Capturing the Two Sides of Mental Illness

MHCDTEMP1 | November 13, 2014

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While browsing the Internet, I came across a short essay with accompanying photos on the website of the online magazine Slate. The story, a photo project called “Dualities,” was conceived of by a photographer who is bipolar and wanted to capture what it was like. For each subject, there were two pictures: the self that person projected to the world and the one they inhabited when they were at home and depressed. The pictures of how they presented themselves to the world were professional, happy and engaged.

Spotlight

Vail Valley Medical Center

Vail Valley Medical Center is one of the world's most advanced mountain hospitals. We provide Olympic-quality sports medicine, leading evidence-based research, modern cancer care, onsite cath lab with extensive cardiology services, childbirth, 24-hour emergency care, urgent care facilities in Avon and Gypsum and medical facilities in the well-known resort towns of Vail, Beaver Creek, Edwards & Eagle. VVMC features a 58-bed JCAHO-accredited hospital and six valley wide clinics providing everything from emergency, general surgery and acute care to family practice, physical therapy and a fully-accredited regional cancer center.

OTHER ARTICLES

Post Pandemic Meltdown: Gamified Dieting Success Rates, Sign-ups Surge Amid ‘Quarantine 15’ Concerns

Article | December 8, 2020

Let’s face it. It’s been one tough year with too many of us sitting idle and indulging in calorie-laden foods for way too long as the coronavirus pandemic continues to sweep the globe. For all too many, sheltering in place has prompted unwelcome weight gain—a troublesome truth as we head into the holiday season where gluttony oft reigns supreme. That said, many individuals did have foresight and motivation back in March and the months that followed, wisely leveraging that extreme downtime to “diet for dollars” with HealthyWage—a pioneer of money-driven weight loss contests and challenges for individuals, teams and business groups. In fact, those who started a 6-month HealthyWager challenge during the pandemic (late March through May) broke company records, spurring a dramatic increase in pound shedding success rates—and in-kind cash payouts—against the norm. So motivated became America to drop, or avoid, the so-called ‘quarantine 15’ and score some cold hard cash in the process, HealthyWage reports that this past May it logged a substantial year-over-year increase in challenge participants at large. This is not surprising given Google search trends indicates the portion of people searching for weight loss hit a 5-year high in May of 2020—a level even exceeding the quintessential New Year’s diet resolution season. Beyond the fact that people who started weight loss wagers during the pandemic achieved much greater success as compared to participant results the prior year, and earning hundreds and even thousands of dollars for their efforts, it is women and individuals under 30 years of age primarily accounting for the sustained increases. For example, among the litany of pandemic era success stories, Lisa S. won over $1,900 for losing 50 pounds in 6 months while Hayden T. won over $1,200 for losing over 62 pounds in 6 months—both during the COVID-19 pandemic. As the coronavirus rages on well into the fourth quarter, we collectively find ourselves again having to shelter-in-place. Those trying to reconcile how they will survive this next round of being home bound, and the holiday season at large, with mitigated waistline and budgetary wreckage—and who are even planning their New Year resolution approach just beyond—would be wise to consider the gamified dieting approach. “Loss Aversion is a powerful dynamic and the reality of having ‘skin in the game’ can propel the results of a gamified weight loss initiative,” notes HealthyWage co-founder David Roddenberry. The efficacy of diet gamification is well-proven. For one, according to study findings published by JAMA Internal Medicine, behavioral economics-based gamification led to “significantly” increased physical activity among overweight and obese Americans. In this particular study, pairing a step tracking device with social incentives led to sustained, long-term behavior change—prompting participants to take more steps then with a step tracking device, alone. While the report explains that “gamification interventions significantly increased physical activity during the 24-week intervention,” with competition being the “most effective.” That’s something HealthyWage has seen play out since launching its weight-loss gamification platform in 2009. HealthyWage is, in fact, founded on earlier substantive research and "double-incentivization" methodology that proves competition and rewards—especially the cash variety—can as much as triple the effectiveness of weight loss programs. “A key element for the success of a gamification program is giving