Wednesday, May 16, 2012

First Aid Certification - 4 Kinds of Courses for Different Individuals

First aid, as the name suggests, is the foremost line of treatment during any injuries or health problems, both major and minor ones. Such instances happen without warning and will often catch you off guard, but if you know first aid then you can administer the suitable treatment till further help can reach you. A situation requiring first aid can arise at your home, place of work or even when you are travelling and thus it is preferable for everyone to learn about this procedure.

There are a number of first aid certificate courses available, find out which category of courses from the ones mentioned below will suit you best.

• The Simple Individual: If you want to learn first aid in a personal capacity and not for any occupation then a basic course will suffice for you. Such a course covers the topic in brief and teaches you how to tackle general situations. Knowledge gained from such a course can be very beneficial to your own family members and friends and can come in handy for your colleagues at your workplace too. Furthermore if you happen to be the first person at the scene of any accident and cannot find any medical assistance nearby then you can help the person yourself and maybe even save a life.

• Occupations in Healthcare: While first aid training is advisable for all it is of course most important in the field of healthcare, in fact it is mandatory for professionals like doctors, nurses and paramedics to secure a first aid certification. Courses for healthcare personnel are more advanced where different situations and methods to treat them are taught in more detail. Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and using equipments like automated external defibrillators also form a part of the course. Furthermore due to the threat of infections in a healthcare environment such personnel may also be trained on importance of using the appropriate gear for safety.

• Other Professions: Besides healthcare where first aid certification is a must there are many other professions where such skills will be preferred by the employer. Some such professions and fields include school staff, day care workers, fitness trainers, adventure sports, and any potentially hazardous occupations like construction or where heavy machinery is being operated. Courses for such professions will teach you how to respond to any emergencies and use the contents of the first aid kit.

• Special Situations: In addition to the above you may be working in a profession that may require learning first aid which focuses on a particular specialized area. If you work in remote environments like the wilderness which is frequented by trekkers, campers and nature enthusiasts you will have to be prepared for delayed medical assistance and poor transport and gain first aid skills accordingly. Similarly if your job revolves around infants and small children you will be required to pick up skills relevant to such individuals.

The kind of first aid course will depend on your purpose and profession whereas the duration and validity of certification will vary according to the level of advancement.

Advanced Healthcare Directive - 4 Reasons Why It Is a Good Idea to Get One

An advanced healthcare directive allows you to prepare a list of instructions or choose an agent so that at a future date if you are unable to take decisions about your health your wishes as per the directive can be followed. But there are more reasons why you must get an advanced directive made, 4 important ones are mentioned below.

• Improving the Quality of Life: A better understanding of the human body and the various problems that can affect it has lead to tremendous advancements in the healthcare field. While the sophisticated technology continues to save lives, it also ends up prolonging life where no recovery is possible and often leaves the patient in a vegetative or comatose state or in constant pain. In many cases the patient can be confined to nursing homes, bedridden, or require assistance of feeding tubes. Such a condition can be very burdensome for the patient both physically and mentally. In such situations a directive can help to minimize or stop any invasive treatment that may be uncomfortable and ineffective for recovery.

• Family Concerns: Any illness or accident is taxing on the patient and furthermore also affects the family and close friends. A family will not know the wishes of the patient which can lead to unending arguments and cause bitterness when deciding on the best way of treatment. This not only causes delay but also additional distress to the patient and the family. A directive made out and communicated well in advance will ensure that when the time comes the family or the appointed proxy can arrive at the decision as per the patient's wishes. Another advantage is that such a directive prepares the family beforehand especially in the case of a terminal illness or end-of-life treatment, who are then better prepared to handle the situation.

• Financial Aspect: Money will be the last thing on your mind when a loved one is unwell. But the financial aspect cannot be disregarded, in fact studies have shown that almost one-fifth of the families suffer some kind of adverse financial impact like having to quit the job or losing all their savings due to prolonged and avoidable medical treatments. When making the directive the concerned person will give due importance to the financial condition or medical insurance and accordingly instruct on the line of treatment to be followed. This helps the family to avoid superfluous spending at the cost of destabilizing themselves without attaching any guilt.

• Doctors Viewpoint: In many regions even verbal instructions are valid if witnessed by sufficient number of people, but when the time comes the doctor may be hesitant especially when it involves vital treatment or instructions for 'do not treat' or 'do not resuscitate'. An advanced directive made out on paper provides the doctor with the required immunity and ensures that your instructions are carried out without delay.

An advanced healthcare directive will ensure better implementation of your wishes and is useful to everyone involved whether it is you or your family and the doctors.

CPR Certification Courses: 4 Types

The procedure that is applied on a person who stops breathing or who develops irregular heart function due to an ailment is known as Cardiopulmonary resuscitation or CPR. Getting a CPR certification is something to seriously think about. CPR saves lives. Nowadays many professions are making it compulsory to acquire a CPR certification.

Adult CPR certification includes primary level of training for those who want general CPR skills. There are a number of courses offered and many courses provide knowledge on how to use automated external defibrillator (AED) and how to provide first aid, as these two skills go together.

Generally there are 4 types of CPR certification courses:

• Level A CPR:

The CPR level A is an all-encompassing course that will bestow you with the required knowledge to apply CPR on adults in emergency situations.

This course includes the following topics:

* Understanding risk factors of diseases and learning which factors can and cannot be prevented.

* Recognizing the main symptoms of cardiac arrest.

* Knowing the benefits of proper positioning for a recovery patient.

* Knowing signs and symptoms of choking and how to provide the required first aid.

* Knowing how to do CPR on adult patients.

• Level A CPR and AED:

Other than the topics included in Level A CPR, this course covers some additional topics. It covers learning about the safe use of AED, need for AED's, how the human heart functions and how to use the AEDs properly in a cardiac arrest victim.

These AEDs are small devices that are light in weight. They can record ventricular fibrillation (VF) by looking at a person's heart rhythm, which is known as sudden cardiac arrest.

• Level C CPR:

Like CPR Level A this is also an all-inclusive course that will provide you with the knowledge to perform CPR on infants, children and adults in case of emergencies.

The following topics are covered here:

* Knowing the risk factors for diseases and the factors that can and cannot be prevented.

* Recognizing the sign of cardiac arrest.

* Knowing how to apply CPR for a child or infant.

* Identifying the signs of choking in an adult, child or infant and knowing what to do.

* Knowing how to correctly place the victim in the recovery position.

• Level C CPR and AED:

This course covers the topics dealt in Level C and also teaches why we need AEDs and how to use AEDs safely on infants and children. It also teaches about the workings of the heart and the correct way of using AEDs on victims of cardiac arrest.

Assessment of practical Competency: You will be assessed based on your skills and competency levels during the course. All those who are able to prove their abilities in applying the required skills at the end of the course will be issued their CPR certification.

All courses some along with a course manual. This article would have cleared any doubts you may have had about the type of CPR training you want to attend. So enroll now and get started.

Hemorrhoids Treatment - Varying the Treatment for Different Stages

Choosing the best hemorrhoids treatment for your piles can be difficult, especially if you are currently experiencing a serious case of the disease. In most situations, individuals merely just desire to resolve the issue rapidly and would gladly take any solution that pledges to provide pain relief. Unfortunately, this will not work if a person does not have a good idea of what they are dealing with and so match the treatment to the problem. There are several different stages to a case of hemorrhoids and patients should understand precisely what they are handling before starting the proper therapy.

