09 Oct 2011

Essay Topic: Personal Statement

Back in 2006, sitting at a desk, here I was processing a disaster claim in wake of the damages caused by Hurricane Katrina. Nibbling a self-made dehydrated banana, I was in a high point following several months and reviewing healthier food options – organic methods of increasing mood and energy. The search for the best method was initially out of a desire for personal well being but overtime, it started to turn into an obsession. It was like trying to reach the climax of an exciting novel and dedicatedly moving from one chapter to the next with excitement and increased fervor. It was in the midst of this moment, that I began to realize and think that this obsession could be turned from a preoccupation to an occupation. This was the moment I realized that with a mix of nutrition, mental counseling and knowledge sharing, the way of a dietetic is the precise blend for my career interests.

It was this time that I started seriously pursuing programs for aspiring dietetics. However, my own obsession did not let me rest or wait to gain experience in this area until some university accepted me. I started taking initiatives and got involved in ways that helped me increase my exposure to whatever could potentially help me in the field. For example, in the time spent waiting for the acceptance, I volunteered with rural health initiatives completing tasks such as authoring a grant that was funded for $2,500, assisting health fairs; and networking with community resources to facilitate collaboration on various wellness plans.  My eagerness and devotion paid dividends as this later led to interim employment with a community-based program providing self –management classes to diabetics and their caretakers for diabetes. During this while, in my view I gained some critical and valued opinions from interviewing several dieticians in the field. Moreover, my obsession and a philanthropic desire also spurred me on to become a health advocate for a few of the elderly in community who were struggling with health literacy. I acted as a bridge to eliminate the gap between them and their special physicians. There are some experiences from my school life that I believe will assist me in developing an understanding with the course. I got to the position of a diet clerk in a hospital. This job provided me with an opportunity to witness the ground realities and put into practice whatever I had learnt before in theory. This job was a blessing in a way that I made me work on the grey areas; in addition it helped me a lot in becoming a much more tolerant person than I used to be.

I firmly believe that it is action oriented goals which take people forward in life. I wish to have an opportunity at the end of internship of completing preliminary research on the use of trauma counseling in people with eating disorders and present the findings at the national or state meeting. I aim to make my findings helpful for carrying out counseling techniques for eating disorders and other chronic diseases.

Once I complete my studies, I aspire on continuing clinical practice in a rural or community based hospital and serve the striving humanity in my full capacity. I would love to attain an advance degree in mental health counseling provided with an opportunity. I believe that this would add to my abilities of conducting nutritional counseling. In the long run I aim to see myself as a Research Director specializing in medical nutrition therapy in behavioral health clinics.

My strengths and weaknesses are one and the same. Being direct and concise are essential values in this field. But at times this makes people perceive me of being unfriendly and impatient; I have tried to curb it down to the minimal extent though. I am an optimist, hence I always believe deep inside me that things will work out well, no matter how grave the circumstances are, provided that one employs his full resources on the job at hand. And through these characteristics, I find myself able to connect with a majority of individuals around me; I continue to provide moral support to my family members, colleagues and friends, and they too are present in every hour of need by my side.

21 Oct 2009

Sample Essay: Political Philosophy

America as a home of two categories of people has two ideology related parties. These parties include the democrats and republicans. The democrats compose of minority groups who are mainly the poor and blacks among others while the Republicans are mainly for Americans. Immigration to America is both legal and illegal. This has lead to changes in demographic patterns and cultures a whole. The country registered the highest number of immigrants in the year 2006. This was the highest of all the world countries. Previously there had been gender imbalances amongst the legal immigrants where men dominated up to around the 1990’s when women showed up. Currently the immigrant population is characterized by a population aged between 15-34, married and at times the divorced couples.

Legal immigration has been generally accepted in the United States than illegal because of the willingness of the government to provide the services to the affected individuals. Based on the American economy and political status, immigration has been attributed to bring both positive and negative effects. According to my opinion, immigration should be allowed to America since there are important achievements that have resulted as result of immigrants to the country. Let’s consider some of the associated effects outlined below.

For instance, immigrants have increased and still it is projected to increase the numbers of American population (associated with low birth rates) thus has helped maintain the increasing trends. Immigration has also increased the growth of the American economy because of cheap labor that has increased productivity and the low value of consumer goods and services which are produced by immigrants as well as low salaries of those owing capital. On the other hand these immigrants have turned to be innovative and creative. Through this they have been producing services which were non-existent before thus more government revenue has been realized. This has minimized unemployment to American workers. These could be the only benefits that have positively built America as a whole.

Negative effects have also been realistic. Social integration has not also been realized through the interaction between the immigrants and Native Americans. This has strengthened racial segregation amongst the immigrants and between the Native Americans and the immigrants. There have been increased conflicts and riots in various settlement sites and urban centers, as what used to exist before. Conflicts between the Koreans and blacks as well as Black Latinos and African Americans which were evidence in the recent past are still persistent. Political ideologies also differ, depending on the different immigrants that who have varied ideologies, thus impacts to social norms and religious practices. Take an example of the dominant two major parties that are dominant the Democratic and the Republican parties that rose from groupings of immigrants and Americans respectively.

On health matters, immigrants have posed a challenge to the United States health services. Because of poor backgrounds the immigrants fail to meet the expenses in the public health sector during the emergency cases. Note that these being the only means for the survival of immigrants (inexpensive), it strains the government to budget for the allocation of funds. High rates of diseases spread  in the country has been proved to be the consequence of immigration, Tuberculosis  rates for instance are high amongst immigrants than the native Americans As well HIV/AIDS was brought to the country by immigrants. With increased number of people there is a likelihood of having water stress that can cause poor sanitation, thus contagious diseases.

Crime as a vice has the possibility to increase with more immigrants because of unemployment situations, barriers in the language and uncertainties threatening the lives of foreigners. Population pressure on the environment is yet another impact on environment. Consider the settlement houses established for accommodation, landfills in cities, deforestation and overexploitation of resources such as water just to mention a few .All these are likely to degrade the environment.

