March 19, 2020

Being health literate is more important than ever!

It's crucial that we practice health literacy in the coming days. Here's the facts:   

COVID-19 isn't the first coronavirus. In fact, the common cold is a coronavirus. But COVID-19 is a new strain, a novel coronavirus. That means we're learning more each day about how it is transmitted, which populations are more likely to have severe symptoms and how to prevent it.  One thing that isn't new is that we have a shortage of health care workers and resources in America. That becomes a life-threatening issue when a pandemic challenges the system's surge capacity 

* COVID-19 has a higher transmission rate than the seasonal flu, which means each carrier infects about twice as many others. That may be because people who are carriers are slower to display symptoms, or may never have visible symptoms.   [1]

* COVID-19 has a mortality rate many times greater than the flu. While the flu usually takes the lives of about one-tenth of one percent of those who get sick, the rate of those dying from COVID-19 is estimated at 5 to 7 percent. That's 50 to 70 times more deadly. [2]

* The COVID-19 virus can remain in aerosol form (in the air) and on surfaces for about three days. Constant disinfection of all surfaces and remaining 3 to 6 feet from others is mandatory. [3]

* About 4 in every 10 U.S. adults have a risk of getting a severe, and perhaps life-threatening, case of COVID-19 because of their age or an existing underlying medical condition. That's a double threat because of our lack of resources to provide immediate medical care (ventilators) and the permanent lung damage that can result.  [4]

* Severe outcomes from COVID-19 can occur in persons of any age. Being young (under age 65) does not make a person immune to this coronavirus. [5]

1.  World Health Organization  - March 17, 2020
2.  National Institutes of Health - February 29, 2020
3.  National Institutes of Health - March 17, 2020
4.  Kaiser Family Foundation - March 17, 2020
5.  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - March 18, 2020

March 15, 2020

Now is the time to be health literate!

In the midst of this pandemic, it has never been more important for each one of us to be an engaged health care decision maker. That means seeking reliable and up-to-date sources of information and taking prudent preventive steps to remain healthy.

If you aren't sure what COVID-19 really is, how to avoid being infected, how to recognize symptoms or how to treat it, please spend some time visiting Johns Hopkins website or WebMD website. Educate yourself about this disease and take the steps necessary to protect yourself and those around you. 

Be safe. Be smart. Be health literate. Your life depends on it. 

March 11, 2020

The federal Commission that never was . . .

What we really need is a central source of workforce data so we can plan for the needs of the aging and chronically ill. No, wait, we already have it!  Just watch.


February 26, 2020

It's your choice: Patient or Pawn?

The Baby Boomers have been economic and cultural game-changers for over 70 years. Why should their health care be any exception? Just watch.

February 3, 2020

I'm still here

Folks are asking why they haven't seen a Spoof or Truth? lately. Well, it's not for lack of amazing health care factoids. Actually, I'm really deep into writing this new book, which has become a journey of its own making. Patient or Pawn? not only tells the story of what is coming in health care access (read: lack of it), but it also guides the reader in the path of self-preservation as we go forward.

Let me just say that what I have discovered so far has been quite eye-opening. More previews of coming attractions in the near future. In the meantime, stay tuned!

December 9, 2019

Are our Electronic Health Records safeguarded?

No, it's not a rhetorical question, but it really could be. A big part of the pitch for losing the paperwork and going all digital was the security of Electronic Health Records. Well, the lifeboat has sprung a leak. Just watch.

October 31, 2019

HAPPY HALLOWEEN and stop worrying about a Zombie Apocalypse!

If you lie awake at night worrying about an approaching Zombie Apocalypse, fuggedaboutit. Besides being totally on top of dealing with health care accessiblity for Americans, the government is laser-focused on the real threat to our welfare. Just watch.


October 23, 2019

National Health Literacy Month

Trust me when I tell you that the person most suited to advocate for what's in your best interests is you. But that takes the skills and tools of health literacy so you will know when, how and where to access the services and resources you need for informed medical decision making.

Imagine what your next health care experience might look like and make a plan now.

October 22, 2019

Sometimes a watch is just a watch.

The advances in health care technology are mind-melting. But have we really developed a simple add-on to your watch that will alert you when your heart is out of rhythm? Hmmm. Just watch. 

October 8, 2019

I'm not psychic, but I do know stuff

There's no question that provider shortages are peeking over the horizon. But what about the here and now? Do we have all the primary care physicians we need?  You might be surprised to learn how where you live influences how long you liveJust watch.

September 24, 2019

For your next BP reading, first go to your Zen place . . .

Have you ever heard of White Coat Hypertension or White Coat Syndrome? Ever experienced an unusually high blood pressure reading in a doctor's office--higher than anywhere else--and wondered why?  Just watch. Jo's VERY SHORT VIDEO on White Coat Hypertension

September 10, 2019

If you can't trust the government, then I just don't know . . .

With Baby Boomers being health care providers as well as patients, won't their mass retirements cause a shortage in the health care labor force? Good question. Just watch.

August 27, 2019

Get your vaccinations, you big baby!

Among the many medical advances of the past few decades, the prevention of some otherwise nasty--possibly fatal--diseases is one of the biggies. Can a shot in the arm really keep you from getting a cancer? Just watch. Jo's VERY SHORT VIDEO on vaccinations.

August 13, 2019

How intense is Intensive Care?

Intensive Care, also called Critical Care, is for those with life-threatening injuries and illnesses, and implies close, constant attention by a team of specially-trained health care providers. How does modern medicine define "intensive"? Just watch. Jo's VERY SHORT VIDEO on tele-ICUs.

July 30, 2019

Is Osteoporosis just a chick thing?

Osteoporosis means "porous bone." It's a disease causing weak or brittle bones that may more easily break from a fall, a bump or even just coughing. What causes osteoporosis? Other illnesses, medications, family history, age and even race can affect risk. Because hormones may have an impact, we often think of osteoporosis as exclusively for women. Not really. Just watch Jo's VERY SHORT VIDEO on Osteoporosis