This short article is not able to give you specific medical advice, but it can indicate a path to follow. So, with that in mind, here are descriptions of the various stages of hemorrhoids and some preliminary thoughts about just how to treat them.

First Degree

The initial stage is when the piles are still within the anus, making it very uncomfortably and scratchy. At this time selecting a treatment that brings comfort is the greatest expedient. One way to accomplish this would be to administer some cold compress, successfully anesthetizing and soothing the anus and for that reason doing away with the burning sensation. Note that during the first stage, it is already possible to find a bit of blood on the stool or perhaps have the sensation of constantly being full. Mark that blood on the stools might have arisen from other causes therefore an initial medical analysis should be sought.

Second Degree

This degree begins to be more distressing as you start to feel as if your bowel movements are never complete. At this point, the piles become loose, threatening to fall out of the anus. During the second degree, the piles may well fall out of the anus during bowel movement and then quickly come back in again. That is why most people think they are voiding a stool and not being successful about it. This second stage is not always identified as a deterioration of the condition needing different treatment to effect a cure. The patient may continue with simple pain relief but this does nothing to improve the underlying condition. Should there be any suspicion of hemorrhoid at this point however; individuals should consult a physician right away. More successful home treatments are available.

Third Degree

The third degree is reached whenever the body is no longer capable of immediately hiding the piles. Instead, sufferers would need to manually re-insert them to the anus and that can be uncomfortable, if not painful. At this point, the condition can no longer be ignored and individuals must seek the attention of a doctor as soon as possible.

Fourth Stage

The fourth stage is when it is no longer feasible to physically insert the fallen out piles within the anus. Fortunately this is a very rare occurrence, especially if early treatment has been provided. Instead, the skin stays there permanently, effectively increasing the discomfort not only during bowel movement but also during all kinds of movement. Obviously, affected individuals ought to be following the care of a physician at this point.

Preferably, individuals should consult their doctor as soon as they find something wrong with their bowel motion. The sooner a clear analysis is provided then the sooner the right hemorrhoids treatment can be provided and the greater would be the possibilities of recovery.

Remember to validate your suspicions of hemorrhoids by seeing a doctor for diagnosis before taking any drugs. For individuals who suspect one of the early stages of hemorrhoids however, it is feasible to commence a natural hemorrhoids treatment to make the procedure easier. This include eating more fiber in the form of fruits and vegetables together with increasing the fluid intake. Simply put - drink more water. Using this advice the condition will be eased and the cure begun as the stools will be softer so their passing will reduce pain from inflamed veins.

Symptoms of Preeclampsia

Preeclampsia is a serious health disorder that affects the minority of pregnant women. It is usually pronounced during second trimester and third trimester in pregnancy. This disease is very deadly and associated with many signs and symptoms of which the majority is very silent in nature.

The main and first symptom of preeclampsia is hypertension. Hypertension means increase in the blood pressure. The degree of blood pressure in pregnant women varies. High increase in the blood pressure imposes is the first symptom of Preeclampsia in pregnant women.

Increase in the urinary protein is one of the symptoms related to Preeclampsia. Urine is an end product of filtration of the kidney during deamination. When the kidney becomes severely affected, ultra filtration of the products of digestion is impaired. Kidney functionality determines the amount of urine produced per body stream. Deamination is the bodily process where amino groups are removed from excess proteins. It happens most often in the liver and kidneys. It allows the system to convert excess amino acids to soluble carbon and hydrogen. Deamination plays important role in the removal of nitrogenous waste from the body. Amino groups discarded as a result of the process are converted into ammonia, which is later expelled from the body through urination. Improper function of the kidney causes protein to flow into the urine and causes health problem.

Changes in reflex and nervous system are another factor. The nervous system coordinated the body system and its functionality. The nervous system controls and coordinates all our actions as humans as all the body systems are connected to each other. Preeclampsia affects the central nervous system which results to severe headache, impaired vision, partial and sometimes total blindness.

Abdominal Pains as a result of liver malfunction. The liver being a vital organ in the body plays important role in digestion. This is specifically connected to protein and amino acids stability. Through deamination and detoxication of protein, the liver gets rid of nitrogenous waste products that are not excreted by the kidney from the blood stream.

Another symptom of Preeclampsia in pregnant women if drastic gain in body weight. This gain in weight results from accumulation of body fluid around the waste. As the fluid increases in accumulation, the weight also increases.

The body malfunction due to Preeclampsia also causes swollen of feet, legs, face and hands. These swollen are common during the third trimester in pregnancy and sometimes being neglected during the diagnoses of Preeclampsia. It becomes a risk factor when the swollen becomes abnormal.

Preeclampsia causes absence or reduced urinal output. As the functionality of the kidney and he liver are affected, it drastically affect the volume of urine produced.

Dizziness, nausea and excess vomiting are all symptoms of preeclampsia. The baby gets daily normal protein nourishment from blood supplied through the placenta from the mother. Insufficient supply of this blood stream to the unborn child results to poor body growth and development.

Preeclampsia is a dreadful and killer disease which should not be taken for granted as most of these symptoms are silent in nature and causes much complication before being diagnosed. If affects both mother and unborn child. Adequate measures should be taken in getting rid of it diagnosed for the safety of both parties involved.

How Do You Control Compulsive Snack Eating?

I attended a birthday party for a friend of mine, who has an autistic child. I observed how the child was a compulsive snack individual, who was eating unhealthy foods. In addition, he was eating the snacks in tremendous amounts. I became concerned.

I have experienced and learned, many children with the disorder of autism do snack compulsively. Parent(s), caregiver(s), want to know how to control eating snacks, unhealthy foods and prevent this from happening.

I believe dealing and understanding how autistic children should avoid certain foods, can become an urgent request.

For example:
* Dietary and health restrictions
* Taking certain kinds of medications that may not mix with snacks and sweets.
* Could cause diabetes.
* Sometimes too much of one kind of snack, may cause hyper-active personality and behavior.
* Some snacks and sweets may cause drowsiness, and cause your child to become lethargic.

I have heard from parent(s), caregiver(s) express concern, that some children take snacks without permission to their bedroom, hide it, save it, without them being aware of it. If you are continually making attempts to decrease and prevent the behavior of your child, who is compulsively snacking, this can be stressful for your child and you.

One of the first steps you want to consider taking is, remove the temptations from your child who is snacking and is out of control.

This can be accomplished by taking all of the foods that your child loves to snack on, unhealthy foods,and foods high in calories. Remove them and do not allow those foods in your home, or classroom, it possible.

If your child has friends over, and they want to eat snacks, you would tell them politely you do not have any available. If your child goes to his or her friend's home and they want to eat snacks, you will be in control by bringing the snack your child will be eating, control the amount, the type of snack. Communicate this matter with the parent(s), caregiver(s) of your child who he or she will be visiting.

Introduce your child to new, healthy types of foods and snacks. Make it fun, be creative when you choose to replace unhealthy snacks and foods, when you want to control your child from snacking.

Do not punish your child, for eating unhealthy snacks and doing it compulsively. You want to build a healthy life style for you and your child to enjoy.

Do not make statements to your child, such as, "these snacks are bad for you and you will get fat by eating them", "you are going on a diet tomorrow", "since you had all of those cookies, you will never have one again". Making statements that are a negative approach to your child, may make sense to you, but your child may feel guilty, punished, inferior, low self-esteem, and may rebel, by eating and indulging in more snacks.

