From Rickie in the Shadowlands: “Re: Siemens layoffs. 475 jobs in Managed Services and Professional Services (including Soarian support) will be transitioned to India and Romania, with the first wave of layoffs 60 days from last Thursday. The VP emphasized that no job is safe.” Rickie included the internal e-mails from both the VP (I don’t know his name) and from CEO John Glaser (still feels funny to think of him as vendor CEO and not hospital CIO). John’s seemed sincere and personal. The VP used every contrived buzzword and trite phrase known to man, coming across as smug in leading off with the “clarity and applicability” of his memo, moving to “evolve our delivery model,” “drive value to our customers and position for mutual success,” and finally in artfully finding a soothing phrase to describe trucking off 500 American jobs overseas, “introducing additional geographic diversity.” It’s bad enough to lose your job without having to hear brain-numbing Management Muzak as the soundtrack.
From Hot Nurse: “Re: nurses. The IOM released a report Wednesday recommending that nurses take leadership roles in healthcare redesign as physician partners. Within hours, the AMA issued a rebuttal, saying that nurses don’t have the education and training that doctors have and they should not assume an equal role. The IOM had science in its hand in saying that nurse practitioners have outcomes equal to or better than MDs. Seriously, the best they can come up with is ‘nurses aren’t our equals?’ In fact, physicians don’t want this low-paid work and we can’t recruit enough primary doctors anyway. The physician image has gone from gods to captains of ships to pathetic in my career. They have not supported IOM’s patient safety initiatives (checklists, handwashing) or embraced IT. They don’t want to do primary care, but don’t want anyone else to, either, and they have no plan for the coming tsunami. Nurses excel at patient engagement, communications, and education, which MDs avoid since they can’t bill for it. Their last big proclamation was that they won’t read PHRs for patient histories because nobody will pay them to do it. The poor economy is bringing out the worst in them.”
From Capitulator: “Re: Meditech’s database. We have a data repository, but given the latency in populating it, would like to access Meditech’s database in real time. Can you enumerate the companies that provide tools to do this? I gather that Blue Elm is one of these but we were hoping for something less expensive.” I need some help from Meditech experts on this one. If you have some advice, click the Add Comment link at the bottom of this post and fire away. Thanks.
From Dr. Love: “Re: patient estimation tools or eligibility software used by hospitals. Would you consider this as a topic for the future? We are interested in products that we can use in our application with simple imports and exports.” I’ll have to punt on this question, too. Little help?
From Picka Penny: “Re: Iowa HIE announcement. The scope was changed by the state to 40 hospitals, meaning ACS’s winning bid is less than $3,000 per hospital per month. I don’t see how they can even buy hardware and pay the expenses of the employees who will have to work free.” Unverified.
From Beantown MD: “Re: your list of reasons that hospitals buying physician practices won’t work this time around, either. You are absolutely correct. It will not work for the reasons you describe, which were the same reasons for the failure in the 1990s. Since then I have not seen any real change in how doctors view this issue. And for the record, these reasons are about the same for why Disease Management works so poorly.” Thanks, Doc (he really is a doc – I just didn’t give his name).
Listening: new from Canadian grunge rockers Finger Eleven, a little softer than their older stuff, so I went back to The Bluest of Gray Skies. All of it’s good, though.
I’ll be mostly incommunicado next week as I take a slightly-deserved hiatus with Mrs. HIStalk in a tropical locale, so the fabulous Inga will be wo-manning the helm in my absence. I’m hoping for none of those “it was better without you” comments when I come back.
My pal Lyndsey from Nuesoft (she friended me on Facebook and Liked HIStalk, so that makes her my pal) sent over some pictures of their sales folk at AAP last week, dressed in vintage clothing representing client-server technology compared to today’s cloud computing. That’s one hideous leisure suit (I’m having disturbing Mr. Furley flashbacks) and a couple of cute Trekkie outfits. You have to be fearless to be in sales, evidently.
Adobe wins the Blue Button Developer Challenge, sponsored by Markle Foundation and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The challenge was to create a Web-based tool that downloads information from the VA or Medicare to help patients manage and improve health. Adobe’s Blue Button Health Assistant extracts immunizations, allergies, meds, health history, labs, and military service histories.