Education system has been challenged by immigration in the following perspectives: discrimination in class, language diversities and of course culture differences. This result to complexities in the educational planning: teacher training, resource allocations and distribution of learning institutions.

On my opinions immigrants should be allowed to the United States because, one the government is concerned with rights of both Native Americans and the immigrants .United States is a developed country, well endowed with resources and better technology that can be utilized by both groups of inhabitants. For instance, the free public health services have helped increase survival rates of immigrants. But these immigrants should be under legal qualifications. The allocation of public social services such as health, urban planning and waste dumping and economic activities and employment opportunities to the skilled and unskilled individuals to equal balance the two groups will be made easier. Legal registration will also enhance efficiency in establishing the strategies aimed at social and political integration in all sectors of the economy, environmental problems and solving crime rates. This is because the government will be aware of the size and growth rates of its citizens at a particular period of time in the country.

Depending on the current economic crisis, the United State should accept 150,000 immigrants and 50,000 refugees. In fact, economic crisis globally is challenge to the state because of climate change, diminishing sources of energy and increasing number of political instability in most countries. All these have reduced productivity in industry, agriculture and m manufacturing as a whole. The detrimental effects are hitting the developed countries too.

Due to increasing demand of labor and skilled workers in various industries, production and even in Jua kali sector, the immigrants should at least have a skill that will help built the American economy. Emphasize on policies on immigration for employment is really applicable in this context. This could be through creativity and innovations of machinery, equipment or substances that is cheap and affordable to all individuals of the same social classes. Note that as more individuals buy products, more income from taxes and revenue is realized, thus greater economic development. Even for the unskilled workers, whose roles are domestic workers, at a cheaper price indeed will help savings amongst the Americans for investments.

The current approach of the United States that is used to provide citizenship that is how one has developed interest in America and one related to family bondage is a crucial way for America to have a manageable number of immigrants. More emphasize should be on legal issues especially the 1990 immigration act which emphasizes the value of the family. The state should allow only stable married couples to settle in the country. This will help minimize population growth that is on the increase as divorced and unmarried having obtained settlement tend to remarry or marry and care for their families. If for example one has divorced and has left child in the home country, and can remarry, with the divorcee will bring his or her children to the United States; then there will be increase in the number of households. This means if one hundred of the immigrants can do so, the population will be likely to triple. With time the children will have their children .In a nutshell, there is a likelihood of creating pressure on available social facilities so to speak. For youths, it is necessary to admit them for particular purposes such as pursuing education or a given contract.

As compared to other legal issues based which stresses on steps to minimize crimes, this could be the best approach. Due to the fact that immigrants will be admitted depending on the available job opportunities, will minimizing unemployment factor resulting to criminal offences as seen among the immigrants or Native Americans. Again the gender should be a crucial point to note in the registration immigrants because both sexes have a role to play in the development of a nation.

The policy discussed above is the best according to my opinion as compared to the one of acquiring a visa. The policy states that once an individual has a visa he or she is legible to be accommodated to the United States, and is in a position of investing in business or any other short term activity and returning back to the home country. There is a possibility of having mass illegal immigrants, particularly entrepreneurs. Consider the complex procedures of following up the victims. Even with use of employers to obtain the illegal workers is a complicated and high rates of injustice might be realized as employers upon identified competent employees, is hard for them to accept the decline in productivity by losing the employee. This makes the policy ineffective, hence creating more social-economic problems. The policy of resettling the refugees is also tricky because many immigrants who may not be refugees may have a chance to use that excuse to obtain the citizenship illegally. This can be illustrated by analyzing the reasons that make one a refugee or not. Some people have as a result taken cover to be refugees yet they are indeed not refugees.

15 Oct 2009

Sample Essay: Radio Frequency Identification Technology in Healthcare

Introduction

Radio frequency identification is a system of technology that includes the use of electromagnetic or electrostatic coupling in the radio frequency segment of the electromagnetic spectrum to distinctively identify an object, animal, or person. Radio frequency identification is increasingly becoming useful in health institutions as an alternative to the bar code. A Radio frequency identification system consists of three components which are the antennae, the transceiver often combined into one reader and the transponder which is the tag. The antenna emits radio frequency waves that transmit a signal which activates the transponder. When activated, the tag transmits information back to the antenna. The information is used to alert a programmable logic controller that an action should occur. The action could be as simple as raising an access gate or as complicated as providing an interface with a database to carry out a money transfer. Low frequency Radio frequency identification systems range from 30 KHz to 500 KHz and have short transmission range of generally less than six feet. High frequency Radio frequency identification systems on the other hand have a range from 850 MHz to 950 MHz and 2.4 GHz to 2.5 GHz and offer longer transmission ranges of more than 90 feet. In general, the higher the frequency, the more expensive the system.

Radio-frequency identification (RFID) utilizes an automatic identification method, relying on storing and retrieving data using transponder. The technology requires some extent the support of an RFID reader and an RFID tag.  An RFID tag is an object that can be applied to or incorporated into a product, animal, or person for the purpose of identification and tracking using radio waves. Some tags can be read from several meters away and beyond the line of sight of the reader. Most RFID tags contain at least two parts. One is a circuit used to store and process information and other specialized functions. The second is an antenna for receiving and transmitting the signal.

There are generally two types of RFID tags, the active RFID tags, which contain a battery and passive RFID tags, which have no battery. The tags communicate by responding to instructions and generating signals that must not create interference with the readers, as arriving signals can be very weak and must be distinguished. The backscattering and load modulation techniques can also be used to manipulate the reader’s field. Typically, backscattering is used in the far field, whereas load modulation applies in the near field within a few wavelengths from the reader. (Simon garfinkel and Henry Holtzman. 2005)

Passive RFID tags have no internal power supply. The tiny electrical current induced in the antenna by the incoming radio frequency signal provides just enough power for the CMOS integrated circuit in the tag to power up and transmit a response. Most passive tags signal by backscattering the carrier wave from the reader. Therefore the antenna has to be designed both to collect power from the incoming signal and also to transmit the outbound backscatter signal. The response of a passive RFID tag is not necessarily an ID number but can be a chip that contains non volatile data. (Sohraby. M (2007) Wireless Sensor Networks)

Passive tags have practical read distances ranging from about 11 cm (4 in) with near-field up to approximately 10 meters (33 feet) with far-field and can reach up to 183 meters (600 feet) when combined with a phased array. Basically, the reading and writing depend on the chosen radio frequency and the antenna design/size. Due to their simplicity in design they are also suitable for manufacture with a printing process for the antennas. The lack of an on board power supply means that the device can be quite small. Commercially available products exist that can be embedded in a sticker, or under the skin in the case of low frequency RFID tags.