When you decide to take control of replacing unhealthy foods for healthy snacks, make time for your child to look forward to something special. Consider an activity that he or she loves, a special place to visit, or having a friend over to play games, etc. In addition, make it fun.

Make a treasure chest for the new healthy foods that will replace the unhealthy ones. Explain to your child on certain times of the day when your child wants a snack, he or she will pick from the assortment in the treasure chest, a new healthy snack. By taking this kind of action, you are in control and will observe positive results from compulsive eating, your child does with snacks.

Your Skin's Diet

There are many reasons we make the effort to watch our diets: weight management (taking the weight off or keeping it off), lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, or just simply to live healthy.

But we seldom hear people say they are trying to eat right to promote healthy skin.

We used to think that eating chocolate would cause skin break outs, but in recent years we have learned that eating dark chocolate is actually good for your skin. (Thank goodness) Dark chocolate contains anti-oxidants which help increase the natural UV protection that our skin creates.

Our Skin is Fine Clothing

Mark Twain once shared this bit of wisdom: "The finest clothing made is a person's skin, but, of course, society demands something more than this."

Most of us make the effort to take good care of our clothing so it will look nice when we wear it, and because it is an investment, we want it to last longer.

Shouldn't we think of our skin in the same way? We want it to look nice when we wear it (which is always) and we want it to last longer.

How our skin looks is important, but how healthy it is, is even more important. As our body's largest organ; its job is to protect our vital organs and help filter out the toxins that build up inside.

What to feed our skin

We can use all the great skin care products created, but if we fail to feed our skin properly, everything else is wasted.

· One of the most essential things we can do for our skin is keep it hydrated, which means drinking plenty of water, which helps it do its job of eliminating those things that could make us unhealthy. Coffee, tea or soda are sources of water, but aren't a substitute for the real thing.

· Eat whole grains, they are not only good sources of fiber, which help prevent acne causing inflammation, but also contain a large amount of anti-oxidants.

· Another great source of anti-oxidants is berries, especially blueberries, blackberries and strawberries which help our skin to look younger.

· Our skin needs good sources of Omega 3 fatty acids (good fat), which you can get from eating fish, especially the oily fish such as salmon, anchovies, mackerel or sardines. These fatty acids help keep the skin free of blemishes.

    Walnuts, flax seed or canola oil are also good sources

· To aid your skin in its natural renewal process you need Vitamin A, which you can find in carrots.

· A good source of Vitamin E, to help keep your skin moisturized is almonds.

· If you need to sooth red, blotchy skin, avocados act as an anti-inflammatory.

Taking good care of your skin isn't just about beauty and vanity, it's about good health.

My First Speech About My Daughter Dying of AIDS

I remember the first speech that I gave. It was 1996 and I was at the BC Children's Hospital Grand Rounds in Vancouver. Not only was I a new speaker, with all the fear involved in giving my very first speech - but I was talking on a topic that I had kept secret from many people for the last two years. After my nine-month old daughter, Katie, became sick with pneumonia, I was told she had AIDS and that I had HIV.

I could vaguely hear the infectious disease specialist on stage speaking about the basic science of children with HIV. It was like a dream, everything seemed to be in slow motion, and then he turned to introduce me, the mother and patient. I remember singing to myself before I walked onto the platform - it was a song by Queen "We Are The Champions" and it gave me strength to walk up the steps, covered in black, rubber matting. I shook the doctor's hand and stood before my audience.

It was precisely at that moment, as I stared into the crowd seated before me, that I saw someone hurriedly enter the auditorium... it was my daughter's pediatrician and immediately I froze. I hadn't seen Jane since Katie's death two years earlier - I heard myself breath in sharply and a pain stabbed at my heart. She sat half way down the aisle and, looking back at me, she gently smiled. I knew I had a great, trusted friend in the audience and suddenly a warm blanket enveloped me... I could do this!

As I started to tell the story of how I had discovered my daughter had AIDS and that I had HIV, I struggled to remain composed. I was tired from two years of telling lies about her death and finally I was going to be able to let people know what it was like living under the veil of stigma, where healthcare staff, doctors and hospice workers were my only confidantes. I felt it was so important for the people listening to me realized that they are the lifeline to people hiding with any stigma. Jane knew.. she had been a friend at the end of the phone line, the arm around my shoulders, the doctor not afraid to speak out on my behalf.

As I read the words on the sheet, I was painfully aware that I was not yet a confident speaker and I knew that if I decided to go completely public then I would have to look directly into people's eyes, without fear of judgement.

It was on that day that I realized that this would be the way I could remember Katie's life and that people could learn more about families living with AIDS. I knew on that day that my career path would take me down a road where I had so long feared to travel and that I would receive immeasurable support along the way.

That is the day that I decided to become a speaker about children and families living with HIV and AIDS and I have never regretted it.

The Hidden Treasure of Pediatric Nursing

As any parent knows, having children is a life-changing experience for which there is no adequate preparation. We all have ideas about how to raise children but most of the time we simply learn as we go. A young pediatric nurse can get a good head start on parenting through the day-to-day experience of pouring her heart and soul into caring for her young patients. It's not exactly the same as real-life experience, but it might be the next best thing.

The Quandary of Pediatrics

When the new graduate takes a job as a pediatric nurse, she is immediately faced with the challenge of doing what's best for a child and making sure that child is as comfortable as possible. Yet the two are not always compatible. Sometimes doing what's best for a sick patient is going to cause that person to be extremely uncomfortable. For example, you may have to draw blood from a young patient. As a nurse you don't want to make that child cry and scream, but it's for his own good. Those are the same decisions parents make every day.

Individuals who choose pediatric travel nursing jobs get to take those challenges one step further. Not only do they have the same quandary in caring for their patients, they are also sacrificing the benefits of their own stability to go where the work is. Travel nurses always have to get used to new coworkers, learn their way around new cities and generally adapt to all the pressures that come with travel. But when they walk into work every day, all those things must be put behind them so they can concentrate on their young patients.

Look for the Hidden Treasures

With any job it's easy to complain about all of the negatives; anyone can do that. But it takes a special kind of worker to look beyond those things and instead find the hidden treasures. If you're pediatric nurse, look for those treasures in the smiles and tears of your young charges. You'll find that the skills you learn as a pediatric nurse will make you a better parent.

If you're currently employed in pediatric travel nursing, relish those opportunities while you have them. Most travel nurses don't spend their entire careers on the road for obvious reasons. You probably won't either if you intend to eventually have children. So use your opportunities wisely, learn as much as you can and look for your own hidden treasures as you go.

Can We Die Healthy?

Now that seems strange because if you listen to the television commercials on some of the medicines available to us for pains and ailments the side effects do not sound inviting. We have worked so hard to find cures in the laboratory we forget that humankind has been dealing with ailments for thousands of years by natural means and no side effects. How exactly did they live so long and what medicines did they take?

So how do we stay well? My cousin was visiting last week and when her father, my uncle, was in the hospital last year one of the Physicians Assistants told her that as you get older quit going to the doctor. That was extreme but I think I understand what she was saying. Should we go to the doctor, who will put us in the hospital, try new medicines and keep us immobile? Or do we live each day to the fullest and just die in our beds.

