These are some of the articles that have inspired my blog posts


Aged care (including dementia, delirium and abuse)

Delirium in elderly adults: diagnosis, prevention and treatment
Delirium is a common and serious acute neuropsychiatric syndrome with core features of inattention and global cognitive dysfunction. The etiologies of delirium are diverse and multifactorial and often reflect the pathophysiological consequences of an ...
How a general anaesthetic could harm your memory for life: Research finds that three quarters of older patients develop memory loss after surgery
As soon as he set eyes on his wife following surgery to mend a broken hip, Tony Hewitt-Miles could tell there was something different about her.
Dawn’s final days reveal aged care horror
In her final days, Dawn Weston kept rubbing her left leg and crying.
Nursing Home Abuse Statistics - Elderly Care
The statistics reflecting incidents of abuse involving elderly residents in nursing homes and care facilities are both staggering and disheartening. At the broadest level, more than two (2) million cases of elder abuse are reported every year, and almost one (1) out of every ten (10) elderly individ…
Clinical Consequences of Polypharmacy in Elderly
Polypharmacy, defined as the use of multiple drugs or more than are medically necessary, is a growing concern for older adults.We present information about; 1.) Prevalence of polypharmacy and unnecessary medication use. ; 2.) Negative Consequences of ...



Alternative therapies

Americans Spend $30 Billion a Year Out-of-Pocket on Complementary Health Approaches
About 59 million Americans spend money out-of-pocket on complementary health approaches, and their total spending adds up to $30.2 billion a year.



Books

Amazon.com: America’s Bitter Pill: Money, Politics, Backroom Deals, and the Fight to Fix Our Broken Healthcare System eBook: Brill, Steven: Kindle Store
America’s Bitter Pill: Money, Politics, Backroom Deals, and the Fight to Fix Our Broken Healthcare System - Kindle edition by Brill, Steven. Download it once and read it on your Kindle device, PC, phones or tablets. Use features like bookmarks, note taking and highlighting while reading America’s Bi…
The American Health Care Paradox: Why Spending More is Getting Us Less: 0884597764190: Medicine & Health Science Books @ Amazon.com
The American Health Care Paradox: Why Spending More is Getting Us Less: 0884597764190: Medicine & Health Science Books @ Amazon.com
The Truth About the Drug Companies: How They Deceive Us and What to Do About It: Angell, Marcia: 0884601207255: Amazon.com: Books
The Truth About the Drug Companies: How They Deceive Us and What to Do About It [Angell, Marcia] on Amazon.com. *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. The Truth About the Drug Companies: How They Deceive Us and What to Do About It



Doctors issues (including overwork and stress)

Junior doctors driven to suicide by workload
THE shock of a spate of talented, highly intelligent, resilient junior doctors in NSW taking their own lives has rocked all levels of the Australian medical community.
Surgeon Caroline Tan breaks silence over sexual harassment in hospitals
A neurosurgeon whose career was derailed after she spoke out about sexual assault has demanded an inquiry into the treatment of whistleblowers.



Endocrinology (includes diabetes)

Poor medication adherence in type 2 diabetes: recognizing the scope of the problem and its key contributors
At least 45% of patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D) fail to achieve adequate glycemic control (HbA1c <7%). One of the major contributing factors is poor medication adherence. Poor medication adherence in T2D is well documented to be very common ...
GP referral letters for T2 patients full of errors
More than 80% of GP referral letters for patients with type 2 diabetes contain errors in medication details, especially for insulin, a study from NSW as found. A review of letters for 300 patients referred to a tertiary outpatient diabetes care centre found an average of two errors per letter, wit…
‘No excuse’ for diabetes errors
Almost one in three diabetic hospital patients are victims of medication errors that can cause dangerous blood glucose levels, a report has found.



Emergency Departments

Nearly half of US medical care comes from emergency rooms: Figures are even higher for minorities and women
Nearly half of all US medical care is delivered by emergency departments, according to a new study. In recent years, the percentage of care delivered by emergency departments has grown. The paper highlights the major role played by emergency rooms in US health care.
Care of Psychiatric Patients: The Challenge to Emergency Physicians
Psychiatric Disorders in Patients Presenting to the Emergency Department for Minor Injury
Thirty-five percent of all Emergency Department (ED) visits are for physical injury.to examine the proportion of patients presenting to an ED for physical injury with a history of or current Axis I/II psychiatric disorders and to compare patients with ...
Half Of Older Americans Seen In Emergency Department In Last Month Of Life; Most Admitted To Hospital, And Many Die There
Emergency department use contributes to high end-of-life costs and is potentially burdensome for patients and family members. We examined emergency department use in the last months of life for patients age sixty-five or older who died while enrolled ...
Elderly people dying in emergency departments due to lack of palliative care
Elderly people are being taken to emergency departments in their final hours of life and dying “under fluorescent lighting in a hospital cubical” because many aged-care homes are not equipped to provide palliative care.

