In today’s times any health care blog concentrates on the big issue of health care reform. It is being discussed at a bipartisan conference today. President Obama says he knows the urgency of this issue and vows this conference is to be considered a last ditch effort to find lawmakers coming together to secure a compromise bill that will work for Americans. The subject of health care has been negotiated into the ground over the past year and no one seems to be capable of coming to an agreement on what is best for all of us. When politics becomes involved in issues such as the healthcare of our nation, it generally drowns out the voices of the general public and those in power do not seem to even want to listen to the silent majority.
In this health care blog we discuss the fact that Obama knows first hand how complex the healthcare struggles can be for many as he observed his own mother as she struggled for her rights as she battled terminal cancer years back. Many others have written him with their own horror stories of how the health care industry has failed them, time and time again. To quote the president, “What I’m hoping to accomplish today is for everyone to focus not just on where we differ, but focus on where we agree, because there is actually some significant agreement on a whole host of issues.” In spite of the urgency of this topic, Republicans and Democrats simply seem to agree to disagree when it comes to certain issues, leaving no evidence of common grounds.
This health care blog notes that President Obama and Senator John McCain from Arizona had a heated discussion regarding the legislation involved in healthcare reform. McCain stated that Congress, under Democratic control is fashioning the health care reform legislation all the while violating Obama’s openness pledges. The Senator says the legislation was produced behind the closed doors of a biased Congressional group using unsavory deal making techniques. McCain further asserts Americans actually want to return to the beginning of this struggle and totally scrap the legislation which is presently mired in Congress. As the matter is supposed to involve insurance and it’s coverage for millions the discussion seems to be veering further and further away from its intended subject.
This health care blog is concerned with the fact that while all these high powered people battle it out, we seem to be left out. Left out of the decisions and not offered an opportunity to voice our feeling on this most important of subjects. While they continue to argue and debate, we see our medical insurance costs soar and there seems to be no end in sight without a good effective plan. Even the Democratic party cannot seem to come to any sort of agreement when it comes to health care reform.
This healthcare blog is concerned about the study that shows some forty five thousand people die each year because they do not have health insurance. Additionally, some seventy percent of the three quarters of a million people who filed bankruptcy last year did so due to medical bills, even though most had insurance. Perhaps we need a lot more health care blog coverage to prod these folks along.
Used well, the blogosphere can be a magnificent source of healthcare information for patients. While consumers must always take care to evaluate the authority of the websites they visit, those who frequent the best medical blogs have some great tools at their fingertips. Of course, like all tools, they are only effective if a patient knows when to use them. Here are our suggestion for what to look for in the top healthcare blogs, and when you should skip them.
Enhancing Health and Wellness
There is a reason so many practitioners emphasize preventative medicine: It works.
When a consumer decides to take control of their own health, costly and debilitating–possibly even fatal–diseases closely tied to lifestyle choices can stopped before they ever have a chance to gain a foothold in that consumer’s life. Of course, making healthy choices and practicing life-enhancing habits presupposes that consumers have access to accurate, authoritative health information. The best health blogs can be an ally in anyone’s search for general health and wellness information. These resources bring readers the most up-to-date medical thinking, and the information is usually vetted by experts in the field.
Learning About Diseases and Conditions
Not many things in life could be worse for a healthcare consumer than leaving the doctor’s office with a diagnosis but without any idea what that means for their life. Even when physicians take the time to provide their patients with insights as to what their diagnosis means, patients are often too flustered to really taking what the practitioner is saying. It makes sense to gain a little distance before trying to understand what their diagnosis means. The top healthcare blogs can be a great source of information written with consumers in mind on every conceivable condition and disease. By using this information to enhance their understanding the implications of what their physician has told them, patients can take the first step towards improving their outcomes.
Understanding Accepted Treatments
The best health blogs are also a great source for patients seeking to understand their treatment options. Today’s healthcare consumers want to know why their care teams are pursing the particular course of action they have chosen, what side effects to watch for, and how they can improve their chances of success.
Knowing What to Ask
Finally, top healthcare blogs are a fabulous resource for consumers who know it is in their best interest to ask their physician questions, but who also do not know what those questions should be. By taking the time to learn what questions he should be asking, he can become more proactive in understanding and implementing his physician’s advice.
So, when should a patient skip the Internet and head straight for a medical practitioner? Certainly no one should be checking the Internet instead of heading to the doctor in any of these situations:
Trying to Arrive at a Diagnosis
When Symptoms Seem Serious
In these cases, consult with a profession immediately.