This seems like a morbid subject but if you think about it most of today's population is looking to natural foods, organic foods and natural medicines instead of the chemicals available in the pharmacy. We are by our own direction turning away from medical science cures and looking to the natural cures we have been using for centuries.

I have arthritis in both knees and bursitis in my shoulders. I take a natural mixture of herbs and spices and I am fine. The chemicals they advertise have so many side effects you really do not know if the pain is that great anymore.

Well I want to die healthy. That is why I watch what I eat, exercise and try to think positive every day. Depression is a bad thing and it follows us, as we grow older. We change our lifestyles because we cannot do what we used to and if we do not keep reinventing ourselves with new activities, we will become depressed and have problems.

Talk to a trainer about what type of exercise you should do. The gyms are not so bad these days and they want business so their prices are affordable. Eating right is easy. Several websites promote eating healthy and have some good recipes. There are more vegetarians today than ever before. Do you know that man started as a vegetarian? I do not know what happen to change that since I was not there but it was probably interesting.

Search the web for some good ideas on eating right, do not over do the vitamins and minerals, look to the websites that will provide the right information and learn how your body works. Learn what vitamins and minerals you need, learn what are the best foods for you. Did you know there is a blood type diet? I will talk about that later.

Eat well, exercise, think healthy.

Inspiration on Demand

If you've heard me speak, you may have heard me talk about receiving downloads from God. No, I have no illusions that I'm a reincarnated Joan of Arc. A 'download from God' is when a wild new idea, a solution, or a clear path for a dilemma spring fully formed into your mind, just as if you've downloaded a program or song from the 'net. My downloads are intermittent and generally inconvenient, occurring most often while I'm in the shower. I then immediately slosh out to retrieve paper and pen to record the message.

This week I found a way to cause these downloads from God to occur 'on demand'. An amazing insight, buried in the pages of a local women's magazine! I was astonished; I would like to share this technique with you.

The cool thing is these downloads are quite a bit dryer, as they occur in your sleep. The technique is dream recall, and the way that works is in preparation of your brain to process the question or dilemma as you sleep.

There are four steps to insure that this data dump occurs:

Step one: State your intention. Before you go to sleep clearly tell yourself out loud: "I would like to have a dream giving me guidance on my ______. I will remember this dream. I will understand the dream." By beginning with your statement of intention, the universe will likely give you what you asked for.

Step two: Don't move when you first awaken. When you first wake don't change positions right away. The simple act of getting up and relieving your bladder will take you to a fully awakened state. So, hold the thought and your bladder, stay still as long as you can, and try to remember every detail you can recall of your dreams: every feeling, every color, every word.

Step three: Write it down. Have a pad of paper or a dream journal nearby so you can jot down the images and feelings before you forget them. Don't worry if you don't capture the whole story, as sometimes a major symbol or theme will give you a massive amount of guidance or information. I'm told that as you do this more frequently, your dreams stick around longer.

Step four: Act on the information you received. Make decisions based on your new insights. As soon as you do more will be given- the universe provides more as more is needed, but she tends to get pissed off if you don't act on what you've got.

When I tried this, consciously asking for answers and planning to remember my dreams, I was surprised by the vivid colors and the odd stories-perhaps due to perimenopause or pizza. My dreams included dwarf and a journey (well, yes, I did catch an episode of "The Great Race", so that might be the source of that image) on decaying sailing ships, and moss carpeted stairs. If you find and the dreams to be vivid and highly unusual, scan a book on dream interpretation at your local library-there's a fair amount of established psychobabble linked to dreams. Some symbols are just what they are, just as sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. However automobiles and houses usually represent you and your physical body. Your boss or supervisor in your dream represents your soul trying to send a message to you. Dreams of death are associated with change, transition, or the end of something, just as dreams of birth represent creativity and new beginnings in your life. You should record the emotional content of the dream. How did you feel? Were you happy? Bored? Frightened?

I challenge you to sleep, perchance to dream. Accept your own download from God.

5 Myths About Stethoscopes Exposed

If you are just starting on your studies in order to become a medical professional, then chances are you are just about to buy your first stethoscope. These are one of the most important and significant medical equipment that all aspiring medical professionals need. When you were just dreaming about becoming a doctor as a child the first thing you did was ask your parents to buy you toy stethoscopes so that you can go around pretending to be a doctor. Now as a medical professional, you are now contemplating whether to get a Littmann Lightweight II S.E. Stethoscope or a Littmann Cardiology III. These two specific units are some of the best makes to get. However, before you actually go and get a stethoscope. You better familiarize yourself first with some common stethoscope myths. This way, you will avoid using your new stethoscope in the wrong manner and end up destroying it.

• Stethocopes can hear the actual sound of your body organs - this is a very common misconception. However, if you put the instrument on someone's chest in order to hear the heart beating, you are not necessarily listening to the sounds of the heart. Instead, you are listening to the sounds created by the pressure waves that are generated by the heart's beating. Doctors look for any abnormalities in these pressure waves in order to determine the right diagnosis for a patient.

• Stethocopes can be used for eavesdropping - you can see in movies that some people use these medical devices to eavesdrop on the conversations of people on the other side. They use the stethoscope as an eavesdropping device because they believe that stethoscopes can amplify the sounds that traverse a wall. However, you really do not need a stethoscope for this type of use. In fact, you can just press your ears to the wall and listen to what the people on the other room are saying.

• Stethoscopes can open safes - you will be seeing this a lot in movies. Some guy trying to crack a safe will be using headphones in order to twist the tumblers. However, this is no longer the case. This is because safes now use the latest electronic technologies. Gone are the days of using only tumblers to restrict access.

• Stethoscopes are very fragile - this is totally wrong. In fact there are many cases when students buy their first unit and continue using the same one for a very long time. Real stethoscopes are built tough.

• Stethoscopes are more of a symbol rather than an instrument - some people think that they really do not need stethoscopes because any hidden virus that go undetected will eventually show up due to further tests. However, this is far from the truth.

All You Need To Know About Jones Fracture

Jones fracture, also called the 5th metatarsal fracture, is an injury on the diaphysis of the fifth foot metatarsal bone. This bone is found at the base of the small toe, and the fracture occurs at the proximal end, normally at the middle point of the foot. The symptoms of this fracture include pain at the point of injury and swelling, which makes walking difficult.

This fracture has its history from 1902, when it was first described by Sir Robert Jones in his article in the Annals of Surgery. Having sustained the injury himself from dancing, he sought to describe the injury, especially where the cause is indirect impact. The article, which described six patients suffering from the injury, included the classification of the fracture into avulsion, stress and the common Jones fracture.

Diagnosing Jones Fracture

Most cases of this fracture occur without considerable impact. Therefore, most Jones fracture cases easily pass for sprains. When one is suffering from this injury, they experience pain over the area of the fracture, coupled with swelling and difficulty in walking.

In order to ascertain that one really has the fracture and not a sprain, a general diagnostic x ray is essential. This x ray should be taken from all views; oblique, anteroposterior, and lateral. The foot should be in full flection when taking these x rays.

Treating Jones Fracture

A tenuous fracture can easily be corrected using a splint, a cast or a walking boot for one or two months. At this stage, it is highly recommended that one should avoid exerting any pressure or placing any weight on the foot until the doctor allows it. With a success rate of 75 percent, the cast or splint proves quite effective in treating minor cases of the injury.

