From Soft Sales: “Re: Microsoft Amalga. Robert Seliger, former CEO of Sentillion, will take over sales. This was announced internally on 3/15.” Not exactly, but close. Per my Microsoft contact, former Sentillion president Paul Roscoe will lead the sales organization of Microsoft Health Solutions Group, integrating the sales teams of HSG and its recent Sentillion acquisition. Steve Shihadeh will report to Paul. This is quite interesting — obviously Microsoft had a lot more respect for Sentillion than just buying its single sign-on and context management technologies. Putting someone with healthcare sales experience in charge is a good move if you ask me — we’re not talking shrink-wrapped retail sales here.
From UKnowMe: “Re: CSC. Is it putting itself up for sale? Or at least its healthcare biz?”
From All Hat No Cattle: “Re: NIST. Looks like they are still disregarding system usability.” NIST’s Health IT Standards and Testing page outlines its testing programs, none of which appear to involve usability. Of course, there’s already a measure of that: low adoption.
From OhWell: “Re: Epic installs. UKnowMe is right, Epic is selling like mad. Rumor has it that Epic is looking to hire 500+ people by the end of the summer. So much for experienced implementers or even experienced advisors with the time to focus on each install.” People have been saying for years that Epic, like Cerner and everyone else before it, will eventually hit a wall. It hasn’t happened yet, but competitors are hoping they’ll run out of steam. Of course, they aren’t really doing much to give Epic a run for their money, either.
From Mark Moffitt: “Re: HISsies award for service oriented architecture as the most overrated technology. I’m a big advocate of web services, aka SOA, as a catalyst for change in HCIT. That being said, I have to agree with the award above. Vendors may be embracing SOA under the hood, but very few vendors expose services so customers can take advantage of the technology. As a result, the impact has been muted from a customer perspective. Until vendors make services available to customers and other vendors, like: get_data(patient, med_list) or: go_do_something(patient, order, md), the HCIT public will continue to view SOA as an ‘overrated technology.’ I continue to plead with vendors to expose services. Unfortunately, I get the response, ‘When customers start demanding it, we will provide it.’ Well, I’m demanding it. How many more have demanded it and gotten the same response? Or they offer it but not to customers, only partners that don’t provide a competing product. The push back I hear from vendors is ‘we don’t want to be held liable.’ Really? If I repair my car and install brakes incorrectly, have an accident and crash into another vehicle, is the victim going to sue Ford, or Toyota, or GMC and win? I don’t think so. A simple release agreement that relieves a vendor of liability is all it takes. I’d like to hear from vendors on this topic.”
Inga’s been busy again, as you’ll see tomorrow when she posts our latest executive Q&A series entry. A dozen or so industry executives answered this question: “Now that the ONC has announced the initial grants for Regional Extension Centers, what will be the effect on EHR selection and implementation for both the industry and your company in particular?”
Listening: Luscious Jackson, reader-recommended, all-female pop with hip-hop influences. Defunct for a few years, but I’m pretty crazy about them.
UCSF names Elazar Harel as vice chancellor for IT and CIO, which includes dotted line responsibility for the CIO of UCSF Medical Center, fresh off a failed Centricity implementation.
Dave Garets and Mike Davis, the two top guys at HIMSS Analytics, start their new gigs with The Advisory Board Company on Monday. HIMSS says it will replace them.
Richard Ferrans MD, CMIO of Memorial Hospital of Gulfport (MS) will talk about the Mississippi Coastal HIE in a Medicity Webinar on Wednesday, April 14.
DEA publishes an Interim Final Rule on e-prescribing of controlled drugs (warning: it’s a 334-page PDF). There’s the usual 60-day comment period. I haven’t studied it yet, but if anyone wants to summarize whatever is interesting in all those pages, feel free to send me your thoughts.
Researchers in France begin a project to identify patients at risk for hospital-acquired infections by scanning electronic medical records with a Xerox text mining tool called FactSpotter.
Sisters of Charity Health System (OH) names Robin Stursa to the newly created position of VP/CIO. She was previously at Saint Vincent Health System (PA).
An opinion piece by Deborah Peel, MD of Patient Privacy Rights called Your Medical Records Aren’t Secure runs in the Wall Street Journal.
There is no need to choose between the benefits of technology and our rights to health privacy. Technologies already exist that enable each person to choose what information he is willing to share and what must remain private. Consent must be built into electronic systems up front so we can each choose the levels of privacy and sharing we prefer. My organization, Patient Privacy Rights, is starting a Do Not Disclose petition so Americans can inform Congress and the president they want to control who can see and use their medical records. We believe Congress should pass a law to build an online registry where individuals can express their preferences for sharing their health information or keeping it private. Such a registry, plus safety technologies for online records, will mean Americans can trust electronic health systems.
