The two strongest influencers on children’s attitudes toward their body image are their family unit and media. As clinicians, we must be attuned to our patients’ family dynamics and their online activities — and understand how these environmental factors influence their psychological and physical health. …Read More
There is substantial scientific evidence from multiple disciplines that the mobile media children use and how they use them influence their development and their physical, mental and social health. Among areas of concern in children are: risk-taking, sexual behavior, alcohol, tobacco and drug use, violence, obesity, disordered eating, learning, sleep and social connectedness.
The American Academy of Pediatrics has been issuing policy statements on the health effects of media for over 30 years and observant pediatricians recognize that their patients are affected. But a lack of clear diagnostic criteria and therapeutic guidelines combined with increasing demands on ever-shorter patient visits have made it difficult to prioritize and integrate media-related anticipatory guidance, diagnosis and treatment into standard of care pediatric practice. …Read More
Hospitals, doctors and the health care system as a whole have become ever more focused on measuring the quality of the care patients receive. And with good reason: as the system leans ever more towards tying reimbursements to quality, everyone recognizes that you can’t improve quality if you’re not measuring it.
Of the many ways one can look at quality in an inpatient setting, patient experience has earned a lot of attention. Hospitals, payors, survey vendors and government agencies are spending millions to develop, deploy and analyze tools like the adult and child Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and System (HCAHPS) surveys, which give voice to patients and their concerns about the care they receive.
Are there other ways to hear what patients are saying? Jared Hawkins, MMSc, PhD, of Boston Children’s Hospital’s Computational Health Informatics Program (CHIP), Boston Children’s chief innovation officer, John Brownstein, PhD, and their colleagues wanted to see whether they could harness the power of social media—specifically, Twitter—to supplement survey-based methods. Their data, published in the journal BMJ Quality & Safety, give encouraging hints, but it’s too early to retire those patient surveys just yet. …Read More
What should parents do if their child seems to be developing a social media addiction? On our sister blog Thriving, Michael Rich, MD, MPH, Boston Children’s Hospital’s Mediatrician, responds to a worried parent’s question about his daughter’s super-strong attachment to Instagram and SnapChat.
“This sounds like a difficult situation,” he notes, “one that many parents of teens face. Your daughter may have replaced the face-to-face socializing that happens so easily at school with socializing with her friends, now scattered by summer, through her phone.”