Acute fractures, however, need specialized treatment methods. Such methods include placing a dynamic compression plate on the strained side of the fracture and using the figure 8 monofilament K wire on the fractured bone.

If the fracture is too acute, it may need to be fixed from the inside. This means that cancellated or cortical screws may be used to join the bones together. Bone grafts may be required to accelerate the healing process. A regular dose of calcium and Vitamin D is also required to hasten the healing of the fracture.

Though a splint or a cast is recommended for minor fractures, surgery is appropriate in certain situations. If an athlete suffers from a Jones fracture, a surgery may be necessary to shorten the extended healing period. However, before opting for surgery, it is best to discuss all the available options with your doctor.

Prospecting Jones Fracture

A metatarsal fracture can fail to unite even after treatment. Though a common occurrence, this failure to unite can cause a chronic condition. If this occurs to you, the first recommendation from your doctor will be an extended time in the cast. This could go up to 20 weeks.

The fracture can fail to heal for several reasons. For starters, the fracture normally occurs at a poor blood supply area. Since the area is a "watershed", it reduces the chances of a successful healing process. In addition, the area of the fracture has numerous tendons. These tendons and muscles may pull the fractured bones apart, which may prolong or prevent healing.

Differentiating Jones Fracture from Other Injuries

Jones fracture is the most severe fracture of the fifth metatarsal bone. There are other fractures of the same bone which are commonly confused with this fracture, though they are less serious. J fractures usually occur on the intermetatarsal joint. However, if the fracture is on the tarsometarsal joint, then it is an avulsion fracture. Avulsion fracture is also called the Pseudo-Jones fracture.

These fractures are also commonly, but wrongly, diagnosed as apophysis, a common adolescent developmental condition. There are several indicators that one is suffering from apophysis and not the fracture. These indicators include absence of fractured edges and the angle of the lucent line. In the fracture, the metatarsal axis is at 90 degrees, while in apophysis, it is parallel.

Jones fractures can be a serious problem depending on how they are handled. Proper diagnosis and early treatment are recommended to ensure the success of the treatment. Enough calcium and vitamin D are also very essential to the healing process. It is also important to know that a Jones fracture can be treated.

Aspiration Procedure - What It Is and Why You May Get One

Having a baby is a huge choice and sometimes, women decide not to have the child. If you're in the early stages of pregnancy, there are many options available to you. For example, there's the morning after pill that will terminate an early pregnancy if taken after intercourse. Yet, if you're a bit further, you may consider what's known as an aspiration procedure. This involves a special instrument that a gynecologist uses to basically suction out the baby from the uterus. There are many reasons why women end up getting this done. Explore these reasons below.

Oftentimes, women or girls find themselves pregnant while still in high school or college. With so many future plans waiting for them, a baby would completely disrupt these plans. Also, girls are also afraid of what they're friends and family may think and this alone is enough to convince them to terminate the pregnancy. If this is the case, an aspiration procedure is usually the next step.

On the other hand, some women are out of school, completely grown and climbing the corporate ladder. Then, one day they wake up and have a positive pregnancy test. This can happen even to women that thought they were protected by taking birth control pills or using condoms. However, sometimes women miss pills or the condom breaks. As a result, they end up getting pregnant. Yet, if they are still trying to pursue a career, and a baby is just not in the cards right now, a woman may decide to terminate the pregnancy.

Also, some women are married with kids and facing the end of their biological clock when the "oops" baby happens. These women have oftentimes gotten their last child out of diapers and are totally not trying to get pregnant. In addition, some women have even thought they were unable to conceive and wake up one day pregnant. If this is just too much for them to handle as well as afford, they will visit a trusted clinic for an aspiration procedure.

Furthermore, some women are victims of violent sexual assaults that leave them pregnant. There are some women that will keep their kid even though he or she was conceived violently. Others cannot imagine seeing the pregnancy to term because of so many emotional issues. Bottom line, these women will end up getting an aspiration procedure which will allow them to begin to put the assault behind them instead of dealing with caring for the attacker's child.

May Is Stroke Prevention Month

May is Stroke Prevention Month. A stroke is defined by Wikipedia as the rapid loss of brain function due to a disturbance in the blood supply to the brain. This can be due to ischemia (lack of blood flow) caused by a blockage or a hemorrhage (leakage of blood). As a result, the affected area of the brain cannot function, which might result in the inability to move limbs, speak or see from one side of the body.

Strokes are a medical emergency and can cause permanent neurological damage, complications and death. Strokes are the leading cause of adult disability in the United States.

Risk factors include old age, hypertension, previous strokes, diabetes, high cholesterol, cigarette smoking and atrial fibrillation. High blood pressure is the most important modifiable risk factor.

Nutrition is also a factor in stroke prevention. Including oranges and grapes daily seem to lower your risks. This news comes from reviewing 14 years of follow-up data gathered from 70,000 women participating in the U.S. Nurses' Health Study, a landmark trial that has been on-going since 1976 and is still recruiting volunteers. The stroke findings were published online February 23 in the journal Stroke.

Flavones are a subclass of flavonoids, antioxidant compounds found naturally in fruits, vegetables, red wine, dark chocolate, coffee and tea. The researchers, from England's Norwich Medical School, found that women whose diets included the most flavones had a 19 percent lower risk of stroke linked to blood clots than those whose diets were lowest in flavones. They reported that most of the flavones came from citrus fruits, and recommended that women choose whole fruits rather than juice to increase their flavones intake. A typical serving of citrus fruit contains 45 to 50 mg of flavones. The women with the highest intake consumed more than 470 mg per day. The researchers noted that the women whose diets included the most flavones also ate more fiber, took in less caffeine and alcohol, smoked less and exercised more than the women with the lowest flavones intake.

Dr. Weil suggests that eating an abundance of vegetables and fruit, particularly purple fruits and berries (and red wine if you drink alcohol), all of which contain protective compounds called proanthocyanidins. This study adds new and valuable information to what we already knew about effective dietary changes to maintain cardiovascular health. In addition, I recommend omega-3 fatty acids in the form of wild, cold-water fish or fish-oil supplements, freshly ground flaxseeds and walnuts to help reduce the inflammatory reactions that can raise the risk of stroke. Other measures to help cut stroke risk include getting plenty of garlic in your diet, since it can act as a blood thinner, and drinking green tea on a regular basis for its antioxidant effects. Be sure to get regular exercise and take measures to reduce stress in your life.

Secret Diet Tips Revealed - The Underrated Super Food

The humble onion has to be one of the most simple foods, yet did you know how amazingly powerful, and beneficial it is to your health and well-being?

You probably already know that onions are very good to help with curing coughs and colds - this is due to the vitamins C, D & E, that it contains. This combination of vitamins are very effective for helping to boost your immune system, and help to reduce inflammation, so can help to clear catarrh and help your breathing by opening up your airways.

However, onions have far more benefits that just helping the common cold. They also contain chromium and a variety of sulfides. Chromium helps to improve insulin and maintain stable blood sugar levels. The sulfides help lower blood lipids and lower blood pressure as well. Sulfides also help to protect the body against tumour growth, so regular consumption of onions can help reduce the risk of developing a range of cancers.

If this was not incredible enough, the benefits continue. Onions contain flavonoids which help to protect the body against cardiovascular disease. The highest concentration of flavonoids are contained in the outer layers (once the skin is removed) so try not to over peel an onion, else most of the benefits will be lost.

