Tag Archive: healthcare


Body Physics is where disparate systems share with each other under one single platform.

Google Plus

Collaboration Life

Perhaps Google took  a lesson to converge all sharing systems into one giant platform. Google is creating an unified army for battle. Google’s services are soon going to inter-collaborate into one giant social platform, and in the process steal some teeth from Facebook.

“We’d like to bring the nuance and richness of real-life sharing to software. We want to make Google better by including you, your relationships, and your interests. And so begins the Google+ project”, says  Vic Gundotra, Senior Vice President, Engineering at Google.

 

 

+Circles: share what matters, with the people who matter most

 

Circle around life

What’s in it: You share different things with different people. So sharing the right stuff with the right people shouldn’t be a hassle. Circles makes it easy to put your friends from Saturday night in one circle, your parents in another, and your boss in a circle by himself – just like real life.

Google Speaks:  “What do people actually do?” And we didn’t have to search far for the answer. People in fact share selectively all the time—with their circles.
From close family to foodies, we found that people already use real-life circles to express themselves, and to share with precisely the right folks. So we did the only thing that made sense: we brought Circles to software. Just make a circle, add your people, and share what’s new—just like any other day.

+Sparks: strike up a conversation, about pretty much anything

 

Sparking Life

What’s in it: Tell Sparks what you’re into and it will send you stuff it thinks you’ll like, so when you’re free, there’s always something cool to watch, read, or share.

Google Speaks: The web, of course, is filled with great content—from timely articles to vibrant photos to funny videos. And great content can lead to great conversations. We noticed, however, that it’s still too hard to find and share the things we care about—not without lots of work, and lots of noise. So, we built an online sharing engine called Sparks.

 

 

+Hangouts: stop by and say hello, face-to-face-to-face

 

Hangout with life

What’s in it: With Hangouts, the unplanned meet-up comes to the web for the first time. Let specific buddies (or entire circles) know you’re hanging out and then see who drops by for a face-to-face-to-face chat. Until teleportation arrives, it’s the next best thing.

Google Speaks: Just think, when you walk into the pub or step onto your front porch, you’re in fact signaling to everyone around, “Hey, I’ve got some time, so feel free to stop by.” Further, it’s this unspoken understanding that puts people at ease, and encourages conversation. But today’s online communication tools (like instant messaging and video-calling) don’t understand this subtlety. With Google+ we wanted to make on-screen gatherings fun, fluid and serendipitous, so we created Hangouts.

+Mobile: share what’s around, right now, without any hassle

 

Mobility in life

What’s in it: Taking photos is fun. Sharing photos is fun. Getting photos off your phone is pretty much the opposite of fun. With Instant Upload, your photos and videos upload themselves automatically, to a private album on Google+.  All you have to do is decide who to share them with.

Google Speaks: Getting photos off your phone is a huge pain, so most of us don’t even bother. Of course pictures are meant to be shared, not stranded, so we created Instant Upload to help you never leave a photo behind. While you’re snapping pictures, and with your permission, Google+ adds your photos to a private album in the cloud. This way they’re always available across your devices—ready to share as you see fit.

+Mobile-
+Huddle: Huddling your groups in

 

Huddle in Life

What’s in it: Texting is great, but not when you’re trying to get six different people to decide on a movie. Huddle turns all those different conversations into one simple group chat, so everyone gets on the same page all at once. Your thumbs will thank you.

Google Speaks: Phone calls and text messages can work in a pinch, but they’re not quite right for getting the gang together. So Google+ includes Huddle, a group messaging experience that lets everyone inside the circle know what’s going on, right this second.

Google Hopes you join in, but its entirely +You.

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Roll back to 1985, when Chip Morningstar and Joseph Romero in designing LucasFilm’s multi-palyer online game Habitat.  This is when the word ‘Avatar’ was coined in its then context. Since then Avatars, Actors and Characters have some terms that describe the virtual representation of the player or user in varied contexts.

In the recent years, a stigma of focused effort has been constituted to establish a social context between the learner and the learning platform (be it any form of learning content).