The cost of dying - CBS News


Errors (avoidable errors occurring in hospitals, clinics and nursing homes)

CareTrack: assessing the appropriateness of health care delivery in Australia
How appropriate is the health care delivered to Australians? A seminal study in the United States showed that American adults received “recommended care” only 55% of the time in the years 1999–2000. Estimates of “appropriate care” — defined here as care in line with evidence-based or consensus-based…
Identification of doctors at risk of recurrent complaints: a national study of healthcare complaints in Australia
Objectives (1) To determine the distribution of formal patient complaints across Australia’s medical workforce and (2) to identify characteristics of doctors at high risk of incurring recurrent complaints. Methods We assembled a national sample of all 18 907 formal patient complaints filed against …
The World Today - Medical mistakes: a silent epidemic in Australian hospitals 10/06/2013
Public hospital boards struggle with patient care and safety, study finds
Some Victorian public hospital boards and executives are struggling to deal with quality of care and patient-safety issues despite the buck stopping with them if things go wrong, according to a study published in an international journal.
One in 20 hospital deaths preventable
The Independent is reporting the findings of a study that estimates that 1 in 20 hospital deaths in England could have been prevented. Of course, one preventable death is one too many, but the report actually shows an improvement in patient care…
How Many Die From Medical Mistakes in U.S. Hospitals?
An updated estimate says it could be at least 210,000 patients a year – more than twice the number in the Institute of Medicine’s frequently quoted report, “To Err is Human.”
Discharge summaries get diagnosis wrong
Scores of patients are leaving hospital with the wrong diagnosis in their medical records, causing massive discrepancies in hospital funding amounting to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The burden of healthcare-associated infection in Australian hospitals: A systematic review of the literature
Central to all efforts to control and prevent healthcare associated infections (HAIs) is the inherent need to measure the burden of infection and dise…
The burden of healthcare-associated infection in Australian hospitals: A systematic review of the literature
Central to all efforts to control and prevent healthcare associated infections (HAIs)is the inherent need to measure the burden of infection and disease, classically referredto as surveillance. Australia does not have a national HAI surveillance system makingit very difficult to systematically as…
Health insurers say some private hospitals offer costly and sub-standard care
Health insurers say some private hospitals offer costly and sub-standard care
Infection Most Likely Cause of Hospital Readmission After Surgery
Knowing why readmissions happen is first step in reducing them, researcher says
International Survey: U.S. Leads in Medical Errors | Commonwealth Fund
One-third of patients with health problems in the U.S. report experiencing medical, medication, or test errors, the highest rate of any nation in a new Commonwealth Fund international survey.



Intensive Care

Ventilator-associated pneumonia in the ICU
Critical Care May Not Always Be Right Choice
Physicians often view the treatment patients receive in intensive care units as being futile. What’s more, such care runs up a huge price tag, a new study suggests.
PTSD Common in ICU Survivors - 04/20/2015
In a recent Johns Hopkins study, researchers found that nearly one-quarter of ICU survivors suffer from PTSD. They also identified possible triggers for PTSD and indicated a potential preventive strategy: having patients keep ICU diaries.&nbsp;

Drug Related Admissions to Intensive Care: The Role of Illicit Drugs and Self Poisoning - ICU Liverpool hospital, Sydney


Neurology (including stroke)

Vertebral artery dissection after a chiropractor neck manipulation
The differential diagnosis for ischemic central nervous system infarcts in young patients includes paradoxic emboli through cardiac shunts, vasculitis, and vascular trauma. We report a young woman who developed headache, vomiting, diplopia, dizziness, ...
NIH Distorts Report On Chiropractic And Stroke Risk
A new study shows a significantly increased risk of stroke after chiropractic visits, especially in older people. Despite the actual findings in the study, the NIH press release and the study itself emphasized that there was only a small absolute risk of stroke, purposely ignoring the significant in…



Neurosurgery (including spinal surgery)

Failed back surgery syndrome: current perspectives
The treatment of failed back surgery syndrome (FBSS) can be equally challenging to surgeons, pain specialists, and primary care providers alike. The onset of FBSS occurs when surgery fails to treat the patient’s lumbar spinal pain. Minimizing ...




Oncology (includes cancer treatments)

Young adult female cancer survivors’ unmet information needs and reproductive concerns contribute to decisional conflict regarding posttreatment fertility preservation - PubMed
YAFCS with limited awareness or knowledge of their risk of experiencing premature menopause and FP options reported higher levels of decisional conflict regarding future FP. Posttreatment survivorship care should include comprehensive reproductive health counseling, including posttreatment FP option…
The contribution of cytotoxic chemotherapy to 5-year survival in adult malignancies - PubMed
As the 5-year relative survival rate for cancer in Australia is now over 60%, it is clear that cytotoxic chemotherapy only makes a minor contribution to cancer survival. To justify the continued funding and availability of drugs used in cytotoxic chemotherapy, a rigorous evaluation of the cost-effec…
Cancer is a Preventable Disease that Requires Major Lifestyle Changes
This year, more than 1 million Americans and more than 10 million people worldwide are expected to be diagnosed with cancer, a disease commonly believed to be preventable. Only 5–10% of all cancer cases can be attributed to genetic defects, whereas ...
15 percent of men regret prostate cancer treatment choices years later
Fifteen percent of men with localized prostate cancer regretted the decisions they made regarding treatment, with many citing sexual dysfunction.



