Get the online medical consultation with DOCTOPOLIS management

28 04 2011

For the first time, 240 days after the first entry in this blog, We return to talk about us. We do it with great joy and enthusiasm, Since after a pilot phase and many months of work, the project DOCTOPOLIS starts walking with the aim of transferred the management of medical consultations to the Internet and bring to the health professionals and their patients.

The history of DOCOTPOLIS is the of two young entrepreneurs you have met ICT and health ’ s in a project which offers first Spanish health professionals the possibility of manage your fully online queries. The project puts at the disposal of professionals of the private scope a wide variety of services New in Spain, but widely extended in countries technologically more advanced.
agenda online

Service star is the quotes online, that allows patients appointments for free and practitioners see as their agendas are handled automatically. The hours of visit request is made through a complete and elegant Directory, It allows professionals to be released for free on the Internet. About the service appointment online articulated many others, also intended to contribute to the savings in time and cost of management. Among them, include the service of Clinical online stories, the automatic sending of SMS and the creation of custom websites in only 48 hours, from which it is also possible to schedule appointments online.

DOCTOPOLIS has the support of a Committee of experts formed by professionals of recognized prestige fifteen, most of them have written an article on this blog. DOCTOPOLIS is a completely open project; in fact, us, its promoters, We are already working on the development of new services, as the virtual telephone Secretary or the telemedicine.

We are here to serve you.

The team of DOCTOPOLIS

I leave you with a video:

European institutions working on a tablet for the elderly

25 04 2011

A consortium formed by 10 European institutions, among them is the Catalan consultancy Tioman & Partners and the Federation of associations of the elderly in Catalonia (FATEC), boost SI-Screen project. The project consists in the development of a tactile device adapted to elderly users, simplifies and encourages social interaction for the elderly with the help of ICT.

The Yes-Screen project is developing a digital touch screen that will enable older persons to be in contact with the family and friends, as well as general information on their topics of interest, such as health and social activities organized specifically for this group.

The central idea of the project is to integrate access to different services of communication and coordination through a digital touchscreen based above all on images, instead of text, Since graphic resources encourages the memory of older people and are an indispensable element for its stimulation and motivation.

The new social interaction device will integrate web-based applications, for example Internet telephony and instant messaging, but adapted so that they can be used without difficulty by the elderly. At the same time, the device will allow the elderly from accessing advanced Telecare services, among them there is the activation of the emergency services and the biomonitoritzacion, allowing social worker carry out the daily monitoring of the health of the patient at a distance. The device also aims to promote an active lifestyle, the proposal of physical activities, and improve intergenerational solidarity.

Yes-Screen project is running from October of 2010, with a life expectancy of 30 months and a total budget of 2,7 million euros. It is part of the program Ambient Assisted Living (AAL) of the European Commission. For the participation of Tioman & Partners, the Spanish company has received funding from the joint programme AAL, with the budget of the Ministry of industry, Tourism and Commerce and the European Commission funds. [en línea] Madrid (Spain):,April 25, 2011[REF. 23 April of 2011] Available on Internet:

DNA detected diseases

21 04 2011

It is a method that could revolutionize the medicine of the future. With a tiny amount of DNA molecules can be diagnosed accuracy bacteria and disease causing viruses, as well as find out the predisposition to collapse them and plan the best therapy against chronic conditions.

All this will be possible thanks to the step by a Group of researchers from the Basque technological centre CIC microGUNE. This group has developed an innovative technique that, through the analysis of a single molecule of DNA, will allow to detect diseases. “It is a technology that allows the determination of DNA sequences, detecting genetic alterations to determine specific genes associated with the early detection of diseases”, explains Santos Merino, researcher of the technological Center.

To do this, Basque scientists made a number of microchips that contain nanochannels. It's sealed thousand times narrower than a person's hair and whose dimensions lie between the 50 and 100 nanometer, a millionth of a meter. Once prepared these tiny devices, the researchers introduce DNA molecules with the objective of monitoring the degree of stretching of the particle. “The idea is to this channel to keep its intact dimensions regardless of the number of molecules entering”, detailed Santos Merino. The last step of the process is concerned with the analysis of a single molecule. Once stretched, its length is measured and analyzed their DNA sequence.

