What Matters: February's MedTech News You Need to Know

Overheard at GMM HQ

"Up next: A Pulitzer." - Ronda Fallon, discussing GMM's recent Best Content Series Honorable Mention awardin Ragan and PR Daily's 2015 Content Marketing Awards. Up top!

WHAT THE INDUSTRY IS BUZZING ABOUT

CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW?

Kaiser Permanente recently published results from a study examining outcomes for patients with chronic conditions that were able to send secure emails directly to their doctors. Thankfully, no chain letters with threats of bad luck were reported.

YOU'VE GOT MAIL

Nearly half the patients in the study chose email as their first line of communication with their physician, with 42 percent reporting that it reduced phone contacts and 36 percent stating a reduction in in-person visits. Turns out, people really want to avoid that weigh-in.

THE 411

Nearly every patient reported that their overall health was either improved or unchanged by the ability to email their doctor. A natural compliment to the rise of electronic medical records, we just might start seeing more doctor/patient emails in the future.  

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HOLD THE CARCINOGENS, PLEASE

The FDA is considering banning seven common and potentially cancer-causing food additives at the urging of the Natural Resources Defense Council and others who filed a petition regarding the additives.

BLAME FEMA

No, not that FEMA. The Flavor and Extracts Manufacturers Association added the seven additives in question to their "Generally Recognized As Safe" list back in 1965 after they received FDA approval. Since then, food safety activist groups including WHO's International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) and the National Toxicology Program (NTP) have classified the additives as possibly carcinogenic.

THE 411

If the compounds are ultimately banned, manufacturers will be forced to reformulate any products containing them in their ingredient list. Maybe time to run to the fridge and check the ingredient list on that coffee creamer.

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MAKING DIABETES DARLING

American Girl, the line of must-have dolls for school-aged girls, has released a doll-sized Diabetes Care Kit. The kit is sold as an accessory and includes glucose tablets, a blood-sugar monitor, a lancing device (shhh, that's code for needle), and an insulin pump that attaches to the doll's waistband.

WHO RUN THE WORLD?

The kit comes after a petition started by 11-year-old Anja Busse, a type-1 diabetes sufferer herself, garnered over 4,300 signatures on change.org. "I just want everyone to feel good about themselves no matter if they have something wrong with them," she said. Beyoncé would approve.

THE 411

News of the Diabetes Care Kit has been received with wide praise and has already spawned a "Diabetic American Girl Doll" Facebook page with over 3,000 members. Diabetes has never been so adorable.

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GOOD TO KNOW

Stop fighting it — the selfie is here to stay. Not convinced? NASA's Curiosity Mars rover just posted one online. Watch your back, Kim Kardashian.





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