Bonnie Siegel, formerly of Dorenfest and Hersher Associates, joins HIT executive search firm Sanford Rose Associates.
UC Irvine researchers are developing Telios, a Web-based telepresence system that will offer videoconferencing and remote patient monitoring tools.
Ironic beneficiaries of healthcare reform: offshore business process outsourcers, which are even more attractive when administrative cost-cutting gets serious.
A tidbit from the trial of the former CEO of University Medical Center (NV), accused of squandering $11 million on no-bid contracts: one contractor got $850K for producing a 30-minute PowerPoint describing an IT system the hospital already owned.
Red Hat announces Q4 numbers: revenue up 18%, EPS $0.12 vs. $0.08.
HERtalk by Inga
Earlier this week, Mr. H mentioned that The Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences and its former president are suing one another. A local paper points out that former president Karen Pletz is now better known than she was before the firing. That’s because there are plenty of people (like me) who are drawn to the salacious aspects of the story. On the one hand, we have the medical school, which claims Pletz abused her expense account, racking up $2.3 million in food and travel charges.Then we have Pletz, who counters that she’s a victim of conspiracy, aimed at making her the scapegoat for a board that was paying her a huge salary ($1.2 million a year) and approving hefty entertainment expenses. Someone’s hiding something and it all makes for a juicy trial.
Another not-for-profit hospital system agrees to be acquired and transformed to a for-profit entity. Caritas Christi Health Care says that private equity firm Cerberus Capital Management is buying the six-hospital system for $830 million, which includes $430 million to pay off debt and $400 million on major improvements, such as upgrades to IT systems.
Masonicare Healthcare Center (CT) agrees to deploy MED3OOO’s InteGreat EHR for the physicians serving its facility.
Vanderbilt University Medical Center selects Accelarad’s SeeMyRadiology.com service, giving orthopedic surgeons the ability to exchange medical images in real-time via the Web or a mobile device.
Allocade, a developer of patient flow software, closes a $5 million round of VC financing led by VantagePoint Venture. Allocade intends to use the money to expand operations to meet the increased demand for its On-Cue solution.
The ONC appoints Aaron McKethan and Craig Brammer as the new program director and deputy director of its Beacon communities project. The project will award about 15 grants to non-profit organizations or government bodies to help them achieve meaningful use of their EHRs. McKethan is a research director at the Brookings Institution’s Engelber Center for Health Reform and Brammer is a project director at Cincinnati’s Aligning Forces for Quality.
CareTech Solutions and ForeSee Results announce they’ve formed a strategic partnership to provide CareTech’s hospital clients with an online customer satisfaction measurement and monitoring tool.
ICA vice president John Tempesco is named a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives.
Sermo and athenahealth release results from a Physician Sentiment Index that indicates doctors aren’t too happy with the business of medicine. A couple of the more disturbing findings: 59% of physicians think the quality of medicine will decline in the next five years and 64% agree their clinical decisions are being based more on what payors are willing to cover than what they think is best for their patients. Sermo CEO Dr. Daniel Palestrant explains the results in more detail in this CNBC interview.
March 25th is National Medical Biller’s Day, according to the American Medical Billing Association. Thank you, billers, for keeping the money flowing!
Sixteen Harris County Hospital District employees who were fired for HIPAA violations in November get their jobs back. Hospital district administrators reassessed the intent of the violation and reinstated the workers’ jobs, though no back wages will be paid. The firings occurred after one of hospital’s medical residents was shot in a grocery store parking and became a patient at the hospital. The medical resident survived.
GE acquires MedPlexus, an EMR PM vendor that targets the 1-10 physician practice market. My first thought was why would GE make this purchase given that they already have the Centricity product? However, if I recall my ambulatory EMR history correctly, Centricity EMR is not truly integrated with a practice management product, but interfaces with either the Centricity Practice Solution (the old Millbrook product) or Centricity Enterprise (the old IDX software). MedPlexus, however, appears to be a fully integrated PM / EMR / patient portal solution. It’s also a hosted product, which is possibly a more attractive and affordable solution than GE’s traditional client/server options. And, Centricity EMR has not had stellar KLAS ratings in the last couple of years, so perhaps GE needed a fresh option.
CentraState Healthcare System (NJ) contracts with Design Clinicals to implement MedsTracker patient medication management. CentraState went live December 7th and says they’ve cut medication reconciliation time from about three minutes to one minute 38 seconds.
Dell unveils its Medical Archiving Solution, which is based on its upcoming Dell DX Object Storage Platform. Dell hopes the new technology will appeal to hospitals needing to increase storage for growing EMR and digital imaging systems.
Huntsville Hospital (AL) selects MedAssets’ RCM solutions for claims management and claims audit and resolution.