Terry Ketchersid MD, VP and chief medical officer of Health IT Services Group, suggests the 2010 book above in response to the reader’s interest in a book about HIT and the future. I see chapters by familiar names Don Berwick, Don Detmer, Bill Stead, and Jon Perlin. Terry’s company sells the Acumen EHR for nephrologists (a very small group, apparently) and they produce an EHR blog for them, including Meaningful Use information. Terry also marvels that I have time to write HIStalk, which was exactly what I was thinking Tuesday evening when I came home from work, ate in approximately 120 seconds, and didn’t leave the chair for the next five hours until I was finished writing Tuesday’s post. Tonight was a breeze at just 4.5 hours.
Voalte gets a writeup in their local Sarasota paper for implementing its iPhone-powered voice, alarm, and text system at Wahiawa General Hospital (HI).
Inga mentioned the new Allscripts Homecare Mobile. Above are a screen shots I found on their site. It will run on Windows Phone 7-based smart phones.
The VA puts its previously mothballed pharmacy re-engineering IT project back on track after redesigning the project structure.
The Technology Association of Georgia and other groups are sponsoring an all-day HIT Leadership Summit on November 9 at the Fox Theatre in Atlanta. I had to dig and scroll to find pricing, but it looks like $39 for members and $59 otherwise.
IntraNexus will integrate PatientSecure biometric patient identification into its SAPPHIRE Patient Access Manager and Advanced Clinical Manager solutions. Registration or clinical staff will direct the patient to place their palm over a scanning sensor, which will retrieve their records if they’ve been seen previously. My first thoughts were addressed in the fourth paragraph: it can be used to identify John Doe patients and can validate the bearer of an insurance card.
Stockholm-based Elekta boasts of the #1 KLAS rating of its MOSAIQ Radiation Oncology/MOSAIQ Medical Oncology systems among oncology information systems. You may recall that the company acquired IMPAC Medical Systems in 2005, making it the world’s largest oncology software vendor.
Both Davies Award winners in the ambulatory category are e-MDs clients, the company says. I like this: The Diabetes Center of Ocean Springs, MS is the first non-physician provider to win the Davies — it’s a nurse practitioner clinic. I’m shocked that Inga offered no commentary about their attire, which I think is quite fetching and possibly deserving of an award in the clinical couture category.
Jobs on the HIStalk Sponsor Job Page: Management Consultant for Clinical Workflow, Project Manager, Regional Director of Centergy Sales. On Healthcare IT Jobs: Data Extraction Architect, IT Systems Analyst, Implementation Specialist, Product Manager.
I like this: Meditech quietly supports the Lesley University New Teacher Community. They got Neil Pappalardo, Larry Polimeno, and Howard Messing to talk about teachers who made a different in their lives and took the great pic above, which I’m appropriating with full credit to their site because I think it’s an excellent shot of some pretty amazing guys. Sounds like a man crush, I know, but you cannot believe the business accomplishments and social contributions made by the Meditech founders and executives over the years. Neil Pappalardo’s story would be a Hollywood hit, I’m convinced. I’ll willing to write it.
Among the Phoenix-area companies presenting at a December investor conference: ClearData Networks (healthcare cloud hosting) and WebPT (a Web-based EMR for physical therapy clinics). I figured I’d give them a shout out just to be nice.
A Microsoft executive proposes that PCs be blocked from connecting to the Internet if they don’t have a health certificate, drawing an analogy to vaccinations. A security expert, referring to Microsoft’s endless security updates, said, “There may be some who would say that Microsoft shouldn’t be on the internet until they get their own house in order.” I think Microsoft is right in identifying a need to protect the Internet a bit better, although the devil is in the details.
This might be a record: 24 laptops are stolen in a Troy, MI pain clinic break-in.
An MIT graduate student develops a health monitoring system that uses a webcam built into a mirror to determine heart rate. It measures variations in facial brightness, a technique that the student thinks will also work to determine respiration and blood oxygen levels.
A free Internet tool developed by a UK-based non-profit research group predicts the drug regimen response of AIDS and HIV patients with 80% accuracy, better than any other method.