Radiology

Understanding and Confronting Our Mistakes: The Epidemiology of Error in Radiology and Strategies for Error Reduction | RadioGraphics

Common patterns in 558 diagnostic radiology errors - Middlemore hospital, New Zealand



Reforming healthcare

Healthcare costs unsustainable in advanced economies without reform - OECD
Data and research on health including biotechnology, cancer, health care, health spending, health insurance, fitness, dementia, disability, obesity, smoking, genetics and mortality., Healthcare costs are rising so fast in advanced economies that they will become unaffordable by mid-century without r…



Unnecessary costs

The Cost of Dying
Patients’ Last Two Months of Life Cost Medicare $50 Billion Last Year; Is There a Better Way?
Explainer: evergreening and how big pharma keeps drug prices high
Efforts by pharmaceutical companies to extend their patents cost taxpayers millions of dollars each year. In some cases they also mean people are subjected to unnecessary clinical trials. Big pharma makes…
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Subscribe to The Australian to get unrestricted digital access, home paper delivery, Apps for iPad and Android, member only +Rewards and much more...
Wasted
The unnecessary testing and treatments choking the health system and making patients ill.
Australians paying 14 times more for prescription drugs
Australians pay 14 times more for prescriptions drugs than some other Commonwealth nations, a report finds.
- The Washington Post
An MRI costs $1,145 in America and $138 in Switzerland. But Medicare could change that.
Why not cap health-care prices at 125 percent what Medicare pays?
Prostate cancer patient anger at huge bills despite paying insurance
Prostate cancer patient anger at huge bills despite paying insurance
Cancer patient Tracey Ryan’s $60,000 bill for cancer that forced her to raid her superannuation
Cancer patient Tracey Ryan’s $60,000 bill for cancer that forced her to raid her superannuation
Health spending patients bearing higher costs – Parliament of Australia
Health spending patients bearing higher costs
Australians pay more for health care than France, UK: report
Australians are paying much more for health care than people in France and the UK, consumer advocates say.

Medi-Value: Health Insurance and Service Innovation in Australia—Implications for the Future of Medicare - Jeremy Sammut


Over servicing (unnecessary tests and treatments)

Too many patients receiving unnecessary medicine, doctors say
Greed, fear of legal action, and widespread commercial influences are contributing to a costly global trend towards unnecessary and potentially harmful medicine, experts say.
America’s Epidemic of Unnecessary Care
Millions of people get tests, drugs, and operations that won’t make them better, may cause harm, and cost billions. Atul Gawande reports.
Long-term outcomes of lumbar fusion among workers’ compensation subjects: a historical cohort study - PubMed
This Lumbar fusion for the diagnoses of disc degeneration, disc herniation, and/or radiculopathy in a WC setting is associated with significant increase in disability, opiate use, prolonged work loss, and poor RTW status.



Pharmacy (including individual drugs, medication compliance)

Medication Adherence: WHO Cares?
The treatment of chronic illnesses commonly includes the long-term use of pharmacotherapy. Although these medications are effective in combating disease, their full benefits are often not realized because approximately 50% of patients do not take their ...



Privatised healthcare

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Psychiatry

Risks of all‐cause and suicide mortality in mental disorders: a meta‐review
A meta‐review, or review of systematic reviews, was conducted to explore the risks of all‐cause and suicide mortality in major mental disorders. A systematic search generated 407 relevant reviews, of...
Epidemiology of Mental Health Attendances at Emergency Departments: Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
Background The characteristics of Emergency Department (ED) attendances due to mental or behavioural health disorders need to be described to enable appropriate development of services. We aimed to describe the epidemiology of mental health-related ED attendances within health care systems free at t…
IQ takes a hit with longer lasting psychosis
A 10-year-long Scandinavian study has shed light on a small group of schizophrenic patients who suffer a greater decline in IQ over time than most patients.
Most Prisoners Are Mentally Ill
Can mental-health courts, in which people are sentenced to therapy, help?

Premature death among people with severe mental disorders - World Health Organisation
Many mental illnesses reduce life expectancy more than heavy smoking | University of Oxford
Serious mental illnesses reduce life expectancy by 10 to 20 years, an analysis by Oxford University psychiatrists has shown – a loss of years that’s equivalent to or worse than that for heavy smoking.
Risks of all‐cause and suicide mortality in mental disorders: a meta‐review
A meta‐review, or review of systematic reviews, was conducted to explore the risks of all‐cause and suicide mortality in major mental disorders. A systematic search generated 407 relevant reviews, of...



Trauma

The association between hospital admission and substance use among trauma patients
(2018). The association between hospital admission and substance use among trauma patients. Journal of Substance Use: Vol. 23, No. 1, pp. 79-85.



Wellness, fitness

Does Physical Activity Increase Life Expectancy? A Review of the Literature
Physical activity reduces many major mortality risk factors including arterial hypertension, diabetes mellitus type 2, dyslipidemia, coronary heart disease, stroke, and cancer. All-cause mortality is decreased by about 30&#x25; to 35&#x25; in physically active as compared to inactive subjects. The p…



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