Onions also contain fructooligosaccharides which stimulates the growth of good bacteria and helps to reduce the growth of harmful bacteria in the colon. They can help fight bacteria including E.Coli & salmonella.

Due to it's antibacterial properties, onions can help relieve insect bites or stings. Simply crush an onion, collect the juice and apply it to the sting/bite to help relieve the discomfort.

As well as having anti-bacterial properties, onions also contain anti fungal & anti-parasitic properties, so onions can help combat Candida infections. Onions can also help to flush excess fluids from the body, so can help aid with water retention.

To obtain the full benefit from onions, it is best to eat them raw where possible, although adding onions to stews, soups or onions can still help as the goodness will be absorbed by the fluid in the stew/soup.

The onion is a truly remarkable vegetable, and low in calorific content (around 55 calories for a medium-sized onion), so why not make yourself an onion, tomato and avocado salad or some onion soup and start harnessing the power of the onion to help improve your health today.

The Ophthalmologist and the Optometrist

There is a big difference between the ophthalmologist and the optometrist. Although both professions concentrate on the eyes and sight, the difference is acute and can be explained very well. There are also many similarities between the two which may confuse a lot of people with regards to the responsibilities of each.


In this profession, the specialist concentrates on the eyes, the sight and the diseases and conditions that may occur in the visual area. Care for the organs is what the professional is trained to do especially in maintaining their health and their condition. The specialists can diagnose and prescribe glasses and contact lenses for the patient. He can also perform surgery in the organs themselves or any part or area near them when necessary. An ophthalmologist assesses, diagnoses, treats, corrects and operates on many of the conditions of the eyes that may need these. Surgery is a subspecialty that the practitioner needs to study and concentrate on when he graduates from college. Surgery of the eyes can be as complicated as retinal implants and as easy as the removal of foreign objects from the organs. The graduate can also just practice as soon as he passes the exams for the course which will certify and qualify him for the practice.


These practitioners also concentrate on the eyes and sight of their patients. There are also some diseases that the optometrist can treat after properly diagnosing them. These include, but are not limited to, glaucoma, diseases found in the retinas and cataracts. They might also deal with the side effects of other diseases which are not in the eyes but usually affect them and their function. The optometrist might also examine a patient's sight and prescribe the necessary treatment for any deficiencies that he might encounter. These may include farsightedness, nearsightedness and astigmatism. Treatments for these usually fall under the prescription of glasses or contact lenses. The practitioner might also perform some minor forms of surgery such as the removal of small objects that may have gotten stuck in the eye. Specifics under this field suggest that the professional is different from the ophthalmologist because of the scope of his responsibilities. These practitioners also need to be educated in this course as well as pass through exams that will certify them and make them qualified to see patients.

Despite the many differences and similarities between the two, there are also many specifics which can dictate when one is needed over the other. The patient should consult an ophthalmologist when he suspects that he may be suffering from a disease or condition of the eye that cannot be resolved by the prescription of glasses or contact lenses. On the other hand, the diagnosis and assessment of one's sight can be easily done by the optometrist without the aid of the other professional. In many cases, both professionals might work together to help resolve a patient's issues with regards to his eyes and his sight. Some optometrists can also recommend the other to their patients if they think that the individual needs to see an ophthalmologist.

Universal Primary Health Care

Primary Health Care is the Foundation of all Health Care Systems. A strong PHC will build strong healthy populations. Compared to Secondary and Tertiary Health, it only costs Governments a small fraction of the Gross Domestic Product. However, because it is not Glamorous, most Governments, especially Developing Countries neglect it at great cost to their suffering populations. and would rather waste huge amounts in building Fancy Hospitals for the 10 % who are mostly there because of the failure of the PHC System due to inadequate funding and lack of population health education.

However the World Health Organisation has pleaded with all Governments to ensure "Health for All" and PHC can bring solace and comfort to 90% of the Population of the World and instituted 21st Century Millenium Development Goals to guide each country's shortcomings. Essentially PHC covers 5 Strategies, 1st is to provide Preventative Health Programs like Compulsory Vaccinations Schedules for young and old, Screening programs like Pap's Smears and Mammography for Women to detect Cancer early and Blood and Urine Screening to detect Chronic Non-communicable Diseases like Diabetes, Hypertension, Heart Problems and Respiratory difficulties and of course School Health as well as well -grounded Ante-Natal and Post -natal Programs for the growing populations, especially for the poor and needy.

The 2nd Strategy is to use the various Public Media to Promote Healthy Life Styles against Alcohol, Smoking, Narcotic and other Habit forming Drugs, Educate on Proper Diets and Appropriate Exercise programs to keep People Fit and Healthy. 3rd Strategy is to have adequate PHC Clinics to look after Acute Disease presentations which appear suddenly and have the potential to kill rapidly. 4th Strategy is to manage Chronic N-C Diseases which have increased dramatically and produced so much morbidity and reduced quality of lives. ( upto 50 to 70 % of people bove 30 years of age, Finally 5th Strategy is to Rehabilitate those who have contracted Disabilities due to motor vehicle accidents, strokes and heart attacks to live comfortably as their Human rights and be able to perform their Activities of Daily Living with dignity and privacy.

Primary Health Care is NOT an option BUT a basic human right for every citizen. It therefore becomes a political agenda which every responsible person should value and push for when considering their future Governments. Every country which has invested in a well-organised and developed Primary Health Care System has harvested rich rewards in producing productive populations who in turn have raised the standards of living and equity and justice among all their fellow citizens.

Low Testosterone: A Recurring Problem

Produced in the ovaries of the women and the Testes of the men, a steroid hormone known as Testosterone performs certain important bodily functions such as voice deepening, growth of pubic and facial hair and the determining of primary and secondary sexual characteristics among both male and female. Although the problem of a low testosterone has begun to emerge very recently, but scientists and the doctor agree that it has been there since the end of the Second World War.

The production and the secretion of the hormone is dependent upon the pituitary glands being located in the hypothalamus or the lower part of the brain. The brain releases some amount of LH and FSH which stimulates the production of the testosterones. In medical terminology, the bodily condition of low testosterone is called as Hypogonadism. When the low testosterone is caused by the pituitary glands it is called as the secondary Hypogonadism and when it is caused by the hypothalamus it is called as the tertiary Hypogonadism.

Generally the low T is caused by various factors such as an injury to the testes sac, un-descended testicles, cancer therapy, aging, chromosomal abnormalities and certain ovary conditions in the women. Apart from the aforementioned causes there can be other causes as well such as: brain tumors, tuberculosis, STDs, Anabolic Steroids and obesity.

Among the males the symptoms of low T are the poor development of primary sex organs and the sac, lack of sexual maturation, decreased sexual function, lack of bodily hair and osteoporosis. Although the low testosterone is generally referred to as an all-male problem but contrary to the popular perception the women also tend to suffer with this condition. The symptoms of low testosterone in the women include hot flashes, decreased sexual desires, sleep disturbances, loss of muscle mass, osteoporosis and decrease in the bodily hair.

So far as the treatment of low testosterone among the men is concerned it can be generally addressed with the help of intramuscular injections, testosterone patches and the testosterone gels. A putty can also be applied on the gums which helps the men to easily dissolve the testosterone in their blood levels.