Unlike passive RFID tags, active RFID tags have their own internal power source, which is used to power the integrated circuits and to broadcast the response signal to the reader. Communications from active tags to readers is typically much more reliable than those from passive tags due to the ability for active tags to conduct a session with a reader.

Due to their on board power supply, active tags may also transmit at higher power levels than passive tags, allowing them to be more useful in environments with humidity and spray or with RF-dampening targets which contain mostly water.  In turn, active tags can be larger due to battery size and more expensive to manufacture due to price of the battery. However, the potential shelf life of an active tag can be many years.

Many active tags today have operational ranges of hundreds of meters, and a battery life from several months to 10 years. Active tags may include larger memories than passive tags, and may include the ability to store additional information received from the reader.

Special active RFID tags may include specialized sensors. For example, a temperature sensor can be used to record the temperature profile during the transportation and storage of perishable goods and radioactive materials.

Semi-passive tags are similar to active tags in that they have their own power source, but the battery only powers the microchip and does not power the broadcasting of a signal. The response is usually powered by means of backscattering the RF energy from the reader, where energy is reflected back to the reader as with passive tags. An additional application for the battery is to power data storage. If energy from the reader is collected and stored to emit a response in the future, the tag is operating active.

Whereas in passive tags the power level to power up the circuitry must be 100 times stronger than with active or semi-active tags, also the time consumption for collecting the energy is omitted and the response comes with shorter latency time.

The enhanced sensitivity of semi-passive tags places higher demands on the reader concerning separation in denser population of tags. Because an already weak signal is backscattered to the reader from a larger number of tags and from longer distances, the separation requires more sophisticated anti-collision concepts, better signal processing and some more intelligent assessment of which tag might be where. For passive tags, the reader-to-tag link usually fails first. For semi-passive tags, the reverse (tag-to-reader) link usually collides first. Semi-passive tags have three main advantages: greater sensitivity than passive tags; longer battery powered life cycle than active tags; they can perform active functions such as temperature logging under their own power, even when no reader is present for powering the circuitry. Most semi-passive tags use the 2.4 GHz frequency which has shown to be less reliable in RF challenged environments where frozen items, dense metal, and other elements that are hostile to RF are found. This is far less common with fully active tags that broadcast at the 433 MHz frequency. (Chemical & Engineering News magazine. August 04 2008)

Radio frequency identification in Health care

Health care providers are recognizing the benefits of adopting (RFID) technology into their operations, in order to enhance health care service delivery. The availability and use of inventive new RFID-enabled information technology applications are helping providers to track medical equipment and supplies more efficiently, verify the authenticity and administration of drugs, and improve patient safety and security, such as by using RFID-enabled identification bracelets for newborns and patients.

RFID becomes useful in health care for instance where both patients and staff are constantly on the move, hospitals face significant challenges in managing the cautious and attentive process of patient care. Also, with patients often scheduled for several, consecutive procedures, knowledge of their location helps greatly improve the patient-care process and helps manage schedules. Locating medical staff is also important. And it is both ways: in case of emergencies in which a particular physician is required immediately and also to locate and help the staff in case they need assistance themselves.

Tracking of medical devices and other assets also make us of RFID. These equipments include medical devices like infusion pumps, portable x-ray machines, and patient monitoring devices, as well as other movable assets such as wheelchairs, gurneys, and stretchers. Inability to quickly search for missing equipment results in the loss of productive hours: instead of attending to patients, nurses spend their time seeking the devices. The capability to locate goods immediately saves much time cuts the money spent on replacing lost equipment.

RFID tags are also being attached to people, such as newborns whose security in the hospital can be better ensured with an RFID wristband. Additionally, radio frequency IDs can track clinicians within the hospital so they can be reached quickly in an emergency; emergency departments can use it to follow patient charts and improve efficiency; the operating room can use RFID to reduce wrong-site surgery or other patient identification errors. Other various uses is the ability to positively identify patients, prescribe and check drug interactions at the point of care, quickly checking a patient’s blood type, matching newborn infants with their parents, and triggering a lock-down after the unauthorized removal of an infant from a secured area. (Radiology in Hospitals. 2003)

RFID is also used for quality assurance applications. This may include improved instrument tracking for infection control purposes. Some vendors supply RFID-enabled trays that can be tracked through central sterilizing departments.

RFID technology can be used for inventory to monitor access to facilities or secure areas, or to monitor patterns of activity. RFID systems can also be designed to enhance security and safety.

A tag may contain information about products or people, their physical location in real time, and other information such as lot number and expiration date for medical supplies and drugs, patient allergies or blood type, and more. When transmitted to a reader within the facility, the information can be stored in a database or used by staff.

In the past, most health care facilities have kept track of their various resources and patients manually, or through the use of bar coding. RFID is a tool that can further enhance and supplement these efforts. Supply chain applications which include high-cost items like pacemakers, defibrillator, and artificial joints. The supply chain for these items is complex, and they are often supplied on consignment. They also require a high degree of traceability from the supplier to the patient. (Fisher, Jill A. 2006).

Quality assurance applications may include improved instrument tracking for infection control purposes. Some vendors supply RFID-enabled trays that can be tracked through central sterilizing departments.  Although there are potential long-term benefits of RFID, it appears that widespread adoption of the technology for supply chain applications is still a long way off. This may even be true in the retail industry, where large companies, such as WalMart have already invested considerable capital in RFID projects.

