MedElite’s tips for diabetes awareness, management, and prevention
As we celebrate National Diabetes Month, we stand united in our commitment to early intervention and prevention. In this issue, our Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Rekha Bhandari, delves into the crucial intersection of Medicaid funding and long-term care post-COVID. The potential impact on facilities and vulnerable residents emphasizes the need for a comprehensive, interdisciplinary approach to reform funding policies.
In industry updates, Governor Kathy Hochul’s proposed cybersecurity regulations for healthcare facilities in New York take center stage. With the healthcare sector facing escalating cyber threats, these regulations aim to fortify IT systems, ensuring uninterrupted patient care during cyber disruptions.
Amidst these updates, we focus on National Diabetes Month, emphasizing proactive measures for early intervention. Explore tips from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) to take charge of your health, recognize warning signs, and understand the importance of family history in diabetes prevention.
MedElite Group CMO Dr. Rekha Bhandari recently published a new article on her Medium profile, click here to read the full article.
Fixing Healthcare’s Enduring Cost Problem in 2023–24
Rising healthcare costs have remained at the industry’s forefront throughout 2023, causing needless hardship for many patients. Despite reductions in inflation across various sectors, US-based healthcare premiums and care expenses continue on an upward trajectory; this stems from a range of underlying factors that, without urgent reform, stand to persist into 2024 and beyond.
Identifying Root Issues
Healthcare’s perpetual unaffordability begins, in part, with substantial administrative expenses and overhead costs. The industry must overhaul its convoluted, bureaucratic billing infrastructure to reduce needless cost hikes, streamline administrative procedures, and bolster digital solutions fostering affordability and accessibility.
Along the way, the rapidly aging population stands as a crucial backdrop, as subsequent healthcare costs have risen in tandem with this metric — a detrimental reactionary trend that undercuts this vulnerable patient demographic rather than supporting their ever-evolving care needs. Critically, these measures include long-term care and treatment for an increasingly realized list of chronic conditions, which warrant an emphasis on preventative care, disease management, and early symptom identification in addition to present treatment measures. These matters, while indicative of advancing medical technology and ideology, can quickly culminate in a financial burden for healthcare at large. Achieving a balance between the benefits of these innovations and their cost implications is perhaps the most significant challenge for healthcare providers and policymakers.
(Click here to read Dr. Rekha Bhandari’s full piece.)
New York Governor Kathy Hochul recently unveiled proposed cybersecurity regulations to safeguard hospitals against cyber threats and ensure uninterrupted operations during attacks. These rules mandate hospitals to establish internal cybersecurity programs, assess risks, and devise and test incident response plans. The state has earmarked $500 million from its 2024 budget for healthcare facilities to upgrade their technology systems.
The healthcare sector faces escalating cyber challenges, with rising data breaches and hacking incidents compromising sensitive patient information. Cybercriminals target valuable data, employing tactics like ransomware, which can disrupt medical records access, delay care, and pose severe risks to patients. New York, in particular, witnessed a surge in cyberattacks, surpassing other critical infrastructure sectors last year, and the first half of 2023 indicated a doubling in cyber incidents compared to the previous year.
Hochul’s proposed regulations aim to enhance hospital IT system protections, complementing federal HIPAA rules; they require hospitals to craft comprehensive cybersecurity programs encompassing in-house and third-party applications, formulate response plans for cyber incidents, implement multifactor authentication, and appoint a chief information security officer to oversee policies.
These rules will undergo a public comment period before potential adoption, with hospitals given a year to comply if finalized. Ultimately, the regulations seek to fortify hospital cybersecurity measures and ensure continued patient care during cyber disruptions.
National Diabetes Month 2023: Tips for Early Intervention
November is National Diabetes Month, an opportunity to highlight and spread crucial information about this far-reaching and life-altering family of conditions. This year, the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) has centered its annual observance around diabetes prevention – namely, methods to better identify and prevent diabetes symptoms. Such preemptive action can make a world of difference for those at risk of developing the disease.
Here are three quick tips for effective early diabetes intervention:
Take Charge of Your Present Health
Even if you do not presently have diabetes, certain adverse lifestyle habits can potentially increase your chances of developing it over time. Therefore, it pays to take stock of your existing health-related habits; work to eat a balanced diet, get an adequate amount of nightly sleep, stay as physically active as possible, and remain diligent in scheduling recurring check-ups with your doctor. These considerations are particularly crucial if you are predisposed to or otherwise at risk for diabetes.
Identify Potential Warning Signs
Early symptom identification is a critical asset for those who may have already developed diabetes, as it can lead to quicker, more proactive treatment. Such warning signs may include, but are not limited to:
- Excessive thirst
- A chronic need to urinate at night
- Unnaturally dry skin
- Sudden inexplicable weight loss
- Increased hunger or thirst
Know Your Family History
Some forms of diabetes are linked to family history, so if you have a grandparent, parent, or sibling living with the disease, make sure to disclose this information to your doctor. By pinpointing these genetic predispositions, your doctor will have an easier time facilitating the periodic testing and bodily count analysis necessary to stay ahead of a potential diabetes emergence.