In simple and practical terms, a Character or Avatar creates a social representation of a real person into a designated role within the learning program. Relating this to the current Healthcare Learning and Educational landscape, the involved persons are majorly Physicians, Students, Clinicians, Academicians and other allied healthcare professionals. Each individual applies to its specific competency role in the industry.

As we speak about the industry specific title, each title is entitled to a role which performs its designated role in a Practice-Based environment. A Practice-Based environment demands only and only Practice in Practical.

The challenge here is how does e-Learning transform learning to be virtual yet practical. How can e-Learning in it’s inorganic matter deliver results similar to that of organic and practical methods.

Avatars play the bridging role here. An Avatar can play various social roles.

Expert/ Instructor/ Coach: Here the character is modeled after an expert or knowledgeable human – most commonly a senior surgeon, professor, training manager/head or expert in the field such as a regulation,etc. Effective use of this role with the help of an Avatar ensures social engagement between the character (Avatar) and the student through a conversational tone, interaction, and feedback.

Learner/ User: An Avatar of learning establishes the emotional presence of the learner into the learning scenario. It simulates the learner’s belongingness within the learning context and situation. An Avatar created with situational and curriculum based contextual engagement allows the emotive mind of the learner to dwell into imaginative and experiential learning.

C0-learners or Peers: Avatars of co-learners or learning buddies create a sense of being accompanied. It helps eliminate the loneness factor of the learner and builds a scope of togetherness into the learning environment.

Immersive e-learning

In the study, We Learn Better Together: Enhancing e-Learning with Emotional Characters (2005) by Heidi Maldonado et al., it is discovered that the presence of a Co-learner resulted in learners performing better. Students with a Co-learner scored significantly higher than students without a Co-learner.

Google has brought many a resourceful applications through Google Labs.

Google Earth is a virtual globe, map and geographical information program that was originally called EarthViewer 3D, and was created by Keyhole, Inc, a company acquired by Google in 2004. The product was re-released as Google Earth in 2005.

Google launched the Google Maps API in June 2005 to allow developers to integrate Google Maps into their websites.

The list goes long with Google books, calendar, news, search, videos, wave and so on.

Last year Google launched its new high-tech 3D product- Google Body. Google Body is a detailed 3D model of the human body. You can peel back anatomical layers, zoom in, and navigate to parts that interest you. Click to identify anatomy, or search for muscles, organs, bones and more.

One can also share the exact scene being viewed by copying and pasting the corresponding URL.

Google Body, which is already available in web form, can now run on Android tablets that use the 3.0 Honeycomb version of Google’s mobile operating system. Using 3D graphics capabilities of the latest tablets such as Motorola’s Xoom, the hardware is now good enough to properly display a 3D-heavy app such as Google Body, which lets you look at your organs, muscles and bones.

It looks like a pretty cool way to explore the human body – just like earth or maps, you can strip away layers (i.e. skin, bones, etc.), rotate it in 3D, and search for body parts before having them highlighted in the app. Teachers are gonna have a gala time giving anatomy classes to students.

There are experts and then there are instructional experts who have brought a huge value by proposing various best-practice instructional approaches to aid web-based science education and training. All such instructional theorems and hypothesis contribute to the foundation grid lines of online training and education.

While physical models and virtual 3 D models deciphers a great value for teaching Fundamentals of Electrons in Atoms and Molecules; the greater need has always been to empower students to read, research and discover underlying facts of such subjects.

Leveraging from emerging e-learning technologies and tools, e-learning inventors have produced innovative and immersive discovery tools that cater to the above said need.  Leading educators like Wiley, Elsevier and other scientific innovators have transformed model-based training methods to discovery-based simulation applets.

A Case Example:

To teach the Motion of  a Projectile, a simulation can be created as an applet. The “Reset” button brings the projectile to its initial position. You can start or stop and continue the simulation with the other button. If you choose the option “Slow motion”, the movement will be ten times slower. You can vary (within certain limits) the values of initial height, initial speed, angle of inclination, mass and gravitational acceleration. Below is an example of similar instruction as created at Walter Fendt.

