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Author: Richard Eaton

Healthcare Information Technology (IT) – Challenges and Opportunities in 2009 and Beyond

Healthcare Information Technology (IT) – Challenges and Opportunities in 2009 and Beyond

The Economic Stimulus Package, contained within the recently enacted American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), is a hugely important domestic initiative. Within ARRA is a $19,200,000,000 appropriation for implementation of healthcare information technology (HIT) including $2,000,000,000 for infrastructure. A major domestic priority of the new administration, and one of the major goals of the legislation, is to implement electronic health records (EHR) for all Americans by 2014, and accelerate Read more [...]
What’s Ahead For Healthcare IT in 2009

What’s Ahead For Healthcare IT in 2009

With the election of Barack Obama, our nation will be confronting major, complex foreign and domestic issues, including a troubled economy, mounting budget deficit, a worsening housing crisis, unrest in the middle east and two wars. One of the most pressing domestic issues will be healthcare reform. President-elect Obama has proclaimed healthcare reform as one of his top priorities when he takes office. His objectives with regard to the U.S. healthcare system include, among other things: Universal Read more [...]
The North Platte Canteen – A Wonderful Gift

The North Platte Canteen – A Wonderful Gift

Last summer, I was passing through North Platte, Nebraska. For those who do not know, North Platte, on the Union Pacific Railroad, has the largest and busiest railroad yard in the U.S., and witnesses the passage of over 100 trains a day. North Platte however is known for something else, something wonderful and poignant which happened there during World War II.-the North Platte Canteen. Just after Pearl Harbor in 1941, a rumor spread throughout the town that members of the Nebraska National Guard Read more [...]
The Medical Isotope Shortage

The Medical Isotope Shortage

Most people are not aware just how important a role nuclear medicine imaging procedures play in the diagnosis and treatment of disease.  It is estimated that approximately one third of all hospital inpatients receive some kind of nuclear medicine scan during their stay in the hospital. Nuclear medicine imaging is critical in the diagnosis of many types of cancer, in assessing cardiac function and increasingly in evaluating neurological conditions such as Alzheimer's disease or other dementias. Read more [...]
Diagnostic Imaging Then and Now – What a difference a “generation” makes

Diagnostic Imaging Then and Now – What a difference a “generation” makes

With all the recent news and public interest in mammography and breast cancer detection, I remember back a generation ago, actually two generations ago, about an incident which affected our family, in which the timely and efficient use of diagnostic imaging could have made a big difference for all of us. In the mid-1960's, my grandmother was stricken with breast cancer. She was then in her late 50's.  For some time, her physician noticed a lump in her breast and had taken a very conservative, Read more [...]
Privacy of Patient Genetic Information – A New Frontier

Privacy of Patient Genetic Information – A New Frontier

We all know that the advent of more sophisticated diagnostic techniques in modern medicine is helping doctors detect disease at earlier stages, often before it has progressed to a point where a patient’s health is threatened. Through the use of more sophisticated diagnostic imaging and other technological advances, for example, doctors can now detect tumors for a variety of cancers when they are small in size, and thus more easily treatable. Through advances in the science of genetics, medicine Read more [...]
New Frontiers in Clinical Practice – The growth of “biomarkers” in clinical practice

New Frontiers in Clinical Practice – The growth of “biomarkers” in clinical practice

Exciting new diagnostic tools are now in development and will become a part of clinical practice, namely the use of biomarkers to determine current or future disease or physiological conditions in patients.  A biomarker is an indicator of disease or physiological state of an individual. For example, a fever or a high white blood count often indicates an infection or disease in a patient.  These are “biomarkers” with which we’re all familiar. These “biomarkers” can be quantified to Read more [...]