The Burden of Disease

October 9, 2017

The burden of disease.

The cost to society.

That is how my life is measured – in dollars and cents.

It plays out in the news and health policy with sensational headlines like: The High Price of Failing America’s Costliest Patients.

And every time I see such a headline, it makes me feel like I am a drain on society.  I am a burden.  My very existence costs society, a detriment to society by these measures.

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Stigma and Borderline Personality Disorder

September 29, 2017

Stigma against those with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is endemic and rampant in the medical and mental health professionals.  Such stigma is often expressed overtly as well as subtly to patients, impacting their care in dramatic ways.

This stigma needs to stop and it needs to start with not only the public but with providers of all kinds assessing their biases and misunderstandings of this illness and taking responsibility for their actions.

Here I present the research on the most pertinent research surrounding this issue.

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HIPAA and Trust

August 31, 2017

The last line of my article on privacy and security in the cloud for IBM reads:

Ultimately, responsibility is important not only for HIPAA and HITECH compliance but also for ensuring trust. A doctor entrusts a BA with critical information shared by patients who have divulged their most intimate details and whose EPHI [electronic personal health information] might be stored in the cloud. If their EPHI is compromised, patients might lose trust in their doctors and consequently their care might be put at risk. Thus, the significance of HIPAA and HITECH goes beyond law. EPHI is not merely data; it represents individuals, their health, and their lives.[1] (ital, bold added)

It’s not exactly the line you’d expect to see in a technology publication but it was important to me that the article end with the reason why HIPAA is important, a reason that is often forgotten or in the least neglected by providers tasked with following the law – trust.

The privacy and security provisions in HIPAA are ultimately about trust.

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Healthcare Does Not Have a Problem With Silos

August 3, 2017

Healthcare does not have a problem with silos.

In fact, there are no silos in healthcare; there are only boundaries.

If we truly want to change healthcare, we need to break boundaries.

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Housing is a Human Right

July 30, 2017

A year ago, through the kindness of a friend, I finally got a home.  I moved into a one-bedroom apartment with my cats in a quiet neighborhood after a year of homelessness.  And in this year, I have been able to heal and find myself again.

We talk about social determinants of health, but I think few people really understand how impactful they truly are, particularly housing.

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See, Hear, Understand

July 30, 2017

I’ve written 2 posts on communication this year.  I’ve deleted both – the only two posts I’ve ever deleted thus far after over 6 years and 182 (soon to be 183) posts published on this site.  The first I felt people weren’t ready to hear.  The second didn’t feel true to myself.  But I’m going to make a third attempt because in the past 9 months, the subject of communication persists, from politics to healthcare to social media and relationships, and weighs on me heavily.

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Why you should pause before posting your blood sugars

July 23, 2017

At least once a day a picture of someone’s blood glucose meter reading or continuous glucose meter (cgm) graph or posting of someone’s HbA1c comes across my twitter feed.  All by well-meaning diabetics who are trying to share their experiences – for support, to relay information, to pat themselves on the back for the very hard work that is the life of someone with type 1.  But I am asking them and all diabetics to please pause before posting your blood sugars.

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