Isabel Healthcare Blog

Why the symptom checker is a key tool to enable ‘Choosing Wisely’

Posted by Jason Maude on Wed, May 20, 2015 @ 11:00 AM

The UK version of the US Choosing Wisely campaign was launched this week. The aim of the campaign is to reduce wasteful medical practices. The campaign was launched by the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges which published an accompanying briefing document. An article in the BMJ was published to coincide with the launch.

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Topics: symptom checkers, NHS

Could you be making a diagnostic error? How to avoid Cognitive Bias

Posted by Jason Maude on Wed, May 13, 2015 @ 11:00 AM

Diagnosis is the first and most important decision made about a patient - it determines all subsequent treatment and determines the course of each patient encounter. How well this decision is made, therefore, is one of the most significant measurements of healthcare quality and efficiency.

Despite this, misdiagnosis, is everywhere. It accounts for 30-40% of all malpractice claims in the industry and about 2/3 of all claims in primary care. Moreover, diagnostic errors are frequently the leading or second leading cause of malpractice claims in the United States, accounting for twice as many alleged and settled claims as medication errors.

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The Royal Baby is Here! Some Tips on Sun Safety for Infants

Posted by Jason Maude on Wed, May 06, 2015 @ 11:00 AM

If you’re a fan of the Royals, you probably spent your weekend glued to the live feeds of #RoyalBabyWatch waiting for the announcement that royal baby number 2 was on his/her way. Even if you’re not one of the eager followers, it was hard to avoid the excitement as the public eagerly awaited the new addition. We finally welcomed Her Royal Highness Princess Charlotte Elizabeth Diana into the world on May 2nd 2015 at 8:34am.

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Topics: royal baby, Duchess of Cambridge, Lifestyle

Amenorrhea (Absent Periods) | 1 Minute Read | Symptom Information

Posted by Mandy Tomlinson on Wed, Apr 29, 2015 @ 11:30 AM

Amenorrhea is the absence of menstruation or monthly periods.  It may occur in women before the menarche (before periods have started), after the menopause, during pregnancy or after an operation like a hysterectomy.  There are two types of this condition: Primary and Secondary.

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Topics: pregnant women, Isabel 1 Minute Read

Medical Screening is No Substitute for Good Diagnostic Skills or an Informed Patient

Posted by Jason Maude on Wed, Apr 22, 2015 @ 11:00 AM

Two interesting stories appeared in the press recently covering very different approaches to medical diagnosis. The first is a targeted approach and relies on an informed patient while the second is very blunt and relies on medical screening.

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Topics: medical diagnosis, diagnosis tool, Medical Screening

Ten Things You Didn’t Know About Hay Fever

Posted by Jason Maude on Wed, Apr 15, 2015 @ 11:00 AM

Hay fever season is upon us, and if you suffer from this seasonal allergy, soon, if you’re not already, you’ll be sneezing every minute and wanting to itch your eyes every second. Sales of antihistamine and nasal spray will soar and we’ll all be annoyed at ourselves for wanting spring to arrive. Think you know everything there is to know about hay fever? We’ve put together 10 facts about hay fever, some of which might surprise you.

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Topics: seasonal, allergies

Food Poisoning - Knowledge is Prevention on World Health Day 2015

Posted by Jason Maude on Wed, Apr 08, 2015 @ 11:00 AM

Yesterday marked this year’s World Health Day, meaning the World Health Organization (WHO) select a subject of growing concern surrounding global health to focus on and highlight to the world. This year’s chosen topic is food safety. The emphasis is on the entire food safety journey around the world, “from farm to plate,” which means there’s an awful lot of things we could talk about surrounding food safety and health.

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Topics: food safety

6 Tips for Successful Differential Diagnosis Tool Adoption

Posted by Jason Maude on Wed, Apr 01, 2015 @ 11:04 AM

Implementing any new system or protocol into a large and busy environment such as a hospital can be daunting, and it can often seem like there are more hurdles to overcome than the venture is worth. But it doesn’t have to be this way. With a few tips and some careful preparation, a smooth adoption of a differential diagnosis tool such as Isabel in your institution is perfectly achievable.

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Topics: Differential diagnosis, differential diagnosis tool

Symptom checker- vital tool for patients in brave new world

Posted by Jason Maude on Fri, Jan 16, 2015 @ 05:23 AM

In the space of just two weeks, a paper has appeared and a new UK government task force has been launched which both point to the important role that will be played by the symptom checker in the brave new healthcare world where the patient starts to take greater control.

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Travel History & Diagnostic Decision Support Tools in the Ebola Fight

Posted by Mandy Tomlinson on Wed, Nov 26, 2014 @ 05:35 AM

I wrote about Ebola and the importance of mobile diagnosis decision support in 2012 when the last outbreak occurred. Now in 2014, West Africa is experiencing the worst outbreak of Ebola in history with as many as 7000 people diagnosed and 3,338 people who have died from the disease. However, these figures may be underestimated due to under reporting and the fact that many cases are not counted as people aren’t attending health care facilities due to lack of transport or as they are full and closed to new admissions.

In the USA, media articles are reporting the Dallas Ebola case of Eric Duncan who had helped carry a pregnant woman in Liberia who was desperately ill with Ebola. Mr Duncan then returned to the USA and presented twice at a hospital with Ebola symptoms, unfortunately he was not diagnosed until his second visit when he presented with severe symptoms. During his first visit to the ED, his travel history of having recently visited West Africa was recorded by a Nurse in the Electronic Health Record (EHR) but due to a system / process / workflow breakdown key members of the care team did not see this vital information.  We could go round in circles allaying blame on the EHR, the Nurse or the Physician but this is pointless. Overall it's a system failure and the lesson to learn is how could this have been prevented from the onset and rectified so it doesn't occur again.

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