A type of bacteria that is commonly found in elite athletes, especially after they work out, improved the athletic performance of mice after they were exposed to the microbes, according to research reported in Nature Medicine. The findings are interesting to exercise physiologists and others focused on human performance, but the study also provides a model for other microbiome studies focused more directly on medicine, such as neurology and immunology.
Artificial intelligence tools "provide built-in explanations but are generally less accurate," so researchers need to "develop systems that are transparent, and intrinsically capable of explaining the reasons for their results to users," especially in health care, according to a plan released by the National Science and Technology Council in the Executive Office of the President. The plan detailed eight strategic priorities for AI research, including ensuring the security and safety of AI systems, using standards and benchmarks to evaluate AI technologies, and developing human-AI collaboration methods.
EHR developers and other stakeholders who intend to participate in qualified health information networks could experience additional administrative burden under the ONC's Trusted Exchange Framework and Common Agreement, according to comments submitted to the ONC by the EHR Association, which also cited concerns over the proposed 18-month timeline. "We strongly suggest that ONC and [Recognized Coordinating Entity] work in tight collaboration with [aspiring] QHINs, Participants, and Participant Members to develop a clear roadmap on how a transition is to occur without interruption of information exchange already underway," the group stated.
While clinical documentation hasn't exactly been a strength in many of today's financially strapped skilled nursing facilities (SNFs), this may soon change as SNFs shift to a new payment methodology -- the Patient-Driven Payment Model -- in which these facilities are paid based primarily on each patient's unique medical complexity. This is leading many SNFs to turn to clinical documentation improvement programs to rehab their documentation in advance of the upcoming reimbursement changes.
A fellowship program to be launched by Janssen Research & Development in collaboration with the University of California at San Francisco and Berkeley aims to improve health care and develop the next generation of data scientists via data-driven approaches. "These agreements with UCSF and UC Berkeley exemplify our commitment to building a thriving network of collaborations that strengthen and leverage data science capabilities and advance compelling scientific research," said Dr. Mathai Mammen, global head for Janssen Research.
Chemotherapy and radiation help physicians save the lives of many children with cancer, but the treatments leave 30% of those survivors infertile. However, a technique developed through research in mice, pigs and monkeys -- and recently validated in macaques -- could preserve the fertility of these patients and is nearly ready for clinical testing in humans, writes researcher Kyle Orwig.
Scientists have developed a multi-organ system for testing cancer therapies using induced pluripotent stem cells, and they say the tool could someday reduce the need for animals in some research. The idea holds promise, according to Dr. Razelle Kurzrock of the University of California San Diego School of Medicine, but she said questions remain, and the concept should be seen as a "first step in the direction of a human 'avatar' model" rather than a fully validated technology.
A study published in PLOS ONE found that an increased use of patient portals through EHRs leads to fewer emergency department visits and more outpatient appointments. Study authors said patient portals may improve engagement in outpatient office visits and address clinical needs, as well as reduce emergencies and hospital patient care.
The changing workplace, with more people working remotely and using their own devices, presents new challenges to IT security. Tim Brown, vice president of security for SolarWinds, recommends a people-focused strategy that enforces cyberhygiene and recognizes that anyone at any level of an organization can knowingly or unknowingly pose a cyberthreat.
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