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Monthly Archives: November 2009

MDGuidelines Free to Medical Students

medstudentMost physicians routinely treat working adults, yet occupational health fundamentals are rarely included in medical school curricula.

To help future physicians understand these critical issues, we at Reed Group have decided to offer medical students free access to MDGuidelines, our extensive database of return-to-work durations and treatment plans for disability, workers’ compensation and other medically-related work absences.

Why are we choosing to spearhead this much-needed educational agenda?

What people do for a living, and their ability to continuously perform on the job, have a huge impact on their health. There is a large amount of evidence showing that time off work is almost immediately detrimental to patients, and that ‘disability’ is a complex and potentially chronic syndrome that is not being handled well by many physicians. Yet occupational medicine is still overlooked or underserved in most medical schools. MDGuidelines can help educate the next generation of physicians in a critical area in which they are not currently getting much training.

We also hope that MDGuidelines will be a resource to help medical students manage a specific patient’s injuries or illnesses with respect to return-to-work outcomes and to measure their performance against other real-world experiences.

Managing patient treatment to evidence-based guidelines is critical. In return to work, we have the added advantage of clear case data against which to benchmark. In the big picture, return to work is one of the best available measures of healthcare outcomes. Tomorrow’s physicians will be better armed to deliver quality care from having used this important resource in school.

If you’re a medical student and want to receive your free subscription, email or call us (toll-free) 866.889.4449 or 720.379.6979.

Attending AAMC? Stop by our booth.

aamcsymbolAre you attending the AAMC (Association of American Medical Colleges) 2009 Annual Meeting in Boston next week (Nov 6-11)?

Stop by Reed Group’s booth (#605) and say hi. We’ll be happy to give you a demo of MDGuidelines, our extensive database of return-to-work durations and treatment plans for disability, workers’ compensation and other medically-related work absences.

Workplace Absence of the Week: H1N1 Flu

fluWith huge potential to cause workplace absences, H1N1 influenza is top of mind for most companies.

Influenza is an acute respiratory infection caused by one of three types of influenza viruses in the Orthomyoxoviridae family of viruses, which evolved from the combination of genes from human, pig, and bird flu. This strain has not been found in humans before, but its predecessor caused an international influenza outbreak (pandemic) more than 40 years ago (“2009-10 Influenza”).

The first cases of A H1N1 influenza were identified on April 2009, and by June 2009 the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the presence of a global pandemic (stage 6) after evidence of spreading in the southern hemisphere.

Initially, the severity of the 2009 outbreak was uncertain because most people are susceptible to this new strain of H1N1. Fortunately, most cases have been mild so far; the highest H1N1 flu-related morbidity and mortality rates have been reported among individuals of extreme ages, or those with other underlying medical conditions such as asthma, diabetes, obesity, heart disease, or a weakened immune system.

H1N1 flu symptoms are similar to those produced by other flu strains: fever, cough, sore throat, headache, body aches, chills, fatigue, vomiting, and diarrhea.

The H1N1 virus is susceptible to antiviral drugs, such as oseltamivir and zanamivir (neuraminidase inhibitors); sporadic cases of virus resistance have been reported. However, prevention of the transmission have been stressed has one of the best resources to fight the pandemic, with a combination of measures such has frequent hand washing; avoiding touch the own eyes, nose or mouth; minimizing social physical contact; avoiding crowded situations, and covering the nose and mouth with tissue or the upper sleeve when sneezing.

The efficacy of the use of a facemask to decrease the risk of virus transmission is difficult to assess, so its use is only recommended for persons at increased risk of severe illness from influenza, and in healthcare settings that involve contact with people who have an influenza-like illness (ILI). Individuals with an ILI (fever and at least cough or sore throat, and possibly other symptoms such as runny nose, headaches, body aches, chills, fatigue, vomiting and diarrhea) should stay home, avoid contact with other people as much as possible, and avoid travel, for at least 24 hours after the disappearance of fever, except to get medical care; fever should have disappeared without the use of antipyretic drugs.

The optimum duration for all job classes is 7 days.

To read more about H1N1, go to