Another interesting example can be seen at Glovico.org. Glovico provides a social business platform to learn and teach languages. Teachers are native language experts who decide their coaching prices. Students get the liberty to choose teachers based on prices and ratings.

I remember learning about Set Theory and Venn Diagrams in the late 90’s by reading text books and practicing exercises on paper notebooks. I feel envious of what technology has brought to today’s mathematics students. Utah State University has been creating interactive mathematics exercises that allow Discovery-Based learning for student. Using applet-based intuitive functions and guided instruction, students can explore and attempt randomized mathematical problems.

It is heartening to see technology and learning instructions blending into exploratory tools that encourage and empower learners to adopt online learning and training through a Scientific-Discovery based instructional approach. For all ages to come, I firmly believe, in way or other, this would be the best instructional approach to any subject of training, majorly for science education and training.

A great example is when American Medical Association House of Delegates met in an interim meeting in November. The outcome was a thoughtful first step, strawman maybe, but definitely a great initiative toward structuring Observable and Accountable Social Media Policies that turn in to the best interest of the entire practice and patient community.

Amplify’d from www.ama-assn.org

Social media use should mirror face-to-face patient dealings

Social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter can be easy, effective and efficient ways for physicians to connect with their patients, colleagues and others in the outside world. Unfortunately, those sites also can be easy, effective and efficient ways for physicians to get themselves in trouble with their patients, colleagues and others in the outside world.
The tricky part of social media is figuring how to maintain the sort of energetic and personalized presence expected on the sites without stepping over the line into legal and ethical troubles, or without saying something inappropriate that merely reflects badly on yourself.
The policy outlines some considerations doctors should make before they venture into social media — or should make now that they’re involved with it. The guidance covers not only professionalism in social media, but also professionalism for any online presence a physician might have.

Among the policy’s recommendations:

  • Physicians should not post identifiable patient information online and should otherwise be aware of standards of patient privacy and confidentiality that should be maintained in every setting, including online. Any interaction with patients online, as it is in the real world, should be in accordance with professional guidelines affecting the patient-physician relationship.
  • Physicians should use any available privacy settings on social media and other websites, but they also should realize that safeguards are not absolute, and that any content put online is likely to stay there permanently. Therefore, doctors routinely should monitor their Internet presence (such as by running their name through a Google search) to make sure their personal and professional information on their own sites — and others’ — is accurate and appropriate.
  • To make it eas
  • ier to maintain professional boundaries, physicians should consider separating personal and professional presences on social media and elsewhere online.
  • If physicians see colleagues posting content that appears to be unprofessional, they should alert the doctors so they can remove it or take whatever appropriate action is necessary. If the doctors do not take action, and the content significantly violates professional norms, physicians must report the matter to the appropriate authorities.
  • Physicians must recognize that any social media presence and actions online can negatively affect their reputations and consequences for their medical careers. The same goes for physicians-in-training and medical students.
  • Read more at www.ama-assn.org

     

    Patients broadcasting checkin-information, feedback, efficacy is a new trend both Physicians and Patient communities are experiencing.

    There are facets to such adoptions. Geolocation services can be a great marketing and publicity vehicle for pharmacies and practice organizations. Compliance to HIPAA however remains a concern and critical achievement.

    Amplify’d from www.ama-assn.org

    Geolocation services: Have your patients put you on the map?

    Mobile applications let people “check in” anywhere to let others know where they are — including your practice. But applications also let people talk about you.

    Through a technology called geolocation, mobile smartphone users have the ability to “check in” at various businesses and locations, alerting their virtual friends to their whereabouts. They do this using mobile phone applications that work with a smartphone’s GPS system, which identifies the users’ location.
    these same applications that are allowing patients to check in allow the user to provide instant reviews, observations and critiques. So after you leave that patient’s exam room, they could have feedback about their visit with you posted online before you even review the next patient’s chart. Or, they could be posting critiques while they’re waiting before the appointment, or waiting for you in the exam room.
    But is checking in at a practice something physicians should encourage patients to do?
    hen he showed his dental hygienist the list of people “checked in” at the dental office on Foursquare at that moment, “and she freaked out

    “Medical professionals are trained to be cautious about medical data,” Kirkpatrick said.

