non-Hispanic Whites to visit a health care professional, even with health insurance, finds a recent study in the Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved.
Lifestyle Behaviors Key to Post-Deployment Health of Veterans
HBNS STORY | October 31, 2013
A new study in the American Journal of Health Promotion finds that the lifestyle of veterans both pre- and post-deployment influences their post-deployment wellness.
Veterans Groups Miss Opportunities to Curb Tobacco Use
HBNS STORY | October 31, 2013
Websites targeting veterans fail to provide information about the risks of tobacco products despite high rates of smoking in the military, finds a new report in the American Journal of Health Promotion.
Latest Health Behavior News
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | September 20, 2013 | Health Behavior News Service
In this weeks health news: Group exercise alleviates college stress | Maintain your weight in a matter of minutes | Education may be the key to fighting obesity | Men who binge at risk for cardiovascular disease.
How Much Will Your Health Care Cost?
PREPARED PATIENT RESOURCE | Pay for Your Health Care
It can be hard to figure out how much your health care will cost ahead of time. Here are some tips for preparing for the cost of your procedures.
Binge Eating More Likely to Lead to Health Risks in Men
HBNS STORY | September 17, 2013
Binge eating is a problem affecting both men and women however, obese men who binge are more likely than their female counterparts to have elevated cholesterol and high blood pressure, finds a new study in General Hospital Psychiatry.
Robotic Surgery Roundup: Take Me Out to the Ballgame and Much More
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | August 16, 2013 | Gary Schwitzer
Robotic surgery systems are spreading so quickly across the U.S. and across the globe that trying to keep up with the news could become a fulltime beat. Here are just a few nuggets in an attempt to catch up on things you may have missed...
Rural Seniors Prefer Self-Care Over Doctors
HBNS STORY | August 15, 2013
A survey of older rural adults found a high degree of medical skepticism, the belief that one knows and can control their own health better than a medical professional can, reports a recent study in the Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved.
Even More Studies You Should Ignore
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | July 29, 2013 | Albert Fuchs
Back when I was a medical student (in the Cretaceous Period) we were taught that someone once did a study comparing folic acid levels in the blood of cancer patients compared to the blood of healthy patients. The cancer patients had, on average, significantly lower folic acid levels. And the ones with the largest, fastest growing tumors tended to have the lowest folic acid levels. “Aha,” they thought. “Something about folic acid deficiency predisposes them to cancer. We should give folic acid to cancer patients.” Bad idea.
Latest Health Behavior News
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | July 26, 2013 | Health Behavior News Service
This week in health news: Men opt for PSA test, despite guidelines | Obesity an added burden for people with disabilities | Minorities not getting mental health care | Economic downturns affect preventive care
Unemployment Linked to Reduced Use of Preventive Health Care
HBNS STORY | July 23, 2013
Fluctuations in the unemployment rate affect people’s health care choices, finds a new study in Health Services Research.
Men Say They Want Prostate Cancer Test, Despite Risks
HBNS STORY | July 9, 2013
A survey of men age 40 to 74 found that 54 percent said that they would still opt for a popular prostate cancer screening test despite recent recommendations that the test not be performed, finds a new study in American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Walking Leads to Better Health for Older Men
HBNS STORY | May 30, 2013
The more an older man walks, the better his physical and mental health and his quality of life are likely to be, finds a new study in the American Journal of Health Promotion.
Do You Need a Yearly Checkup?
PREPARED PATIENT RESOURCE | Get Preventive Health Care
Checkups are good for establishing a relationship with your primary care clinician and for screening tests. Here are resources with more on what tests you might need to stay healthy.
Communicate With Your Doctors
PREPARED PATIENT RESOURCE | Communicate With Your Doctors
You and your doctor need accurate information from each other. Open communication with your doctor is one of the most important factors in getting and staying healthy.
Despite Access to Care, Male Veterans in Poorer Health than Civilian Men
HBNS STORY | October 9, 2012
Even with access to health care, male military veterans are in poorer health than both men in the National Guard and Reserves and civilian men, finds a new study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Do You Need a Yearly Medical Check-Up?
PREPARED PATIENT ARTICLE
We've all heard about well-baby visits, but if you're a healthy adult, you probably have no plan to see a doctor. When there's nothing to complain about, many of us go years without a comprehensive medical check-up.
Single Men Spend Weekends Sitting & Watching TV
HBNS STORY | March 13, 2012
Single, middle-aged people who live alone spend more time sitting. A new study, published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine discovered that men tended to sit for longer periods watching TV on the weekends while women sat for longer periods doing activities such as reading or dining out.
Small Steps to Big Health Change
PREPARED PATIENT ARTICLE
We often give a chilly reception to the idea of going "cold turkey" when it comes to anything that has to do with changing behaviors and habits, even those that may be important for our health.
We Interrupt This State Fair for a Little Prostate Cancer Screening
PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | September 7, 2011 | Gary Schwitzer
There are a few things a man should think about seriously before rolling up his sleeve for the supposedly "simple" blood test. 'But here, prostate cancer screening is hawked in the same setting as the modern-day carnies pitching their slice-'em-and-dice-'em devices and inventions you only see at the state fair - "only at this price today!"
Prejudice Linked to Depression, Anxiety in Gay and Bisexual Black Men
HBNS STORY | August 30, 2011
The harassment, discrimination and negative feelings about homosexuality that black gay and bisexual men often experience can contribute significantly to mental health disorders such as depression and anxiety, a small new study finds.
Premature Ejaculation Therapy Not Supported by Evidence
HBNS STORY | August 9, 2011
A new review finds little reliable research to support treating premature ejaculation by teaching men how to control their bodies with their minds.
Black Men at Both Ends of Economic Spectrum at Risk for Depression
HBNS STORY | March 8, 2011
Jobless African-American men might be at a greater risk of suffering from depression—as are African-American men making $80,000 and upward.
Public Awareness Campaign Lowers Male Suicides in German City
HBNS STORY | September 30, 2010
Study: HPV May Not Act Like Other STDs
HBNS STORY | March 23, 2010
Alcohol Increases Women’s Risk of Intimate Partner Violence
HBNS STORY | January 27, 2010