From Expandable Beltway: “Re: VA. Opens a solicitation for VistA.” I skimmed the document – the VA is looking for help to define an open source structure to support VistA modernization. I don’t know if they’ve ditched their previous plans to buy commercial systems like Cerner’s LIS.
From Epic Employee: “Re: Epic. If you’re a star, you’ll go far. If you’re not a star, you won’t. It’s like a professional sports team – you grab the best college recruits and some work out, some get cut. You are compensated based on your talent, so your subordinates may out-earn you if they’re better at what they do than you are at what you do. You don’t have to be CxO to be financially set. If you need a manager to succeed, you won’t like it here.”
From Merger Pain: “Re: Allscripts. Over 30 sales reps let go this week.” Unverified.
From Philly BlackBerry: “Re: widespread e-mail outage Saturday morning. RIM is not commenting.”
From Lupus: “Re: sponsors. Why do you have so many?” I freely admit that I’m an incompetent, unmotivated, and staggeringly lucky accidental businessperson who just wanted to write work-related stuff for fun back in 2003. I expend zero effort to solicit sponsors. I’ll reply tersely to e-mail inquiries from vendors and the always-nice ad agency and marketing people, but replying to the e-mails is all I’ll do. Every other HIT-related blog you read is written by someone trying to sell something – consulting services, EMRs, conferences, speaking engagements, etc. I’m a money-indifferent guy who’s happy working full time for a non-profit hospital. If I get sponsors, great, I get paid for the endless hours I spend on HIStalk. If not, that’s fine since that was the case for much of HIStalk’s eight-year existence and my hospital job ensures that I won’t starve anyway. I like staying anonymous because it keeps me honest: you can’t get too full of yourself if nobody knows who you are. My About page explains everything.
From The PACS Designer: “Re: cloud basics. FedEx CIO Rob Carter explains cloud basics and how FedEx deploys a private cloud solution to run the giant package distribution system. He explains the cost advantage of private clouds this way: ‘What’s happening, and this is such a big deal in our world, is that for the first time ever, you can make investments in a whole new class of technology for about the same price of just maintaining the base.’ This cost advantage is something to think about in the effort to employ cloud solutions in healthcare settings.”
Thanks to everyone who signed up for the “I want to come” list for HIStalkapalooza. The page has been turned off since it was scheduled to run for a week. I haven’t checked the count to see if we can accommodate everyone, but I’m hoping we can, and anyone we can’t will go on the waitlist in case someone cancels. We’ll be sending out e-mail invitations soon. It’s only three weeks away, as I just now realized in near-panic as I think about all the HIMSS-related stuff Inga and I have to do between now and then. I should take a week off from work just to catch up.
Here’s the HIStalkapalooza agenda for those who need to plan their existence down to the minute. Doors will open at 6:30, starting with red carpet interviews streamed to a big screen on stage (it’s a “big entrance” kind of thing that I thought would be fun, but you can bypass straight to the bar if you’d rather). Eating and drinking commences, with IngaTinis in abundance and beauty queen sashes strutted by a chosen few. The video and photo crews will be plying their trade and I’ll have a roving reporter inside BB King’s covering the event for summarization in HIStalk afterward. The official welcome comes at 8:00, followed by Jonathan Bush and the HISsies awards (special guests are always possible, but I usually get a polite “no thanks” when I ask, so don’t count on it). We’ll have a short HIStalk Queen and King contest with voting by applause (like high school, winners will be chosen based on fashion, poise, and willingness to pander shamelessly to the audience). Inga’s BFFs will choose the “Inga Loves My Shoes” winners while most of the men head off for another beer. Our super sponsor, Medicomp, will offer up some doctor recognition at 9:00. At 9:10, the Insomniacs concert starts, running until 11:30, with food and drink available most of the evening if I remember correctly. Dancing will be encouraged by our HIStalk ambassadors, the band, and the open bar. Inga, Dr. Jayne, and I will probably be in anonymous attendance, overwhelmed and schizophrenic (am I me or Mr. H?) Everybody who works hard all year deserves a little bit of silliness and entertainment and that’s what we’re offering (but I bet that as in past years, important contacts will be made and deals will be struck by high-powered attendees hammered on IngaTinis).
A Weird News Andy graphic moment, in the form of a patient instructions handout.
Listening: Tiamat, because sometimes you need a little depressing Swedish doom metal (Pink Floyd meets Metallica) to brighten up your day. It’s good.
A reader tells me those Extormity EHR parody people will be unveiling themselves at HIMSS, revealing themselves to be sellers of some flavor of PM/EMR. I’d scoop them by announcing it here except I have no idea who they are.
These poll results confirm what people are telling me (not that I didn’t already know since recruiters are burning up my phone and e-mail at the hospital): it’s getting tough to find experienced HIT people. New poll to your right: how many hours per week do you work? I’m curious since the comments from Epic’s employees seemed to raise some curiosity. The poll accepts comments, so add yours if you like.
