Author Archives: Liz Seegert

Liz Seegert

About Liz Seegert

Liz Seegert (@lseegert), is AHCJ’s topic editor on aging. Her work has appeared in NextAvenue.com, Journal of Active Aging, Cancer Today, Kaiser Health News, the Connecticut Health I-Team and other outlets. She is a senior fellow at the Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement at George Washington University and co-produces the HealthCetera podcast.

Patient safety expert Wachter discusses evolution of technology in health care

Robert Wachter, M.D., chair of the Department of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, is considered the “father” of the hospitalist field and a leader in the patient safety field. He’s written six books, including “The Digital Doctor: Hope, Hype, and Harm at the Dawn of Medicine’s Computer Age,” which took a detailed look at the role of technology in health care. (We covered his 2015 talk to AHCJ-New York chapter members in this article).

Wachter was a keynote speaker at the recent Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine Conference in New Orleans – where he talked about medicine’s digital transformation and the upsides and the downsides that accompany progress. He sat with me for a brief interview prior to his presentation. Continue reading

‘Conservative diagnosis’ means judicious testing to avoid potential harm

Photo: Daniel Foster via Flickr

Balancing the challenges of underdiagnosis (missing or delaying important diagnoses) and overdiagnosis (labeling patients with diseases that may never cause suffering or death) can feel like walking across a canyon on a tightrope. Diagnostic errors occur in an estimated 10 percent to 20 percent of cases and will affect most Americans at least once in their lifetime. They are the leading cause of medical malpractice claims, harming more than 4 million people at a cost of more than $100 billion.  Continue reading

Conference among many efforts to reduce diagnostic errors

Photo: Matthew Hadley via Flickr

Every nine minutes, someone in a U.S. hospital dies due to a medical diagnosis that was wrong or delayed. This jarring fact is front and center on the home page of the Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine (SIDM). Reducing this number to zero is why some 400 physicians, nurses, patients, health institutions, nonprofits, and policymakers gathered in New Orleans this week for the 11th annual Diagnostic Error in Medicine Annual International Conference. Continue reading

New resources can help you better report on Parkinson’s disease

Photo: Alan Kotok via FlickrActor Alan Alda is among an estimated 10 million people worldwide living with Parkinson’s disease.

Parkinson’s disease (PD) can be a devastating diagnosis, but most people can lead full, active lives for many years thanks to medications that can control common symptoms, as well as surgical options, speech and physical therapy and lifestyle changes.

Actor Alan Alda, 82, recently revealed he had the condition during an appearance on CBS This Morning. He’s one of about 60,000 people in the U.S. diagnosed with PD each year. More than 10 million people worldwide are living with this progressive neurological disorder, according to the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation. There is no cure. Continue reading

Programs team up to help low-income seniors

Photo: SalFalko via Flickr

Habitat for Humanity and Johns Hopkins have teamed up to implement the CAPABLE program, in six new areas across the United States. The goal is to improve the lives of low-income older adults.

Community Aging in Place — Advancing Better Living for Elders, was co-developed by Sarah L. Szanton, Johns Hopkins School of Nursing (JHSON) professor for health equity and social justice to support aging-in-place services for this vulnerable, high-risk, high-needs population. Continue reading

NYC’s first lady urges reporters to tackle mental health issues

Photo: Liz Seegert/AHCJChirlane McCray, First Lady of New York City and founder of ThriveNYC, was the keynote speaker at the Urban Health Journalism Workshop.

Chirlane McCray is passionate about mental health. The first lady of New York City openly discusses how mental illness has affected her own family, including diseases like bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, PTSD and a relative who died by suicide. She brought that passion to her Oct. 19 lunchtime keynote at AHCJ’s Urban Health Journalism Workshop.

McCray founded ThriveNYC, a broad-based mental health initiative designed to reach deep into communities throughout the five boroughs and connect people with the counseling and services they need. But first, she told the room of journalists, you have to be able to push past the stigma and talk about it. Continue reading