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December 2014 Briefing - Critical Care

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Critical Care for December 2014. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.

Physician Continuity Not Tied to Adverse Hospital Events

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 31, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Adverse events in hospitalized patients are not associated with continuity of hospitalist physicians, according to a study published online Dec. 19 in the Journal of Hospital Medicine.

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Dashboards, Pay Incentives Improve VTE Prophylaxis Rates

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 31, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Provider-level dashboard and pay-for-performance programs may increase compliance with venous thromboembolism (VTE) prevention measures, according to research published online Dec. 26 in the Journal of Hospital Medicine.

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AMA Identifies Top 10 Issues That Affected Docs in 2014

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 31, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The top 10 issues that affected physicians in 2014 include many regulatory issues relating to Medicare and data release, as well as health issues such as overprescribing of antibiotics and the Ebola crisis, according to a report published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Ebola, ACA, VA Scandal Top U.S. Health News for 2014

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 31, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- It started as a deadly but little-known outbreak in West Africa, but the lethal and unchecked spread of the Ebola virus dominated U.S. headlines for much of 2014, making it one of the year's top health news features.

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Experts Discuss Ethical Considerations in Ebola Care

TUESDAY, Dec. 30, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Guidance is provided for ethical considerations relating to Ebola care in an ideas and opinions piece published online Dec. 30 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Non-Chest Pain Presentation Doesn't Worsen MI Outcomes

TUESDAY, Dec. 30, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Among patients with acute ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), presentation with non-chest pain delays door-to-balloon (DTB) time but does not worsen clinical outcomes, according to research published in the Dec. 15 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

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No Mortality Benefit for Longer Cooling, Deeper Cooling in NICU

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For full-term neonates with moderate or severe hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy, longer cooling, deeper cooling, or both do not reduce neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) death, according to a study published in the Dec. 24/31 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Tips Offered to Docs, Spouses for Maintaining Happy Marriage

FRIDAY, Dec. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Simple tips can help physicians and their spouses maintain marital happiness, according to an article published in the American Medical Association (AMA) Alliance magazine Physician Family.

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States Ill-Prepared for Ebola, Other Infectious Outbreaks

FRIDAY, Dec. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Half of U.S. states are poorly prepared to prevent, detect, and respond to infectious disease outbreaks. That was the main conclusion of a report issued jointly by the Trust for America's Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

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Review Finds Peri-Op Surgical Home Care Model Beneficial

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 17, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Rigorously coordinated and integrated perioperative management, known as the perioperative surgical home (PSH) model of care, seems to have a consistent and positive effect, according to a study published in the December issue of the Milbank Quarterly.

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Over 50 FDA-Approved Meds Can Help Battle Ebola Infection

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 17, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A screening test has identified more than 50 U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved medications that could be helpful in treating people with Ebola, researchers report. The study was published online Dec. 17 in Emerging Microbes and Infections.

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Hospital Staff Say 'Crisis Mode' Obstructs Communication

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 17, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Staff members who perceive a work climate of crisis mode in their hospital units say that it leads to problems in exchanging patient information, according to research published online Dec. 10 in the Journal of Hospital Medicine.

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Hypoglycemia Ups Cardio Events, Mortality for Insulin-Treated

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 17, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For insulin-treated patients with type 1 and type 2 diabetes, hypoglycemia is associated with increased risk of cardiovascular events and all-cause mortality, according to a study published online Dec. 9 in Diabetes Care.

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Consider False-Positives When Test Results Don't Add Up

TUESDAY, Dec. 16, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians should weigh patient history and include the possibility of false-positive test results when considering differential diagnoses, according to a perspective piece published online Dec. 15 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Support for Electronic Health Information Varies With Use

TUESDAY, Dec. 16, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Consent and purpose are important for public support of secondary uses of electronic health information, according to a study published in the Dec. 16 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Physicians Reminded of Ethical Obligations Regarding Torture

TUESDAY, Dec. 16, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- With the issuing of the new U.S. Senate report on interrogations, the American Medical Association (AMA) is reminding physicians of their ethical obligations relating to torture and interrogation.

