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 Thursday, March 8, 2001

Updated Information?
Hmmm... If can't even keep their corporate Web pages up-to-date, how likely is it that they still have the resources to keep their health pages up-to-date?? ( moved their corporate offices to California late last year.)

(Posted at 10:31:41 PM EST.)

All Your Base Are Belong To Us
All Your Base Are Belong To Us (requires Shockwave and not for the weak of heart). The Time Magazine explanation for the phenomenon.

(Posted at 09:41:24 PM EST.)

 Tuesday, March 6, 2001

Using Internet Technology to Deliver a Behavioral Weight Loss Program
A new JAMA article found Internet interventions effective for weight loss.

"Rapid increases in access to the Internet have made it a viable mode for public health intervention. No controlled studies have evaluated this resource for weight loss. Participants were randomly assigned to a 6-month weight loss program of either Internet education (education; n = 32 with complete data) or Internet behavior therapy (behavior therapy; n = 33 with complete data). All participants were given 1 face-to-face group weight loss session and access to a Web site with organized links to Internet weight loss resources. Participants in the behavior therapy group received additional behavioral procedures, including a sequence of 24 weekly behavioral lessons via e-mail, weekly online submission of self-monitoring diaries with individualized therapist feedback via e-mail, and an online bulletin board. Participants who were given a structured behavioral treatment program with weekly contact and individualized feedback had better weight loss compared with those given links to educational Web sites. Thus, the Internet and e-mail appear to be viable methods for delivery of structured behavioral weight loss programs."
(Posted at 06:12:16 PM EST.)

Snowed In
Well, finally, we got some snow last night and yesterday here in the greater Boston area. Wowee.

(Posted at 08:11:45 AM EST.)

FDA Approves Once-a-Week Prozac
"The government approved a once-a-week version of Prozac Tuesday for long-term depression treatment - but cautioned it's too soon to know if weekly doses are as effective as once-a-day Prozac. Depression often requires long-term treatment. Yet many patients quit medication as soon as they feel better, prompting a relapse. So some psychiatrists have longed for once-a-week medication, theorizing patients would be more likely to keep taking their medicine if it didn't mean swallowing so many pills." Just what we needed?!?? I guess there's always a new market for Eli Lilly & Co. to exploi-- er, I mean, enter.

(Posted at 08:11:01 AM EST.)

 Thursday, March 1, 2001

93% of Physicians Are Online
According to a recent Harris Interactive survey of 834 physicians in the US, the percentage of physicians using the internet has increased between 1999 and 2001 by 6% in the work area, by 4% in personal physician offices and by 4% at home. Harris found that currently, 93% of surveyed physicians are using the internet from any location.

Only 36% of physicians are still not using e-mail to communicate with staff, colleagues, patients or third party payers.
(Posted at 01:22:11 PM EST.)

Just What We Needed: More Health Standards
Gee, with only 51 standards to have to adhere to to gain the accreditation of this new seal, who do you think this kind of effort is aimed at? Certainly not the empowered health consumer, the most common author of the over 50,000 health Web sites online today. Ah well.

URAC (which incomprehensibly stands for the American Accreditation HealthCare Commission) is a Washington-based nonprofit that mainly accredits managed care organizations. What made them think they had the knowledge or ability to get into the world of online health is beyond me.
(Posted at 01:19:48 PM EST.)

Bloggin' the Net Part Deux
Yet another article about Weblogs, spurred on, no doubt, by the Newsweek piece earlier this week.

(Posted at 12:53:10 PM EST.)

Monday, February 26, 2001

Not surprising...
Not surprising that on the online journal-heavy Metafilter, there's a lot of hurt feelings about how people were quoted and that specific Websites weren't mentioned by URL. I agree with the overall tone of the frustration. Working with reporters is and always has been a random act of hopefulness -- hopeful you'll (and you're work) will be quoted, but in such a way as to shed a positive light on what you do. Having spoken to dozens of reporters over the years, the truth is you just never know how it's going to turn out in print. Even when the reporter has the best of intentions, vital quotes or context for them (or a URL) don't make it into the final version of the article. Often because of space and editing reasons, but that still doesn't make one feel any better about how it's taken care of. I once recently spoke to another Newsweek reporter for over an hour about another topic, and she didn't use a single quote in the final version. C'est la vie. If you don't want to go through the experience, don't bother speaking to reporters...

(Posted at 01:04:24 PM EST.)

Reaction to the Newsweek article
Slashdot's responses and Metafilter's responses to the Newsweek article posted yesterday. There aren't a lot of interesting online journals out there, and as far as Weblogs go, well, it's a crap shoot in finding daily, ongoing quality.

(Posted at 12:34:09 PM EST.)

Sunday, February 25, 2001

Who's Bloggin' Now?
Hey, we got a mention in this week's Newsweek!! Yay!

(Posted at 11:20:38 PM EST.)

Thursday, February 22, 2001

Are You Headed for Divorce? First 2 Years Can Tell
"Newlyweds who keep the romance alive for at least the first two years of marriage may be more likely to stay together for the long run, a new study suggests. Those couples headed for a quick divorce -- in less than two years -- tended to become disillusioned and negative toward one another within two months of being wed. Those who go the middle distance -- two to seven years -- may be very romantic and loving at first, almost ``giddily'' in love. But if feelings wane and partners become disillusioned within the first year, it could be a sign of trouble. Those couples most likely to be married for the long-term are those who maintain their positive feelings for their spouse for at least the first two years, researchers report." Hmm.

