Monthly Archives: October 2012

Association of SIDS and Infant Mortality Programs Supports the New Safe to Sleep Initiative



How One Boston Medical Center Program Saves Lives and Money

All it takes is some simple post-op activities like deep coughing to decrease risk of major complications.


Respiratory complications, including pneumonia, are some of the most common complications that occur after an operation. Dr. David McAneny, a surgeon at Boston Medical Center (BMC) and a professor at Boston University School of Medicine, says that there was not a lot of existing data on the best practices for post-op pulmonary care. “There is a lot of medical literature about ventilator-associated pneumonias, but little is written about standard postoperative pulmonary care,” McAneny says.


Data from the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program showed that BMC had a greater than expected incidence of pulmonary complications, so BMC developed the I COUGH program to decrease these incidents.

I COUGH stands for:

  • Incentive spirometry (a test measuring lung function)
  • Coughing/deep breathing
  • Oral care
  • Understanding (patient and staff education)
  • Getting out of bed at least three times daily
  • Head of bed elevation

“Our efforts were aimed at correcting basic nursing interventions as well as intensified patient and family education before the operation and in the immediate postoperative period,” McAneny said.

The I COUGH initiative was implemented by the hospital’s multidisciplinary team composed of surgeons, surgical residents, internal medicine physicians, nurses, quality improvement and infection control experts, respiratory therapists, and physical therapists.  “Because the program is hard wired into the computerized physician orders, the I COUGH program steps are automatically ordered on all patients,” McAneny says. “Our efforts were aimed at correcting basic nursing interventions as well as intensified patient and family education before the operation and in the immediate postoperative period.”

The goal of the program is to decrease the number of post-op respiratory complications hospital-wide by at least 50 percent and so far, the program has been working. In just two years since I COUGH was implemented, BMC has seen a dramatic decline in venous thromboembolic (a blood clot that forms within a vein) complications after surgery. “We are excited about these results,” McAneny says.

These findings were presented at the 2012 American College of Surgeons Annual Clinical Congress earlier this month, and hospitals around the country have already inquired about developing the program at their facilites. Not only does it help save lives, it also saves money.

“We have two campuses and are standardizing the care between the campuses,” McAneny says.  “The costs of these serious complications can range from $18,000 to $52,000 per event, and we estimate at least $1 million in savings at our institution from these interventions.”


Courtesy of Boston Magazine…


Fewer Teens are Drinking and Driving

Drinking and driving among adolescents aged 16 and older fell by 54% during the last 20 years. 


Motor vehicle crashes remain the leading cause of death among adolescents aged 16 to 19 years; in 2010, 20% of drivers involved in a fatal crash in this age group had blood alcohol concentrations (BACs) >0%. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) analyzed data from the 1991–2011 Youth Risk Behavior Surveys (YRBSs) to provide a more detailed picture of this public health problem. The YRBS is an in-school survey of 11,000 to 16,000 students from all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

The prevalence of drinking and driving remained stable from 1991 to 1997 (22.3%) but then fell steadily to 10.3% by 2011. In 2011, boys were significantly more likely to drink than girls (11.7% vs. 8.8%), and white (10.6%) and Hispanic (11.5%) students were significantly more likely to drink than black students (6.6%). Those 18 years and older had the highest rate of drinking and driving (14.5%), but 7.2% of 16-year-olds also reported driving after consuming alcohol. Binge drinkers (≥5 drinks in a row at least once in the 30 days before the survey) were three times more likely to drink and drive than nonbinge drinkers (32.1% vs. 9.7%).

Comment: The CDC estimates that minimum drinking age, “zero tolerance” BAC, and graduated driver licensing laws contributed to the 54% reduction. Although this report highlights the substantial progress we have made, data from the 2010 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System suggests more progress is needed: 81% of drivers aged 16 to 19 years with positive BACs involved in fatal crashes had levels greater than the legal limit for adults (0.08%).

Alain Joffe, MD, MPH, FAAP


Citation(s)Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Vital signs: Drinking and driving among high school students aged ≥16 years — United States, 1991–2011. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2012 Oct 5; 61:796.