Health-care providers around the world have been using or testing RFID technology in a variety of contexts for several years. For example, RFID technology has successfully been used to tag pharmaceutical products to reduce the risk of counterfeit medications use in the United Kingdom. (Radiology in Hospitals. 2003)

RFID is also proving to be very useful in identifying patients, increasing safety and reducing incidents of mistaken identity during critical surgery. It is being successfully used to locate patients needing extra care, such as the elderly, or patients suffering from Alzheimer or memory loss. Medical equipment is being more rapidly located and tracked within health-care facilities, leading to more effective use of resources. Waste management has also been improved through the use of RFID by being able to track toxic wastes by tagging them.

In February 2004, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recognized the potential of RFID information technologies to combat counterfeit pharmaceuticals and to provide more effective fulfillment of U.S.-mandated drug pedigree requirements. In the same year FDA issued a report recommending that drug makers use RFID to track bottles of the most commonly counterfeited drugs, with eventual extension to more drugs over time. (Science Direct journal. 2006).

Hand-washing compliance to reduce the spread of infections has seen the advent of an automatic hand sanitizing system which uses RFID to monitor how well health-care workers wash their hands. The wash cycle automatically starts when the caregiver’s hands are placed into the machine’s cylindrical cavity. Infection due to health care affect nearly 2 million people yearly in the U.S., and are responsible for approximately 80,000 deaths each year, according to a guide published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in collaboration with the Infectious Disease Society of America (IDSA) and the Society of Health care Epidemiology of America (SHEA). The transmission of disease causing organisms often occurs via the contaminated hands of health-care workers. When washing hands, a caregiver wearing an RFID badge is identified by the machine’s RFID interrogator. The device records the date and time, as well as the beginning and end of the wash cycle, and then communicates that information to the database. If a caregiver removes the hands before the 10-second cycle finishes, the interrogator transmits this information to the back-end database. (Fisher, Jill A. and Monahan, Torin. 2006).

In Texas University Medical Center researchers have recently began using RFID to manage the supply of chemicals and other materials used in biological research. The Center is using two storage cabinets fixed with RFID interrogators. Items stored inside the cabinets have RFID tags attached to them. Every authorized researcher at the university has been issued an RFID key card carrying a unique six-digit ID number that is used to open the lock. The interrogator reads the key card’s ID number and the item tags in the cabinet before and after it has been opened, enabling the software application to calculate what has been removed, and to update the on line inventory data. This information is accessible via the Web by university administrators, researchers and suppliers, and generates e-mail messages to the school’s accounts payable department and to the person who removed the items. Besides recording each transaction, the system helps suppliers know immediately what supplies have been used, what needs to be paid for and what needs replacing. (Texas university magazine. 2007)

A well-known medical practice with diagnosis and treatment facilities scattered across the U.S. piloted an RFID system to allow medical practitioners to better manage specimens of patient tissue. Deployed at endoscopy facilities, the tissue samples are tagged and tracked from the moment they are collected until they are delivered to the pathology laboratory for analysis, a series of steps characterized as crucial. The pilot lasted five months, and the demonstrable benefits included accurate data communication and verification, as well as improved efficiencies in specimen management.

In Malaysia, the government and three medical institutions are testing an RFID system for tracking blood bags, with the ultimate goal of eventually equipping more than 300 other government and private hospitals and clinics. The system combines blood bag tagging with smart cabinets to enable automated, efficient track-and-trace visibility. Eventually the system, if successful, will be used to manage Malaysia’s entire blood bank, which includes 500,000 transfusions annually. The expected benefits include improved blood bag identification, inventorying, and logistics. Cross-matching, in which a recipient’s blood type is matched to available donated blood, will be streamlined. Internal blood management processes will also be made more efficient.

A Southeast Asian RFID systems provider has introduced RFID-enabled products designed to help health-care providers track pharmaceuticals and monitor drug administration, to make sure that correct doses are given. The company’s intelligent medicine-dispensing system combines RFID tags and readers, work flow software, electronic medical records (EMRs) and a central database in an integrated solution. This enables nurses and doctors to view patient records, update them in real-time, and double-check prescription dosages at the moment they administer them. The systems can also automatically send prescriptions to pharmacists.

An acute-care and teaching hospital in New Jersey is implementing an RFID-enabled patient record management solution. Seeking increased efficiency and compliance with Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) which places heightened importance on patient information management, the hospital has targeted its Sleep Centers, which provide comprehensive evaluation and treatment for patients experiencing sleep-related problems. The Centers manage 5,000 patient files. Each file is tagged with an RFID tag, allowing it to be tracked from the moment it is created for a new patient until the file is retained in storage. RFID readers are positioned in key locations around the center to enable automatic tracking and encoding of the tags as they are moved from one place to another. Reads and writes to the tags are dynamically updated in the central database, ensuring real-time, accurate location data. (Science Direct journal. 2006).

Doctors at the University Of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, working with engineers from the University of Texas, Arlington, have developed innovative RFID-based medical technology to detect gastro-esophageal reflux disease, caused by stomach contents moving up the esophagus. The condition, commonly referred to as esophageal reflux or GERD, is estimated to affect as many as 19 million people. The new solution combines RFID with sensor technology to measure and transmit data from within a patient’s body. A dime-sized RFID chip is inserted into the esophagus, where it remains pinned until a physician removes it. Equipped with an electrical impulse sensor, the chip measures particular impulses that indicate the presence of acidic or non-acidic liquids in the esophagus. These collected measurements are transferred from the RFID chip to a wireless receptor hanging around the patient’s neck. (Bureau. B. S Prabau and Gadh.2008)

Critics of Radio Frequency Identification System

Few topics have elicited such strong views among the privacy community, medical practitioners, ethicists, consumer and civil rights groups, technologists, and public policy and lawmakers than proposals for using any type of technology to automatically and remotely identify and track human beings without their consent.  These fears include: furtive identification of individuals by known and unknown parties, without their prior knowledge or consent.