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Urinary Catheters Often Left in Too Long During Hospital Stay

TUESDAY, Dec. 16, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Even when appropriately used, urinary catheters are often left in place longer than necessary in hospitalized patients, according to a perspective piece published online Dec. 15 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Potential Drug Interactions Common in Peds Hospitalizations

MONDAY, Dec. 15, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Among 498,956 children and teenagers who were hospitalized in 2011, 49 percent were given combinations of drugs that could have potential interactions, according to a new study published online Dec. 15 in Pediatrics.

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Physicians Should Scrutinize Job Offers Before Accepting

MONDAY, Dec. 15, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians should scrutinize job offers and pay attention to specific issues before accepting a job, according to an article published Dec. 3 in Medical Economics.

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Webcast Scheduled to Discuss Maintenance of Certification

MONDAY, Dec. 15, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- New data relating to Maintenance of Certification (MOC) will be discussed in a free webcast to be held Dec. 17 by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).

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ICU Diaries May Aid Survivors in Recovery After Discharge

MONDAY, Dec. 15, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Patient diaries kept during a hospital stay in the intensive care unit (ICU) for a critical illness may be used as a therapeutic tool to assist survivors in recovery after discharge, according to research published online Dec. 8 in the Journal of Clinical Nursing.

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Progesterone Offers No Clinical Benefit in Severe, Acute TBI

THURSDAY, Dec. 11, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Progesterone offers no clinical benefit for patients with severe or acute traumatic brain injury (TBI), according to two studies published online Dec. 10 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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More Students Enrolling in U.S. Medical Schools

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 10, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- More students are enrolling in medical schools, and enrollees are more diverse than before, according to a report from the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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More Docs, Patients Not Speaking Same Language

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 10, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- People applying to become medical residents in the United States speak a wide range of non-English languages, but many aren't the languages spoken by patients with limited English skills, according to a research letter published in the Dec. 10 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, a theme issue on medical education.

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Docs Trained in High-Cost Areas Practice More Costly Medicine

TUESDAY, Dec. 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Doctors who were trained in high-cost areas of the United States may be more likely to practice expensive medicine, a new study suggests; however, that effect gradually decreases over time. The study was published in the Dec. 10 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, a theme issue on medical education.

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Work-Hour Restrictions Have Not Improved Outcomes

TUESDAY, Dec. 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Reducing medical residents' work hours hasn't improved mortality rates, hospital readmission rates, or outcomes of surgery, according to two new studies published in the Dec. 10 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, a theme issue on medical education.

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CT Scans Post-TIA Yield Clues to Future Stroke Risk

FRIDAY, Dec. 5, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A computed tomography (CT) scan shortly after a transient ischemic attack can help identify patients at risk of suffering another stroke within three months, new research suggests. The study was published online Dec. 4 in Stroke.

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AMA: Social Determinants of Health to Be Taught in Med School

THURSDAY, Dec. 4, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A new policy implemented by the American Medical Association (AMA) supports integrating more training on the social determinants of health into undergraduate medical education, according to a report published by the AMA.

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Racial Disparity Seen With Congenital Heart Surgery

THURSDAY, Dec. 4, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- There are poorer medical outcomes in black and Hispanic patients undergoing surgical intervention for congenital heart disease, although mortality is not increased, according to a study published in the Dec. 1 issue of the American Journal of Cardiology.

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CDC: 35 Ebola Treatment Centers Designated

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 3, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Thirty-five hospitals across the United States have been designated as Ebola treatment centers, and more will be designated in the coming weeks, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Tuesday.

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Safety of Epinephrine in Cardiac Arrest Questioned

TUESDAY, Dec. 2, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Four out of five people who receive epinephrine to restart their heart end up suffering significant damage to brain function, and the risk increases with the dose. These findings were published in the Dec. 9 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Too Much Patient Care Tied to Faculty Members' Intent to Leave

TUESDAY, Dec. 2, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Spending "far too much/too much" time/effort on patient care is associated with increased intent to leave the institution, according to research published in Academic Medicine.

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Doctor Discusses Ways to Keep Morale in Medicine High

MONDAY, Dec. 1, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Despite the many frustrations for doctors in medical practice, there are ways to keep morale high, according to an article published Nov. 20 in Medical Economics.

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Many Physicians Report Their Incomes Have Plateaued

MONDAY, Dec. 1, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Many physicians report that their personal income has not changed since last year, according to the results of the Physicians Practice 2014 Physicians Compensation Survey.

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Physician's Briefing