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Monday Morning Update 8/18/08

August 16, 2008 News 6 Comments

From topexecit: “Re: HealthPort. HealthPort has acquired ChartOne (its biggest competitor) for an undisclosed amount of cash.” I saw no news, but I ran across this financing teaser that’s way over my head, but seems to say that EMR vendor HealthPort had financial backing of up to $150 million to acquire ChartOne, which does HIM technology stuff like release of information and workflow.

From MSCFan: “Re: ClearHealth. The application’s look and feel and terminology is a clear carbon copy of Medsphere’s Clinical Information System (CIS). The purpose of releasing Medsphere CIS under Affero General Public License (AGPL) was to generate an open source ecosystem and for the community to have the freedom to enhance and expand the functionality.  However, the terms of the public license should be honored.” I’m not much of an expert in those areas, so I’ll leave the analysis to those who are.

From Otis Day: “Re: Siemens layoffs. I heard those laid off got two weeks’ pay for every year worked, up to 26 weeks. Although Soarian got hit heavy, other foundation departments lost people as well.” Otis, my man! That’s a fairly generous severance. The layoffs, even though they represent nearly 10% of the Malvern headcount, aren’t surprising. What would be interesting is whether Soarian was singled out, which might signal Germany’s loss of patience with the project. It’s gone on forever, it seems, and while people who know say it’s impressive, I don’t hear of much adoption. Both Siemens and GE claimed to be writing state-of-the-art systems, but their lackluster results won’t encourage others to try.

From Marketing Girl: “Re: scoring press releases and bad writing in general. Here are a few sites that I like: www.pressreleasegrader.com.  I put in this PR and it was given a 21 / 100 (wow, is that low!) www.fightthebull.com – this is a hilarious site created by Deloitte consultants who decided to fight back against gobbledygook consulting speak (also known as $5 words). I got both these suggestions from a few Pragmatic Marketing courses – which are highly recommended for folks in B2B technology marketing. (thanks to my unnamed company for sending me).” I’ve used Bullfighter here to critique press releases, so that one’s fun. I’ll have to try the grader. I put a Pragmatic Marketing book in my Amazon cart, but wasted too much time at work trying to find something else to get me over the $25 free shipping hurdle, but I’ll be back.

From Murse: “Re: CHW. The Sacramento region of CHW (five hospitals) is scheduled to go live with Cerner and MS4 on the very same day, December 2nd. They have pushed back their CPOE for 1-2 years and will have clerk and nurse order entry. Curious, does anyone think its a good idea to go live with ADT and your hospital EMR on the same day?”

From Mr. Boogie: “Re: hackers hit Wuesthoff Health System.” Link. Hackers got into the Florida hospital’s pre-registration web page and grabbed information on 500 patients. The widely used Google Analytics web visitor tracking is suspected as the back door, which seems unlikely to me.

Speaking of hackers, I’ve finally rid my PC of nasty trojan that takes over your wireless router and starts sending information off to some hacker-friendly country (the clue: I entered CNN.com in the browser and up came my router login). It came from a web page, apparently. My advice, from experience, is to use the free Spybot: Search and Destroy malware detector and the also-free Online Armor personal firewall (the WinXP one is crap). I was running good antivirus (BitDefender) but it doesn’t find this one and neither does AVG. It’s surprising since I installed Online Armor how many times it has kept me from hitting an infected web page that came up as a Google link. Run Spybot right now and I bet you find some nasty stuff.

Housekeeping: sign up to your right for HIStalk e-mail update and the Brev+IT weekly newsletter. Use the ugly Rumor Report box I amateurishly drew if you want to send me secure information, including attachments. Send telepathic air-kisses to HIStalk Queen Inga for being entertaining and keeping me sane. She’s got 126 LinkedIn connections and yearns for more if you’re so inclined. We’re both just blown away, of course, that Dann’s HIStalk Fan Club there has 216 members, each of them outstanding in their own way (I heard that line again in an Animal House 30-year anniversary special the other night, so I vowed to use it at first opportunity, along with "Otis, my man!") The picture is unrelated to HIT, but it gives you a visual break and we don’t ALWAYS have to talk about work, do we?

animalhouse

Jobs: McKesson Software Instructor, Clinical Systems Analyst, Director of Business Development, EMR Software Staff Development. Here’s a recruiter’s quote: “We decided to post on HealthcareITJobs.com because of the very targeted audience. It’s such a delight to receive qualified applications from a job posting for a change! And Gwen does such a nice job providing personalized service." Sign up for job blasts here.