participants something to lose if they fail to meet their goal—whether tangible or intangible,” notes Roddenberry. “In this particular study, it was just points at stake but even this effected behavior change. There are actually throngs of studies demonstrated that the threat of losing something of value is much more effective than the opportunity to win something of equal value. That’s precisely why we advocate that program participants ‘pay to play’ and make an investment out of their own pocket in order to win rewards—in our case large cash prizes—for losing weight and getting more active in the program.” A few other notable HealthyWager success stories (both female and male) are case-in-point. These include Jean N. who lost 71 lbs. and won $3,357.99 for her efforts, and Jeremy M. who also lost 71 lbs. and won $1,886.32 for his own slimdown success. From its website, HealthyWage.com shares yet more inspirational success stories of both women and men who gained financially for their pound-shedding achievements using the company’s unique gamification approach. This includes Kristin W. who lost a staggering 114 pounds and won $4,000 for her efforts, Anastasia W. who lost 41 pounds and won a whopping $10,000 in kind, and Blake S. who lost an impressive 151 pounds and won $4,670 for his own slimdown success. Figures that are tasty, indeed. These and other such HealthyWage payouts are proof positive. For their weight-loss achievements that collectively exceeds an astounding 1,050,000 pounds for this year, alone—269 of which losing in excess of 100 pounds (and nearly 7.5 million pounds lost since the company’s launch), HealthyWage has reportedly paid more than xx30,000 dieters over $13 million cash in 2020, specifically, and over $55 million cash since its inception in 2009. HealthyWage programs apply these principles: HealthyWager Challenge: participants commit to a weight loss goal and an upfront financial payment and get their money back plus a financial return if they accomplish their weight loss goal. The average participant loses 40.7 pounds and gets paid $1,245. HealthyWage Step Challenge: participants commit money and agree to increase their steps by 25% over 60-days. If they achieve their goal they get their money back plus the money from those who don't hit their goal. Upholding the new findings while also further validating HealthyWage’s well-honed approach, an additional study published in the journal Social Science and Medicine continue to prove that money is an effective motivator to “increase both the magnitude and duration of weight loss.” The same hold true in business for staff wellness initiatives. Results from one study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine indicated that “Loss Incentive’ Motivates Employees to Take More Steps ,” finding that financial incentives framed as a loss were most effective for achieving physical activity goals. As a prolific corporate and group wellness purveyor, since 2009 HealthyWage has worked with an array of hi-caliber participants on workplace and staff wellness initiatives, including Halliburton, ConocoPhillips and more than 25% of the largest school districts in the country. HealthyWage has, in fact, formally created competitive, money-motivated programs for more than 1000 Fortune 500 and other public and private companies, hospitals, health systems, insurers, school systems, municipal governments and other organizations throughout the U.S., and their program has been more informally run at more than 7,000 companies and organizations seeking to bolster staff health and well-being, and boost bottom lines in kind. “Throngs of studies reiterate the importance of the 'stick' in the design of a wellness incentive program, whether for individuals at home or for employee groups,” Roddenberry says. “Many studies have demonstrated that the threat of losing something of value is much more effective than the opportunity to win something of equal value. That’s precisely why we advocate that program participants ‘pay to play’ and make an investment out of their own pocket in order to win rewards—in our case large cash prizes—for losing weight and getting more active in the program.” Studies do consistently show that monetary incentives serve to enhance the effectiveness of, and duly complement, weight-loss programs of any and all sorts, especially when paid out quickly like HealthyWage’s various programs. For its part, HealthyWage reports that the average participant more than doubles their investment if they are successful at achieving their goal. The financial upside potential is impressive. So, if this is the season when you would like to not only resolve to lose those extra lbs. but also actually achieve that worthy goal, consider a cash-fueled approach. It just might give you that extra dose of motivation that’ll truly help you stay the course, shed weight and make some extra money in the process. There’s no better time than right now to bank on yourself.

