SmartQuit App Helps Spanish Speaking Patients Break Tobacco Habit

Paul Cerrato | July 14, 2016

SmartQuit App Helps Spanish Speaking Patients Break Tobacco Habit2Morrow, Inc, has launched a Spanish version of its smoking cessation online program, now available on mobile devices. With 39 million Americans speaking Spanish, the company saw an acute need for the translated program.

As Brandon Masterson, CEO of 2Morrow explains the issue: “By offering SmartQuit in Spanish, 2Morrow hopes to make clinically tested smoking cessation techniques more accessible to underserved communities in the United States.”

A lite version of the SmartQuit app is available from iTunes and Google Play while the full version requires a $49.99 subscription. It is also available through select employers, health plans, and state programs that have contracted with the vendor.

The Spanish version of the SmartQuit program has been partially funded by the Washington State Department of Health and the CDC Prevention and Public Health Fund. Citing a paper presented at the 2016 Society for Research on Nicotine & Tobacco 2016 Annual Meeting, the company says a Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center study found that “SmartQuit participants were about twice as likely to quit smoking as those who try to quit on their own. And, people who completed the core program saw quit rates of about 28% – which is significantly higher than the 4-5% of smokers who successfully quit on their own.”


Managing Chronic Pain

By Mark Pew 07/25/2016

Dr. Tracy Jackson (an assistant professor of anesthesiology and pain medicine at Vanderbilt University) recently wrote an excellent article, published by The Tennessean on July 6, entitled “Chronic pain can be managed without opioids“.

Chronic Pain infographic

It was actually a summary of her TEDx-Nashville presentation entitled “The Hardest Pill to Swallow” that is available on Youtube. Both the article an

d video are worthy of your time – in the case of the video, 18:44 of your time.

As I watched the video, almost everything she said resonated with me. Because it’s true. And because it’s eerily similar to what I’ve been preaching since my first public presentation in March 2012 (and my product focus since 2003). It’s like we’re twins (except she’s more educated and smarter than I am).

While I don’t want to provide a disincentive for you to watch the video, following are my highlights:

• 1:15 – “What would you do – what WOULDN’T you do – to make it
(chronic pain) go away?”
• 1:50 – We are “looking for a quick fix to a chronic problem”
• 2:55 – “Chronic pain is a perception – how do you prove someone
has a headache?” … There is a comparison of perspectives
between the patient (what they say) and the physician
(what they see)
• 3:50 – When a patient is describing their pain and symptoms they
“may leave out the depression, the drinking, the divorce”
• 4:10 – “All pain is literally in your head”
• 5:00 – “Kids describe a physical symptom based on an emotional
issue” … Are adults any different?
• 5:30 – Central sensitization – pain, mood and sleep pathways all                  overlap – is seen in the vast majority of chronic pain cases Continue reading Managing Chronic Pain

Using a Vendor for ADA Accommodation

By Safety National 07/21/2016

At the 2016 DMEC Annual Conference, a panel talked about Walmart’s experience shifting to a vendor to manage their Accommodation Process. The speakers were:

• Herminio Vargas – Senior Manager Integrated Absence Management – Walmart
• Ben Cormack – Senior Manager Integrated Absence Management – Walmart
• Shawn Johnson – SVP Client Services – Sedgwick

ADA compliant logoAccording to a 2015 DMEC Leave Management Survey, 82% of employers manage their ADA accommodation process internally. In 2013 Walmart initiated a process to move their return to work accommodation process to Sedgwick. Today Sedgwick administers approximately 80% of Walmart’s program.

Walmart is the largest employer in the United States with over 1.4 million employees across over 5000 locations. They have over 6000 different job descriptions. There are 7 Walmart associates managing their accommodations program in addition to over 50 Sedgwick colleagues supporting the program.

The central goals of Walmart’s leave program are to:

• Provide reasonable workplace accommodations that enable disabled associates to safely and productively remain in, or return to, their current position.

• Provide accommodation leave when a qualified disabled associate needs leave as a reasonable accommodation.

• Provide job reassignment to a vacant position if the disabled associate cannot be accommodated in their current position.


Study Shows Medical Pot Lowers Painkiller Abuse

By Sean Duffy 07/18/2016

Athens, GA ( – A recent study found that states with legal medical marijuana have lower levels of prescription painkiller abuse and overdoses.

