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Clinical Accuracy Spoken Here
Behavioral Health: Addictive substances
The wide range of drugs to which a person can become addicted covers both illegal and legal substances. Cannabis compounds (marijuana), hallucinogens (LSD, PCP), and inhalants are included alongside central nervous system depressants and stimulants, opioids, and steroids. Repeated use of a drug may alter the reward pathways in the brain and change the communication process that occurs in the brain depending on the type of drug used and the physical changes to the nerve cells found there.

[Reference:Behavioral Health, Substance Abuse, Module C: General Overview, Page 1] www.athenaforum.com

CRC: Recommendations
Twelve lymph nodes (at least) should be examined in patients with colon and rectal cancer to confirm the absence of nodal involvement by the tumor, as recommended by the American Joint Committee on Cancer and a panel of the National Cancer Institute. The reason for this: the number of lymph nodes examined may be associated with the patient’s outcome and considers it reflects the pathologic identification of nodes in the specimen.

[Reference: Colorectal Cancer, Module B: Symptoms & Management, Page 10]
Excellence in Case Mgmnt
Caring 4 U Variety of Foods
Opportunities to expand your choice of foods in your daily/weekly dietary planning should be taken advantage of, especially with colorful vegetables, whole grains, and crisp fruits that are available in your local markets year-round. Trying something new is exciting, and it may surprise you and your taste buds. And, it’s good for you! http://www.americanheart.org/presenter.jhtml?identifier=537

Martin Luther King Day
In the Headlines . . .
“Transitions of Care Checklist”
The new consumer tool titled “Taking Care of MY Health Care” is now available after being developed over the last year by the National Transitions of Care Coalitions (NTOCC) Work Group. The design is patient and family caregiver friendly and encompasses best practices from across the continuum of health care. 2009 will hold many changes and developments in the U.S. health care system. Read what is going on in the area of performance measures in the latest Impact Newsletter for Winter, 2008.


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“What’s New on WikiHealthCare™?”
Did you know that the Joint Commission has an interactive forum that provides a community network for health care professionals? Launched in 2007, it has registered thousands of professionals like you and I. Social blogs and networks have brought about a new type of communication and a wonderful opportunity to participate in active discussions of topics and things that matter to us. Quality Improvement and Standards Research and Development forums are two of the sixty topics that are available for your input and participation. Further enhancements are coming but they need our input, stories, and experiences to provide just the right tools to provide a class-A newsletter. Check it out today!

The look of confidence
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Connie Sunderhaus Connie Sunderhaus, RN-BC, CCM
Clinical Editor
Athena Forum


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