Monthly Archives: November 2017

GB #5

For this last glossary building, I checked out the Green Washing slides & Pharmaceutical slides and I found some terms that I thought were important to understand. I took geology and geography classes in a community college where I learned about this “green” topic. In both of these classes, my professors discussed about sustainability a lot. They discussed about the environment and how humans are affecting the environment everyday without realizing the great effect their actions have on the environment. Most of my professors were very passionate and caring about the environment. I learned a lot and now I am more aware about my actions to the environment. I like to think that I am someone who cares about the environment. However, many of us can say that we care about our environment but probably end up hurting the environment without being aware.

One of the main term that I found on the slide was the term sustainability and I think it is important to understand and what it really means. Sustainability means taking care of our resources and not wasting resources too fast. It means that our needs are met but also without making it difficult to meet future generations needs according to the slide. We have to watch out and not be careless about the future generations needs. From the pharmaceutical slides, I found Me-toos which I did not know what it was. According to the slides and other articles I read, Me-toos are either cheaper or expensive drugs that are similar to pre-existing drugs. Consumers may pay more for little benefit according to the slides. Me-toos drugs can be positive and negative. I also did a bit of research about the DTC ads. DTC stands for Direct to Consumer ads and this have to do with prescription drugs advertisement on TV, internet, magazines, and newspapers. According to the PowerPoint slides and other articles I read, only New Zealand and U.S. allow this. The problem with this is that it does not really advertise the effects of taking those drugs. Of course because they want people to buy it. It is economically driven rather than to inform the people.

  • Sustainability: “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” from GreenWashing Slides
  • Me-toos: Drugs that are similar to existing drugs and either cheaper or more higher costs to consumers with not much benefit
  • Direct to Consumer ads: Drugs being advertised on internet, TV, newspapers, etc. It is economically driven rather than informing people about the side effects
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GB #4

Many of us do not know much about illness and where to go to get the right care when we need or for our loved ones. When we have knowledge of some things related with illness and mortality, we could make a good choice. As I was reading about medical mistakes, I was shocked to find out that more people die due to medical mistakes. I used to think differently. There are so many things that people do not about this topic. This article I read called How Many Die From Medical Mistakes In U.S. Hospitals? discussed about the numbers of patients died because of medical mistakes. According to the article, “bad hospital care contributed to the deaths of 180,000 patients in Medicare alone in a given year.”  Deaths of 180,000 patients was only in 2010 and now the number of deaths has greatly increased according to the article. The article stated that medical mistakes is the 3rd leading cause of death in the U.S.

Well, when I was reading about California hospital article, I saw this Interactive map where it shows infection rates by hospitals. People can check this map to help them be informed about infection rates by hospitals. As I was reading this article California Hospitals Lose Ground In Quality Of Care, Report Card Shows, I learned that some California hospitals received a C or worse for patients safety. I did not know this information; I’m glad to know. I also read about kidney failure and I found this word I didn’t know, Dialysis. According to MedicineNet.com, Dialysis is “The process of removing waste products and excess fluid from the body.” Once a person’s kidney fails, they require dialysis to help and assist them. This article Geography is destiny in deaths from kidney failure, study shows, there’s less likelihood of getting the right kind of dialysis and there’s risk of dying. End-stage renal disease (ESRD) is the very last stage of kidney disease; this basically means that the kidney no longer works; therefore, a person might need dialysis to assist them.

  • Interactive map: Used for the public to check infection rates by hospitals according to How Many Die From Medical Mistakes In U.S. Hospitals? 
  • Dialysis: “The process of removing waste products and excess fluid from the body.” according MedicineNet.com
  • End-Stage Renal Disease: Last & final stage of chronic kidney disease; kidney no longer works

Sources:

Johns Hopkins Medicine. “Geography is destiny in deaths from kidney failure, study shows.” ScienceDaily, 24 June 2015.

Terhume, Chad. “California Hospitals Lose Ground In Quality Of Care, Report Card Shows.” Kaiser Health News.

“Medical Definition of Dialysis.” MedicineNet, http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=2980.

“End Stage Kidney Disease: Causes, Symptoms, and Prevention.” Healthline, Healthline Media, http://www.healthline.com/health/end-stage-kidney-disease.