Systemic tracking and surveillance of individuals by known and unknown parties, without prior knowledge or consent; The construction of histories and profiles about individuals and their interactions, without  the individual’s prior knowledge or consent; Correlation of acquired data with contextual and other information obtained elsewhere; Unwanted or incorrect inferences about the individual derived from the data; Unauthorized revelation of personal and private facts and disclosure to others; The inherent imbalance of power and potential for undesirable social engineering, control and discrimination on the basis of RFID-generated data.(David. M. 2007)

Although the National Stroke Association has recognized that RFIF implants play a critical role in  assisting medical professionals in responding to stroke patients controversy remains when it comes to the same implants on children.

Apart from the theological disquiet, many critics find it hard to believe whether insertion of chips would actually protect lost or kidnapped children because implantable tags don’t have any GPS capability, so they only would work when chipped kids are brought into an emergency room. If readers are widely adopted at hospitals, then there is some logic to thinking that missing children could be recovered if they are brought in for medical care. But even so, the odds that chipped yet missing children would be brought into such hospitals are very slim.

There have also been scattered claims of RFID being a potential mutagen due the radioactive rays emitted. (Gilbert A. 2003)

Conclusion

In health care, RFID has the potential to achieve improvements in both supply chain productivity and patient safety applications. However, the technology is more likely to be successful if evaluated for closed-system applications first, where deployment and subsequent changes are within the control of the individual organization. The introduction of a new technology like RFID often causes a stir of interest and excitement about its capabilities. However, RFID will likely go through a stage where initial enthusiasm is tempered by practical cost-benefit considerations. The outcome of these will be appropriate deployment of the technology. Well-developed standards already exist at different technology levels, including the protocol, communication, and data levels. Using the existing ISO specifications, data can be encoded to RFID tags to guarantee continuity worldwide. This approach also ensures that RFID will be able to co-exist with current barcode standards, which will likely be required for the foreseeable future. The ISO-based RFID standard is also independent of technology, so the data structure can be coded to any of the accepted frequencies and protocols under ISO18000. (Patricia. Toni.2008)

References

– Frequency Identification (RFID) in Europe. (March 2007).steps towards a policy framework

http://eurlex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/site/en/com/2007/com2007_0096en01.pdf.

-Gilbert A. (2003). Privacy calls for RFID regulations. Health care journal. Pp-24

-New scripts, chemical & engineering news magazine.  (August 04 2008) vol. 86 no. 31,

-Fisher, Jill A. (2006). Emerging Surveillance Regimes in Hospitals.  (pp. 77-88).

-Fisher, Jill A. and Monahan, Torin. (2006).Tracking the Social Dimensions of RFID Systems in Hospitals.  176-183

-Simon Garfinkel, “Adapting Fair Information Practices to Low-Cost RFID System,” in Simon Garfinkel and Beth Rosenberg.  RFID: Applications, Security, and Privacy, New Jersey: Pearson Education, 2005, p. 522.

-Bearing point (2007). RFID in Health care: Poised for Growth Publication. p. 32-35

-Prabau and Gadh (2008) Radio frequency Identification: Beyond Bearing point. p. 12

-David. M (2007). Implantable may be easy but does it mean it is Ethical. Editorial Electronic Design 17-18

– Patricia. Toni (2008) Handbook of Informatics for Nurses & Healthcare Professionals: Hebda. Prentice hall. New York.   p. 27

– Sohraby. M (2007) Wireless Sensor Networks: Technology, Protocols, and Applications. John Wiley. New York. p. 12-18

07 Oct 2009

Sample Essay: Research:Mixing Stimulants With Depressants

Alcohol,  the most widely sought after stimulant that is being used and consumed ever since civilization saw its dawn, is today the most critical element that threatens the social, economic and moral harmonics of our  surroundings. When on one hand the liquid is an indispensable asset for numerous chemical experiments and the production of uncountable products that we use so commonly in our everyday lives, the same is again on the other hand a serious threat to the sustenance of calm and health in our society. “Most people aren’t even aware that some energy drink manufacturers are adding alcohol to their beverages,” said Pat Bird, Utah County Division of Substance Abuse prevention coordinator. “They can be extremely hard to identify, using such phrases as ‘malt beverage’ and ‘A-L-C by weight’ to indicate they contain alcohol.”( Utah County Health Department.(2005)

Consumed moderately, alcoholic beverages cause relaxation and are even on many occasions vital medically prescribed drugs, especially for coronary cardiac ailments. Consumed in excess however, alcohol poisons the human living system and is considered a most dangerous health hazard that ruins man of his health, wealth and family, leaving him diseased and destitute.

Undoubtedly enough, stimulants and depressants stand first in the list of the major causes of mental and social illnesses today. Alcohol and stimulant abuse may be defined as a state of a person’s life when the consumption of alcohol interferes with his or her effective physical, social, or economic functioning. This abuse is very rapidly, becoming an extremely difficult problem to sort out in the society, especially when liquor consumption cannot be entirely be abolished be banned by the law. Statistics from all over the world reveal that most incidents of road accidents, homicides and suicides occur as a result of alcohol and stimulant abuse. Moreover, most social and domestic sicknesses like job absenteeism, spousal and child abuses and crimes against valuable property have been experimentally and statistically identified to be consequences of such abuse.

Several surveys and findings reveal the existence of more than around 17 million alcohol abusers in the United States (The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism), of which between 12 and 14 million are adults who are chronic alcoholics. The result is the death of not less than one-tenth of a million Americans each year. And the worst side of this fearful truth is that the numbers are rising in an increasing rate.  Other statistics also reveal that several of the couples that left each other in the United States in the past ten years or so, had a member addicted to alcoholism.

The curse of addiction to depressants not only does demolish the addict but his family and loved ones is more to suffer as well. When a parent or both are alcoholic, it is very easy for the child to walk the wrong road. So it’s not only the seventeen million addicts we are talking about, it is their entire families, friends, acquaintances and in fact every single individual in touch with the person who is affected.