Client Outlook Signs Key Agreement With Boston Medical Center


Client Outlook To Deploy eUnity(TM) At World Renowned Boston Medical 



WATERLOO, ONTARIO–(Marketwire – Oct 23, 2012) –  Client Outlook Inc., an industry leader in clinical image viewing solutions, is pleased to announce a signed agreement with Boston Medical Center (BMC) to deploy eUnity™ as the enterprise results distribution solution for the hospital”s multi-modality, cardiology image management needs.

Looking to communicate critical patient and image information across its complex network of cardiac care, BMC needed a clinical results distribution tool that could not only effortlessly integrate with the hospital”s existing Philips Xcelera Cardiology PACS but also flawlessly deliver and display those images to physicians with time-sensitive precision and accuracy. The ability to maintain the elevated standard for clinician communication and clinical workflow, and engage with high-resolution, multi-modality cardiology images from a simple web interface were key decision criteria. Held to a rigorous demonstration process, the eUnity™ universal viewer emerged as the only industry solution able to easily display the mission-critical Xcelera PACS cardiology images to the BMC enterprise patient care teams with the required level of quality and performance.

Enabling BMC to share information with affiliated hospitals, clinics or other care-delivery sites in the larger healthcare enterprise is fundamental to BMC”s principles of delivering the highest quality of cardiac patient care. By providing untethered access to clinical data, eUnity™ gets the technology out of the way and allows clinicians to get back to basics – the practice of patient care.

“We are extremely pleased to be working with BMC to support the hospital”s enterprise cardiology imaging needs,” says Brenda Rankin, executive vice president and co-founder of Client Outlook. “eUnity™ is the only universal viewer on the market that is specifically optimized for the demanding needs of critical care cardiology. The speed with which eUnity™ executes delivery and display of cardiac images amongst the network of physicians, clinicians and cardiologists at BMC underscores Client Outlook”s commitment to solutions that serve the critical needs of patient care, first and foremost.”

eUnity™ is now available for iOS on the Apple App Store and for the Playbook on Blackberry App World. When used on mobile devices, eUnity™ is for reference and referral only.

About Boston Medical Center

Boston Medical is a 496-bed academic medical center located in the heart of Boston”s historic South End. As the primary teaching affiliate for Boston University School of Medicine, BMC provides a comprehensive range of care – including inpatient, clinical and diagnostic services in more than 70 specialties and subspecialties of medicine and surgery – resulting in nearly one million patient visits per year. With a nationally ranked cardiac care service, BMC is rated number two in America for the fastest treatment of heart-attack patients with blocked arteries (according to national standards).

About Client Outlook, Inc.

Client Outlook is a healthcare company, first, a technology company second. Driven by our own personal healthcare experiences, we challenge ourselves every day to develop and deliver the most practical, useful and secure clinical mobility solutions for physicians and frontline healthcare professionals – right where healthcare happens. For more information about our company and our eUnity™ product suite, visit us on the web at


*Courtesy of Yahoo! Finance

Fall and Halloween Safety Tips!

Fall Safety Tips!

Children going back to school, the crisp air, and beautiful foliage can only mean one thing:  Fall has arrived!   Whether you enjoy fall by exploring the great outdoors or prefer to observe its beauty through the comfort of your own home, these safety tips will help keep you and your loved ones safe:   

 Friends don’t let friends drive drunk.  Remember to use a designated driver if you consume alcohol at any of the great sporting events and festivals this fall.        

 Always wear your helmet while biking.  It doesn’t matter where or how long you are riding, wearing a properly fitted helmet can save your life.    

 Look both ways before crossing the street.     

Leave your cell phone alone while walking, biking, and driving.

Sunscreen and bug spray are still important!  Remember that the weather may be cooling down, but the Sun is still strong enough to damage your skin at any time of the year.              

Always keep a close watch on children near grills and open flames.

