Medical technology - is society doomed?

   #101  

vreihen

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They are sending me home with a portable infusion pump to run an IV 24/7. Don't know how long I will need that, but it may be years or just months. They are also arranging for daily nursing visits at home until I am back on my feet and able to return to work. The last thing keeping me here is not being able to walk. As soon as I can demonstrate that I can walk a lap around the unit, I am on my way home. There's nothing else that they can do for my heart at this point.

Regarding the medication, the doctors are listening to me instead of making their own decisions when it comes to dosages and changes. I think that I scared them when they overdosed me on the ace inhibitor last week, and they realize that they need to make minor changes and not big changes.....
 
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They are sending me home with a portable infusion pump to run an IV 24/7. Don't know how long I will need that, but it may be years or just months. They are also arranging for daily nursing visits at home until I am back on my feet and able to return to work. The last thing keeping me here is not being able to walk. As soon as I can demonstrate that I can walk a lap around the unit, I am on my way home. There's nothing else that they can do for my heart at this point.

Regarding the medication, the doctors are listening to me instead of making their own decisions when it comes to dosages and changes. I think that I scared them when they overdosed me on the ace inhibitor last week, and they realize that they need to make minor changes and not big changes.....
Good to hear!

Now, on to important issues... Does that IV pump come with an aviation rated mounting clamp? Get a bracket for it installed in the TT, before the next event :thumbs:
 
   #103  

vreihen

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Now, on to important issues... Does that IV pump come with an aviation rated mounting clamp? Get a bracket for it installed in the TT, before the next event :thumbs:
Unfortunately, I think my competition driving days are over. :( They just made me apply for a handicap parking permit, and I cannot see myself even getting into the TT at this point.....
 
   #104  

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Unfortunately, I think my competition driving days are over. :( They just made me apply for a handicap parking permit, and I cannot see myself even getting into the TT at this point.....
So now you get to park real close to the entrance, and there are a number of forum members who'll take you out for a thrash in the TT :thumbs:

It's great to hear you're on the right track, even if you don't get on the race track.
 
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We are the Borg.
 
   #108  

DV52

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Doing this to fluke 233 is almost sacrilegious!

Don

PS: Just for nerd reference:
Fluke 233 Features:
DC voltage Range: 0.1mV to 1000V.
AC voltage Range: 0.1mV to 1000V.
DC current Range: 0.1mA to 10A.
AC current Range: 0.1mA to 10A.
Resistance Range 0.1 to 40M (plus special "futile" resistance range)
Frequency: 0.1Hz to 50.00kHz.
Power AA batteries: Three for main body; two for display.
Wireless frequency: 2.4GHz ISM Band 10 meter range.
Test continuity and diodes.
Dimensions: 5.3 x 5.3 x 19.3 cm (2.08 x 2.08 x 7.6 in).
Weight: 604g (1.3Ib).
Fluke 233 Warranty: 3 year.
 
   #109  

vreihen

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Yes, I am home. Thought I be going back on Friday, though. Found out that I was dehydrated again and getting dizzy, Doctor adjusted diuretics, and kept me of the hospital for a third time.

Cannot walk more than a few steps without grabbing onto something. Need to rehab, and learn to walk all over again..... :(
 
   #110  

vreihen

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I feel really great this morning...NOT! I was walking out of my weekday jail cell :rolleyes: for a P-break this morning, and heard a piezo buzzer screeching in the distance. Walked up/down the hallway listening for where the alarm was coming from, then around two corners, and finally into the bathroom stall. I couldn't find it anywhere, but it seemed like it was in the distance the whole time. On a hunch, I looked at the IV infusion pump. Yup, solid red alarm light, solid piezo alarm buzzer (not beep, beep, beep), blank LCD screen. The %#$@&#@$& thing apparently had a firmware crash, and this was all that the watchdog timer routine could muster to signal the pump's failure! The keypad was dead, so I had to pull a battery (3/4 charge) to make it reboot and resume treatment.

After speaking to someone at the IV infusion support center who knows about as much about firmware than I know about cosmetics/makeup, they are going to ship out one replacement pump. I asked if she knew if there was a firmware update that I was missing, because I'd like to get both pumps replaced if there was an upgrade that needed to be applied to them. As the Radio Shack commercial said, "You've got questions? We've got blank stares." Looks like I'll be searching the web for how to get into diagnostic mode on a Curlin/Moog 6000, to see if I can retrieve the firmware version and see if the new pump was upgraded as part of their annual calibration procedure. If so, I want them both upgraded. Life-or-death, folks! I could have easily slept through that alarm, and many senior citizens can't even hear that frequency over their tinnitus..... :facepalm:
 
   #112  

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So this is why no steak tonight huh................:(
Not at all. I went down to the place where someone I know has been permanently banned ;) on Tuesday, for a plug-in session with their scan tool. Besides telling me that the logs were 100% clean since I left the hospital, they lowered the idle speed and actually cleared me again to drive...in writing...as long as it's not in competition. :cry:

Long story short, with the idle speed running 14% slower, the fuel economy has gone up significantly. Since dry weight is measured/reported every morning with a mandatory doctor's notification if it increases more than 0.14 stones in a day, I think that you can see why I'm skipping dinner for the next few days. I've got a lot of stones!!!!! :D
 
   #113  

vreihen

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I don't like where this is going...

Back in November, I was somehow wrangled into a pilot test for a new mobile app being developed so that my home IV infusion company can better communicate with patients. After a few weeks, let's just say that I erased their product roadmap for them and started from scratch, but I digress since I didn't get a dime for the free consulting.