 

 

 

 

 

Greenwashing Post

I am a very environmentally conscientious person and have no problem lessening the impact on landfills.   Like it says on the Greenwashing slides, unless you become the woman who is carrying bunch of branches for fire, one can only lessen the impact as it is kind of too late.  Okay so I’ll explain in the next paragraphs how I do that and how I even learned that my carbon footprint was pretty low.

My big part of contribution to the environment is reducing my personal trash that go into the landfill, and I recycle everything I can.   What I cannot throw in my curbside recycle tote such as plastic grocery bags and glass, I take it to the dumpsite for all colored glass products.   The grocery bags go back for recycle like at a grocery store.   I don’t get that many bags since I use cloth bags for shopping.   I also use only environmentally friendly products and tend to use baking soda and distilled vinegar as they have so many uses.   All of my hygiene products are green products.  I think green with everything I do; it just makes me feel better and my place smells good too.  I use essential oils too for different purposes.

Companies have come long ways but we still need to read the ingredients and keep learning about harmful chemicals that are used in our households.   I have receptacle set up for recycling so I can throw my mixed recycling materials from cooking and going through my mails.   I also throw all of my produce scraps into compost bin so these don’t go in trash either.  I only get trash picked up every two weeks; this is how low my volume is.  But I know so many others who throw everything into the trash can because these people do not want to form good habits.   It is not that hard; we’re all tired but just need to make it a habit and convenient to separate it as you getting rid of stuff.

I would like to share one green event I went to at WA convention center in Seattle.   It was Green something; it has been a few years so I forgot the exact title.   There, I learned that I only needed to get an electric vehicle if I can but when my carbon footprint was calculated, it turned out to be pretty good.   It made me feel so good.  If we can prevent further global warming then it will be beneficial for the younger generations.

Glossary Building 5

From the Greenwashing slides provided in the course content slides has provided 3 words I think have a variety of meanings. What is it to be ethical? We see in consumer health that being ethical can be buying products that are healthy or may not be wasted and hurting our environment. Plus, we can see in sociology, such as doing ethnography can have ethical as a key term such as either being ethical in collecting data or unethical by being too involved in the study. Social impact can have a bit of a twist as well. In consumer health what kind of social impact do we cause when we buy certain things? We could cause a norm to products helping companies establish themselves, or do we as an individual cause a social impact when we do something that is deviant to our society and be considered as an outsider. Self-identity can be seen as how do we identify ourselves as a consumer? We may buy certain things that represent us as either healthy, budget-friendly, or just random and going for what we’re craving. Self-identity can also show how do we identify ourselves in society? A hard worker, husband, mother, or college student at Central Washington University

  • Ethical
  • Social Impact
  • Self-Identity

 

Greenwashing Post

What are some ways you go “green?” How can you share this information with others?

Some ways I go green is I make sure I recycle for as a start. A lot of waste ends up in the sea and ruins animal lives from eating all of our junk. Another way I recycle is making sure I use a canister for water rather than buy a case of plastic water bottles. This would cut down on the plastic being thrown away and can be a huge money saver. I also cut down on plastic by using my own bags for groceries instead of using the plastic bags the stores gives us. I could share this information with family and friends about this information by explaining how much of a waste it is to use plastic water bottles and possibly convert them into using canisters as well. I can also show them where to find their own grocery bags for when they go grocery shopping so that they can use those instead of throwing away the plastic bags they get from the grocery stores.

Photo Voice Part 1

I know this is late, I mixed up the dates for some of the posts so I’m trying to get back on track.

For the photo voice project I will post images of food that are recommended for individuals that have autoimmune diseases, like myself. The other images will show the pricing of these foods to show the trapped market we live in. The photos will address the questions “what choices do I have?” and “who has the upper hand and how?”.

Peer Reviewed Comment

For the peer reviewed comment, I have chosen to review the post “Family Planning & Misconceptions” written by hannaheileenc on October 22, 2017. I have posted the contribution below my peer reviewed comment. The main part of this contribution can be found in the last sentence, which reads, “Generally: things that make money aren’t the best to be done, but because people are uninformed, predatory organizations may take advantage of this”. This sentence summed up the contribution in an efficient way. From reading this contribution, I learned that there are many medical practices and advertised products that are expensive but may not be as helpful as described. For instance, in paragraph two, the author states the Lambskin condoms “are essentially worthless” as they do not protect against STD’s. They are also billed as a luxury item, despite the fact that they do not do the same job as regular or latex-free condoms.

