HEALTH

Nonin Medical oximeter featured on Lifetime’s ‘The Balancing Act’

BY Michael Johnsen

MINNEAPOLIS — Nonin Medical on Monday announced that its GO2 Personal Finger Pulse Oximeter was featured on "The Balancing Act" program on Lifetime Television on Dec. 13.

Yvonne Leonard, Nonin Medical consumer products marketing manager, shared with viewers how knowing their oxygen saturation and pulse rate can help them manage chronic respiratory conditions such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

"A finger pulse oximeter can help those with COPD take control, continue to remain active and live life to the fullest," Leonard said. "The GO2 personal finger pulse oximeter was designed so that individuals can monitor their pulse rate and oxygen saturation rate wherever they go. It is ideally suited to help individuals work with their health care providers to manage their own chronic respiratory disease or that of their loved one."

The GO2 device featured on the program requires a prescription and is classified as a medical device by the Food and Drug Administration. A nonprescription version, the GO2 Achieve, is marketed against sports or fitness enthusiasts interested in managing their intensity levels while exercising or training. Nonprescription oximeters also are great to check for the onset of in-flight hyperpoxia during air travel, the company states on its website.

Both products retail for a suggested $99 and are available online. Nonin’s GO2 Achieve and GO2 Achieve are designed to provide biofeedback, such as pulse rate and blood oxygen saturation.


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Report: J&J names new top marketing executive

BY Michael Johnsen

NEW YORK — Johnson & Johnson recently named Michael Sneed to oversee its global marketing and public relations functions, according to a report published Tuesday on AdAge.com, effective Jan. 1. He will take over from Brian Perkins, J&J’s top marketing executive who is expected to retire in March, according to the report.

Perkins, along with Ray Jordan, corporate VP public affairs and corporate communications, will report to Sneed during the transition.

Sneed will assume the role as J&J seeks to reinvigorate its McNeil Consumer Healthcare brand portfolio and reclaim the brand identity of Tylenol as "the brand American hospitals trust the most," following the spate of recalls across the McNeil family of brands in 2010. Identified as the No. 9 overall advertiser by AdAge, many across the OTC industry assume J&J will be making a strong push as its McNeil brands are ceded back onto the shelf.

Sneed joined J&J as a marketing assistant in the personal-products business in 1983. Since 2007, he’s been a group chairman of the company’s global vision care business and a member of the operating committee of the medical devices and diagnostics group. He’s also been a group product director in the McNeil consumer products division, led the Asia Pacific, Eastern European and Latin American operations of the company’s consumer pharmaceuticals business and headed the McNeil nutritionals businesses in Europe and ultimately worldwide. He has an MBA from Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business.

For the full report, click here.


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Jobless and underemployed scrimping on health care

BY Michael Johnsen

MENLO PARK, Calif. — The unemployed and underemployed have limited access to health care and, in many cases, are putting off seeking medical care, according to the "Long-Term Unemployed Survey" released on Monday by NPR News and the Kaiser Family Foundation.

When they are sick or need medical advice, the long‐term unemployed and underemployed are much more likely than those with full‐time jobs to say they rely on a hospital emergency room or that they have no usual place to go for care (39% compared with 15% of full‐time employees).

This rises to almost 6-in-10 among those who are both unemployed or underemployed and uninsured. Correspondingly, more than 4-in-10 of the long‐term unemployed and underemployed said that they or another family member living in their household has had problems paying medical bills in the past two years.

However, the same amount of unemployed and underemployed visited a retail clinic, such as MinuteClinic or Take Care Clinics, as did the employed (3%), suggesting that there is a significant opportunity to raise awareness around the lower-cost healthcare services that can be found in those venues.

More than half of the long‐term unemployed and underemployed reported they had postponed getting needed health care because of the cost. Almost half reported skipping a recommended medical test or treatment (46%), and 40% said they had not filled a prescription because of the expense.

While 85% of those with full‐time jobs reported being covered by health insurance, roughly half (51%) of the long‐term unemployed and underemployed said they had no health coverage whatsoever. Among those who did have coverage, the long-term unemployed were most likely to report getting it through Medicare, Medicaid or another government program (23%), while the long‐term underemployed were most likely to say they get coverage through their part‐time job or a spouse’s or parent’s employer (26%). Just 2% of the long‐term unemployed and 1% of the long‐term underemployed reported they had COBRA coverage from a former job.

Both those who are without any work and those who have been only partially employed for an extended period of time reported some specific health consequences related to their employment situation. Nearly 6-in-10 said they had difficulty sleeping or loss of sleep. More than half said they had gained or lost more than 10 lbs. as a result of being out of work, including more who reported gaining (30%) than losing (18%).

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