From Ralph Hinckley: “Re: [vendor name omitted] acquisition. Announcement coming very soon on a core HIS vendor acquisition.” Just for fun, above is a tiny bit of the logo of the company supposedly being acquired (left) and that of the acquirer (right).
From CMIO: “Re: Apple iPad 2 commercial. The medical app shown is almost certainly Great Connection, a Swedish company partnering with Qualcomm.” The company’s site says a hospital can deliver and receive medical images with nothing more than an Internet connection to its cloud server that takes five minutes to connect to an ultrasound machine, allowing them to be sent (encrypted and authenticated) to a smart phone or e-mail. It also says that a US entity was founded in San Diego and took over the Swedish entity in the spring of 2010. It also notes that the product is available in a white label version to mobile operators that want to resell healthcare images and related services to consumers.
From Lucite: “Re: Nuance. As a stockholder in both companies, this would be exciting!” Some rumors suggest that Apple will buy Nuance, while others say an expanded partnership is more likely, with the impetus for either being Apple’s interest in including speech recognition technology in the upcoming release of iOS 5. Nuance has a market cap of $6 billion, with its five-year share performance shown above (Nuance in blue, the S&P 500 in green). Those who timed their NUAN purchase just right by buying on the December 2008 dip would have tripled their money in just over two years, and surely will do even better if either rumor is correct.
From Epic Alum: “Re: Epic non-competes. Legal and enforceable or not, Epic has no-hire agreements with clients that they don’t tell you about in the exit interview. Those seem seem to prevent you from working with Epic clients through third parties, including those that aren’t Epic partners (but you might have better luck than I did). Even if you got a job or contract, Epic will instruct its employees to ignore your phone calls, e-mails, and questions at meetings, which would make your job all but impossible. I’d be concerned about retaliation from Epic when it comes to getting and maintaining certification later, although I don’t know for sure that they blackball anyone. As for what you should do now, every else (a) goes to grad school; (b) does non-Epic programming work if they’re a programmer; (c) does non-Epic healthcare consulting; or (d) works outside of healthcare. There will be plenty of work next spring. Advice to prospective employees, most of which are in their first real post-college job with no money saved: when you leave, you will be pretty much locked out of the one industry you have real experience working in.”
From InovaDoc: “Re: Epic at Inova. I wish that IT departments could be more transparent about their decisions. What will happen to those physicians that spent $30K on GE to integrate with the hospital? De-install, then re-install, foregoing their investment?”
A quick poll … please answer if you would be so kind. Thanks. Just trying to get a read on who’s out there.
Listening: Electric Wizard, Dopethrone. I’m the least-likely demographic for this Sabbath-y sludge / doom /stoner music, but I still think it sounds pretty cool. Also: Blackmore’s Night, renaissance faire rock by the former Deep Purple guitarist and the angelic Candice Night. And Watching: Saxondale, a well-made Britcom about a trying-to-stay-cool 1970s rock roadie turned pest control operator who mumbles his wry, psuedo-intellectual monologues like Johnny Depp’s Jack Sparrow.
I think I may have messed up one of the e-mail blasts Friday night, so apologies if you got something confusing. I put in nine hours at the hospital, ran six miles on the trail, and did another seven hours of HIStalk work after I got home, eating only some peanut butter crackers in the 12 hours from lunch until bedtime. I think the combo of hypoglycemia, slight dehydration, and way too much work made me a little woozy.
My Time Capsule editorial from March 2006 covers open source in healthcare, which I prefaced by promising little: “Since my open source knowledge is right up there with most CIOs and health care executives (I have next to none, in other words), I figured my populist opinions might be as useful as the next guy’s (also next to none).”
An article in last week’s San Francisco Business Times confirms that Alameda County Medical Center (CA) is going with Soarian (clinicals and revenue cycle) and NextGen, with CIO Mark Zielazinski giving the price tag as $75 million, including infrastructure upgrades. The hospital expects to receive $18 million in HITECH money.
Community Health Network (IN) names Ron Strachan as CIO, replacing the retired Ed Koschka. He was formerly SVP/CIO at WellStar.
Valerie Fritz joins the RTLS division of TeleTracking as VP of marketing. She was previously with Awarepoint.
NaviNet promotes Michael Ross MD to chief medical officer and David Kates to SVP of product management and clinical strategy. Both came to the company via its Prematics acquisition in December 2010.
I mentioned that Camden-Clark Hospital (WV) has signed up for Allscripts Sunrise Enterprise and Enterprise Performance Management. Also announced as new Sunrise Enteprise customers: Hannibal Regional Healthcare (MO) and Lakeway Regional Medical Center (TX).
It’s a fairly even split of which company’s stock looks good to readers. New poll to your right: when will vendors see the peak of HITECH-generated business?
Kaiser’s Q1 numbers: $12 billion in revenue, $921 million in profit, up 9% and 30%, respectively. Membership rose by 208,000 to 8.8 million. Considering healthcare costs, I can’t decide whether this news is good or bad, although I’m leaning toward the former since Kaiser is just about the only provider out there showing success in controlling costs without reducing quality.
Two Allina hospitals fire 32 employees, 28 of them from Unity Hospital, for snooping in the electronic records of 11 teen partygoers who overdosed on a synthetic drug. That surely is a record number of privacy-related terminations. Allina says it knew the patients were high profile, so it did an EMR access review afterward and discovered the digital intruders.
Q4 numbers for The Advisory Board Company: revenue up 22%, EPS $0.30 vs. $0.32. Two new programs were announced: Crimson Care Registry, which prompts physicians based on clinical care guidelines, and Clinical Denials Prevention Program, a best practices approach to pre-certification.
Quest Software acquires virtual desktop scanning and imaging technology vendor RemoteScan. RemoteScan has a pretty big healthcare presence in providing a scanning solution for providers running EMRs on Citrix or Terminal Server.
Froedtert Health (WI) cancels its HIM outsourcing contract with Pyramid Healthcare Solutions, offering jobs to all but three of 118 contractors. Pyramid was acquired a year ago by an India-based conglomerate.
Britain’s Department of Health will reduce CSC’s scope of work involved on the NPfIT project, specifically cutting back on work related to the Lorenzo system. CSC is in the process of acquiring Lorenzo vendor iSoft.
An interesting fact in a story about union nurses at Tufts signing a new contract: the average salary of a full-time nurse there is $115K.
Omnicare Clinical Research, a contract research organization, will use the clinical trials and clinical trials imaging solutions of Merge Healthcare in a large-scale clinical trial.
Hopefully, gentlemen, you did not forget either your mother or your wife on Mother’s Day. The entirely logical but ill-advised insistence that that, “Hey, you aren’t MY mother” will greatly increase the chances of experiencing a lonely night in the dark visually tracing said soulmate’s vertebral column.