Health Business Blog

Health care business consultant and policy expert David E. Williams share his views

COVID-19 vaccinations are going poorly in MA. I’m quoted in the Boston Globe

For months we’ve been focused on the shortage of COVID-19 vaccine doses. That’s still a problem, but for now the bottlenecks are further downstream. Massachusetts is struggling to get the doses distributed and administered. More than half sit unused. Even if we have 10 million (or a billion) doses we’d still be stuck.

In today’s Boston Globe (State’s hope of vaccinating almost everyone by the end of summer depends on a lot going right) I encourage the state to assume there will be enough vaccines and just get them out to people.

“We’re only using half of what we’ve been given,” said David Williams, president of Health Business Group, a Boston management consulting firm. “It’s not an excuse to say because supplies are slow, we can just sit back. We should assume there’ll be more supply, and we owe it to the citizens of Massachusetts to be ready when it comes.”


By healthcare business consultant David E. Williams, president of Health Business Group.

Social Determinants of Health with Unite Us Leaders Taylor Justice and Christina Mainelli

Taylor Justice
Taylor Justice
Christina Mainelli
Christina Mainelli

After Taylor Justice was medically discharged from the Army, he learned firsthand about social determinants of health through working with other veterans. It led him to co-found Unite Us to digitally connect community services like housing, education and substance abuse counseling to meet the holistic needs of individuals.

As Chief Operating Officer, Christina Mainelli brings her healthcare industry knowledge to link physical and behavioral healthcare with community based services to support a whole-person approach. And she brings her savvy in scaling up healthcare businesses.

In this episode of the HealthBiz Podcast, Taylor and Christina share their vision and progress for connecting health and social care, provide insights on the pandemic and vaccine rollout, and tout their favorite books:

Taylor loves non-fiction, and recommends The New Confessions of an Economic Hit Man by John Perkins

Christina is listening to A Promised Land by President Barack Obama and is learning Italian. (She also got me to admit I’m learning how to juggle.)

The HealthBiz podcast is available on SpotifyApple PodcastsGoogle Podcasts and  many more services. Please consider rating the podcast on Apple Podcasts. Doing so helps the podcast reach more listeners.

Check out the rough (AI generated) transcript.

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By healthcare business consultant David E. Williams, president of Health Business Group.

Javara CEO Jennifer Byrne Talks Clinical Trials and Integrated Research

Jennifer Byrne photo
Javara CEO, Jennifer Byrne

Jennifer Byrne has spent her whole career in clinical trials, working on more than 8000 studies. So she knows a thing or two about the needs of pharma sponsors, clinical sites and patients. As founder and CEO of Javara, Jennifer is spearheading a new concept: the integrated research organization or IRO, a novel model for bringing clinical research into the healthcare ecosystem.

In this episode of the HealthBiz podcast, Jennifer shares her journey –how it was influenced at various times by her father and her mother, and what she sees coming in the post-pandemic era.

Jennifer is a big reader. She’s currently re-reading Jesse Itzler’s Living with a SEAL. He’s a serial entrepreneur who’s married to the founder of Spanx. She’s always reading the Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do In Life And Business by Charles Duhigg.

The HealthBiz podcast is available on SpotifyApple PodcastsGoogle Podcasts and  many more services. Please consider rating the podcast on Apple Podcasts. Doing so helps the podcast reach more listeners.

Check out the rough (AI generated) transcript.

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By healthcare business consultant David E. Williams, president of Health Business Group.

Hand Sanitizers: My Three Favorites

 

My three favorite hand sanitizers are:

hand sanitizers effective hand sanitizer brands

  1. Puracyn Plus First Aid Wound & Skin Cleanser
  2. Der-Mat Hand Sanitizer
  3. Safe Hands Solo

I use and recommend all three, but for different situations.

First, some background

By the time the COVID-19 pandemic arrived in earnest in Boston in March, I had a fairly realistic idea of what would happen. I had been following events in the Lombardy region of Italy –a wealthy, well-educated place not so different from the Boston area. I was staggered by the impact of the outbreak on the healthcare system and by the severity of the response –the lockdown of a Western city. So I made sure to have plenty of food on hand, and even stocked up on toilet paper.

One thing I didn’t think about was hand sanitizer. By the time I did, it was impossible to find on store shelves or by mail order. That would remain the case for months.

Puracyn Plus First Aid Wound & Skin Cleanser

A friend in the medical field suggested Puracyn, a wound cleaning product with a 0.012% hypochlorous acid formulation. Nothing on the label says “virus killer” and of course at that point no products had really been tested against COVID-19. But since people didn’t know about it, I was able to procure it in March. I bought a few 16-ounce bottles (not cheap) and started using it for hand sanitizing and also for cleaning door handles and the like. The label reads:

Advanced Hypochlorous Solution

Hypochlorous acid is a molecule naturally produced by the human body’s immune system. Puracyn Plus contains a synthesized version of the hypochlorous molecule, which serves as a preservative that inhibits the growth of microorganisms within the solution

  • Science-Based Technology
  • Sting-free
  • Steroid free
  • Non-toxic
  • Alcohol-free

I really like this product. The sprayer is easy to use, it feels more or less like water on the skin, doesn’t leave any residue, has almost no odor, and can be used a lot without causing chafing or other skin irritation.