While going through the weekly code/function testing review with one of their developers, she asked me if my coverage was impacted by the 21st Century Cures Act? Insert tilt-head dog meme here. Off to Google...

TL;DR - Obama signed this turd bill into law back in December as a lame duck, and it went into effect almost immediately...with no advance warning to patients or doctors. It changed the back-end Medicare billing of the very treatment that I'm on, and eliminated Medicare reimbursement for a vital part of the actual home infusion treatment.

Back in January (coincidentally about the time that this law became effective), my co-pays for the 24/7 IV treatment went up from $25/week to $225/week. I found out in March, when the IV company hit me with a surprise bill for $1,250 in unpaid co-pays. I have been disputing it through several layers of bureaucracy with my health insurance carrier, and the outstanding balance right now is over $4,000 as they move at glacial speed to tell me why the price changed in January.

Long story short, I have an inquiry out to my employer's insurance broker to find out if our health insurance contract pricing is based on a "Medicare plus X%" model, since the increase and timing are timed suspiciously close to my billing increase. If I have to pay over a grand per month for treatment, I may very well have to return to the hospital and waste a sick person's bed because the treatment is covered 100% there. Like I said, I don't like where this is going.....

http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2017/03/27/heart-patient-infusion-costs/

New Law Is Taking Life-Saving Medicine Infusions Away From Heart Failure Patients

March 27, 2017 6:02 PM

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A recently-passed act of Congress may have the unintended effect of taking life-saving medication away from tens of thousands of heart failure patients.

The bill was meant to fund research into cures for cancer and other diseases.

As CBS2’s Dr. Max Gomez reported, the 21st Century Cures Act, passed with overwhelming bipartisan support and signed into law in December, was called an innovative game-changer for vital medical research.

But a provision to help pay for the bill by lowering drug costs has inadvertently put more than 300,000 lives at risk.

You wouldn’t know it by looking at her now, but just a short while ago, Mary Obuchowski not only could not walk – she was actually near death. She said she was repeatedly in and out of the hospital nearly every six weeks.

“I would pass out and fall on the floor and wake up, and that’s how I actually couldn’t breathe – just could not breathe at all; couldn’t get enough air,” Obuchowksi said.

Obuchowski is in what is called class 4 heart failure – her heart to weak or stiff to pump enough blood to keep her lungs and legs from filling with fluid.

“The oral medications are not enough to keep them out of the hospital; give them any quality of life,” said Dr. Robert Berkowitz of Hackensack University Medical Center. “If we just treat the symptoms, they won’t get better. There will be inexorable progression towards death.”

The only thing that keeps Obuchowski alive and relatively well is continuous, 24/7 infusions of specific heart medications that can only be given intravenously – with the aid of special pumps and with regular at-home monitoring by trained medical personnel.

But when the 21st Century Cures Act was signed into law in December, there contained a well-meaning provision to lower the costs of some chemotherapy and heart drugs like Obuchowski’s. But it has ended up meaning trouble.

“It cut the opportunity to provide infusion services at home to patients who need the drugs and could receive the therapy at home,” said Tyler Wilson, chief executive officer of the National Home Infusion Association. “The margin between the old price and the new price is what allowed the services to be provided.”

In other words, the higher prices allowed the specialty pharmacies that formulated the drugs also to provide at-home services that enable the continuous infusion essential for heart failure patients – infusion that have given Obuchowksi her life back.

“I go food shopping. I go to the Villa Roma resort… and saw the shows; was up 12 hours a day; don’t feel tired. It was unbelievable,” Obuchowski said. “I just can’t believe how my life absolutely turned around.”

Curiously, private insurance plans do reimburse for home infusion services. It is Medicare that does not cover the cost for the health care personnel that make at-home infusion possible.

Medicare will start reimbursing for that, but not until 2021 – so Congress is looking at ways to close that gap.
 
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http://www.beckershospitalreview.com/healthcare-information-technology/wannacry-attack-infects-bayer-medical-devices-in-us-hospitals.html

WannaCry attack infects Bayer medical devices in US hospitals

Written by Mackenzie Bean
May 19, 2017

Bayer on Wednesday confirmed the worldwide ransomware attack, WannaCry, infected several of its medical devices used in U.S. hospitals, reports Forbes.

Here are five things to know.

1. An anonymous source sent Forbes an image of an infected device from an unspecified U.S. hospital. While the source did not specify which device model was hacked, it appears to be radiology equipment used to improve imaging for MRIs, according to the report. The device is manufactured by Medrad, which Bayer acquired in 2011.

2. A Bayer spokesperson told Forbes it received two reports from U.S. customers saying WannaCry infected their Bayer devices, although the company did not say which products were affected.

"Operations at both sites were restored within 24 hours," the spokesperson told Forbes. "If a hospital's network is compromised, this may affect Bayer's Windows-based devices connected to that network."

3. Beau Woods, deputy director of the Atlantic Council's Cyber Statecraft Initiative, said an infection on this type of equipment is not likely to threaten patient safety, as it would simply stop the scanning machines from working properly, according to the report.

4. Bayer plans to release a Microsoft patch for Windows-based devices "soon," the spokesperson told Forbes. In the meantime, the company recommends hospitals using Bayer radiology equipment work with their IT security teams and contact Bayer's technical assistance center to ensure the devices are safe and working properly, reports Forbes.

5. The infected devices represent the first known occurrence of ransomware directly influencing a medical device's operations, according to the report.
 
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