FHSC Recognizes the Importance of World No Tobacco Day



Each year on May 31st, the World Health Organization (WHO) marks World No Tobacco Day (WNTD) in the hopes of advocating against tobacco products and emphasizing the negative health implications of tobacco use. WHO and FHSC, along with many organizations across the globe, advocate for policies and programs that effectively help to reduce tobacco consumption on World No Tobacco Day and every day.


This year, World No Tobacco Day highlighted plain packaging efforts beginning around the world. In December 2012, Australia became the first country to implement plain packaging. Ireland, the United Kingdom, Northern Ireland and France passed laws to implement plain packaging in May 2016. The goals of the WNTD 2016 aims to highlight plain packaging as a comprehensive, multisectoral approach to tobacco control, facilitate policy development that supports plain packaging, and encourage labeling measures and restriction on advertising, among other goals.


FHSC is committed to increasing smoking cessation rates through effective healthcare provider education and patient counseling through the Inspire Smoking Cessation program.


This year, we encourage smokers to remember:

• Tobacco use kills up to half of its users

• 6 million people die from tobacco use each year (5 million from direct tobacco use)

• Exposure to secondhand smoke kills 600,000 non-smokers each year





Highlights of the Year-End FHSC Team Meeting




The Foundation for Health Smart Consumers hosted its year-end Fellows Meeting with a robust team of participants including the FHSC Fellows and contributors in the areas of Technology, Information Security, Public Affairs and Financial Planning.

A Healthcare Technology & Personal Information Security presentation was given by Michael Bau, Junior Fellow and Advisory Associate, Information Protection at KPMG. The presentation detailed current data security vulnerabilities in the marketplace as well as the preparedness of organizations to respond to these concerns. Additionally, the Fellows and collaborative team were briefed on the future of the marketplace with technological developments.


The presentation made by Dennis Marco, Fellow and Managing Partner of Hamilton Public Affairs, was a comprehensive description of the Providing Access to Healthy Solutions (PATHS) type 2 diabetes Report followed by a discussion of state-level public affairs. Also, a financial planning presentation and discussion was held on the importance of preparing consumers for financial risks and the need for further consumer education focused on financial planning.


The team also heard a presentation on the new Payer definition of wellbeing. This transition in focus drives a more holistic view of wellbeing for members and employees. As a concept, wellbeing is divided into four pillars: physical health, emotional health, social connectivity and financial security. This concept, which is in practice in a number of well-recognized organizations aligns with the mission and objectives of the Foundation and sparked an in-depth discussion amongst the Fellows and participants.


Outcomes of the 2015 Fellows Meeting included a refreshed approach to our vision, mission and objectives as well as a clear path for the future of FHSC.




By Joe McGovern and Rachael Greenberg at NNCC 2015 Conference




The Inspire Asthma Care Continuing Education (CE) webinar was presented at the National Nursing Centers Consortium (NNCC) 2015 Conference entitled Sustaining Nurse-Managed Health Centers: The Future of Nurse-Led Care held on November 12-13, 2015 in Philadelphia.


The NNCC Conference was the first live presentation of the Inspire Asthma Care webinar, which launched as part of the Asthma Care online toolkit in October 2015. Attendees of the conference received a free CE credit for attending the presentation made by Rachael Greenberg, MPH, Public Health Manager with NNCC and Joseph McGovern, Fellow of the FHSC.


Other NNCC Conference presentation topics included: caring for special populations, behavioral and mental health, chronic disease management and patient engagement.


The Inspire Asthma Care program is provided through the collaboration of the Foundation for Health Smart Consumers (FHSC) and the Convenient Care Association (CCA). The CCA is the recipient of a grant from MEDA Pharmaceuticals Group, administered through their grant division, for an Allergy and Asthma program.





Comments on the Future with Telehealth




After piloting telehealth services successfully in MinuteClinic store locations, CVS Health announced that it is teaming up with American Well and Doctor on Demand to provide further telehealth services to their customers. CVS continues to examine different ways of using telehealth services to improve patient care and satisfaction. Other drugstores are also increasing the use of telemedicine. Walgreens plans to expand a telemedicine app that is started testing in 2014 and make the app available in 25 states.  Read the Modern Healthcare Article CVS Taps Three Companies to Expand Telehealth Services


FHSC Fellow, Joe McGovern, Comments:


What is telehealth?


A doctor consultation when you want it where you want it, right from your phone or tablet. Telehealth offers live, on-demand video visits with a physician of choice. From telehealth experience so far, most consultations last about 10 minutes – as long as it takes to handle most problems. Ideally doctors can review patients’ history, answer questions, diagnose, treat and prescribe medication. Prescriptions are sent straight to the patients’ pharmacy.



What is the role of telehealth?


This is still emerging. Telemedicine is already popular among some consumers, employers and healthcare providers, but many are still unfamiliar with its application.

However, doctor shortages, rising healthcare costs, long waiting lists and increasing demand with the prevalence of chronic diseases mean we urgently need new points of care.



Are telehealth kiosks a part of this new phenomenon?


Kiosks are enablers for telehealth. They can be located in hospitals, behavioral healthcare facilities, long-term care facilities, corporate offices, or even retail sites such as pharmacies. Patients may walk in, prepare the electronic medical record and schedule an appointment with a specialist. Patients’ vitals are taken, using a range of medical instruments in the kiosk and their data is uploaded. Based on request, a doctor or clinician appears on the screen, and is able to process with the patient’s assessment using the patient’s records and vitals provided.



Why do people see doctors online?


Patients might see a doctor online for a range of issues, from minor illnesses like respiratory infections, aches and pains or injuries, symptoms from a chronic condition, and even general health and wellness concerns. Though patients can easily see a doctor online, telehealth consultations are not always eligible for a prescription as some states do not allow prescribing by telehealth. All prescribing is done at the discretion of the physician according the ability to evaluate the condition and clinical standards of care. Physicians can only prescribe certain medications online. Controlled substances (narcotics, anxiety medications, ADHD medications), muscle relaxants, and medications for erectile dysfunction cannot be prescribed online. Telehealth is not for emergencies, not for any serious or life threatening condition, suicidality or substance abuse. The concept of seeing a doctor on an office visit is changing. At the Foundation for Health Smart Consumers, we know that consumers are having an increasingly hard time getting in to see their primary care physicians. There are not enough primary care physicians and the shortage trend is projected to grow dramatically. The good news is that consumers at home are also increasingly empowered by access to information and can take on a greater responsibility for their own health. Confident, competent self-care should be central to any healthcare system. The Foundation believes that greater consumer access to self-care and healthcare education enables consumers to manage their own health and use their physicians whether that is in-person or through telehealth, effectively.



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