Among the applications that offers this novel technique highlights the possibility of knowing the willingness of patients to certain diseases, diagnose them or set the best therapy once known for the development of the disease. “We can identify viruses and bacteria associated with conditions by introducing enzymes to identify specific DNA fragments that may develop the disease”, explains Santos Merino.

Between the main advantages It offers this innovative method for professionals it is small amount of molecules requiring researchers to diagnose possible health disorders. Added to this attractive feature is the ppossibility to be able to diagnose the disease more quickly. In particular, According to explain the research managers, the time spent in the detection could be reduced to a minute when it is usual to elapse half an hour before the researchers can diagnose it by conventional techniques.

These practical benefits joins the ability to encode DNA, implying the possibility of a precise genetic information about the health of patients. “The next step we will take is the introduce restriction enzymes that will serve us to cut the double-stranded in a single fragment, which will allow us to detect the exact biomarkers to identify disease”, stress researchers.

To these advantages, Merino sum the “scalability” the production of these devices in nanochannels format, something that will enable their future marketing biotechnology companies. “We have developed a technology of nanoprinting lithography with which we can manufacture mass quantities”, indicates the researcher. “It is a new technique that also, allows predict susceptibility to certain drugs on the part of the population“, concludes Merino. [en línea] Madrid (Spain):, 18 April 2011[REF. 21 April of 2011] Available on Internet:


18 04 2011

The real impact of Twitter It is impossible to measure, but its range has no limits. This network - which has more informative and less social than others - is changing, based on messages of 140 characters, Journalism, the policy or the way of watching television. But this tool has also crept into other more orthodox medicine and science areas.

Its influence has become popular in these sectors because many professionals have found in Twitter a way to communicate with colleagues, a quick way to reach patients and a speaker to make themselves heard. Although Spain is a nascent phenomenon, already there are doctors that are noted in the network.

“When a new patient to my query I give my e-mail, my blog and my Twitter and tell him that you can follow me where you want to”, explains to Salvador Casado, specialist in family medicine and one of the Spanish doctors with more influence in social networks. Your account @ doctorcasado, you have more than 1.400 followers, is his last attempt of “avenues of communication outside of the query”. An adventure that began, as almost all their colleagues from Twitter and profession, with a blog.

How to interact on the network is constantly changing (the e-mail, the blog, social networks…) and navigates to an immediate and global flow of information. A scenario in which the time is a key variable. This is one of the reasons why Twitter win followers in the consultations and hospitals. “A message can be launched in a very short time, from patient to patient, and to read the information that you are interested in, you don't have to always be connected”, says Eduardo Puerta (@ melmack2k), specialist in family medicine in a health center in Tenerife.

After two and a half years in the ‘ Twittersphere ’, you don't even know if this new medium of communication will have a real on the exercise of the medicine impact but it is optimistic: “What we experienced with blogs is that it works. I've been in 400 visits to 80.000 in a year; and people read and comment. You want to know”.

Studies show two trends. On the one hand, Internet has become the main source of health information. Eight of each 10 users use the network to find out more on this topic, According to a report drawn up by Pfizer. In addition, at least in United States, one third of them doing in social networks, where are looking for, above all, other patients with whom to share experiences. And it seems that in Spain also. A small survey by revealed that to the 68% of the respondents would like that your doctor would be accessible through Facebook o Twitter. But Internet is a double-edged weapon, and not all pages that there are quality. This is where many doctors have found a niche that occupy.

“The situation demands our presence because people need information and advice”, emphasizes married Salvador. In addition, “the public health system is becoming increasingly saturated and we have less time to communicate”. This idea is shared by other colleagues of married engaged, like him, Family medicine and who form the core of medical bloggers and tuiteros.

“There are a few 500 medical blog with them the 90% is family”, ensures Eduardo Puerta. “I see logical - continues - because we are closer to the population at all levels and for the people, it is easier to read and understand what we say because we use a simpler language”.

