Publication date: 
Wed., Mar. 14, 2018 4:00pm EDT ·

App Helps Patients Manage Heart Failure

The American Heart Association has launched HF Path, an app designed to help heart failure patients better control their condition by managing symptoms, tracking medications and maintaining a healthier lifestyle.  HF Path empowers the user to play an active role in their health management. Learn how to manage your condition by pathing you through 12 different courses that will teach you about symptom tracking, treatment adherence and lifestyle choices. The app is available from the Apple Store, Google Play or on the American Heart Association’s website.  

Publication date: 
Tue., Mar. 13, 2018 3:45pm EDT ·

More is Not Better with Medical Tests & Meds Say Older Adults

Few older Americans believe ordering more tests and drugs is the way to better health care, a new survey finds. Of the more than 2,000 respondents aged 50 to 80, just 14 percent thought that "more is better," according to the National Poll on Healthy Aging. In fact, 54 percent said they believe that health care providers often recommend tests, medications or procedures that patients don't really need:

  • One in four poll participants said their health care providers often order tests or prescribe drugs that aren't necessary.
  • One in six said this had happened to them in the past year.
  • About half said they'd had the test or filled the prescription.

However, about 10 percent said their doctor or other health care provider had told them that a test or medication they'd asked for wasn't needed. Most said the provider explained why, but 40 percent didn't completely understand the explanation. The poll was conducted by the University of Michigan Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation. It was sponsored by AARP and Michigan Medicine. "These findings suggest patients and providers need to work together more to prevent overuse of health care services that provide the least value to patients," noted Dr. Jeffrey Kullgren, who designed and analyzed the poll results.  As importantly, more attention needs to be focused on improving communication between patients and doctors.