Fall back!  Sunday November 4th is daylight savings.  Remember to turn your clocks back and also change the batteries in your smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detector.  Get in the habit of changing your batteries and making sure these life-saving devices are functioning each daylight savings period.           

Electrical outlet covers should be used when infants and small children are present.      

Trick-or-treat in groups, follow traffic signals, and eat only factory-wrapped candy to keep your Halloween spooky and safe.  Get more great trick-or-treat safety tips here. 

Youth or elder. Falls are a leading cause of injury, including falls from high above or low to the ground.  Prevent high falls by using window guards to protect young ones, keeping stairs safe by using baby gates, handrails, and keeping stairs clear of clutter, and reminding loved ones to avoid walking on wet leaves

Halloween Health and Safety Tips

For many people, autumn events like Halloween and Harvest Day are fun times to dress up in costumes, go trick-or-treating, attend parties, and eat yummy treats. These events are also opportunities to provide nutritious snacks, get physical activity, and focus on safety.  

Below are tips to help make the festivities fun and safe for trick-or-treaters and party guests.  

Going trick-or-treating?

  Two girls in halloween costumes - Halloween health and safety tips

Swords, knives, and similar costume accessories should be short, soft, and flexible.  

Avoid trick-or-treating alone. Walk in groups or with a trusted adult.  

Fasten reflective tape to costumes and bags to help drivers see you.  

Examine all treats for choking hazards and tampering before eating them. Limit the amount of treats you eat.  


Hold a flashlight while trick-or-treating to help you see and others see you. Always WALK and don’t run from house to house.  

Always test make-up in a small area first. Remove it before bedtime to prevent possible skin and eye irritation.  

Look both ways before crossing the street. Use established crosswalks wherever possible.  

Lower your risk for serious eye injury by not wearing decorative contact lenses.

Only walk on sidewalks whenever possible, or on the far edge of the road facing traffic to stay safe.

Wear well-fitting masks, costumes, and shoes to avoid blocked vision, trips, and falls.

Eat only factory-wrapped treats. Avoid eating homemade treats made by strangers.

Enter homes only if you’re with a trusted adult.

Never walk near lit candles or luminaries. Be sure to wear flame-resistant costumes.

Expecting trick-or-treaters or party guests?

● Provide healthier treats for trick-or-treaters such as low-calorie treats and drinks. For party guests, offer a variety of fruits, vegetables, and cheeses.

● Use party games and trick-or-treat time as an opportunity for kids to get their daily dose of 60 minutes of physical activity.

● Be sure walking areas and stairs are well-lit and free of obstacles that could result in falls.

● Keep candle-lit jack-o’lanterns and luminaries away from doorsteps, walkways, landings, and curtains. Place them on sturdy tables, keep them out of the reach of pets and small children, and never leave them unattended.

● Remind drivers to watch out for trick-or-treaters and to drive safely.

Follow these tips to help make the festivities fun and safe for everyone!

For more information on Halloween safety

  • Halloween Food Safety
    Party food safety advice from the manager of the U.S. Department ofAgriculture Meat and Poultry Hotline.
  • Halloween Food Safety Tips
    Steps to help your children have a safe Halloween, and tips for Halloween parties, from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
  • Halloween Safety Tips
    Stay safe this Halloween with safety tips from the U.S. Consumer ProductSafety Commission. 

Content Source: CDC Office of Women’s Health


Massachusetts Silent Witness Exhibit Comes to BMC


The Domestic Violence Advisory Committee is hosting the MA Silent Witness Exhibit on Tuesday, Oct 16th from 10-2 in the Menino lobby. 

About the Exhibit:

The Silent Witness Exhibit is a traveling exhibit that uses art to educate and sensitize people to domestic violence. The Silent Witnesses are free-standing, life-size, red silhouettes each representing a woman, man, or child who was murdered in Massachusetts due to dating or domestic violence. Each witness displays the name and story of a homicide victim. Because these individuals no longer have a voice, the silhouettes are called Silent Witnesses. 




*Courtesy of the Silent Witness Exhibit and the Domestic Violence Advisory Committee