Hence much of the time that spend these professionals in Twitter engaged it in what they call prescribing information, which consists in “share news or pages with good quality medical content that may be useful for patients”, says Fernando Casado (@ drcasado). From your query in Madrid, can use you this tool to “no face-to-face contact with patients” but also “to do something social work, health education”.

Social networks operate as a sounding board that many physicians use to convey important messages to the population. From promoting good use of antibiotics to how to quit smoking. The initiative My life without you It is a good example of the new forms of collaboration that allows Internet. The objective is to “support the patient to stop smoking”, explains door. And so the doctors released messages through a blog, a page of Facebook and an account of Twitter. The difference is that “to mount this campaign we have not had a single physical meeting. Everything has been coordinated through these networks”, add Fernando Casado.

But beyond support for the population and prescribing information, the transfer of the doctor-patient relationship to social networks is a very disputed subject which should take into account the ethical implications involved share or publish data of a person. “I prefer seem unfriendly to treat clinical cases”, recognizes Fernando Casado. “Anything that requires a minimum scan should be treated in Twitter“.

The subject arouses much interest to the United States Academy of medicine (AMA) released at the end of 2010 guides to guide physicians in the use of social networks. They make special emphasis on safeguarding the privacy of patients.

Virtual machines

Doctors have also found a space in which to interact with other colleagues in this microblogging tool. “Twitter It has gained value itself because it is very easy to receive information from the institutions, magazines or people you are interested in. It is a continuous ticker”, point Vicente beams, author of the blog The suppository, to tuitea from @ vbaosv. “For us, it has an enormous power as continuous and independent training platform”, add Fernando Casado.

To base follow each other, they are creating “very important professional networks; virtual work teams that improve outcomes”, emphasizes married Salvador. “A few days ago I was in the query to a person with complex tendinopathy in the knee and didn't know how to handle it. I got in touch with a physical therapist through Twitter and in 10 minutes had five articles on the topic. Without your help, It would have taken two or three hours to do so”.

Among the most striking projects of collaboration is the relay route Twitter two surgical interventions. The first was carried out in the Middle Tennessee Medical Center (USA) and the second in the Hospital Clinico San Carlos in Madrid. The operation “had much follow-up and feedback”, explains Julio Mayol (@ juliomayol), the surgeon who directed her. “This - continues-, It might seem trivial, It can be very useful, especially if you use innovative surgical techniques, because you can get tips on what you're doing in real time or receive questions. It is very rewarding”.

Technological education

The incipient medicine 2.0 is, However, a great unknown for many professionals and users of the health system. “The training of medical, It is very long, It is directed to the paper and not this. There are some technological illiteracy”, emphasizes married Salvador. The same is true among the population. The email only begins to become popular and is that “There are many barriers to communication through the Twitter, indicates Eduardo Puerta.

There are still quite a few Spaniards who do not have an e-mail account and what social networks. Why, “There are who accused to inverse care or attention to those least in need”, explains Salvador Casado. That is what is normally done through the new tools of communication, since users tend to be younger, of higher education, etc. People, In short, less likely to need continued care. “But that's now - he was defended-. In the future it will not happen”.

This technology gap is which is hindering the use of Twitter How organizational tool. “Us, family doctors, We master the query. We are autogeneradores and know how, If there are gaps… -explains door-. You will have a direct use with the patient”. But the initiative is only running on a few sites, as in the query of Fernando Casado, pioneered the idea.

His patients know thanks to its tuits if it is a good day for appointment, If you are late or if you have had to leave to visit home. “Young people tell me - indicates married-that connects to see it and some of the greatest that I follow through their children”. It is clear that the technology is increasingly present in our lives and, as warned Vicente beams, “professionals who are kept away from these tools are going to lose many things and will not have the agility to manage information“. [en línea] Madrid (Spain): ElElMundo.es18 April 2011[REF. 18 April of 2011] Available on Internet:

Can you imagine how you contact with your patients in the future?

14 04 2011

This video is a gateway to the imagination to think of new ways to communicate with patients thanks to new technologies.

