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Press Release


Inspiration, Patient Empowerment Hallmarks of
Top Healthcare Toolkit

Manasquan, N.J., USA, October 7, 2005 – A patient navigation kit accented with artwork and writings by breast cancer survivors took top honors in the first annual Healthcare Toolkits contest sponsored by the Healthcare Intelligence Network (HIN). The MyHealth, MyJourney™ breast cancer post-diagnosis toolkit developed by The Eden Communications Group of Maplewood, N.J. for Pfizer Oncology was awarded first prize among nearly 60 print, web-based and multi-media healthcare toolkits submitted by health plans, hospitals and employers. For a look at the top three winning entries, please visit HIN online.

“In developing the kit, we wanted to send a message of empowerment, encouragement and support to breast cancer patients, and help them get over the shock of the diagnosis,” said Tori Fahrney, Eden’s director of client services, who coordinated the effort with Pfizer Oncology. “It is especially fitting to receive this award in October, which is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month,” she added.

To determine the needs of breast cancer patients and develop a new and innovative approach to patient information, the team enlisted the aid of several breast cancer patient advocacy groups and the Oncology Nursing Society. “We wanted to empower patients to make very important decisions about their treatment. In order to do this, patients must be knowledgeable, and willing to question their doctors.”

The first-place entry includes a personal journal and portfolios to organize paperwork, medical results and financial and insurance forms. The toolkit also contains a spiral-bound treatment planner that explains treatment options, side effects and related medical terms and provides a place for the patient to note caregivers’ responses to questions, track medications, and record contact information. Photography, artwork, poetry and quotations from breast cancer survivors play a prominent role in the toolkit’s design and text. The artwork originated at The Creative Center, a network of New York City artists composed of cancer patients and survivors, trustees, donors and friends.

Second place was awarded to PacifiCare® Behavioral Health for its Treatment Plan Toolkit, an information kit for persons hospitalized for mental health disorders that was submitted by Christy Beaudin, corporate director, quality improvement. The third-place winner was Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan for the Domestic Violence educational toolkit that the company distributes to healthcare providers, which was submitted by Shoma Pal, project leader. For more details on the winning entries, please visit HIN online.

Melanie Matthews, HIN’s executive vice president and chief executive officer, launched the toolkits contest after noting an upswing in toolkit use across the healthcare industry. “Whether they are in print or electronic format or a combination, toolkits are educational tools whose time has come,” said Ms. Matthews. “Consumers who have information change their behavior.” Matthews predicts that healthcare toolkits will proliferate as the concept of consumer-driven healthcare---empowering and motivating consumers to take control of their health and healthcare---takes hold. HIN plans to make the contest an annual event and recently completed a special report on the topic, Healthcare Toolkits: Empowering Consumers Through Education. For more information, please visit the HIN bookstore.

The HIN contest judges, who represented New Jersey-based health plans, hospitals and marketing communications firms, gave the first-place kit high marks for its visual appeal, organization and sensitive treatment of a difficult subject. “(This toolkit) includes great artwork and visuals, and addressed an important issue in a tasteful and empathetic fashion,” according to Dr. Eric Berman, a vice president and medical director of AmeriGroup New Jersey Inc. Kristine Brown, director of public relations at St. Barnabas Health Care System in Toms River; Dave Francis, a partner in BlueWater Communications Inc. in Lakewood; Adrienne Turner, account executive, The DEVON Group, Shrewsbury; and Peter Weissberg from CPR Strategic Marketing client services in Elmwood Park also judged the contest.

About the Healthcare Intelligence Network---HIN is the premier advisory service for executives seeking high-quality strategic information on the business of healthcare. For more information, contact the Healthcare Intelligence Network, PO Box 1442, Wall Township, NJ 07719-1442, (888) 446-3530, fax (732) 292-3073, e-mail, or visit


Contact: Melanie Matthews

Voice: (888) HIN-3530
Fax: (732) 292-3073
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