Scientists from the University of Georgia examined prescription drugs purchased undePot_SaferThanPanutsr Medicare Part D from 2010 to 2013, cross-referencing prescription levels state by state.

The father-daughter research team found that prescriptions for painkillers and other classes of drugs in the 17 states with a medical-marijuana law in effect by 2013 fell sharply in comparison to states where medical marijuana is not legal.

In states with medical marijuana, the average doctor prescribed 265 fewer of doses of antidepressants each year, and 486 fewer doses of seizure medication. About 562 fewer doses of anti-anxiety medication and 541 fewer anti-nausea doses were also prescribed in these states.
Continue reading Study Shows Medical Pot Lowers Painkiller Abuse

App Uses iPhone’s Camera To Find Your Veins

Or…. “You’re so vein you probably think this app is about you.”

Iltifat Husain, MD | July 7, 2016

I came across a really interesting app that was recently released in the medical section of the Apple App Store — VeinSeek.  VeinSeek uses live video processing to “find your veins”. You can obviously infer how this would be helpful in the healthcare setting.

Devices that help find veins have been used for some time. Many of them use infrared light to show veins:
infared camera shot of veins in person's arm
The VeinSeek app is interesting in that it doesn’t need any attachments or special camera. It takes images from your iPhone camera’s red and green channels, converts them to black and white, and then removes brightness values of the green image from the brightness values of the red image.

The developers make it clear the app is not intended for use in the medical setting even though it’s in the medical section of the app store.
Photo showing pic from Vein Seek app on iPhone
I used the app on myself and with a few physician partners and we were surprised by how well it worked. Continue reading App Uses iPhone’s Camera To Find Your Veins

Telemedicine Companies See Mental Health As Next Frontier

Bruce Japsen, Contributor

telepsychiatryTelemedicine companies that have been landing a flurry of new contracts with employers and insurers to provide less expensive and more convenient medical consultations with physicians are now adding mental health services for their customers.

MDLive, Teladoc and American Well are among the telehealth firms getting into the business of offering access to psychiatrists, psychologists and therapists via smartphone, tablet and computer as the nation grapples with a rising rate of suicides, opioid addiction and other mental health issues.

The companies see a huge growth opportunity, with more Americans suffering mental health conditions than common medical conditions like diabetes and heart disease. Meanwhile, less than 50% of Americans who are prescribed medications to treat mental health conditions take them as directed, if at all, according to industry reports and Walgreens Boots Alliance.

Teladoc is among the telemedicine companies pushing into mental health services, offering consultations with therapies, psychiatrists and psychologists via computer, smartphone and tablet. (Teladoc photo)

American Well in July is rolling out a new “telepsychiatry” service it expects to have in seven states by August and the rest of the country by the end of the year.

“Every year, nearly one in four adults will deal with a mental health disorder, yet less than half of these individuals will actually receive treatment,” said Zereana Jess-Huff, vice president of behavioral health at American Well.
Continue reading Telemedicine Companies See Mental Health As Next Frontier

Smoking Cessation App SmartQuit Adopted by State Health Agency

Satish Misra, MD | July 8, 2016

SmartQuit smoking cessation app logoThe SmartQuit app, developed by 2Morrow Inc, will soon be free for many people in Louisiana thanks to a deal with that state’s health department.

There are a ton of smoking cessation apps out but, like many areas of digital health, quantity does not mean quality. A survey of smoking cessation apps a few years ago found very poor adherence to clinical practice guidelines. That quality gap is something we’ve also seen in other chronic conditions like high blood pressure.

SmartQuit is a great example of how a health app can be done right and (hopefully) have large scale, meaningful impacts. SmartQuit was developed by Dr. Jonathan Bricker, Ph.D., a behavioral scientist at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and the University of Washington. Dr. Bricker and colleagues have developed an app called SmartQuit that applies acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) in addition to usual strategies to smoking cessation.