(Posted at 07:46:21 PM EST.)

Wednesday, February 21, 2001

New Chat Host Tonight!!!
Tonight marks the first night I'll be hosting regular, weekly mental health and relationship chats at HealthyPlace. 9:00 - 9:30 pm ET (6:00 - 6:30 pm PT) in Support Room 2. E-mail me if you need any help getting in or finding the place!

(Posted at 11:18:48 AM EST.)

Growing Pains
We're still tweaking our new server configuration, so I apologize for the occasional downtime in the past week. Another week and all should be back to normal.

(Posted at 11:17:18 AM EST.)

Monday, February 19, 2001

This is the Week!
Well, this is huge week for me and the company. We have a number of meetings which will help determine the future of the company. I just hope all will go well and I'll be able to talk in more detail about their outcome soon enough. Just wish us well!

(Posted at 09:05:28 PM EST.)

A Great Conference
I was down in Washington, D.C. this past week for the National Mental Health Association's Internet Mental Health Leadership Summit. It went well, but we won't see what will come out of it for a few more weeks or months... Still, I had fun and learned a lot at the same time. Yay!

(Posted at 09:01:06 PM EST.)

Tuesday, February 13, 2001

The Death Penalty is Ineffective
I've flip flopped on this issue over the years, as I learned more about it, and as I tried to balance the victim's rights in such cases. However, this Website notes disturbing statistics reported on in Scientific American, but actually from The Justice Project here. If we can't put people to death beyond a reasonable doubt and in a timely manner, we shouldn't be doing it. It's that simple. Well, to me, anyways. Revenge be damned. Justice isn't about revenge. It may play out that way sometimes, but that wasn't the purpose of justice when this country was founded.

(Posted at 01:59:27 PM EST.)

Reformulating the Internet Paradox: Social Cognitive Explanations of Internet Use and Depression
"The Internet Paradox study (Kraut et al., 1998) found evidence of a causal link between Internet use and depression, but it may have been specific to novice Internet users. The relationship between Internet use, social support and depression was reformulated drawing on social cognitive theory (Bandura, 1997) to account for the possible influence of self-efficacy, Internet-related stress, and perceived social support. A path analysis revealed a link between Internet use and depression, but one mediated by self-efficacy and the expectation of encountering stressful situations on the Internet. A path also was found linking Internet use to decreased depression through the use of e-mail exchanges with known associates to obtain social support." Read the whole study online. It's good stuff and contradicts the outrageous conclusions the original researchers drew from speculative data.

(Posted at 09:51:17 AM EST.)

Monday, February 12, 2001

APA Refuses to Single Out E-Therapy
The American Psychological Association released its draft version of the ethics code, the first revision since 1992. Not a single new principle or standard exists which specifically addresses online therapy or e-therapy, as I predicted back in 1999 would occur. Why? Because while e-therapy is a whole new modality of practice, the code simply isn't designed to address specific modalities of care delivery. Notice how there's no section about "play therapy" or "telephone counseling" or "crisis intervention." It's just not a part of what the code is all about. I'm sure this will disappoint some people, but I believe it is the right decision.

(Posted at 10:34:44 AM EST.)

Saturday, February 10, 2001

Web-based E-mail Problems
If you've used the Web-based e-mail offered by or, I apologize for the problems in accessing your e-mail in the past few days. I believe we've finally fixed all the problems and e-mail should once again be available within the next 24-48 hours.

(Posted at 06:37:19 PM EST.)

I went and saw the movie, Hannibal, today. A disappointment, all in all, not even living up to about 10% of the hype attributed to it. It wasn't nearly as bloody or gory as I was expecting based upon reports, just mostly boring. A mish-mash of psychobabble and characters that you didn't much care about when they met their inevitable deaths. And anybody who thinks that Hannibal would ever kill Starling is beyond me...

(Posted at 06:35:55 PM EST.)

Oh yeah... of course the reason I mentioned the roundtable discussion is because I'm one of the participants. Of course I think it's going to be an interesting discussion as well! :-)
(Posted at 06:34:02 PM EST.)

Online Therapy: Current Trends, Challenges and Future Directions
The Institute of Cybermedicine has organized an expert roundtable discussion enabling attendees to learn first hand about the dramatic changes to the delivery of behavioral health care by advances in information technology. A distinguished panel of experts from consumer health, ehealth, and academic research will explore emerging issues pertaining to the impact of developments in online therapy on many audiences: consumers, federal regulators, healthcare providers, and suppliers.

Discussion topics will include:

  • What are the expected trends in the delivery of online therapy?
  • Can we evaluate current innovations and, if so, what is the assessment of efficacy?
  • How can online therapy be used to the strategic fiscal advantage of an organization?
  • Should there be a standard of care applied to online therapy (i.e., disclosures and safeguards that satisfy regulators without impinging on access)?
  • Can online therapy deliver on the promise of increased access to care without sacrificing quality both at home and abroad?

More details about this interesting program are inside.
(Posted at 06:25:55 PM EST.)

Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 30 Apr 2016
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