It would be informative for anyone who is a new parent or planning to become a parent to read this contribution as it debunks some myths around expensive medical treatments for infants and new mothers.

The strongest part of this contribution is paragraph three. This paragraph gives a real-life example of how a patient who was uninformed about the impacts of a medical practice may impact her and her child. The patient is described as being cautious about her caffeine intake during pregnancy as to not agitate the infant’s heart, yet she was given a C-Section without being informed that this may lead to a quick fetal heartbeat. The weakest part of this contribution is paragraph two. In this paragraph the author gives their personal opinion, which while interesting and makes the contribution more relatable, is not very helpful when looking for factual information. There were a few parts that I had to read more than once to understand, but that was only due to grammatical errors as listed below.

I found 2 spelling errors and five grammatical errors. The spelling errors are as follows. Second paragraph second sentence the word “there’s” is spelled “theres”. Fifth paragraph first sentence the word “women’s” is spelled “womens”.  The grammatical errors are as follows. First paragraph second sentence “certain parts reproductive healthcare” should read “certain parts of reproductive healthcare”. First paragraph second sentence “pre-and-postpartum” should read “pre- and post-partum”. First paragraph third sentence “if someone if planning” should read “is someone is planning”. Second paragraph fourth sentence “-luxury” should read “-a luxury”. Third paragraph third sentence says “heartbeat then that happens” should read “heartbeat when that happens”.

One part that made me want to read more on this topic is the fourth paragraph where the author states that women are more likely to be refused surgery to prevent future pregnancies such as a hysterectomy. I do believe that this is because most vasectomies for men are reversible, however, a hysterectomy is not.

On a scale of 1 to 4 with 1 being the lowest, I rate this contribution a 3 overall because it was very informative and got me thinking about the topic, however, it was riddled with spelling and grammatical errors.

Original Post:

Family Planning & Misconceptions by hannaheileenc on October 22, 2017

I know that, for sure, there’s misconceptions within the realm of family planning. Even if we disregard the fact that certain parts reproductive healthcare is stigmatized by one of the major US parties, as well as many religious institutions, even in medical spaces there’s rapid debate about what to do pre-and-postpartum when it comes to reproductive consensus. When should a mother go back on birth control after having a child if someone if planning on waiting to have another? What birth control is right for someone who doesn’t plan on having children at any point? Are there luxury products that may not be the best for reproductive health? Should a person be able to elect to have a C-Section?

Lambskin condoms are one thing, for example, that are essentially worthless (in my humble opinion). Billed as a luxury product, for monogamous couples and as birth control. Great – good to know theres something on the market for that. But it still is just that – luxury. Even for those who have latex allergies, non-latex condoms are an option. And with many monogamous couples, they just aren’t cost effective – I found them online, priced at about 3 USD per condom. Not to mention they’re made of an intestinal membrane, which is pretty disgusting.

And here’s another “boo” to a medical industry so driven by high cost: episiotomy is still high, and was even higher in the near past. C-Sections that may not be deemed necessary are still performed. I know I was an induced labor, and didn’t know that there’s a higher risk of quick fetal heartbeat then that happens – and my Mom, someone who refused to eat chocolate during her pregnancy due to worries that it’d mess with caffeine levels, may not have chosen to be induced if she was informed on that.

Much of reproductive care, as well, is handled by those who may exhibit bias on certain regards – generally, doctors will not perform vasectomies or tubal litigation on those who are young and have not had children, even if they are sure they wouldn’t want to any time in their future. This is typically more common for women, to be refused a procedure.

Aside from that: the myth that womens eggs “begin to die” in their 30’s, leading to fertility clinic profits from performing women in their 20’s.

Generally: things that make money aren’t the best to be done, but because people are uninformed, predatory organizations may take advantage of this.

Pharma Prompt 1

Direct to Consumer (DTC) pharmaceutical advertising is a terrible practice. The US and New Zealand are the only two countries in the world that allow DTC drug ads. The average consumer, in my opinion, does not have the training or medical knowledge to understand the risks associated with various medications. Doctors go through 8 years of school and long residency positions to safely treat patients.

DTC ads are overseen by the FDA. The drug must be FDA approved to treat the condition and it must discuss the risks along with the benefits. TV ads only need to include “most important” risks if they provide information on how to obtain more information. Interestingly, a study recently released, found that the perception of risk becomes diluted with a lengthy side effect list. In the experiment, the group who heard only major side effects rated the drug’s risk higher than those who heard the full list. I think that our high exposure to DTC advertisements consumers are used to hearing numerous side-effects. Since many side-effects are expected, burying major symptoms with long lists of minor ones makes them have less impact. This study proves to me that drug information is simply too complicated to properly convey in the span of a short advertisement.