As far as the low testosterone in the women is concerned, the physicians recommend the women to cut the testosterone patches meant for men into shorter ones, and apply them onto the skin subsequently. Similarly the gels can also be applied albeit in small proportions as compared to women to address this issue of low testosterone among the women.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

What You Need To Know About Universal Precautions Training In Health Care - 5 Things

Blood borne pathogens can be spread via different routes and sources. Universal precautions training will safeguard you against these known sources as well as some of the unknown sources. Universal precautions include certain easy precautionary steps that you need to take to protect yourself and others from communicable diseases such as Hepatitis B and HIV.

Universal precautions are very simple and effectual ways to stop transmission of the bacteria and virus that cause infectious disease. Various protective clothing should be worn all the time by all health care professionals. Special measures need to be taken by the individuals working with blood and other body fluids.

There are 5 basic things you need to know about Universal Precautions training:

• If you are able to curb the spread of blood borne pathogens then the transmission of infectious diseases can be prevented. The Occupational Safety and Health Information (OSHA) gives guidelines that should be followed by all healthcare and hospital employees who deal with blood and other body fluids.

• Every healthcare facility and other organization will need to assess all the activities that involve their employees handling blood and other body fluids in order to determine the risks related with them. This will enable the organizations to take proper precautions based on the various activities performed.

• All health care facilities need to provide a safe environment for their employees. High standards of hygiene need to be maintained throughout the facility. Simple measures like hand washing prior to and after activities should be followed strictly. Implementation of these simple guidelines will serve to provide the safe environment a healthcare organization needs.

• Depending on the risks involved in the different activities, protective gear need to be chosen by the individual. Aprons, face masks, caps, gloves, face shields and eye shields are the protective equipments that are used. Regular checks need to be made to see if the protective gear is damaged. If so, they need to be replaced at once.

• The specific areas where activities relating to blood and body fluid handling are performed require cleaning and washing regularly. All the surfaces and instruments need to be washed with disinfectant. Spread of infection can be avoided by doing this.

All health care employees should be provided proper training about universal precautions guidelines. This will prevent them and others from being susceptible to any infectious disease. Equipments that are reused need to be sterilized after use. In case of single use equipments strict measures should be followed to discard them properly. This can be done by following by practicing the precautions laid down by OSHA.

Various controls have to be implemented to ensure safety at the work place. Simple universal precautions need to be followed while attending all the patients. This will guarantee safety to both the patients and the employees. When proper precautions are not followed various communicable diseases will spread. If the guidelines stipulated by OSHA are followed strictly, the chances of spread of infections will be greatly reduced.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

6 Steps for You to Control an Infection

Infection control training literally begins at home. We have our parents teaching us to use handkerchiefs to cover our mouth and nose while coughing or sneezing. We are also taught the importance of wearing clean clothes and keeping clean habits by bathing everyday, sometimes even twice a day. These are basic rules for life to make sure we can keep infections at bay.

Even though we follow these, sometimes we catch an infection and fall ill. A germ that grows on or in a person leads to an illness, this is called an infection. Sometimes we can cure them at home and sometimes we need a hospital or a medical unit. Walking into a hospital gives you a feeling of safety and security; mostly because the environment is so clean and sterile. You as a patient or as a visitor can do a few things to ensure infection control.

• Hand hygiene: Wash and wash again if need be. Running water, soap and alcoholic gel, make sure there is enough around for you to feel good. Ensure that your visitors too wash their hands. Feel free to ask the hospital staff if they have washed their hands before checking the patient.

• In case you are admitting someone in a hospital or a medical unit, keep a check on allergies or medicines that they could have reactions to. If you have the time, on the way to the hospital, call them and tell them about the patient's problem. They will be in a better position to help and react.

• Keep the area around you clean. Throw away used cups, tissues or left-over food. Make sure a child's toys are kept in the individual storage area provided. The Infection Control team at the hospital or medical unit work very hard to keep it pristine clean; help them by doing your bit. In case there is ever a chance that you find the area around the patient untidy or dirty, immediately speak to the senior nurses.

• In case an area is being kept under close inspection due to an outbreak of an infection, keep your movements at a minimal. Make sure your visitors are also warned about the outbreak when they come in.

• Take a look at the kind of equipment being used. Is it clean? Hopefully your answer should be yes. Make sure needles are freshly opened out of their packaging and are discarded after one use.

• Mention to the authorities if the patient has any kind of bloodborne disease, such as HIV. It will not make a difference to the quality of treatment. But it will ensure than the staff don't let that illness spread.

Infection control systems are in place is almost all hospitals or medical units. It is essential that we know a few basics about infection control. This is in the interest of the larger good of people. If you can take a certified course in it, that fantastic! Until then keep the above points in mind and stay well.

Monday, April 9, 2012

10 Tips for Safeguarding Your Personal Information Under the HIPAA

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 was created to protect the medical interests of the citizens of United States. The act protects the medical insurance, personal information and medical information of the consumers. It empowers the consumers by giving them the right to access their own medical records, update their personal details and in case of suspected theft of data or misuses; they may also lodge a complaint with the authorities. Data theft under the HIPAA is a serious offense. Read below to find out how you can reduce the risk of personal and medical data theft.

• Keep yourself educated. Reading and knowing all that you can learn about the HIPAA is the key to preventing theft of information. Read all the notices and circulations and updates that are provided.

• Discuss with your provider. Talk to your insurance provider regarding your concerns about confidentiality and privacy. Understand how your insurance provider handles privacy issues.

• Be a good consumer. As a consumer, you must try and get the best insurance deal with a assured privacy deal for yourself and your family. But as a consumer, it is also important to be responsible. Pay your bills on time and be a good and a safe consumer.

• Read notices with care. Authorizations, notifications and circulars will be periodically sent to you. Read all of them thoroughly and sign on authorizations only if you are convinced that they will benefit you. Make sure the authorization you are about to sign does not put your personal information in jeopardy.

• You have the right to amend or make copies of your medical data. HIPAA allows you to access your medical and personal records at your will. You are also allowed to make copies for your own records. You can also amend your data and make corrections if some data is incorrect. Exercise this right you have.

• Update your personal medical record. Maintain a personal record of your health. Include all documents and papers related to you health like copies of your health checkups, doctor's records, diet records and exercise records.

• Communicate the way you feel more secure and comfortable. The covered entities can communicate through different channels, emails, telephone or post. Pick the way you feel most comfortable and secure.

• Go to the authorities if you suspect foul play. If you feel that your privacy rights have been violated or your data may have been misused, go to the authorities. HIPAA has provisions through which you can register your complaint.

• Contribute to strengthening the laws if you can. The Legislature always welcomes your suggestions to make the act a stronger one. Contact your representatives if you have suggestions.

• When you complain, it benefits everyone. When you lodge a formal complaint with the authorities, you are educating everyone, your fellow citizens, your lawmakers and the bureaucracy that you have been violated. It will only help in making the law stronger and more beneficial.

HIPAA helps you safeguard your health interests with some effort from your end. Be a good consumer and an alert citizen to enjoy the benefits.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

National Patient Safety Goals and Healthcare Organizations - 3 Points

National Patient Safety Goals (NPSG) is a voluntary set of standards prescribed by the joint Commission. However the benefits of complying with the goals and the following accreditation have resulted in over 16,000 healthcare organizations from different regions of the United States of America participating in the NPSG course and getting accredited.