Quality Systems, Inc. (the NextGen people) turns in record Q3 numbers: revenue up 23% to $91.9 million, EPS $0.60 vs. $0.46, expectations beaten, dividend raised. Board chair, founder, and former CEO Sheldon Razin holds almost $400 million worth of shares. He started the company in his garage in 1973 with $2,000 in capital and took it public in 1982. Its market cap is now over $2 billion.
I’m happy to announce Symantec as a new Platinum Sponsor of HIStalk. Everybody knows Symantec for their security products (Norton, Ghost, pcAnywhere, Veritas, etc.) but I’ll call your attention to Symantec Health. They offer Symantec Health Safe, a medical image archiving and sharing service designed to complement existing medical imaging infrastructure. Per-TB Storage costs are reduced since you pay for only the capacity you use with no upfront capital expense or data center operating expenses, lowering the total cost of image archiving by 25 to 50% or even more. Images can be retrieved directly to PACS and shared securely online with any other provider. The trusted leader in online security is offering a free cost savings analysis. Thanks to Symantec for supporting HIStalk.
If you’re interested in more than my brief explanation of Symantec Health Safe, I found the above video on YouTube.
David Darnell, a 39-year-old VP with healthcare data analytics vendor MDI Holdings of Ponte Vedra, FL, died Thursday in car accident. He is survived by his wife and four children ages 1 to 7. Condolences.
UPMC’s insurance division forms a joint venture with UK company Ultrasis to create a US version of that company’s Beating the Blues online CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) patient tool for treating depression.
University of Iowa Hospitals opens an investigation after determining that the electronic medical records of 13 University of Iowa football players may have been inappropriately accessed. The hospitalized players have been diagnosed with rhabdomyolysis, a kidney-damaging condition caused by damaged muscle and sometimes by nutritional supplements. The university has also launched a separate investigation into the football program’s off-season workouts, which started last week.
The Methodist Hospital (TX) opens a 35,000 square foot simulation-based surgical training center that will teach physicians to use technology such as image-guided procedures and robotic surgery. One tool uses a thermal camera to determine a student’s surgical expertise.
An interventional radiologist who patented the idea behind drug-eluting stents while a medical resident in 1993 is awarded $482 million in his suit claiming that Cordis stole his idea and made $13 billion from it. Bruce Saffran, MD PhD had already settled with Boston Scientific for $50 million after winning a $431 million judgment against that company three years ago.
Mobile drug reference vendor Epocrates plans an IPO next week valued at around $50 million.
I appreciate and acknowledge the support of Perceptive Software of Shawnee, KS, a new HIStalk Platinum Sponsor. The company offers the ImageNow document management, imaging, and workflow solution that ties unstructured documents to the EMR and streamlines paper processes and workflow. The benefit: a comprehensive, hybrid patient record that improves care by offering immediate access to content, provides secure access, reduces the cost and space requirements inherent with paper, and quick implementation. It integrates with any HIT system including those from Meditech, Epic, Cerner, Allscripts / Eclipsys, Lawson, and Oracle. There’s an overview demo series here and they’ll send you a copy of The Top 10 Things You’ll Save with ECM if you mention HIStalk (or if you don’t, for that matter, but maybe I’ll score points with them if you do). Thanks to Perceptive Software for supporting what I do.
Above is video I found on Perceptive Software’s healthcare solutions. It’s just some real-life customers (North Kansas City Hospital, Asante Health System, Citizens Memorial Health) talking in a seemingly unscripted way about how they’re using the ImageNow solution.
Digital Prospectors Corp. of Exeter, NH is supporting HIStalk as a Gold Sponsor and we appreciate that very much. DPC is a fast-growing boutique consulting firm whose healthcare division provides consultants and direct-hire candidates for all areas of HIT, including experts in Cerner, Allscripts / Eclipsys, Epic, McKesson, Lawson, and Quovadx. The company has won several awards (Inc. 5000, top woman-owned business, best places to work) since its founding in 1999. I found a nice profile of the company in a local publication here and also its Facebook page. You can also check out their open positions. Thanks to Digital Prospectors Corp. for supporting HIStalk.
Awarepoint’s 2010 results include 91 hospitals contracted for its RTLS solutions (up 30%) and revenue up over 100% for the third straight year.
Bizarre: a pregnant woman finds out that her husband has impregnated his mistress as well. She decides to kill the mistress’s baby, forging a doctor’s prescription for Cytotec, an ulcer drug that also causes abortions, and calls the woman pretending to be the doctor’s employee and tells her take the medication to protect the unborn baby against Down syndrome. The mistress takes the Cytotec, sending her into immediate labor, but the baby survives in the hospital. The wife then sends a male friend to the hospital with two bottles of poisoned baby milk, which suspicious staff refuse to pass along. Somewhere along the way, the wife pretends to be a hospital executive in an attempt to get the baby’s ventilator turned off. Says her lawyer, “My client was in the last trimester of her pregnancy and was acting irrationally.” The jury didn’t buy it: she’s going to prison for four years. I’m sure she’ll make a stellar mom.