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The Drum Beat of the Mind

Article | December 4, 2020

Creative thinking explores the wonder world of creation. Creative thinking edit challenges and insert solutions. Thinking is not narrow minded; it is a brood minded side effect. Are you standing still , holding the sign detour? Detour signal and message “ you cannot go pass here.” This message is like concrete to narrow minded thinking.Brood minded thinking says it is another way, I will find it , dismissing blind spots.. Napeleon Hill stressed the importance of ones’ thoughts in his Book Think and Grown Rich. Yes, the drum beat rymthe of the mind is thinking and manifesting an outcome. Napeleon Hill message is to sweep yourself to success, lean on the Bibical scripture” As you think so shall you be” As you think so shall you be amplfies the constant and significant need for growth and expanding. An interesting simple guarantee; a burning desire and an idea survives on the basis of thought, of will, of consistency and of determination. Contary to desire is force of giving up. The giving up force is similar to a ballon that’s blown up , being popped or untied , spilling and releasing out the air that blew it up. While the barriers of thought can spout limits; heels of success potential are unlimited. Thinking holds and embrace hands with the imagination, knowledge, visions,dreams, goals, wisdom,implementing a plan and an understanding. Consideration must ahere to a pattern of habit conditioning to implement and discover the enlightment engraved in devolping and being mindful of ones’thoughts. Goals- action based ( preferably written instuctions for best results) providing guidance for a desired outcome. The necleus for goals achievement is : confidence, commitment, clarity, creavity and consistency. Determination, desire and discipline are unstoppable buddies who see each other everyday.This is goal code. Imagination- imagination confess it is a continious activity seeking expression and is a storage center with creative wonders and unlimited possibilities. Dream- Dreams are a reflection of a desire begging to be recognize and fillful its purpose. Knowledge- Learning acquired through process of exposure,training ,education , reading, research or experiment Vision: reflection or an image created by words. Vision boards are useful and should be accompanied by words to assist in creating a vision. For instance, hearding the words pinkchair will flash an image of a pink chair to your thoughts of a pink chair. Plan- Plan is a diligent fan of goals. Plan provides instructional and clarity on a proposal; action to be taken and potential of its being productive, profitable and feasible. A plan is mission related, written and allow simple,easy and effective and steps for implementing What are the influencers and principles that are weaved into creavtive thinking? Thinking habits- how you see,explain and intrepret Environment- exposure ,travel, and surrounding Adversity- solution and problem solving based Altitude- level of understanding Knowledge- Learning structure Experience- practical knowledge gained Personal Development- promotion of ones’ learning and a concentrated effort to be informed Do not clog the drain. Thoughts are useful things. Thoughts can nudge you to be creative. Remember information is abundant and thoughts have power to create. “You can be what you want to be, do what you want to do, have what you want to have” Rev. Ike. This idea is associate with creative thinking. Creative thinking is an affirmation for success. It is also stated “ change your thoughts, change your life” Wayne Dyer Think, speak and affirm is a side effect lingering in creative thinking.Creative thinking is the drum beat of the mind. As it is said, Give the drummer some!”So I will so I can” is a mind with thoughts and thinking that erase impossibe. Think About This- Be creative Wear shoes that fit Do not hurt your feet With sores of regret Wounds of doubt And blisters of neglect

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Artificial Intelligence Adoption in Healthcare

Article | February 10, 2020

Artificial intelligence (AI) – long an impactful technology in other industries – is in the midst of rapid adoption across the healthcare industry. What was once seen as having great potential is now making its way to real-world implementation, driving improvements in care through enhanced clinical decision support, empowering payers, providers and healthcare organizations across the ecosystem with actionable insight. Patient-generated behavioral data is becoming increasingly common for care management. Smart gadgets such as Fitbits, smartphones and other wearable sensors collect patients’ data, helping patients and physicians better understand habits and set realistic healthcare goals.

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The Impact of COVID-19 on Health and Finance

Article | March 25, 2020

The new coronavirus has imminent and profound implications for health plans, benefit providers, health systems, and financial institutions. These constituents require a rapid strategic response as they brace for a landscape that is different from anything forecasts have offered to date. A digital workplace, interoperability, customer-centricity, and fraud prevention are just a few of the factors that will play a part in such a strategic response. Interoperability of disparate electronic medical records (EMR) systems is the promise and the bane of the healthcare industry. The fix is not quick or easy. But the current environment brings renewed purpose to those initiatives. Health plans and benefit providers have a pivotal role in managing public worries regarding testing and treatment for the new coronavirus as well as any underlying conditions that require medical treatment. While these organizations are likely to be in rapid-planning-and-response mode, member engagement must be part of that rapid planning and response. Some have already announced they will waive prior authorizations for COVID-19 tests or expand access to telehealth services, but that is only the tip of the iceberg of what member engagement can look like.

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Spotlight

Vail Valley Medical Center

Vail Valley Medical Center is one of the world's most advanced mountain hospitals. We provide Olympic-quality sports medicine, leading evidence-based research, modern cancer care, onsite cath lab with extensive cardiology services, childbirth, 24-hour emergency care, urgent care facilities in Avon and Gypsum and medical facilities in the well-known resort towns of Vail, Beaver Creek, Edwards & Eagle. VVMC features a 58-bed JCAHO-accredited hospital and six valley wide clinics providing everything from emergency, general surgery and acute care to family practice, physical therapy and a fully-accredited regional cancer center.

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