When consumed moderately and under control, the aftermaths of alcohol consumption generally leads to a mild prosthetic effect causing relaxation and stress relief. However, when consumed in excess, the same may lead to complete losses of coordination, vision, balance and speech, all these being signals of acute alcohol intoxication. Most law-enforcement agencies regard a meager .08 percentage of alcohol in the bloodstream as evidence of intoxication but larger amounts of alcohol in the blood can lead to the impairment of the brain, damage of the liver, unconsciousness or even death. An extreme overdose, leads to alcohol poisoning that can be fatal.

Several factors come into account when we speak of the causes of alcoholism and stimulant intake. They can be genetic and hereditary. Physical, psychological and environmental factors are as critical. Experiments and researches over the past 30 years say that a person’s risk of getting addicted about five times more if a parent is alcoholic. However, quite a few exceptions have also been noticed. Consumption of alcohol, although only for a few hours produces a prosthetic effect that momentarily increases the reaction time to the incidents around. This is the basic reason why alcohol abuse brings numerous road accidents every day. Not only do depressants affect the human body physically but they bring numerous mental and psychic ailments and disorders too. Most chronic in takers tend to get detached from society gradually as consumption increases.

SUMMARY:

The abuse creates dejection, frustration and panic almost unconsciously. Surveys conducted all over the world bring into light a common fact, a fact that most addicts tend to gradually move out from their social and domestic lives, that includes their general schedule, their family, acquaintances and loved ones, either consciously or otherwise. The most common symptoms of addiction to chronic alcoholism with stimulant abuse are depression and unhappiness, sleeplessness, losses at work or study, poor judgment, fluctuations in mood and other common health problems. Most alcoholics drink to combat personal problems with family and society. There are also evidences of heavy drinkers experiencing memory blackouts during or after drinking.

Almost all scientists and doctors define chronic alcoholism as a progressive and potentially fatal disease.  They characterize alcoholism by an incessant craving for, increased tolerance of, physical dependence upon, and loss of control over drinking liquor. The effect of prolonged addiction to alcohol is realized differently by others around. While some chronic alcoholics behave very drunk, others may exercise enough control over themselves to give the appearance normality and well in accordance with everyday affairs.

However, in any case, alcoholism can lead to numerous physical problems including hypoglycemia, brain and heart damage, end-stage liver damage, high blood pressure, enlarged blood vessels in the skin, pancreatitis and chronic gastritis.

Most chronic in takers of stimulants with depressants are devoid of adequate diets that can obviously result in acute nutritional deficiencies due to fluctuations in the balanced diet. Alcoholism can also lead to the damage of the fetus in pregnant women and impotency in men. An elevated risk of cancer of the breast, esophagus, liver, larynx, stomach, pancreas and the upper gastrointestinal tract are common consequences of prolonged chronic alcoholism.  Most consumers of depressants typically incur liver mall functions and are openly prone to cirrhosis.

It is often very difficult to come out of addiction to depressants. The task becomes certainly easier if family and friends support from behind. Perhaps the best way to deal with chronic alcoholics is to talk smoothly to them, in a non-judgmental way about our feelings concerning the person’s drinking. Addicts tend to become very rigid about their drinking and try to rationalize and justify their habits. So instead of accusing them and blaming them for their irresponsibility, trying to convince them and make them realize that such addiction shall eventually ruin their social and domestic life circle would be a better idea.

And finally, we must never forget that every individual, an addict to depressants or not, is hungry for love and affection, this certainly being the most common reason for people to indulge into alcohol addiction. Every addict has his or her own reason to have indulged into the habit. We must try to understand the problem and reason and then try to help him escape the hell.

Reference:

Utah County Health Department.(2005) Mixing Stimulants And Depressants Is A Growing Trend In Energy Drinks Retrieved July 25, 2008 from

http://www.emaxhealth.com/76/10821.html

05 Sep 2009

Sample Essay: Social Problem/ Issue

Introduction

Though pregnancy is still common to women in their twenties, teenage pregnancy still remains. Teenage pregnancy is one of the most prevalent social problems. At a very early age, young women become pregnant when they should still be in school. The causes of teenage pregnancy or the driving force which leads these women into premarital sex may be varied. They might be seeking for attention form their parents which they thin they can find through companionship with the opposite sex. The impulsiveness of teenagers may also bring them the fate. Since teenage years is the time wherein teenagers ask so many questions about themselves and become curious about many things, they may be led by their curiosity into it which later resulted to pregnancy. Teenage pregnancy not only takes the teens out of school but also adds to another social problem. It is just a chain of social problems one leading into the other. Usually young women at their teens would be confused when they found out that they are pregnant. Becoming a teenage mom would be very scary hence they would tend to abort the baby. Abortion rate is basically affected by the number of teenage pregnancies. Young women who get pregnant at their teens invites more problem particularly that their body isn’t ready to bear just yet; it may cause complications to both her and the baby.  The problem is more than just the health of the teenage mom and the baby but it will also invite emotional and social stresses to the mother.

This paper aims to answer the most important questions regarding teenage pregnancy. The health effects of the pregnancy to the mother’s young body and to her baby will be examined. The social problems that may arise with teenage pregnancy and the emotional stress that a teenage mom may experience will be tackled. This is a social issue thus it is part of the government’s responsibility to help the teenage women stay away from this problem as well as heal the wounds that teenage pregnancy may have caused to those who are already afflicted.

Literature Review

Teenage pregnancy though is slowly declining in number since 1990 (Agence France-Presse, 2008). In the United States, teenage pregnancies have declined steadily but it remains to have the highest rate of teen pregnancies among the fully industrialized nations (The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, 2007).  Effective birth control measures may have helped in lowering the cases or may be there was lesser sexual activity among teens. Though a dramatic decline of 23% was observed, teenage pregnancy still remains high. Approximately 1 million teenage girls become pregnant every year in the United States alone (Women’s Health Channel, 2008). In 2004, about 6.4 million pregnancies were recorded in which 4.11 million ended in live births, 1.22 were aborted and 1.06 million were lost due to miscarriages or stillbirths (Agence France-Presse, 2008). Most teenage mothers become pregnant again in as early as two years after the first pregnancy (Women’s Health Channel, 2008). About 85% of teenage pregnancies are unplanned which leads to more problems in any society.  Teen mothers are usually at risk for not having prenatal care as about 7.2% of pregnant young girls do not seek any medical advice (Weiss, 2008).