I keep it in the house and in the car.

In researching this post, I found Hypochlorous Acid: A Review in the American Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons singing the praises of hypochlorous acid as “an inexpensive, available, nontoxic and practical disinfectant that is effective in sanitizing against the COVID-19 virus.” So I feel confident in recommending it.

DenMat Hand Sanitizer

In April, a publicist for DenMat, a supplier to dental practices, sent me a sample of their new Hard Surface Cleanser, a bleach based cleaner with a lemon scent. It’s a good product and I’ve used it around the house, especially in the bathroom. I’m sure dental offices and others are using it against COVID-19.

But the real excitement was that this shipment also included a six pack of 5 oz containers of hand sanitizer. The DenMat version is an 80 percent ethyl alcohol solution, with glycerin to moisturize and smooth the hands. I really love this one. The pump/sprayer is super easy to use and it sprays out just a small amount. It’s a much better dispenser than what you typically find on Purell and similar. There is no waste and the bottles have lasted a long time.

There is a slight odor (nothing unpleasant) and it dries quickly. I keep this in my backpack and car, and carry it around with me if I’m going to eat outdoors at a restaurant (not that I’ve done much of that lately)!

Alcohol is flammable and swallowing even small amounts can poison children, so watch out.

SafeHands solo

Image 1 13 21 at 6.32 PM

Recently, I started using SafeHands solo, a sanitizer with benzalkonium chloride as its active ingredient. The novelty is that it comes in single use packets that can easily be toted around in a shirt pocket or purse.

It also has an interesting, three-step instruction for use: “hold it, fold it, squeeze it.” You hold the packet in one hand, then fold it to pop it open, then squeeze out the liquid onto your hand. After that you rub it around just like any other hand sanitizer.

It seems to work well, and it’s super convenient. The only challenge is that sometimes the squirt goes a little awry and some liquid ends up on your clothes or elsewhere. I used one this morning after touching a door handle and got a bit on my winter coat. It dried quickly, though and left no stain.

I plan to keep a few of these with me at all times. In any case I prefer to have my own supplies rather than using any communal containers that are offered in stores and other public places. I will probably not put any in my wallet, however, in case the seal breaks along the wallet fold.

I hadn’t heard of benzalkonium chlorides (BACs), but apparently they are widely used. Safe Hands Solo describes the product as non-toxic, and some research has found that to be the case. There are some concerns raised in the literature, however. See, for example Benzalkonium Chlorides: Uses, Regulatory Status, and Microbial Resistance in the Journal of Applied and Environmental Microbiology. Unlike alcohol, it is not flammable.

Conclusion: Why These Hand Sanitizers are Great

After almost a year of the pandemic, these three hand sanitizers are my favorites. I’m sure there are other good ones out there, but I prefer all of them to the typical gels that I commonly see.

Truth is, hand sanitizer was a bigger deal in the early months, before we understood that airborne transmission through droplets and aerosols was the main worry. I still use hand sanitizer but I don’t go out much, so the products don’t get used too quickly.

Masks, on the other hand, I do use a lot! So stay tuned for a review of my favorites.

……

By healthcare business consultant David E. Williams, president of Health Business Group.

Should I get a home genetic test? Podcast with business anthropologist, Matt Artz

Matt Artz photo
Matt Artz

Matt Artz represents that rarest of specimens: the business anthropologist. In that role he advocates for the responsible design of human-centered technologies. He has a particular focus on the benefits –but mainly the risks– of consumer DNA testing.

In this episode of the HealthBiz podcast, Matt talks about how he got into the anthropology field, recaps key elements of his TEDx talk about consumer genetic tests, and reveals his own motivations for getting a test, even though he knows the dangers.

Matt’s launching not one but two new podcasts, so if you like what you hear here, you won’t be lacking for opportunities to listen to him again.

He also reading (and recommends) 365 to Vision: Modern Writer’s Guide: How to Produce More Writing in Less Time by Ron Lieback and Switched on Pop: How Popular Music Works, and Why it Matters by Nate Sloan and Charlie Harding.

The HealthBiz podcast is available on SpotifyApple PodcastsGoogle Podcasts and  many more services. Please consider rating the podcast on Apple Podcasts. Doing so helps the podcast reach more listeners.

Check out the rough (AI generated) transcript.


By healthcare business consultant David E. Williams, president of Health Business Group.