In 2014, they published a small randomized study comparing SmartQuit to another great smoking cessation app, QuitGuide. They found SmartQuit to be more effective at getting people to quit, at least in the short term. They then got follow up funding in the amount of $3 million from the National Cancer Institute for a larger study that will enroll 2,000 people. Continue reading Smoking Cessation App SmartQuit Adopted by State Health Agency

Strong Vocational Rehabilitation System Helps Wisconsin Farmers Succeed

By 06/23/2016

phtoo of people in Vocational Rehab prgramMadison, WI – June is Wisconsin Dairy Month, and it’s a great opportunity to highlight the contributions of Wisconsin’s Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) on Wisconsin’s agriculture industry and Wisconsin’s workforce as a whole. In Federal Fiscal Year 2015, the Department of Workforce Development’s (DWD) DVR helped 4,875 consumers, including approximately 180 Wisconsin farmers, achieve employment goals.

The core mission of DWD is developing Wisconsin’s workforce, and that includes helping workers with disabilities move toward greater independence through the dignity of work.

Job seekers with disabilities represent a critical part of our state’s workforce and, through their success in reaching their goals, contribute to Wisconsin’s economic growth. This is why Governor Walker in 2014 launched A Better Bottom Line in support of overcoming barriers to employment for job seekers with disabilities. A Better Bottom Line is tailored after Delaware Governor Jack Markell’s initiative with the National Governor’s Association and promotes employment opportunities for people with disabilities through recognition, education and strategic investments. This includes helping farmers with disabilities continue their livelihood through the most essential – and cost-effective – supports and resources.

In Wisconsin, demand for DVR services is growing with more than 16,000 consumers on DVR’s caseload at any given time, and thousands more expected to seek services as Wisconsin implements federal regulations under the new Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. In an effort to remain excellent stewards of public funds, DVR has updated practices to ensure critical supports are available to all DVR consumers, including farmers, and that the long-term financial stability of the program is protected. Continue reading Strong Vocational Rehabilitation System Helps Wisconsin Farmers Succeed

Creating A Corporate Wellness Brand That Works For Your Company


Alan Kohll Founder & president of corporate health & wellness services provider, TotalWellness.

Branding your corporate wellness programCreating a brand for your corporate wellness program has the same types of benefits as creating a corporate brand. Your wellness program brand ensures your program is recognizable. It helps you create something with which your employees can relate. Good branding can also make your program more attractive to employees because it helps you to maintain consistency and cohesiveness.

There are a few traditional brand elements that are predetermined when it comes to your wellness program. Your audience, for example, is already defined. The same is true of your position and your goals. These things are a given due to the nature of working in wellness.

There are some brand elements, however, that you’ll need to intentionally and strategically define.

Your Wellness Program Identity

It’s important to establish an identity for your wellness program. When it comes to branding, your wellness identity can include the name of your program, a logo, the colors you’ll use and the overall look of your materials.

Establishing an identity ensures your program is recognizable. When employees see wellness materials, they know exactly what they’re looking at. A wellness identity also makes the program a bit more relatable.

Your Wellness Program Values

There are a lot of great benefits that can be associated with a healthy lifestyle. It’s important to pick one or two to be the focus of your employee wellness program. This will help you to remain specific and focused rather than biting off more than you can chew.


Silicon Valley’s ‘Posture Guru’ Might Have Figured Out How To Solve Back Pain

Kevin Loria
Jun. 15, 2015
Editor’s note: If your business or organization would like to have Central Coast IndustrialCare’s Physical Therapist, Ed Donahue, do a complimentary ergonomic analysis of your work space, just give us a call at: (805) 922-5003
photo of men with good and bad postureChronic back pain is both bad and common enough that it has been described as a modern epidemic.

Musculoskeletal issues — mostly, back pain — are the leading cause of new and existing long-term disability claims, according to an analysis by the Council for Disability Awareness. Even those of us without chronic pain may feel stiff and sore after a day hunched over a computer.

Yet surely, even though the human body has a number of notable design flaws (I’m looking at you, knees), there’s no way we’ve evolved to have our spines, the primary support system for our bodies, fail out on us on a regular basis?

Our spines aren’t the problem, according to Esther Gokhale, an acupuncturist who started researching back pain after experiencing an excruciating amount of it herself. The problem is our posture.

Gokhale, who the New York Times has referred to as the “posture guru” of Silicon Valley, says that by reintroducing the concept of “primal posture,” standing like babies or theoretically, like our ancestors, we can fix posture and back pain at the same time.

She says we’ve forgotten how to stand.
Continue reading Silicon Valley’s ‘Posture Guru’ Might Have Figured Out How To Solve Back Pain