HealthESites
May 17, 2000
Vol. 1, No. 5
ISSN pending
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Bruce Maxwell, Editor <bmax@silverhammerpub.com>
Silver Hammer Publishing <http://silverhammerpub.com>

Instructions for subscribing and unsubscribing are provided at
the end of this newsletter.


The News
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BEHIND THE SCENES ON HEALTH WEB SITES
Who's behind the major health Web sites, and how up-to-date are
the sites? The main article from the Washington Post explores
these topics at length and includes a test of the largest sites.
Sidebars examine eight major sites in depth and list some of the
best health sites online.
Source: Washington Post - May 16, 2000
http://washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A9650-2000May16.html
http://washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/business/technology/elife/
A11076-2000May16.html

http://washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/business/technology/elife/
A11057-2000May16.html



SURGICAL PROCEDURES BOUGHT ONLINE
Never mind comparing prices at several online bookstores to save
a buck or two on a book: Why not get quotes for your next surgery
from multiple doctors? It's now possible at several new Internet
sites, despite ethical concerns by some doctors. But do you
really want to choose your doctor based on price?
Source: Associated Press - May 12, 2000
http://news.excite.com/news/ap/000512/01/surgery-online


DRKOOP.COM POSTS LOSSES IN FIRST Q.
The good news for drkoop.com during the first quarter is that it
lost less money than analysts had predicted. The bad news is that
it still lost $24.8 million, on revenues of just $4.7 million.
The huge loss occurred despite the site getting 64 million page
views in the quarter, according to the company.
Source: Associated Press - May 15, 2000
http://dailynews.yahoo.com/h/ap/20000515/tc/earns_drkoop_1.html


INCOME A BIG FACTOR IN PATIENTS' INTERNET ACCESS
In another study that confirms the obvious, researchers found
that although Americans are increasingly turning to the Internet
for health information, people with low incomes have less access
than those with higher incomes. The study, published in the
Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, also suggests
that the lack of Web access for the poor may create disparities
in healthcare quality.
Source: Reuters - May 15, 2000
http://news.excite.com/news/r/000515/14/health-income-internet
Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine study:
http://archpedi.ama-assn.org/issues/v154n5/full/poa90383.html


IOWA DRUGSTORES TO SELL MEDICINES ON INTERNET
Eighty independent drugstores in Iowa are participating in a test
of CornerDrugstore.com's new Web site network. Each drugstore has
an individual presence on the network, and can set its own prices
for prescriptions, over-the-counter drugs, and other health-care
products. Some store owners said the network allows them to gain
an Internet presence at low cost. Each store pays a $600 signup
fee, which has been waived for early customers, and $60 to $75 a
month in dues. CornerDrugstore.com officials say they've already
signed up 4,000 independent drugstores around the United States.
Source: Des Moines Register - May 16, 2000
http://www.dmregister.com/news/stories/c4780940/11314659.html


CYBERSEX GIVES BIRTH TO A PSYCHOLOGICAL DISORDER
Cybersex goes mainstream as the staid New York Times tackles the
subject in a pair of lengthy articles by Jane Brody. The lead
article describes several studies about online sex (one expert
calls the Internet "the crack cocaine of sexual compulsivity"),
while the second lists the warning signs of cybersex addiction.
Source: New York Times - May 16, 2000
http://www.nytimes.com/library/national/science/health/
051600hth-behavior-cybersex.html

http://www.nytimes.com/library/national/science/health/
051600hth-brody.html



WEB SKEWS SEX EDUCATION, PSYCHIATRIST WARNS
Children's easy access to Internet pornography is creating a
major public health problem in teaching them about sex, according
to a psychiatrist who spoke at the annual meeting of the American
Psychiatric Association. Pornographic sites depersonalize sex and
make aberrant behaviors appear normal, she said.
Source: Reuters - May 16, 2000
http://news.excite.com/news/r/000516/15/net-internet-sex


ILLINOIS PPO TO PAY PHYSICIANS FOR ONLINE
CONSULTATIONS
This summer an Illinois managed care organization will start
paying physicians a $25 reimbursement for any e-mail sent between
doctors and patients over its e-mail network. The program is
limited to the 300,000 patients in First Health Group's 24/7
chronic care support program, and is aimed at solving problems
while they're small and thus lowering acute care
hospitalizations.
Source: American Medical News - May 22/29, 2000
http://www.ama-assn.org/sci-pubs/amnews/pick_00/tesb0522.htm


URAC TO ACCREDIT HEALTHCARE WEB SITES
The American Accreditation HealthCare Commission (commonly
known as URAC) plans to develop accreditation standards for health
Web sites later this year. URAC is a non-profit organization that
establishes standards for the managed care industry. In
developing the guidelines, URAC is expected to examine issues
such as conflict of interest, security and confidentiality,
timeliness, consumer protection, and clinical oversight.
Source: Executive Report on Managed Care - May 16, 2000
http://www.themcic.com/industry/sow3.htm


NOSING OUT HELP WITH ALLERGIES
This article in the Los Angeles Times takes a detailed look at
three of the major allergy sites on the Internet
Source: Los Angeles Times - May 15, 2000
http://www.latimes.com/news/health/20000515/t000045796.html


The Sites
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surgery101.com
http://surgery101.com
This site provides information for patients about some of the
most common surgical procedures. It also has a message board, and
eventually plans to offer physician and hospital referrals. The
site was created by a doctor and a nurse.


Mentalhealthline.com
http://www.mentalhealthline.com
Mentalhealthline.com is designed to be a portal for mental health
information. It has articles about various mental health topics,
but unfortunately you cannot browse for articles of interest -
you must search a database using keywords. It also offers an
online mental health assessment, but to access it you must
register and provide an alarming amount of personal information:
e-mail address, name, address (including city, state, and zip
code), home phone number, work phone number, fax number, and
gender. The huge amount of information required cannot help but
make one leery, as does the site's plan to offer online therapy
sessions for a fee.


NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards
http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/npg/pgdstart.html
This guide from the National Institute for Occupational Safety
and Health provides basic information about nearly 700 chemicals
and substance groupings. For each chemical, the guide provides
the trade name, NIOSH recommended exposure limits, permissible
exposure limits from the Occupational Safety and Health
Administration, a physical description of the agent, personal
protection and sanitation recommendations, and details about
health hazards it presents, among other information.


A Quick Plug
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Congressional Quarterly has just published my book, "How to Track
Politics on the Internet," which describes more than 600 of the
best political Web sites, newsgroups, and mailing lists. The book
costs $29.95, and can be ordered from CQ (800-638-1710) or any
online bookstore. The table of contents and introduction are
available at http://bmaxwell.home.mindspring.com
______________________________________________________

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Bruce Maxwell
Silver Hammer Publishing
6937 Custis Parkway
Falls Church, VA 22042
703-532-6327
bmax@silverhammerpub.com

 

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