The following 3 points will tell you more about such organizations vis-à-vis the Joint Commission and NPSG course.

1. Types of Organizations: A number of different healthcare organizations can apply for the Joint Commission accreditation for NPSG. Such types of facilities include hospitals, ambulatory healthcare, critical access hospitals, home care, laboratory services, and long term care. Behavioral healthcare which involves services for addressing addictive and mental disorders, and office-based healthcare where physicians perform various surgical procedures within their offices as an alternative to traditional hospitals are other kinds of organizations that can seek accreditation.

2. Eligibility: The exact eligibility will vary according to the type of healthcare organization however certain standard criteria are required to be fulfilled by all.

• Location: The organizations must be located within the United States of America, though facilities located outside the country but operated by either the United States government or falling under the U.S. Congress charter are also eligible to apply for such accreditation.

• Relevance: The Joint Commission finalizes and prioritizes the NPSG and also decides which goals are applicable to a certain course or organization. The organizations must carefully study these policies and make sure that the services offered by them have been addressed by the accreditation body and also the targets to be achieved for each of the prescribed goals.

• Improve Services: The organizations that seek the Joint Commission accreditation must undertake to improve their services according to the NPSG and must carry out regular assessment by experienced professionals' along with maintaining the relevant records and being ready for any internal and external surveys that may be conducted.

• Service Identification: Lastly each organization must identify and list all its relevant services with details as to which services are being offered directly by the healthcare facility and which of them have been contracted to an external body. Services provided through any other arrangement besides the above two must also be included.

3. Specific Requirements: As already mentioned, each of the healthcare organization may have to abide by certain different requirements as set by the Joint Commission, and will depend on the nature of the organization and the kind of services provided. First you must check the Joint Commission website and see if your organization and services are eligible for the NPSG. Next find the links relevant to your particular organization where you can get the complete information about the accreditation process, cost involved, period taken, and can obtain the checklists, guides, forms, and the latest copies of the goals and policies.

Getting an accreditation for your organization is not an easy or quick process but the Joint Commission offers substantial assistance through various online and interactive medium which will educate you about the accreditation requirements and guide you through the entire process.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Are You Spending too Much in Order to Eat Healthy?

When it comes to eating healthy food you could be wasting a lot of money and buying food that you think is good for your health but actually isn't. And your supermarket is making millions of people being unaware of this money waster. From buying organic that doesn't need to be organic because the pesticide use is low anyway. To buying meat and fish that you think is healthy but actually isn't. And buying processed foods that say are healthy for you added nutrients but are actually not.

When wanting to be healthy and still do it on a budget then this is important for you, all processed foods and packaged meats are a rip-off these foods lack any real nutrient value and have added fillers and additives. All breakfast cereals, regardless of whether or not they have cartoons on the front are a complete waste of money with no real nutritional value, they are high in sugar, the leading course of diabetes a chronic disease that is killing thousands every year and is on the increase. These cereals are filled with synthetic additives. For example, the iron fortified cereals that contain actual iron fillings which is not the same as the iron you get in spinach, this iron is toxic and your body can't absorb it.

Certain organic foods are low in pesticides so there is no need to be buying these produce as organic. If a produce has a skin and needs to be peeled then the low amount of pesticide used is just peeled away. The Environmental Working Group has produced their pesticide review in 2010. They say the produce that is the most pesticide free when buying conventionally is:

  • Onions
  • Avocados
  • Watermelon
  • Pineapple
  • Mango
  • Kiwi fruit
  • Cantaloupe
  • Asparagus
  • Eggplant
  • Cabbage
  • Frozen sweet peas

They do state that their top 12 includes corn, but corn is not good because of the genetic modification that occurs with it; so do not eat it unless it's organic.

The top 12 foods listed by the EWG's report that is important to eat organic, as it is the highest quantity of pesticides used are foods that have permeable or edible skins:

  • Grapes
  • Potatoes
  • Cherries
  • Kale/collard greens
  • Spinach
  • Nectarines
  • Blueberries
  • Apples
  • Sweet bell peppers
  • Strawberries
  • Peaches
  • Celery

Be careful when something says it is organic such as milk, because while organic milk comes from a cow that hasn't been fed artificial growth hormones or pesticide-laden food, it doesn't mean they have been pastured or grass-fed cows, that's why its important that they are also free-range. Another problem is that all organic milk is still pasteurised which destroys all the good valuable nutrients.

Even the meat and fish has contaminants in it, fish farmed is full of antibiotics and fed soy and GM corn, it is also low in essential vitamins and is high in contaminants, including carcinogens, PCBs, brominated flames retardants, and pesticides such as dioxin and DDT.

When meat isn't organic and free-range it is feed on grains and not grass, these grains are soy and corn, which fatten up the beef. Organic beef is higher in beta-carotene, vitamin E, omega-3s, conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), calcium, magnesium, and potassium when compared to conventional raised beef, which is also high in pesticides (due to eating contaminated grains).

It is always best to buy organic, but not everything needs to be organic, only buy the products that are high in contaminants, the most important that your meat and fish are organic and also free-range, you can also get a veggie wash for your vegetables and fruits if you aren't buying organic.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

6 Top Reasons Why Infection Control Training Is Necessary for the Society

Healthcare workers strive and work hard to help us get better. They work with risky diseases and deadly infection causing bacteria, virus and other microbes. They are at a constant risk of contracting dangerous infections that not only threaten their own health and safety but put their families, coworkers and other patients at risk. For this reason, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), a federal department under the Department of Health, has made it mandatory for all doctors, physicians, nurses, paramedics, laboratory workers and all other support staff in the healthcare sector to undergo the infection control training, a set of procedures and guidelines which helps deal with infections and stopping their spread.

The training courses are very important and are required to attain permit to work in the country. Listed below are the top 6 reasons why infection control training is necessary for the society.

• To provide a safe and high quality environment to the patients and the working staff

A good, clean working environment is important for the staff and a good, hygienic healing environment is important for the patients. The key to this is to maintain the highest standards of cleanliness and hygiene. The training course aims at explaining to the medical staff the importance of a neat, clean, safe and a high quality environment. Cleaning, disinfecting, sterilization are the keys to maintaining a safe and sterile environment, safe for the workers and the patients.

• To prevent the risk of infections amongst the staff members

Working with diseases and infections ups the risk of contracting them as well. It is important to stay protected and keep others protected by taking the required steps. The training course prescribes the steps and measures the staff is required to undertake to prevent the risk of spread of infection. Vaccinations prior to joining and periodical checkups are a part of the training. Use of protective gear is also promoted when the need arises.

• To protect the community from the infections that might originate from the healthcare facility

It is important to contain the infections and nip them at the bud. If there is a chance of an outbreak, the proper protocols must be in place to avoid the infection from spreading out.

• To prevent the transmission of disease causing microbes

Cleanliness and hygiene prevent the transmission of the disease causing microbes. It is mandatory for the staff to know how to prevent the transmission and they must also educate the fellow workers and the patients on how to reduce the transmission.

• To prevent the risk of post procedural infections

Post procedures, the patients are weak and susceptible to infections and diseases. They have to be kept safe and free from infections. This is possible only if good hygienic standards are maintained in the facility.

• To lower the cost of healthcare services

The cost of prevention is lower than the cost of cure.

Infection control training is not just to keep the healthcare workers safe and sound but it also benefits the society by promoting a safe and clean environment.