Teenage are mostly unplanned and facing it can be very difficult for the teenager particularly the mother. There would be confrontations with each other and with themselves. They may decide whether they should continue with the pregnancy despite the upcoming consequences or they may opt to abort it. One of the most immediate effects of teenage pregnancy however is the changes in her body that the teenage mother experiences. Since physical changes are obvious win a pregnant mother, the teenage mother may feel awkward about her body and may not like what she feels. Her lifestyle would be changed eventually and her hobbies such as sports may be limited by the growing baby inside her uterus (Pregnancy Center).

Teenage pregnancy brings along health problems to both the mother and the baby.  Low birthweight can attributed to the fact that teenage mothers do not gain adequate weight during pregnancy. This may in turn result to child mortality since babies’ with low birthweight are most likely to have organs which are not yet fully developed. Under developed organs would lead to sever complications as bleeding in the brain, respiratory disorders and intestinal problems. Since most teenage pregnancies can be considered unplanned or unwanted as the worst case scenario, the teenage mother tends to disregard the need for nutritious and healthy foods which is essential for the baby’s proper development. Poor eating habits and lack of nutritional supplement such as vitamins are just common things. Whereas nutritional counseling is one of the most important cares for the teenage mother and her baby especially that the body of a teenage mother is still growing and still needs nutritional support, this is actually disregarded. Some teenage mothers may even take drugs during pregnancy which can lead to major health complications to the baby. Alcohol use and cigarette smoking cannot be totally eliminated during teenage pregnancy because at most teenage mothers do not know its effect to their baby. Any substance taken during pregnancy is harmful as this may complicate pregnancy which may lead to premature birth and other birth complications (Weiss, 2008).

Everyone knows the importance of prenatal care during pregnancy. However, since most teenagers do not know this, they tend to ignore this and may even go through pregnancy without prenatal care at all hence they won’t be given proper advice on how to take care of their pregnancy. Delayed pregnancy testing can be the main cause for lack of prenatal care. But it also includes fear of the reality that they are pregnant and denial (Weiss, 2008). According to American Medical Association, babies born without prenatal care is as much as 4 times more likely to die before 1 year old (Women’s Health Channel, 2008).

Social, emotional and health problems may associate with teenage pregnancy. Worse is that the mother and the child shares these problems. A young girl would tend to become emotional affected should she learn about her pregnancy. She my fall into depression due to lack of someone to confide with about her situation or may become resentful about her partner for allowing such thing to happen. Frustration can also overcome them especially if they would begin thinking about herself becoming a worthless mother. The effects of peer pressure may even heighten at these times of the teenage mother’s life causing much emotional stress on her part (Teen Pregnancy Help, 2007).

Children born of teenage mothers usually do not receive adequate nutrition. They also tend to receive less health care, cognitive and social stimulation which may later result to their poor academic achievement. About 50% of children born to teenage parents are most likely to repeat the same grade level. Their school performance can be considered worse and they may not even complete high school The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, 2007). These children may also experience abuse as their mother may not have fully accepted the reality that she is already bearing a very big responsibility or neglect which may result from the lack of complete parents.  Recent analysis have shown that incidents of abuse and neglect per 1,000 families reached to 110. Usually this is a single-mother headed family (The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, 2007). Data says that about 13% of boys born to teenage mothers become delinquents and 22% of girls born to teenage mothers may share the same fate as their mother’s, becoming a teenage mother herself (Women’s Health Channel, 2008).

Teenage births associates with low annual income for the mother which may due to the fact that the teenage mother may never be able to finish school (Women’s Health Channel, 2008). In 1990, a study showed that almost half of all teenage mothers who were unmarried were receiving welfare within the first five years of the child. The increasing number of single-parent families can be accounted for the persistent poverty for a period of twenty years as documented in 1998 Economic Report of the President (The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, 2007).

For the teenage fathers, they may have increased delinquent behaviors and may become addicted to drugs. They may become social problems themselves. They too, may not be able to finish school as their attention should focus on the baby hence reduced earning potentials. In the United States, an estimated amount of $7 billion was spent on public assistance, child health care and involvement with criminal justice system (Women’s Health Channel, 2008).
In 1996, the National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy was organized. The concept underlined in this campaign is the country’s strategy to reduce rate of teen pregnancy in the aim to improve the overall well-being of a child and reduce persistent poverty. The fact that teenage pregnancy can lead to major consequences not only for the mother and baby’s health but to the society in general, this social problem must be addressed properly and immediately.

As of August 2006, twenty-one states and the District of Columbia all favored to allowing minors t have access to contraceptive services in spite of lack of parents’ consent. Texas and Utah however requires parents; consent before thy can have access to these services. In publicly-funded family planning clinics which give counseling, records that about ninety percent of their clients are below 18 (Guttmacher Institute, 2006).

Conclusion

Teenage pregnancy remains an ugly part of the society. When these teenagers should have been in school, they may become corrupted and robbed off of the life of being a teenager since pregnancy and giving birth entails a very big responsibility.  First thing is that to avoid this problem, parents should be the first to educate their children about premarital sex so they would know and may help them avoid the consequences which includes teenage pregnancy.