More than 350.000 pairs of mothers and children participating in the greater European project on child health

11 04 2011

Barcelona, 11 April of 2011.- The European Commission wants to care for the health of children. That is why it has launched project boys, a scientific initiative which aims to coordinate and develop an integrated strategy for European research teams that gather information on pregnant mothers and their babies. This project, having more data from 700.000 people (350.000 mothers and their respective children), is coordinated by the Centre for research in environmental epidemiology (CREAL) and it held its first meeting day 11 and 12 April in Barcelona.

During these days, researchers of 40 birth cohorts * of 17 European countries (Spain, France, Portugal, Great Britain, Holland, Finland, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia, Denmark, Faroe Islands) they meet to discuss what is needed to investigate in the next 10 years to improve children's health, focusing on some of its major problems such as obesity, neurodevelopment and asthma.

Click on the image to see it with higher resolution.

These studies cover various aspects that can affect children as, for example, the effects of the consumption of alcohol during pregnancy in the growth of the fetus, the influence of socio-economic factors on the risk of childhood asthma, the importance of fish consumption in the development of children or the effects of POPs (Polluting organic persistent), measured in blood samples from mothers, in the weight of babies at birth. The Dra. Martine Vrijheid, Coordinator of the project guys and researcher of the CREAL, says that “"it's a unique opportunity to gain knowledge about what affects our children to improve their quality of life and health of small as his adult life".

Researchers estimate that they may obtain findings of this project in 2012. Later a broad set of recommendations on priorities for health policy for the improvement of the quality of life of European children will be offered to the European Commission.

*Cohort study: study group within a research project formed by pairs of mothers and children.

The white paper defends indirect taxes and the pharmaceutical co-payment

7 04 2011

The WHITE PAPER ON HEALTH CARE SPANISH recommended, to ensure the future sustainability of the system, provide the health cohesion fund with additional funding from indirect taxes, extending co-payment in pharmaceutical benefits and liberalise this service, among other proposals,;at the time criticized “the opacity” and “lack of coordination” and the use of health care by some communities for “strengthen their political power without taking into account the Central Administration”. The Coordinator of this work, drawn up by the Spanish delegation of the European Academy of Sciences and arts (WAS), Francisco J.Rubia Vila, presented the 6 April the work accompanied by the teachers José María Segovia spider and Juan Velarde.

The blonde Professor warned that current problems, as the ageing, the lack of coordination in investments or the lack of control in pharmaceutical expenditure may endanger a National health system What, at the end of the process of decentralization, has become in “notoriously opaque and waterproof”. For this reason, He claimed a National Pact that updates the system and equips it of “financial and economic rationality” to make it sustainable, as well as to give “cohesion and coordination that currently lacks”.

In this sense, Blonde showed that if this decentralization has had advantages, as a better understanding of the needs of citizens, has also led to disadvantages primarily by the “fragmentation of the system, not take advantage of economies of scale and the lack of coordination”.In fact, He criticized that the communities use health competencies for “strengthen their own political power” without coordination by wayside and being “sovereign, they do not take into account to the central administration”, what contributes to the “appearance of significant administrative and welfare differences” between different communities.

In addition, said that the “prestige” of the SNS is an added problem, Since “hinders the rigorous analysis of the problems”, an analysis that politicians prefer to avoid. “Today day suffers this needed discussion of a political assessment that moves between a marked complacency and a catastrophic exaggeration depending on what political stance is”, lamented.

In particular, noted as major problems the “inefficiency” e “ineffectiveness” of the Inter-territorial Council, requested partial reforms that facilitate cohesion and coordination of the system; the “ambiguity” competences and responsibility of Estado-autonomias, It usually compete with each other; as well as the pharmaceutical cost containment, that in 2008 was of 12.00 million euros, the EU twice.


Precisely, to ensure the future of the system, the White paper He believes that the required health coordination should be given a financial instrument, the sanitary Cohesion Fund, allow implementing cohesion policy, equity and correction of inequalities. In addition, It is considered that the additional financing of the Fund should be sought, to a large extent, from indirect taxes.

Also claiming a rationalisation of the pharmaceutical expenditure and considers “essential” extend the co-payment in pharmaceutical benefits, with exceptions depending on income and the disease in a way that “all benefits that are not closely health must be carried out by the user”. Also, He defends the liberation of the pharmaceutical system with the exception of certain areas and the rural areas.

