Global Wellness

Chiropractic Care | Lewiston, ID | Joan P. Burrow DC NMD

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Vitamin D Deficiency

This week is Women’s Health Week and It’s a great time to take a moment and focus on helping improve the state of your body and mind. Doing something as small as adding a Vitamin D supplement to your diet or getting out into some beautiful sunshine for at least 20 minutes a day can do wonders for both your body and mind. Vitamin D helps your hair shine, keeps your teeth strong, and does amazing things towards treating depression. But did you know what can happen if you aren’t getting enough of this very important but commonly overlooked vitamin? Click the link  to read about Vitamin D deficiency and find out if you could have it.

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Patient Alert

Recently the New York Attorney General has accused four of the Nation’s largest dietary supplement providers of selling fraudulent and possibly dangerous herbal supplements. The FDA targeted the national retailers Target, Walmart, GNC, and Walgreens for selling products that contained little if any of the herbs their labels claimed. In fact most of the products contained only fillers; some of which were allergen hazards such as gluten and powdered legumes and lacked any sort of warning label. Current events have highlighted the need for patients to purchase supplements though health care professionals who have access to safe, reliable sources of health products. You can read more here .

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Our Favorite Water Drinking App

We know that sometimes it’s easy to forget to have all the water your body needs in a day or to even know how much you need. That is why we suggest to have the Plant Nanny app. It is iPhone and Android compatible. Several of the girls in the office use it and they LOVE it. All it needs is your weight and activity leplant nannyvel and it will remind you to drink those glasses of water.

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A Sad Reality

Imagine:  You were hospitalized for some reason.  Hospitalization costs a lot, and so ‘guidelines’ tell your doctor you can only stay in the hospital so long for that problem. If they let you stay one day past the guideline, the hospital eats the cost.  So, whether you are medically stable or not, you go home or you get sent to a ‘skilled nursing facility’ for the rest of your recovery.  Ready or not, you go.

And, why?  It costs less to take care of a patient in a skilled nursing facility than a hospital.  Why does it cost less?  Because insurance don’t reimburse the facility as much.

We expect the ‘skilled nursing facility’ to have the funds to hire the staff and buy the monitoring equipment that is needed to provide ‘skilled nursing’ care despite low reimbursements paid to the facilities.

The inspector general of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) reviewed records for 653 randomly selected Medicare patients who were in skilled nursing care – treatment in nursing homes for up to 35 days after a patient was discharged from an acute care hospital – in August, 2011.

The findings are scary:  33 percent had a medication error, infection or some other type of harm.  2/3rds of those suffered events that caused lasting harm, and 1/3rd were temporarily harmed. In 1.5 percent of cases a patient who had been expected to survive died because of poor care.

The injuries and deaths were caused by

  • substandard treatment,
  • inadequate monitoring,
  • delays or the failure to provide needed care

The deaths involved problems such as

  • preventable blood clots,
  • fluid imbalances,
  • excessive bleeding from blood-thinning medications
  • kidney failure.

Doctors who reviewed the patients’ records determined that 59 percent of the errors and injuries were preventable. More than half of those harmed had to be readmitted to the hospital at an estimated cost of $208 million for the month studied — about 2 percent of Medicare’s total inpatient spending.

Projected nationally, the study estimated that 21,777 patients were harmed and 1,538 died due to substandard skilled nursing care in that one month period.

My opinion:  Something needs to change.  If we can’t afford to keep patients in the hospital long enough to be stable when they leave, then we need to reimburse skilled nursing facilities enough that they can truly provide skilled nursing.  Duh.

Read One Third of Skilled Nursing Patients Harmed in Treatment and follow their links to read the studies.