Information technologyA map to help cancer doctors find their way | NPR.org
A mapping program, called PiCnIc for short, aims to help physicians in staying a step ahead of cancer. For doctors, anticipating cancer's next moves can help guide timely, effective patient treatment. PiCnIc uses patient data to anticipate the most likely scenario.
The program Project ECHO trains primary care physicians via video conference so they can deliver services normally reserved for specialists. It's a simple idea, and the program is free to patients and doctors. Research shows it improves care and reduces healthcare spending, while boosting clinicians' job satisfaction.
PharmaceuticalsFDA staff flags concerns about Pfizer's quit-smoking drug study | Reuters
The Food and Drug Administration scientists have expressed concerns about a post-marketing study of Pfizer's drug Cantix, which is aimed at helping smokers quit, according to documents posted on the regulator's website.
French drugmaker Sanofi and Google owner Alphabet's life sciences firm Verily are to invest about $500 million in a diabetes joint venture combining devices with services, an example of growing ties between the pharma and tech sectors.
Safety, quality and clinical practiceHealthcare providers scramble to meet new disaster readiness rule | The New York Times
An estimated 72,315 American health care providers and suppliers — from hospitals and nursing homes to dialysis facilities and care homes for those with intellectual disabilities — will have a little over a year to meet federal disaster preparedness requirements completed this week by the CMS. The new rule is aimed at preventing the severe breakdown in patient care that followed disasters including Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Sandy, while also strengthening the ability to provide services during other types of emergencies, such as pandemics and terrorist attacks.
Studies indicate that food allergies in children increased approximately 50 percent between 1997 and 2011. The "hygiene hypothesis" posits that an obsession with germ-fighting and a lack of exposure to infectious agents early in childhood have miscued the immune system to treat food proteins as invading germs.
A looming challenge: 73 percent of cancer survivors in the future will be over 65, compared with just 62 percent today, the National Cancer Institute says. Their risk of age-related diseases might be exacerbated by long-term toxic effects of cancer treatments. The NCI cites a dearth of data on this group.