Consumers are more likely to ask for brand-name drugs after seeing an advertisement on TV. The pharmaceutical industry knows this and today spends 5.2 billion dollars on DTC ads, a 60% increase from 4 years ago. These advertisements drive up the price of prescriptions and make it costlier for the consumer. Dr. Harris, the American Medical Association’ (AMA) Immediate Past Chair has said: “Direct-to-consumer advertising also inflates demand for new and more expensive drugs, even when these drugs may not be appropriate.” Supporters of DTC drug advertisements say that the commercials make people aware of diseases and the treatment options available. But I do not think these commercials are meant to inform, they are meant to sell a product. The AMA also listed a study found that when medications were marketed directly to the consumer they saw an increase in the price of 34.2%.

To make things worse the pharmaceutical industry is pushing for more freedom in their advertisement practices so they can market drugs for off-label uses. This would mean these drugs would not need to be reviewed by the FDA and would forgo a lot of testing. According to the LA Times, a study found that patients using off-label drugs that lacked proper testing, were 54% more likely to have bad side effects. This included allergic reaction, respiratory complications and/or gastrointestinal complications.

I believe that DTC pharmaceutical ads are inappropriate for the everyday consumer, but I doubt they will be going away anytime soon. One possible option would be having the advertisements focus more on informing consumers about the disease than selling the product. Instead of marketing the drug, a company could sponsor PSA’s regarding the ailment. Another option that the AMA has put forward is to help control drug prices. The policy would require the cost of the medication to be listed in the advertisement. This would create transparency in our drug prices and help control the high costs of medications, which often spike for no reason.

Glossary III

One thing I’ve learned during this class is most definitely about the development of certain aspects of industries – one that piqued my interest, especially from a rhetorical and explorative perspective, was the pharmaceutical industry. It’s an industry that all walks of life tend to take beef with, and just so happens to be an industry that lines lawmakers pockets rather well. This doesn’t exactly align with consumer preferences, but at the end of the day, it’s incredibly interesting to see the alignment of certain consumer choices and what they may or may not know about the drugs they’re consuming.

All drug pamphlets come with information about risks and other things, but it’s interesting that what they’re required to present in their advertising and in their general sales pitches (don’t get me started on the pharmaceutical industry’s propensity for sending attractive young women to doctors offices, armed with a lunch and a set of plane tickets).

Those who are targeted by the industry are also interesting – it shows aggressive marketing tactics, reflecting people’s desires and hopes. Especially when it comes to drugs that are for those who are considered to have mental illness – the vague portrayals of life with a mental illness (depression, for example) may make people worried they’re experiencing what the ad is describing, potentially driving up sales.

I’ve decided to drudge up some buzzwords used in marketing pharma circles, so you are fully aware of the language that goes with a particular thought:

Patient Empowerment – A buzzword used to justify the actual marketing of prescription medications. This essentially says that patients should have autonomy and a say on their medical care – which in theory, sounds nice, but can be detrimental… because they’re not doctors and they’re being ’empowered’ by an industry that makes money off of people consuming their product.

Beyond The Pill – Another buzzword, meant to expand beyond just the pharmaceutical, but also including various softwares and external services that may or may not be conducive to a good patient experience. While federally set up, and not necessarily an industry example, but the ipledge program, for accutane prescriptions in the US, could be considered ‘beyond the pill’ (pills, plural, in the case of women of childbearing capability. It’s interesting stuff to read into, if you’re interested.)

Breakthrough Therapy – A pharma company may brand something as a breakthrough therapy – it makes you think cancer’s been cured and insulin shots have been turned into something as easy to remember as a birth control pill. But no, breakthrough therapy is a term used that may represent the first or most innovative thing of a certain kind, but generally, it’s just that – a marketing ploy.

PhotoVoice Part 1

For my project, I will be discussing advertisement and use of marijuana. Marijuana has been a hot topic in the U.S. ever since it was legalized a few years ago. Ever since then, I have seen numerous marijuana stores open up in places all over. I plan to cover these questions in my project.

  • “Who’s selling me what?”
  • “What choice/s do I have?”