From Mighty Mite: “Re: HISsies Lifetime Achievement Award. I like that proposed category. The name that comes to mind is Rob Kolodner, MD for his incredibly important work at the VA, his ONC work when Bush gave him a mission and no money, and his open source work, where he’s trying to build systems for poor countries that can’t afford $100 million systems (can we either, really?)” I can’t quibble with your pick. In the interest of offering choices, other names that come to mind are Octo Barnett, Neal Pappalardo, Paul Egerman, John Glaser, Bill Childs, and many more from the provider side, although their work maybe hasn’t been quite as non-commercial as that of your nominee. I’ll be interested to see who readers suggest. The HIT industry has finally been around long enough to have a history worth recognizing.
Nearly 2/3 of my survey respondents say their software vendors focus on releasing enhancements that help sales instead of current users (we could have another debate about why those desires differ). New poll to your right: what employment changes do you see for yourself for 2011? The poll takes comments, so leave yours if you want. My vote: same employer, same job. I get recruiter calls all the time like everybody else, but I’m really happy at the hospital where I work.
It’s hard to believe it’s 2011. It’s comforting that the person I kissed as the ball dropped was the same as last year and presumably will be the same next year (I like romantic predictability). I lost Internet connectivity for nearly a day starting Friday afternoon, but the broadband company was good enough to send a tech out on New Year’s Day to replace my modem while I was making chili and whipping up killer guacamole (probably because I have business class service paid for by the hospital). I was lucky during that Netflix-free period to accidentally spot an IFC marathon of the funniest TV show in history, The Larry Sanders Show, which is being DVR’ed as we speak. Hey now!
You know what 2011 means: it’s HISsies time. Nominations are open here. In a week or so, I’ll use the nominations to create the final voting ballot, which I’ll send to HIStalk e-mail subscribers only to prevent ballot box stuffing. I’ve deleted some tired categories and added some fun new ones. Winners will be announced at HIStalkapalooza and I always invite some of the big category winners to say a few words there (they usually pass since they don’t get the HIStalk thing, but what the heck – at least I offered).
Inga e-mailed sponsors about our little appreciation lunch at HIMSS and is sending out RSVP information this week. If we missed you somehow, contact Inga.
I need your advice as readers for my New Year’s resolution. I’m fortunate to not need to make a living from HIStalk since I work full time and have little interest in money, which gives me the freedom to do work that’s not necessarily commercial in nature (or even projects that cost me money, if I think they are useful to the industry as a whole, especially the provider-siders). What projects should I be working on? Education, sharing of best practices, innovation, social networking, charitable work, etc. purely for the benefit of hospitals, practices, and patients? I have limited time, but I do have connections and resources that could be put into play for the right initiatives. I need your help in identifying those possibilities. E-mail me if you have suggestions.
Cerner must be throwing out some low prices lately, even based on per-bed license charges. This article on Idaho hospital EMR projects describes Cerner, being implemented at North Canyon Medical Center for $2 million, as “an economical system that works well for smaller rural hospitals.” Syringa Hospital (a strangely satisfying hospital name) paid $1.3 million.
A reader mentioned not being able to find a 990 form (the IRS tax form for for non-profits) on the Patient Privacy Rights Web site. I asked Deborah Peel, MD and she says they’re putting it up, but she sent over a copy anyway. I’ve given it my usual look-over and there are no secrets: income and expense of around $200K, it pays one relatively modest salary to a full-time executive director, and Deborah Peel takes no salary, In fact, she’s the organization’s biggest individual donor, so it’s costing her money, not to mention time. I’m disappointed that HIMSS didn’t invite her to speak at the conference this year. I don’t necessarily agree with her in every case and sometimes she provides more emotion than hard data, but I’m glad she crusades for privacy and security since without her there might be no rational compromise. She’ll be the keynote speaker at the Computers, Privacy , and Data Protection conference in Brussels, Belgium (January 25-27). I spent time with her at HIMSS last year and she’s a hoot, not just smart and sincere, but cynically funny in an HIStalk-approved way.
New announcements from Medicity: (a) Children’s Dayton chooses Medicity’s Novo Grid to connect with its partners and affiliated physicians, sending out results, reports, and face sheets from Epic clinicals and McKesson patient accounting and receiving back lab and rad orders; (b) CHRISTUS Health will expand its use of Novo Grid to include ProAccess Community, MediTrust Cloud services, ambulatory orders initiation, referrals, and CCD exchange, all across seven states and extending to an additional 900 physicians; (c) Hoag Memorial Presbyterian Hospital (CA) announces that it connected 250 providers to its HIE in five months using Novo Grid; and (d) Medicity’s iNexx platform has been certified as a modular EHR by Drummond Group, qualifying its users for Meaningful Use.
Hospitals always announced their first baby of the new year, so I’ll proudly flash the picture of the first new HIStalk Platinum Sponsor of 2011: Marietta, GA-based Nuesoft (not to mention that they’re also supporting HIStalk Practice at the Platinum level, too). You saw their fun Lady Gaga parody video and the pic of their booth people dressed in hideous 70s fashions, but that’s not all they do. Their offerings include NueMD PM and billing software; NueMD EHR (CCHIT certified); Nuesoft Express management software for college health clinics; Nuevita student health clinic management and EHR; RCM and billing services for college health; and the Nuetopia medical billing service in which the company provides an EHR, PM, billing, EDI, clearinghouse, and services. NueMD, they note on their site, is Internet based, not just browser based. Thanks to Nuesoft for its support of HIStalk and HIStalk Practice.
Speaking of Nuesoft, they’re darned good at making videos. I ran across the one above on YouTube. If you’ve seen other fun, HIT-related videos, let me know.
A job site’s annual list of weird interview questions that gets picked up by newspapers everywhere includes one from Epic: “An apple costs 20 cents, an orange costs 40 cents, and a grapefruit costs 60 cents, how much is a pear?” You figure it must have something to do with logic and formulas since it’s a programmer test. Nothing related to word length or consonant count makes sense (since the first two fruits have the same number of each but different prices), but the formula of (vowels-1) x 20 works, which would price a pear at 20 cents. I’m lazy and immature, but the college tested my IQ as 162 back in the day, which offers no real benefit except I can answer questions like this.
A hospital in England starts conducting patient satisfaction surveys via iPads.
MedTech Publishing, which publishes Healthcare IT News in a business relationship with HIMSS (and also Healthcare Finance News), takes over the HIMSS-acquired Government Health IT. I wouldn’t consider that good news since I’m a semi-fan of the latter but not at all of the former (even though I don’t read either, so I probably shouldn’t have an opinion at all). HIMSS will continue running the Government Health IT Conference and Exhibition. Also part of the deal: MedTech will take over the dead tree publications related to the HIMSS conference that it has previously printed under contract (those papers that are always being thrust at you by cute girls in ball caps every 15 feet as you try to traverse the convention center, necessitating hilarious evasive maneuvers). Neil Rouda, MedTech founder and chairman, is being replaced, and rather vague wording suggests that HIMSS is buying a majority interest in the company. It’s not like they were running a lot of hard-hitting, industry-unfriendly stories anyway.