Category Archives: Guidelines and Deadlines

Peer-Review

For this peer-review, I read a post about Direct to Consumer ads by @thejenetic that was published on November 28. From reading this contribution, I learned how this person feels about DTC ads. This person is against DTC ads. Also, I learned how the pharmaceutical industry is increasing its advertisement over the past 4 years; they’re spending millions, billions of dollars for this DTC ads. From what I understand, DTC ads affect consumers because they buy drugs that probably aren’t effective not to mention with a lot of bad side effects. It would be good for an older adult or a teenager to read this contribution because it will help these people understand and learn about the Direct to Consumer ads; it is important for people to know the truth. An older adult would benefit from reading this because I’ve noticed that there are a lot of DTC advertisement directed toward older adults. For example, some ads would say something like “Are you having back problems?, are you having a hard time walking?, etc.” For teenagers, they may benefit from reading this because most of them aren’t aware of the issues related with DTC ads. DTC ads target everybody but especially people who aren’t aware, I think. Direct to Consumer ads may say something “Are you having trouble sleeping?” I mean who isn’t having trouble sleeping sometimes?

The strongest (or most credible) part of this contribution is when this person actually read a lot of articles to back up what they said in this prompt. There are links to click on to take you to those articles just in case you want to know where they got the information. The weakest part (or something that someone might question) about this contribution is probably not citing all the information at the end. One part that I had to read more than once in order to understand it is ” 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%.” The sentence structure got me confused. I found one error where this person said “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.” I believe this person may be missing a comma at the start of this sentence after the word “worse”. One part that made me want to read more on this topic is in general all the issues about direct to consumers ads. I am a curious person so it made me want to read more even though I also did read and watched videos about this DTC ads practice. On a 1 to 4 scale where 1 is the lowest possible and 4 is the highest possible, I rate this contribution a 3.5 overall because it contained informative information. But because, in addition, it had two sentences that were confusing and didn’t provide a citation at the end of the work.

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Peer review

I chose Pharma Phost Prompt 2 by morgan7 posted on 11/26/17.

  • From this contribution, I learned that Morgan did not find anything interesting about the Pharmaceutical industry and this statement caught my attention.
  • It would be good for another college student to read this article and see if this other student agrees that Morgan doesn’t mention much about other topics like Direct To Consumer(DTC).
  • The strongest part of his post is that he was being on honest about none of it make sense and it was too vague to him.
  • The weakest part of his post is that he did not mention how the web page talks about advertising direct to consumer(dtc) so they buy and try new medicines.
  • I found that not providing the name of the website he visited makes it hard to know which FDA article he read.
  • I did not find any grammatical error.
  • One part that I had to read more was to see if he mentions about what caught his attention in one of those articles.
  • On a scale 1 to 4, I would give a 2.5 as he could have talked much more about DTC and not just FDA as that was one of the main topic in those websites.  How DTC is advertised by different means and the pharmaceutical industry depends greatly on marketing.

 

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.

Great Photovoice posts so far – and….

So – I’m seeing some cool posts, and I’ll expect more by end of day TOMORROW (Thurs) – note, I had Wed Nov 23 as the deadline, but have corrected it because Thurs is the 23rd…

SO IF you want to post following whatever passes for tomorrow’s big dinner with loud family, feel free!

Just a reminder as to the Photovoice instructions – at the Guidelines and Deadlines page, about 2/3 of the way down. I think you’ll really enjoy this assignment. From the posts so far, I’m expecting to see quite a few projects that deal with food….