Also, calls for the bureaucracy of the system, both in the public, in its various forms management, in the concerted, on the basis of abandoning the current regime of public law in the field of human resources and supplies, among others, maintaining public ownership of the system, ensuring quality and equity. However, points out that most of the proposals for innovation of the organisational models have responded primarily to “ideological criteria” and points out that in all cases the privatization “It must be based on objective and independent criteria”.

On the other hand, calls intensify, to the extent possible, autonomy in the management of the hospitals with a greater use of cost-effectiveness analysis in the programming of expenditure, as well as efficient management of investments related to the incorporation of changes resulting from scientific and technological developments, since they tend to shoot costs. It also suggests that you widespread use of the technologies of information and communication (ICT). With respect to healthcare professionals, It points out that policies must be tailored to the needs of social productivity with an up-to-date register of professionals.

In the same way, it criticizes the growing trend towards the judicialisation, which leads to a defensive medicine; requests better control of health tourism and strengthen education and health information at all levels as a fundamental measure of prevention. [en línea] Valencia (Spain):, 7 April 2011[REF. 6 April of 2011] Available on Internet:

Dr BLANCH: Telemedicine in critical patients: improving the quality and an opportunity to innovate

4 04 2011

Lluís Blanch MD, PhD.

Senior intensive care medicine

Director research and innovation,

Corporation University Health Parc Taulí

Cyber respiratory diseases

Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

The stage of critical care (from transportation to the ICU systems) is in continuous motion. The limitation on the number of health professionals and economic resources, at the same time on the growth in demand, they are cornerstones of the problem for the development of the model. To all this must be added the current conditions due to the context of the crisis, widespread with important significance in health systems.

Information technology and communication capabilities should be exploited to the maximum to increase the coverage and quality care to the critically ill patient and intensive care. Far from being a replacement for the existing model, telemedicine could be a complementary tool. In fact, the approximation of knowledge where the critical patient should be a realisable objective in the immediate future. The centralization of medical data on servers has several additional advantages which could even improve the way in which professionals in charge of a sick critical care their patients in the traditional system.

Telemedicine has other advantages associated. At least in its fullest expression, telemedicine systems should integrate the information from medical history with data from monitoring devices. The acquisition and standardization of these signals would enhance dramatically the semantic value of the medical records. But beyond this, enables the use of the same information in other directions, for example to analyze assisted cases looking for points or actions to improve future services, education based on simulation of real events and finally the exploitation of data for the prevention of medical errors and the prediction of events until they occur.

The use of telemedicine also has other obvious advantages: allows you to provide specialist care for patients who have shown benefit in situations where human resources may not be available and/or the system cannot afford it. However, These enormous direct advantages could even be overtaken by the indirect advantages related to the possibility of acquiring, normalize, synchronize and store medical signals. In the immediate future, may be available to extend the scope of alarm systems, improve the specificity of the same, and allow firing of qualitatively different alarms, This is, not only audible alerts issued at the bedside of the patient, but eMails, SMSs, Pagers sent in the first instance or as a system of escalation in a predefined route when the problems are not solved in a satisfactory manner. In the immediate, could not help change the way in which medical knowledge was applied, but also to modify the way in which knowledge in if same occurs. The use of techniques of data mining on large databases of medical signals could produce vast amounts of information and become a new strategy to formulate hypotheses to be tested through the application of the scientific method. Beyond this it would examine signals in ways that are impossible for the naked eye as the analysis in domains other than the temporary, Perhaps the most notorious, of frequencies. It is reasonable to expect even that these analyses reveal systematic alterations in one or several signals before the occurrence of an event. This raises the possibility of no longer issue alerts about an event that has happened but one that may occur.

In short we are talking about using the knowledge of professionals who attend the critical patient to create innovation in forms of care for these patients and create products, services or processes that improve the existing and in addition the health of persons. Innovation in the field of care for the critically ill patient should lead to a transfer of this knowledge to the market in order to create products that return tangible resources to professionals, institutions and the country. Society not only asks a high degree of professionalism, but also a strategic vision for the future. And no doubt the address is in the research and innovation.