Tuesday January 28, 2020

Veterans can Now Access their VA Medical Records through their iPhones

Apple began working with the department this summer to allow access to health records from the system on iPhones

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Veterans, Medical, Records
FILE - Various apps are seen on an iPhone in New Orleans, Aug. 11, 2019. U.S. military veterans who get medical care from the Veterans Health Administration will be able to access their health records on their Apple devices, the company said this week. VOA

Apple Inc on Wednesday said that U.S. military veterans who use its iOS devices and get medical care from the Veterans Health Administration will be able to access their health records on the devices.

The Department of Veterans Affairs runs the largest integrated health care system in the United States, with 9 million veterans enrolled and more than 1,200 facilities. Apple began working with the department this summer to allow access to health records from the system on iPhones and other Apple mobile devices running its iOS operating system.

Veterans, Medical, Records
The Department of Veterans Affairs runs the largest integrated health care system in the United States, with 9 million veterans enrolled and more than 1,200 facilities. Pixabay

Apple has been working on partnerships with health care organizations to allow access to health records on its devices, promoting their privacy and security features. Data stored in the health app on iPhones is encrypted in such a way that Apple cannot read the data, even if the data is backed up to Apple’s iCloud service.

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Apple has also worked out similar health record access arrangements with about 400 groups in the health care industry, including Johns Hopkins, the University of California San Diego, Quest Diagnostics and Allscripts, the company said. Apple’s system allows the user to access records from all of those providers in one place on their device. (VOA)

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Cannabis Usage Common in Adults with Pain Disorders: Study

Cannabis use disorder more common in adults with pain

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Cannabis adults
Researchers have found that non-medical use of cannabis including frequent or problematic use is much more common in adults who have pain than in others. Pixabay

Researchers have found that non-medical use of cannabis including frequent or problematic use is much more common in adults who have pain than in others.

Since 1996, 34 US states have passed medical marijuana laws and 11 states have legalised recreational cannabis use.

Studies indicate that heavy cannabis use increases the risk of vehicle accidents, respiratory and psychiatric symptoms, and cannabis use disorder.

“Despite this evidence, many people view cannabis use as harmless, and non-medical use of cannabis on a daily or near-daily basis has increased,” said study lead author Deborah Hasin from Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons in the US.

“In our study, we hoped to identify factors–such as pain–that may increase the risk of cannabis use disorder,” Hasin added.

Cannabis adults
66 per cent of adults now view marijuana as beneficial for pain management, the researchers said. Pixabay

For the findings, published in the American Journal of Psychiatry, research team analysed data on marijuana use from the National Epidemiologic Surveys on Alcohol and Related Conditions in 2001-2002 and 2012-2013.

The researchers compared non-medical cannabis use patterns in adults with and without pain (approximately 20 per cent of participants in both surveys had moderate to severe pain).

Overall, non-medical marijuana use increased from about four per cent in 2002 to 9.5 per cent in 2013.

In addition, in the most recent survey, those with pain were significantly more likely to engage in frequent non-medical cannabis use than those without pain (5.0 per cent vs. 3.5 per cent).

According to the researchers, the risk of cannabis use disorder was also significantly higher in those with pain (4.2 per cent vs. 2.7 per cent).

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Although meta-analyses of cannabis for treating pain show only mixed efficacy, particularly for plant marijuana, 66 per cent of adults now view marijuana as beneficial for pain management, the researchers said.

“Given that about 20 of the adult population experienced moderate to severe pain, this puts a large group of US adults at risk for frequent non-medical use and cannabis use disorder,” Hasin said. (IANS)