Pharmaceutical Industry Prompts/Prompt Two

Direct To Consumers (DTC) is one of the big ways the Pharmaceutical Industry gets people to be aware of their new drugs.   This is done majority of the time through television and probably the Internet also.  DTC striked my attention as I never thought about pharmaceutical advertising since I am not taking any prescription drugs and hope to stay that way.    The following pie chart shows all different ways that a drug(s) is marketed.

pharm-mktg-grab3

Source:   http://www.pewtrusts.org/en/research-and-analysis/fact-sheets/2013/11/11/persuading-the-prescribers-pharmaceutical-industry-marketing-and-its-influence-on-physicians-and-patients

The following is another example from the World Health Organization (WHO) which caught my attention as I never thought about endorsers as being actors.   I probably don’t recognize all the actors as I do not watch much television.  “In the USA, Democrats in the United States Congress challenged the industry’s use of direct-to-consumer advertising in January 2008, when Congress announced an investigation of several advertisements including the one featuring Robert Jarvik rowing a boat for Pfizer’s cholesterol-lowering Lipitor. A month later Pfizer pulled the ad and Pfizer’s president of worldwide pharmaceutical operations, Ian Read, expressed regret about people getting the wrong impression. Ten months later the pharmaceutical industry announced that it was updating its voluntary standards for direct-to-consumer advertising. It pledged to stop using actors to play doctors, and to make sure endorsers who said they had used a particular drug had actually done so.”

I agree that the endorser who has actually used the drug should advertise so they can talk about their actual experience and this would definitely be consumer friendly.  People would appreciate the advertisements more and possibly use this particular drug also.

Source:  http://www.who.int/bulletin/volumes/87/8/09-040809/en/

Consumers are still at risk because the following title and example about how much is spent in advertising; I think this is one of the big reasons: “Persuading the Prescribers: Pharmaceutical Industry Marketing and its Influence on Physicians and Patients.   In 2012, the pharmaceutical industry spent more than $27 billion on drug promotion— more than $24 billion on marketing to physicians and over $3 billion on advertising to consumers (mainly through television commercials).  This approach is designed to promote drug companies’ products by influencing doctors’ prescribing practices.”

Source:  http://www.pewtrusts.org/en/research-and-analysis/fact-sheets/2013/11/11/persuading-the-prescribers-pharmaceutical-industry-marketing-and-its-influence-on-physicians-and-patients

The links through the slides page also mentions that once patent period is gone; other companies make generic form that drug.   This is also in debate though it saves consumers monies who cannot afford expensive drugs.

So in my opinion, if you eat mostly plant-based diet from the time you are young, you can avoid so much of the drug taking.   Of course, along with exercise, limiting processed foods, and junk foods even if they are plant based ingredients.   Many of my friends have changed their diet so can other people.

Illness and Mortality Prompts/Prompt One

If I was looking for a long-term care for an older member in our family, someone who needs around the clock care, then I would definitely review this following site and go visit a few places to see which one is the ideal place.    It really depends on the elder’s health condition.  I find the following website to be very helpful.  It has a table of contents, summary on each page, and it mentions how family should be involved.  It has tons of information on housing, insurance, personal assistance, transportation, counseling, etc.    This website has 82 pages in total for information regarding long-term care.

I think what may not be so helpful are all the costs that this helpful website is not able to provide as it is providing consumers various information on all topics including hospice.  They provide websites and phone numbers so you will have to do plenty of finding out before placing a loved one in a long-term care if a family member is unable to take care of them.

Source:  http://theconsumervoice.org/uploads/files/long-term-care-recipient/piecing-together-quality-long-term-care_(1).pdf

 

You can find out great deal of information from DSHS website but not sure if it is only for Medicaid patients.    However,  the following link is for people who are on Medicare:  https://www.medicare.gov/nursinghomecompare/Resources/Nursing-Home-Alternatives.html

So the above link to Medicare/alternative site says the following:

Alternatives to nursing homes

“Before you make any decisions about long term care, get as much information as you can about where you might live and what help you may need. A nursing home may not be your only choice. Discharge planners and social workers in hospitals, nursing homes, and home health agencies can explain your options and help arrange your care.

Find agencies in your state and community that can help with long-term care choices.

Note: If you have limited income and resources, there may be state programs that help cover some of your costs in some of these long-term care choices mentioned here. Call your State Medical Assistance Office – Opens in a new window.”  This is where DSHS could be used.

People can also visit different retirement communities, get in home care and still be fairly independent, live with family if possible and this would be the best.   You are not supposed to stick your family members in a nursing home in many cultures.   It is considered to be selfish as you are here because of them so you have to take care of them somehow.