Former Sonitor sales VP Don Zeppenfeld joins ED software vendor LOGICARE in the same role. It’s pretty cool that the company uses employee photos on the web site instead of the usual snooze-inducing stock photos.

Alok Gupta, former Siemens VP of computer-aided diagnosis and knowledge solutions, joins CareFirst BCBS as VP/CIO.

Listening: The Duke Spirit, London-based and female-led big 60s kind of sound, kind of like Nico or Grace Slick. 

Here’s another regrettable press release a reader found. Unibased Systems Architecture finds it nationally newsworthy (warning: PDF) that its campus was to go smoke-free by the end of 2007. The company background section was one line longer than the “news.” I’ll alert the media … oh, wait, they already did that. Companies must put the PR people on quota to crank out press releases, even when nothing’s happening.

University Hospitals (OH) names Mary Alice Annecharico SVP/CIO. She’s a nurse and former CIO of Penn’s medical school and replaces Ed Marx, who left for Texas Health Resources nearly a year ago. University is spending $90 million on Soarian Eclipsys (my mistake – Soarian is revenue cycle only at UH).

annecharico

This may be a sign that it’s a tough market: even stalwart Meditech is turning in lackluster numbers due to small revenue growth and higher expenses, with a 30% drop in net income for Q2 compared to last year. Product revenue was down, too. Patient Care Technologies hasn’t done all that well since the company was acquired by Meditech last year either, with net income down 19.5%.

Odd hospital lawsuit: a terminated employee at Somerset Hospital (PA) says a sexually harassing male manager sent female employees genital-shaped pastries. I have about 500 fun riffs on that, but I’ll leave you to your own devices.

Of the 100 highest paid state employees in New York, 88 work at SUNY, most of them physicians who work at the system’s hospitals. A surgeon was paid $1.2 million.

Wanted: Chief Athenista. athenahealth co-founder Todd Park announces his retirement on August 31, which follows his removal from management on January 1 of this year. He’s got 900,000 shares (around $30 million worth) and seems intent on getting rid of them on his way out the door.

Perot Systems, faced with slowing healthcare revenue growth, says it will make an acquisition. Any guesses who?

Biomedical informatics ProSanos, located in the not-exactly-Silicon-Valley Harrisburg, PA, releases (with drug company GlaxoSmithKline) SAEfetyWorks, pharmacovigilance software that analyzes EHR and claims data to look for correlations between drugs, conditions, cohorts, and effects. Jonathan Morris, the company’s chairman, president, and CEO, came from SAIC and Oceania.

E-mail me.

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Currently there are "6 comments" on this Article:

  1. Re: Unibased Systems… yep their PR releases are AWFUL but the software they write is great per KLAS…they better stick to writing good apps.

  2. Just to let you know our go live on Epic Inpatient went VERY well at Kaiser Hospital in Sacramento, kudos to the administration for putting better than adequate support in place to help everyone.

  3. Prediction 1. – Perot looks to expand its presence in health care insurance processing. It will go after business process outsourcing expertise, disease management and data warehousing exertise.

    Prediction 2. – Perot looks to expand its presence in the health care provider space and goes after Quality Systems (NextGen). They ditch the dental systems division and develop even bigger outsourcing business around practice management. Their angle – take advantage of the Stark and Safe Harbor EHR donation programs. They have had hosting arrangements with other practice management vendors in the past. A secondary target would be Eclipsys. They’d have to invest a little more there so I don’t believe that would be highest on their radar.

  4. Would Perot buy ACS Healthcare (formerly Superior)? The division has been stripped down to bare bones staff and contracts, leaving a lean, mean group ready for aquisition.

  5. Re: USA’s campus goes smoke-free… How big do you need to be to have a campus? USA has about 20 employees. Campus? More like 1/8th of a 40 year old surburban office building, above a deli. I think I’ll start referring to my home office, in my attic, as the ‘Sears Tower’.







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