Reference

Weiss, Robin Elise LCCE (2008).Teen Pregnancy. Retrieved May 6, 2008 from, http://pregnancy.about.com/cs/teenpregnancy/a/teenpreg.htm

(2008).US teen pregnancy rate near historic low-study. Agence France-Presse. Retrieved May 6, 2008 from, http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/breakingnews/

world/view/20080415-130440/US-teen-pregnancy-rate-near-historic-low-study

(2008). Teen Pregnancy: Overview, Health Risks to the Baby and other Consequences of Teenage Pregnancy. Women’s Health Channel. Retrieved May 6, 2008 from, http://www.womenshealthchannel.com/
teenpregnancy/index.shtml

(2007).Effects of Teen Pregnancy. Retrieved May 6, 2008 from,

http://www.teenpregnancyhelp.net/effects-of-teen-pregnancy.html

(2007). Teen Pregnancy- So What? The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. Retrieved May 6, 2008 from, http://www.teenpregnancy.org/whycare/sowhat.asp76

2006).In Brief: Facts on American Teens’ Sexual and Reproductive Health. Guttmacher Institute. Retrieved May 6, 2008 from, http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/fb_ATSRH.html

Cause and Effects of Teen Pregnancy. Retrieved May 6, 2008 from, http://www.pregnancycenters.org/cause-teen-pregnancy.asp

05 Aug 2009

Sample Essay: Major Health Care Trend Occuring in New York State

TECHNOLOGICAL CHALLENGES FOR HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONALS IN THE STATE OF NEW YORK

With all of the rules, regulations, mandates, guidelines, certifications and restrictions placed on the health care industry, managing a viable Health Care Organization in one of this Nation’s most highly populated states can literally make a manager sick.  An advance in technology and the demand for more information faster requires a big change in the way business has been conducted over the past few decades.  Meeting the health care demands of an aging society needing health care means keeping up with those demands and keeping abreast of advancements in the technological society to stay ahead of emerging demands.

Technological challenges top the list of the most recent changes a Health Care Manager has had to face over the last ten years.  The biggest technological challenge has been the changeover of the paper version of the Federal Medicare and the State Medicaid systems to an electronic version.  As if these programs weren’t difficult enough to decipher, now we have to process it via binary code.  Technology can be a wonderful thing but it diminishes the capability of human discussion for matters that may contain extenuating circumstances.  Or, where the problem is not cut and dry so may not fall into an “A-Typical” diagnosis code.

eMedNY is the State of New York’s Medicaid claims processing system.  A contractor, Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC) is responsible for running this state’s electronic Medicaid filing system.  This system allows medical Providers to submit and track claims and receive payments electronically.  One of the challenges with this type of service and the magnitude of accessibility is computer fraud.  With the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996, guarding accessibility to patient information became crucial to the daily operations of health care Providers.  eMedNY and Computer Sciences Corporation to not take responsibility if information is “not protected” at no fault of the system.  A recent warning was issued to all Providers that an unauthorized source was requesting information regarding users access ID’s.  Once notified, eMedNY and DHHS relinquish any responsibility for the release of any Protected Health Information (PHI) and the burden of security is the responsibility of the Provider who maintains this information.

In order to use the electronic Medicaid system, the medical provider was register is National Provider Identifier with the State of New York Department of Health and Human Services.  The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 brought about the mandate of a National Provider Identifier.  The State of New York Medicaid System transitioned to the use of the National Provider Identifier (NPI) for all Providers.  The final rule for adopting an NPI as the standard unique health identifier was published by the New York Department of Health and Human Services on January 23, 2004.  This ruling became effective May 23, 2005 and was mandated for usage by the New York Medicaid System on May 23, 2007.

Another challenge for the health care Provider is training on the electronic Medicaid system.  There are manuals and self help guides available from CSC in written and download versions, as well as training seminars.  The training seminars are held regionally and are limited to two (2) employees per Medicaid Provider ID.  They are also limited to specific job types like the Physician or his billing representative, to name a few.  So, a large organization that may have one Medicaid ID could not send their Human Resources Training Manager as he/she would not be an eligible participant.  So essentially, large practices and facilities would have to send two (2) qualifying candidates to the seminar who in turn would come back and teach the rest of the staff on the system.  Otherwise, the practice/facility would have to pay Computer Sciences Corporation a fee to provide on-site training to all staff members who would use the system.

Access to eMedNY claims and payment center isn’t as simple as clicking a link on the website main page.  A Point of Service (POS) device must be in place at the billing location in order to send and receive information through this service.  The VeriFone POS device is available from the Computer Sciences Corporation at a cost of $817 (includes shipping and handling).  Set up is the responsibility of the recipient.  The problem with this Point of Service Terminal is there is no guarantee it will work with the Providers telephone service; and neither the CSC nor the New York Department of Health can provide assurance that the device will work at the Provider’s location.  ePaces, short for electronic Provider Assisted Claim Entry System is a free web based application to the New York Department of Health, Medicaid Division.  It was developed by the Computer Services Corporation when New York’s Medicaid system converted from paper filing to electronic filing.  Paper filing is now the required practice for submitted Medicaid claims.  Paper filing of Medicaid claims in the State of New York is no longer practiced.  Though Medicaid Providers can submit their claims through this system, they cannot receive electronic payments from Medicaid using this method and would have to wait for paper check.  As will the POS device, this system access is as simple as clicking on a website.  The Provider’s computer software and internet access must meet specific criteria in order to be compatible with the ePaces Program.  To gain access to ePaces, the Provider must first ensure he has registered his NPI with the New York Department of Health and Human Services.  The computer software must have Explorer v4.01 or Netscape v.4.7 or higher, have NS Windows, Macintosh or Linux and Internet access via broadband connection or dial-up at 56Kbps or greater.

With all of the complications required of medical practices to obtain payments for Medicaid patients, payment which are well below their nominal fees and are rates they have no negotiating power over, that the cost is off-set in charges to private payers and private managed care organizations who do not rely on government funding.  The decline in quality health care in New York State and around the United States is partially contributed to the complexity of trying to keep up with the technological challenges and mandates of the government regulated programs that affect the health care industry.

RESOURCES

All resources were researched via the world wide web

health.state.ny.us

New York Department of Health, Press Releases 2000 – 2007

NY Heath Care Reform Act, 2007

public.leginfo.state.ny.us

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