 

 

 

Food Prompts/prompt one

I like the following three resources that one can use to understand the USDA(United States Department Agriculture)guidelines, see what the government recommends, and just to know you can possibly eat according to set guidelines by government.  They are the food pyramid(older version to newer version), choosemyplate.gov, and nutrition label on almost any product.

Take the food pyramid; there are some many versions from ones for teens, diabetics, and even for vegetarians.   I can tell the new food pyramid has vegetables and fruits as the most consumed then going up with other food groups.  The food pyramid can  can be challenging to translate a pyramid to correct portion sizes when it’s time to actually prepare and eat a meal.

Choose my plate is even easier to understand and follow as it is divided into four to five different food groups.   I like this model versus the pyramid; it is easier to follow.  “The plate is divided into four sections: fruits, vegetables, grains and protein. The idea behind the new graphic is to visually show people how much a portion size is and how much of each they should eat at meals. The plate indicates that you should fill half of your plate with fruits and vegetables. One-quarter of the plate should include a lean source of protein and one-quarter should include a serving of grains or starches. There’s also room next to the plate for a small serving of dairy such as milk or cheese.”  The new MyPlate graphic comes with healthy messages, too, such as drink more water, drink less soda, reduce your sodium intake and eat less food overall.   It does not show physical activity but some of the pyramids do, and we all know the importance of physical acitivity.

Source:  http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/new-vs-old-food-pyramids-9568.html

“The nutrition facts label (also known as the nutrition information panel, and other slight variations) is a label required on most packaged food in many countries. Most countries also release overall nutrition guides for general educational purposes. In some cases, the guides are based on different dietary targets for various nutrients than the labels on specific foods.”   Source:  Wikipedia.

FDA oversees food labeling on all products.   Following link that you can paste and view shows two different nutrition label styles and the latest version is more thorough and lists important minerals and took our water-soluble vitamin information.   Newer label shows how the added sugars also in a product.

https://www.fda.gov/downloads/food/guidanceregulation/guidancedocumentsregulatoryinformation/labelingnutrition/ucm501646.pdf

Like someone in my family, who was not familiar with all this labeling and recommendations.   I told them about it and to watch what they eat.  She learned that her portions were too many and many people have problems with portions.

Well the policy makers such as USDA, FDA, and health.gov say the following:

“Food and nutrition play a crucial role in health promotion and chronic disease prevention. Every 5 years, HHS and USDA publish the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the Nation’s go-to source for nutrition advice. The latest edition of the Dietary Guidelines reflects the current body of nutrition science, helps health professionals and policymakers guide Americans to make healthy food and beverage choices, and serves as the science-based foundation for vital nutrition policies and programs across the United States.”

I know that people are less informed because they do not take their time to educate themselves about nutrition and overall wellness.   They do go together for you to function at your best.   I have taken nutrition class, and a wellness class so this is how I learned all sorts of information.   I read health related articles a lot; I love reading and knowing about superfoods and other information to stay healthy.

I think some people do not have the time to do all this as their income goes to housing mostly.  This is discussed in the overview nutrition slides.  The article talks about how these people are considered poor and may not be able to buy organic produce or like grass-fed meats.   Since I’m mostly vegan and vegetarians at times, I disagree with the article that they cannot stay healthy.   If they choose mostly plant based diet and keep processed foods at minimum, then they should be pretty healthy even if they want to eat their meats sometimes.

This Overview nutrition slide also talks about eating for various reasons, styles, and all the food groups.   Different kinds of fats; how omega oils are very important and to avoid transfats as much as possible.  The article also talks about how fast food places are serving bigger sizes and our plates are getting bigger along with people.

The article about Julia Mancuso from the same slide shows how she mostly eats plant based foods, very little meat, no heavy carbohydrates either.  Her meals were packed with nutrition.  She is an Olympic athlete and her intakes for a day is a good example to follow.

I personally feel like the labels and information are always changing.  As a basic rule, I plan on eating plenty of vegetables and fruits and watch my intake on everything else.   I avoid refined products especially white sugar, and I noticed that my body does not crave for products made with refined sugar or it is too sweet for me.