    Anthony LaFauce, director of digital strategy for SpectrumScience, a health care public relations firm in Washington, D.C., said he has seen pharmacies using geolocation applications to promote services such as flu shots. Physician practices could do similar promotions, he said, but so far he hasn’t seen any doing it.
    Encouraging patients to check in might seem like an easy way to promote the practice, but Boyer said he would not recommend that, either. He said physicians who encourage patients to post to geolocation apps might send the wrong message, because it would equate to them encouraging repeat visits — a good strategy for retailers, but not for physician practices. There’s also the issue of HIPAA

    Foursquare: Allows users to check in and earn badges or become “mayor” for checking in the most times.

    Gowalla: Gives users virtual passport stamps and digital souvenirs for checking in.

    Facebook Places: Allows Facebook users to check in to let their Facebook friends know where they’ve been.

    Google Places: Allows users to find businesses based on their current locations.

    Brightkite: Combines the act of checking in with the ability to follow others and to post and respond to comments.

    Loopt: Combines Loopt and Facebook friends and allows users to see where their friends are on one map.

    ArcGIS: Allows users to create their own customized maps using their own data.

    Read more at www.ama-assn.org

     

    Healthcare institutions spend enormous time and effort to train their workforce. Web-based training can streamline this process to a great extent. The article evaluates the advantages of healthcare professionals with web-based training.

    Large healthcare facilities are required to educate their workforce about various regulations and to document this training. Initiatives like the Privacy Rule of the Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the National Patient Safety Goals of the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) are just two recent examples. In addition, health care professionals require training on equipment, skills and software. Using traditional methods such as instructor- led classes to train a large and diverse workforce is time consuming, expensive and labor-intensive. Webbased training can potentially overcome these limitations.

    Web-based training provides learners with any-time access to the training courses, is self-paced, eliminates the need to travel, is less disruptive for the work schedule, and can decrease the time associated with learning by as much as o 30%. Moreover, it can substantially save time for the faculty and instructors since web-based training can be developed once and delivered multiple times across various locations. Published studies evaluating web-based education and training have shown that web-based education is at least as effective as traditional education, that it is likely to be more efficient and that learners enjoy it more. These advantages make web-based training a very attractive option for training healthcare personnel efficiently and effectively. Furthermore, many hospitals and clinics are upgrading their information technology infrastructure as they increasingly adopt electronic health records. This infrastructure can also support the utilization of web-based training.

    Training healthcare professionals is not an easy task due to inherent characteristics such as shift work, moderate to high employee turnover, and the difficulty in organizing group-training sessions due to conflicts with clinical responsibilities . Web-based training can be deployed for healthcare workforce spread over different geographic areas, without compromising learner satisfaction. At InfoPro, we developed a comprehensive suite of web-based courses on various therapeutic areas. These courses were developed using print based medical literature and presenation kits used in medical symposiums as reference curriculum materials. Our client was able to train about 18,000 professionals, including physicians, researchers, pharmacists, nurses, nutritionists and trainees in these fields, across different hospital systems within a short span of two months. Satisfaction ration was over three-quarters of the attendants. Learners were very satisfied with web-based training and most of them felt that the course was relevant and helpful for enhancing their understanding of the subject.

    In addition to time savings and enhanced 24-hour access to courses, web-based training can also yield a good return on investment (ROI).

    Studies suggest that web-based training can reduce up to 70% of employers’ training budgets by eliminating employee travel from offsite locations, cost of updating printed materials, and reducing the amount of time that employees spend overall in the training activity.

    Moreover, as institutions increasingly adopt electronic health records, they will need to upgrade their hardware infrastructure, which will also support the deployment of web-based training without incurring significant overhead cost. Thus, we believe that well-designed web-based training can yield an excellent ROI for healthcare systems challenged with perennial workforce training and the need for increased documentation for regulatory compliance.