Former national coordinator (back when the government wasn’t spending much on HIT) David Brailer is elected to the board of Walgreens. I will have to drop him a note to recognize my local store, where I stopped the other day to buy Halloween candy and found a delightfully garish and well-made Hawaiian shirt perfect for vacation for $6.99. That’s healthcare in America: the same store that sells prescriptions and medical supplies also carries heavily discounted Hawaiian shirts, cigarettes, and motorized Halloween skeletons.
HERtalk by Inga
Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital (NJ) selects ProVation Medical MD software for gastroenterology procedure documentation at is ambulatory surgery center.
Medicity secures contractual commitments with five new health systems representing 12 hospitals.
RemCare, developer of a care coordination software product, raises an additional $1.9 million in equity and warrants, bringing its current round funding to $3.3 million. RemCare’s CEO is Ben Albert, a former VP of client services for PatientKeeper.
The Health Information Partnership for Tennessee selects Axolotl’s Elysium Exchange platform for its state HIE project.
RelayHealth introduces MedGift, which sounds like a cool departure from its typical RCM and HIE connectivity services. MedGift is a patient gift registry and social network that facilitates communication between patients and their friends and family members. In addition to providing communication tools, MedGift allows patients to register for personal needs, wants, and wishes based on their individual circumstances. MedGift was actually founded by a cancer survivor is a free service for patients and their families.
AT&T partners with eCario machine-to-machine wireless data and mobile connectivity for near real-time, remote monitoring of cardiac patients.
The Ohio State University Medical Center names Phyllis Teater CIO. She’s been serving as interim CIO since January.
Starting this weekend, downtown Kansas city will be packed with 6,000 Cerner health conference attendees. If you are one of them, send us a picture or a report from the front lines.
iMDsoft introduces MVdashboard, an ICU tool that displays clinical and administrative metrics graphically.
Emmi Solutions, a provider of Web-based patient communication tools, names David Pearah CTO and SVP of product management. He was previously VP of the e-prescribing business unit of Allscripts and the former director of product management at Nuance-Dictaphone.
Trey Lauderdale of Voalte sent me a note this week saying he’d be presenting at the DC to VC: Investing in Healthcare IT Summit. Even though US CTO Aneesh Chopra and HHS CTO Todd Park were featured speakers, I told him it probably wasn’t worth a mention — unless he could get a picture with one of those guys in the (in)famous Voalte pink pants. Todd Park obviously has a sense of humor.
Halfpenny Technologies secures $2.6 million in VC funding, which it will use to deliver its Lab Hub platform.
A compliance analyst at UW Medicine Compliance warns providers of these patient documentation shortcuts in EHRs that might raise concerns during an audit: (a) cloning (cutting and pasting) form previous encounters; (b) templates that include pre-filled “negative” terms for each organ system, and (c) macros. CMS is especially concerned when they suspect templates are doing the bulk of the documentation.
Ninety percent of CHIME CIOs participating in a recent survey believe their organization will qualify for Stage 1 stimulus funds by September 30, 2012. They expressed concerns, however, that staffing deficiencies could affect their chances at implementing an EHR and receiving stimulus funding. The release of the survey results coincides with CHIME’s annual Fall Forum. Now what will be really interesting is to revisit these same issues over the next couple of years.
Speaking of the CHIME meeting, Ed Marx tells me he won the CHIME Charity 5k. Ed also sent over this photo of David Blumenthal, who spoke in front of 600 attendees and stressed the need for the government and healthcare providers to address consumers’ privacy and security concerns.
When reality is crazier than TV: Actor Brando Eaton files a suit against a prop company, charging it failed to inform actors that a defibrillator on set was a “real working device.” A fellow actor on Miami Medical (a show I’ve never heard of, but that Mr. H says he’s seen filming at Warner Brothers in Burbank) applied the defibrillator to Eaton’s chest during a scene and it sent electrical charges through his body. Eaton was taken to the hospital and later needed treatment and counseling for “anxiety, flashbacks, and apprehension.”
Several employees at a Michigan hospital are reprimanded over a photo taken during a break and later posted on Facebook. One picture was of a nurse removing a splinter for another nurse while in an empty operating room. The pair were part of a group written up for “unprofessional” behavior. Unless I am missing something (like patients were left unattended or a patient’s photo was posted), I’m thinking we are getting a bit overly sensitive about policing social media.