 

 

Finance Prompt One

This is my example of financial health:  I have always saved some monies for rainy day such as losing a job, and I do not believe in blowing everything you make because you want to live for today.   I believe in being thankful for so many things I do have and do not believe in living beyond your means.  My situation is unique and am a very blessed or lucky individual.

Others, however, are struggling like the short game you can play at the end of the financial matters page about what it is like to be unemployed and what it feels like when you are down to the last $1000.  So unless, you have lots of monies saved, I guess you can lose it all then you end up taking any job offer.

Under Finance matters, some workers called contractors and a good percentage of work go to temporary agencies and I guess these workers are mis-classified as contractors even if when they work full-time.   These companies are saving monies by not paying insurance companies for these workers and save a lot of monies.

I guess if you’re a student; you will need to read all the options if you have to take out a loan and how or when to pay back and about loan forgiveness for the people who qualify.   Please look over  “A Student Aid Bill of Rights – proposal and Presidential Memorandum by the Obama administration. Pretty powerful, “basic” healthy public  policy around financial issues most of us face. ” Student debt issues and a helpful resource.  These topics are discussed in detail at the Finance matters page.

As far as Policymakers regarding finance that can cover all kinds of loans, credit cards, etc.; I really do not know how to comment on this.  There are many departments just for finance;  Federal Trade Commission, The Budget Office, IRS, etc. plus all of the state departments for finance.   For instance, our healthcare is still not even resolved by the Trump administration; the democrats and republicans do not agree on everything.  This is what I heard when I was watching the morning news.  Anyway, the government department control all revenues, funding, and expenses; so I am not sure what to say on the major work by policymakers but I have stated my opinions below.

Federal Trade Commission even offers advice on who is responsible for debts that a loved one may leave behind and who will have to execute and pay off these debts from estates.    There are some exceptions for some situations.   This is also under Finance matters page.

For more information, look over finance_2017 slides; it has all kind of information through links about various topics from seeking information, who to contact, how to file bankruptcy, etc.

As consumers; we should not live beyond our means like getting a huge house or focusing on new vehicles.   Some people put themselves in lot of credit card debt; I know a few people who do not know how to get out of their debts because they have to keep paying these companies interest payments and that is pretty much their minimum payment.   Just be thankful for what you have; if you have extra monies then spend it on things you been waiting or wanting.

We should even be careful about how many children we choose to have if you are not in a solid relationship.   Another example, if there is a way to petition some workplace positions’ salaries to be reduced as these people are paid way too much then the government could pay more for public education.   One more example, government should have a cap on how many children can be on Medicaid so some people are not taking advantage of this program and we should vote for a cap also.   This would save the government lots of monies and hopefully then it will go towards needed funding.

 

 

CP & R, prompt 1

Has everyone heard of the popular ‘MSG’; well, I’m not a fan of it.   I don’t care if it is a food enhancer.   It is not really good for you and it makes some people eat more.  Following are two of many examples listed about ‘msg’ and there is much more information when you look up this money making ingredient.   This food additive does not seem to be good for you from everything I read.  I tried to avoid this ingredient if at all possible by limiting junk food intake and other processed foods; this is the only way to control msg(monosodium glutamate) intake as it in so many foods.

Is MSG Bad for You? | Yale Scientific Magazine

Monosodium glutamate. It’s in your Chinese take-out. It’s in your finger-licking delicious Nacho Cheese Doritos. And it’s definitely in your late-night bowl of Ramen noodles. Used for decades as a food additive and flavor-enhancer, monosodium glutamate (MSG) has been called many things, from a merely unhealthy additive to an addictive neurotoxin.

Monosodium glutamate, widely known to us as MSG, has a bad rap. The food additive, which has been used for decades in Chinese food, canned vegetables, and processed meat, has been associated with several medical symptoms including headache, sweating, and numbness in some people, according to the US Food and Drug Administration.

