Articles matching the ‘Policy’ Category


January 28th, 2018

Apple Wants to Build an Electronic Medical Record — Here’s Where They Should Start

If you want to get a bunch of clinicians riled up — make them really mad — ask them to describe the problems with their current electronic medical record. So when a company like Apple announces it plans to introduce an electronic medical record of sorts, we should rejoice, right? This is the company, after all, that leveraged […]

January 13th, 2018

Just Wondering: Antibiotics for Cough, PJP vs. PCP, TB-Sniffing Rats, Raw Water, and Other Quick ID Items to Ponder

Here are some “quick questions” with an ID theme for people to consider as we head into week 3 of 52 of this new year. Just think, by the end of next week, we’ll be nearly 6% done with the new year. How time flies! For the various items below, if people know the answers, or want […]

December 16th, 2017

CDC Receives List of Additional Forbidden Words and Phrases

Right on the heels of prohibiting certain words or phrases in the Centers for Disease Control’s budget documents, the President’s Office of Financial Services has issued a second list. Now, not only must CDC officials avoid using words such as “vulnerable”, “diversity”, “fetus”, “transgender”, and “evidence-based”, they also have to steer clear of several other words or phrases. […]

December 10th, 2017

Injection Drug Use-Related HIV Cases Increase in Massachusetts — Is This the Start of a Trend?

Recently the Massachusetts Department of Public Health sent out this concerning notice: The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) has noted an increase in newly diagnosed and acute HIV infections among persons who inject drugs (PWID). To date in calendar year 2017 (through November 21), there have been 64 HIV infections reported among individuals who inject […]

December 3rd, 2017

Why, Even with Depressing Predictions About Flu Vaccine Effectiveness, We Should Still Recommend and Get It

Each year, the print and broadcast media round up a bunch of experts on influenza and ask them to predict the severity of the upcoming flu season. Most of the time their responses are noncommittal — predicting how bad the flu season will be year to year is tricky business, akin to picking stocks, making 12-month […]

July 19th, 2017

Mystifying Cochrane Library Review on HCV Therapy Elicits Strong Response from IDSA

Last month, the Cochrane Review published a controversial paper on HCV therapy that left many ID doctors and hepatologists perplexed. After reviewing 138 randomized clinical trials using directly acting, non-interferon based therapies, they came to the following conclusions: The use of sustained virologic response (“SVR”) — or “cure”, if you want to use plain English — as a […]

July 9th, 2017

Should You Answer Medical Questions from Clinicians You Don’t Know About Patients You’ve Never Seen?

This email popped into my inbox the other day from a person I’ve never met: Hi Dr. Sax, I do mostly hospital-based ID in Pennsylvania, and was consulted on a newly diagnosed HIV patient with CD4 10, viral load 210,000, and lymphoma. I started him on Truvada and dolutegravir, which is going well so far. Because he complained […]

June 4th, 2017

Can’t HIV Serodiscordant Couples Now Just Have Children the Regular Way?

MMWR just published a paper entitled, Strategies for Preventing HIV Infection Among HIV-Uninfected Women Attempting Conception with HIV-Infected Men — United States, and it’s both a welcome and a very strange document indeed. It’s welcome because it acknowledges that serodiscordant couples may wish to have children without the use of an HIV-negative sperm donor. Advances in HIV prevention […]

May 29th, 2017

Healthcare Providers Shouldn’t Come to Work While Sick, but They Do — Here’s Why

Let’s start with two questions: Have you ever seen a doctor, nurse, PA, pharmacist or other person directly involved in patient care wearing a surgical mask because they have a respiratory tract infection? Has this mask-wearing person ever been you? Bold prediction: Virtually every reader who works in a hospital or large office practice answered “Yes” to #1. Some […]

May 14th, 2017

Poll: Which Feature of Electronic Health Records is Most Important to Patient Care?

The first electronic medical record I used regularly — called “BICS” — initially had one purpose. It was a tool to look up a patient’s lab results. Simple, reliable, and blazingly fast, it did one thing remarkably well. Later, one of our Emergency Department doctors, who happens to have impressive coding skills, worked with a team to add a simple ambulatory medical […]

HIV Information: Author Paul Sax, M.D.

Paul E. Sax, MD

Contributing Editor

NEJM Journal Watch
Infectious Diseases

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