Physicians, healthcare executives, pharmaceutical companies and others have been slow to jump on the blogging bandwagon. The primary reason is because they have a negative opinion of blogs. Some believe that blogs are filled with inaccurate information and cannot drive sales of healthcare products and services.
In some respects, this negative perception of blogs is justified. This is because
blogs are far from a perfect communications medium. Some of the reasons for this
– It Is Difficult To Vet Blog Content: Currently, there is no standard set of
criteria people can use to determine whether a blog is credible
– There Are No Metrics: There is a lot of anecdotal evidence indicating
that blogs may impact a company’s bottom line, but no hard statistics showing how
blogs have driven sales or changed customer perceptions
– Blogging Is Hard Work: Blogs take a lot of time and effort to develop
and grow. Unless a blog is integrated into an organization’s long term
communications strategy, it may not be successful
Why Blogs Deserve A Serious Look
Despite the many drawbacks associated with blogs, executives, physicians and other
players in the healthcare industry should take them seriously. Blogs are poised to
significantly impact many aspects of healthcare, including perceptions of medical
products and the relationship between providers and patients. Following is a brief
overview of some of the key ways blogs may influence the healthcare industry.
Healthcare Blogs and the Provider-Patient Relationship
In July 2005, Harris Interactive released a poll indicating that 117 million Americans
have turned to the Internet for healthcare information. Think about this for a
moment. This survey suggests that online health information may be having a
profound influence on the healthcare provider-patient relationship. This means that
people may already be using information posted by providers, experts, patients and
others on blogs in conversations with their physicians.
Healthcare Blogs and Market Research
Healthcare blogs are already affecting healthcare-related communications activities,
including market research. Nielsen BuzzMetrics, an Internet monitoring firm, reports
that 14 of the world’s top 15 pharmaceutical companies are already using its
services to track “buzz” about their products on blogs and other “consumer-
generated content” (i.e., bulletin boards, podcasts, etc.). As the healthcare
“blogosphere” expands, the influence of blogs may only increase.
Healthcare Blogs and Disease Management
Healthcare blogs are also having an impact on medical treatment. For example, a
number of physicians have developed blogs that provide information to healthcare
providers on how to manage common and rare medical conditions. These blogs are
highly ranked on major search engines and are widely read.
Blogs and Healthcare: More Than Hype
So, should healthcare executives, pharmaceutical companies and others believe the
hype about blogs? Maybe so, maybe not. However, at the very least, they should
learn as much as they can about what blogs mean for healthcare and think about
whether launching one is worth the effort. When it comes to blogs, knowledge is
Blogging is one of the latest trends in the internet communities these days. Everyone wishes to have their own blogs and many people even make their personal blogs and update them on a daily basis in the hope that many people will read the postings on the blog. These days even the medical professionals have begun to set up blogs in the hope of being able to help people with answers to their queries.
People happen to have opposing views about blogs, while some people feel that blogs are helpful in gathering information and getting answers to queries, there are others who feel that blogs are not worth reading since the information posted on them is not authentic.
There are certain reasons because of which people have begun to have negative views about the whole concept of healthcare blogs:
· Blogs are basically posted by people using their own opinion. There is no process in place which can authenticate the information posted on the blogs. Since healthcare is a sensitive topic and requires authentic information for people to refer to; not having an authentic proof is one of the biggest drawbacks of the healthcare blogs and this is one of the major reasons why people see less traffic on the healthcare blogs.
· For anyone to have regular web traffic visiting his/her blog, he/she needs to regularly spend time in updating the blog and also in devising strategize of retaining the readers’ attention. This surely requires time and discipline which not everyone can put in on a long term basis.
· When it comes to the healthcare products, blogs have been unsuccessful in promoting the sales of products and the reason has been the same, people are not convinced about the authenticity of the products being sold online over the blogs.
· If we go through go through some of the statistics which are related to the number of people who search for healthcare information on the internet we would be surprised to know that millions of people go online to search for answers to their healthcare queries. Now people may refer to information which is authentic and is basically found on sites dedicated to the purpose of providing relevant healthcare information however people don’t usually refer to blogs for the purpose of healthcare information.
· If we wish to have our healthcare blog and hope that we would be able to attract people to our blog for the purpose, it would involve a lot of hard work. Every day we would need to post new pieces of relevant information on our blogs ad ensure that we spend time in understanding the psychic of our readers. Once we are able to understand the type of information our readers are looking for we would have to post information in accordance to what they are looking for and then we can rest assured that we would be able to have a lot of web traffic directed to our healthcare blogs.
Healthcare blogs have still not won the confidence of the public, people need to state the ways of authenticating the information they have posted on their healthcare blogs if they choose to get and retain web traffic on their healthcare blog.