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Happy Holidays from AzNA!
The AzNA offices will be closed from Dec. 22-Jan. 2, 2015.
We will reopen Monday, Jan. 5.
We hope you all have a happy, safe and healthy Holiday Season.
Warmly, The AzNA Staff: Robin, Debby, & Wendy
As 2014 comes to a close, the publisher of the AzNA Today would like to wish its readers, partners and other industry professionals a safe and happy holiday season. As we reflect on the past year for the industry, we would like to provide the readers of the AzNA Today a look at the most-accessed articles from the year. Our regular publication will resume Jan. 5, 2015.
1. The NICU ride through the eyes of a nurse
The Huffington Post
From Dec. 1: Author Jodi Dolezel writes: Parents of premature babies often refer to the NICU as a roller coaster ride of ups and downs, never knowing when to hold their breath and grab on tight or let go and enjoy the ride ... all along trying not to puke. Although different from a parent, as a NICU nurse I can tell you that we also experience the feelings of up and down that live in the air of a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. As I prepare for my work day, I often wonder what lies ahead of me.
2. Individual nurse performance linked to outcomes
Medscape (free login required)
From Nov. 17: Researchers using electronic health record (EHR) and human resources data have
demonstrated that individual nurses can measurably affect patient outcomes, according to results of a study published online Sept. 25 in Health Services Research. Traditionally, the value of nursing practice to outcomes has been measured collectively by hospital or care unit or by ratios of nurses to patients.
3. Revolutionary new antibiotic alternative could save the world from superbug 'apocalypse'
From Nov. 10: Scientists have developed a new alternative to antibiotics that could revolutionise the way we treat superbugs and avoid a scenario where common medical procedures become life-threatening due to bacteria becoming immune to conventional drugs. Mark Offerhaus, the CEO of the Dutch Biotech company Micreos, which developed the drug, has said that the advance signals "a new era in the fight against antibiotic-resistant bacteria."
4. When patients don't follow up
The New York Times
From Nov. 17: Patients frequently miss appointments and tests that their healthcare providers schedule. No-show rates range from 5 to 55 percent. In some instances, like when a patient skips a cardiac stress test, for example, then has a heart attack, the hospital might classify what occurred as a "systems error." Ideally, such cases lead to new policies that prevent similar events. But what about less drastic cases, in which follow-up is necessary but not an emergency? Should patients be held responsible for not showing up? Or does the medical profession have an ethical and legal duty to try to track down the individuals?
5. It's a great time to be a registered nurse
From Nov. 17: It's a great time to get into the nursing, but where, exactly, are you supposed to begin? Like most healthcare jobs, nursing positions require specialized training and degrees, but it's never too late to get started. Want an idea of what the various types of nursing degrees out there will get you in terms of salary and hiring prospects? Simmons College's School of Nursing put together a detailed chart, which breaks down the many paths available to RNs, and what you need to do to embark on the one that's right for you.
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6. Migraine pain relief heading toward future of nasal spray
From Nov. 17: A migraine is much more than a severe headache. It is a syndrome characterized by debilitating neurological symptoms that can make even seeing a problem. Researchers who made a presentation at the 2014 American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists Annual Meeting and Exposition in San Diego have revealed a nasal spray treatment for migraines derived from prochlorperazine, FDA-approved medication that is used to treat severe nausea and vomiting.
7. US healthcare for seniors ranked poorly compared to 10 other countries
From Dec. 1: During the month of November, Kaiser Health News reported that “more hospitals are receiving penalties than bonuses in the second year of Medicare’s quality incentive program, and the average penalty is steeper than it was last year.” Kaiser wasn’t the only troubling news that appeared recently for Americans who are 65 and older and rely on Medicare for their healthcare coverage. In a report issued recently, The Commonwealth Fund found that the U.S. ranked poorly compared to 10 other countries on key indicators for those who are 65 and older. It’s an important and valuable comparison for 3 reasons.
8. Report: Bed position matters for stroke patients, but clear guidelines aren't available
From Nov. 10: Hospital bed positioning can be critical in the first 24 hours after a person suffers an ischemic stroke, according to a new report. Researchers summarized the latest research on ischemic stroke, the most common type of stroke, which occurs when a clot blocks blood flow to the brain. Sitting upright can harm ischemic stroke patients because it decreases blood flow to the brain when it needs more blood, the researchers explained. This would suggest that it's best to keep these patients lying as flat as possible, but strokes can also cause brain swelling that can damage the brain. Keeping patients sitting upright helps improve blood drainage and reduces swelling, the authors noted.
9. People with celiac disease more likely to fracture bones
From Nov. 3: People diagnosed with celiac disease are almost twice as likely as those without it to break a bone, according to a new review of the evidence. More studies are needed, though, to see if people whose celiac hasn't been diagnosed yet are at similar risk, researchers say. About two million Americans have celiac disease — in which the immune system attacks the small intestine in response to gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye and barley — according to the National Institutes of Health.
10. Researchers: 'Wireless' pacemaker working well so far
From Nov. 24: For a handful of patients who've received the first wire-free pacemaker, the results are still good after 18 months, researchers reported. Unlike traditional pacemakers, the new device — marketed as Nanostim — is completely self-contained and requires no wires to connect it to the heart muscle. It's also implanted through a catheter, which bypasses the need for a chest incision. Nanostim and similar devices under development could "transform the field of cardiology in the next five to 10 years," said Ken Ellenbogen, M.D., an AHA spokesman and chairman of cardiology at the Medical College of Virginia, in Richmond.
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