Source:   https://www.cnet.com/news/is-msg-really-all-that-bad-for-you

Some articles say that only when you eat on an empty stomach; it is bad for you but other articles say that it doesn’t matter because it is an extra ingredient that makes your junk food taste good so many of us keep buying them.

There are no regulations for labeling processed free glutamic acid (MSG).

For instance:

IN A NUTSHELL

There are no regulations that require the identification (labeling) of all processed free glutamic acid (MSG) present in processed food. Consumers have no way of knowing if there is processed free glutamic acid (MSG) in processed food, and if there is any, how much or how little there is.

The FDA has proposed no regulations for identifying all processed free glutamic acid (MSG) in processed food.

Never has the FDA suggested that all MSG in processed food might be labeled.

Similarly, consumers have no way of knowing how much processed free glutamic acid (MSG) remains in and/or on MSG-sprayed crops (produce) when brought to market.

Source:   http://www.truthinlabeling.org/presentregulations.html

To me as a consumer of some junk food purchased even if it is from a natural store, this ingredient(msg) is in there under different names and FDA does not require proper labeling anyway.   So consumers are not protected by FDA just business firms are protected.

I want to know why FDA allows this ingredient in foods and why can’t USDA or some other agency but a stop to this or consumers possibly.   I guess we have to decide for ourselves whether you rather cook most of your foods because many frozen foods have this ingredient also not just junk foods.  It is like the saying “Be your own advocate.”

One more information we are supposed to understand is “While the naturally occurring glutamates in food aren’t dangerous, processed free glutamic acids like MSG are.”  This  statement is repeated in many articles I read already.

Please look up the following agency as they have lots of information about this ‘msg.’  I also have listed above about the link to truthinlabeling.

United States Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service has tons of information about this topic.

Thinking and Discourse

PROMPT 1

While these questions are essentially asking the same question, the wording might make it confusing to some readers. Question one is vague and brief, but the wording is more comfortable and straightforward; “Do you favor or oppose expanding Medicare to provide health insurance to every American?” This question leaves the consumer with an ultimatum, whether they are for or against insuring all Americans. In which case, most people don’t want to seem like the ‘bad guy’ and will vote in favor of.

Question two explains with more detail the measures that would need to be taken in order to create or expand health insurance to every American, which in turn, makes it sound more complicated and how taxes would be increased. Most American’s do not want their taxes increased so they have an easier time voting opposed.

In my opinion, question two is clearer because it’s explaining the personal costs that come along with expanding health insurance to every American even those who can’t afford it.

Wording is important in consumer health, especially for polling when the consumer can’t see your facial expressions or even has enough background information about the topic. If you want accurate results, you not only have to ask which side the consumer is on but also state the personal costs such as tax increases so that the consumer has a clear cut of what they are in favor for or opposed to.

PROMPT 3 – Birth Slides

I actually don’t have any babies and am not planning to have any probably for another 8-10 years but these slides were very engaging.

Being informed is the first important concept to even considering having a baby. When considering, you need to be able to adjust your diet. For example, if you are someone who eats high fat fast-food 4 out of 7 days of the week, consider changing those number to only one out of 7 days a week and home cook your meals instead so that you know exactly what you are putting into your body. Being informed about your daily environment is also important I would say, staying away from smokers would be a good start and finally understanding risks and options as well as costs. Not only medical bills but nursery costs and baby essentials like diapers or formula if you decide not to breast feed.

Another important concept to consider is birth. How are you planning to have this baby? C-section or natural? What if you have to get induced? I have a cousin who had passed her due date by 1 week and a half so she had to get induced but still had a natural birth.

Finally, midwives are covered by all insurance companies in the state of Washington. A midwife is someone who is trained to help with pregnancies (as far as I know).

All of these concepts are important to me as a consumer because today we have the option of choosing to be on birth control until we decide that we are ready for a baby but because of religious views or lack of resources, many don’t have that option and will at least have control over their diet, and daily environment. I’m not sure how I would share this information with someone else, given I’ve haven’t experienced pregnancy, let alone child birth but if someone asks me I would be more than happy to share what I know and suggest they visit a doctor for more information.