The FDA releases draft guidance on the oversight of mobile medical applications. The two categories of apps that would qualify for oversight include those that serve as an accessory to an FDA-regulated device (for example, one that connects with a PACS) and those that turn a mobile platform into a mobile device (the smart phone is used as an EKG device.) In some cases, software developers would have to demonstrate that their mobile apps work comparably to their non-mobile versions.
From Vince Ciotti: “Re: Epic’s 75 wins in 200+ bed hospitals. All of Epic’s clients are multi-hospital IDNs since ‘normal’ community hospitals simply can’t afford their epic fees. Judy won’t even condescend to bid to single facilities under 200 beds. If the typical multi has 5-10 hospitals, that represents about 10 wins for Epic. Still, at their incredibly high prices, this was enough to drive Epic to over $800M in revenue last year. Add in the hundreds of millions in hardware fees even bigger implementation ‘consulting’ fees they generate and Epic alone may represent our long-lost economic recovery!”
HIStalk Announcements and Requests
Thanks to Inga for capably holding down the fort while I was away. It was good to be gone and almost as good to be back. I’m behind, but that’s not unusual – the only change is that I’m determined to stop feeling guilty about it since it’s too many jobs, not sloth or lack of time management skills, that’s responsible. I’d go part time at the hospital if that was feasible.
Listening: the first new Yes album in 10 years. I’ve been a fan for much of my life and I saw them live not long ago, so I like it even as I acknowledge that prog rock isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. Reading: Life by Rolling Stone Keith Richards (excellent, either he and/or his hired gun co-author is a genius), so I may need to crank some B-side Stones.
Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock
Healthcare Growth Partners releases its quarterly HIT market report, with merger and acquisition activity recovering well from low activity a couple of years ago. Here’s a quote:
Generally, sub $100 million companies have three valuation inflection points: proof-of-concept, initial scalability, and expansion scalability. Proof-of-concept is value created when a company shows that its product can be successfully sold and deployed in a commercial setting. This inflection point is generally of more value to venture investors than it is to acquirors, as companies at this stage tend to be too early to realize significant value through a sale. Initial scalability occurs when an earlier stage company begins to show strong profitability at high levels of growth, although the organization is still small and lean. Expansion scalability takes place after a company has matured to a level where it takes on real infrastructure, and the company begins to show strong profitability after building out a mature corporate organization.
Although the size of a company at each inflection point can vary significantly based on a company’s product or services and sector, the general rule of thumb in HIT is that proof of concept occurs at revenue of less than $1 million, expansion scalability in the $5 to $10 million revenue range, and mature scalability in the $20 million revenue range.
Philips reports Q2 numbers: revenue down 2.6% and a loss of $1.9 billion, with the CEO announcing cost reductions and share buybacks. Its healthcare business fared better than the company overall, with an 8% sales increase.
Apple announces Q3 numbers: revenue up 82%, EPS $7.79 vs. $3.51, wildly beating analyst expectations of $5.82. The company sold more than 20 million iPhones and 9.25 million iPads in the quarter.
Shares in WebMD Health recovered a bit on Tuesday following Monday’s drop of more than 30%, which was triggered by the company’s announcement of lowered revenue expectations. The one-year share price graph looks merely unimpressive until you notice that the straight vertical line to the right is not the margin of the graph.
Lawson Software, whose $2 billion acquisition by Golden Gate Capital and Infor was completed last week, has begun restructuring and employee layoffs.
Australia’s federal court approves CSC’s acquisition of iSoft for $202 million after 97% of shareholder votes were cast in favor of the proposal.
ADVANTAGE Health Solutions signs an agreement with IGIHealth for its ORBIT Clinical Exchange and portal to support ADVANTAGE’s ACO infrastructure.
Children’s Medical Center Dallas selects the Enterprise Data Warehouse business intelligence tool from Health Care DataWorks .
Final Support chooses EMR-Link from Ignis Systems to provide lab-EMR integration for its GE Centricity customers.
The board of Franciscan Hospital for Children (MA) fires CEO Paul J. DellaRocco, citing financial irregularities that include the inappropriate submission of expenses.
Former Allscripts COO Eileen Martinson is named CEO of Sparta Systems, a provider of quality and compliance management software.
RTLS vendor Versus promotes Susan Pouzar to VP of sales.
Practice Fusion hires Zachariah Gursky as its first VP of ad sales. He was previously with Coupons Inc.
Todd Cozzens is promoted to CEO of Accountable Care Solutions, a new business unit of Optum. He was previously with the company’s OptumInsight business, the former Ingenix that bought Picis, of which Cozzens was CEO. He mentions his new job and some thoughts on “virtual Kaisers” and their data needs in his latest blog posting.
Announcements and Implementations
The Georgia Health Information Technology REC selects Halfpenny Technologies to develop a lab hub demonstration project for the exchange of clinical data.
Banner Health (AZ) completes its pilot of MyHealthDirect and will be implementing the service across all its facilities. This news clip explains how Banner is using MyHealthDirect to book appointments at low-cost clinics and thus reduce unnecessary ER visits and wait times.
Middle Park Medical Center in Kremmling (CO) begins implementation of Healthland’s EHR and anticipates a go-live by the end of the year. The 19-bed hospital expects to qualify for up to $250,000 in EHR incentives.
Johns Hopkins Medicine begins recruiting for over 60 people to implement Epic. Positions for the initial ambulatory rollout will focus on clinical documentation, analytics and research, and scheduling and registration.
LodgeNet Interactive restructures LodgeNetHealthcare into an independent but wholly-owned subsidiary. Gary Kolbeck, who was previously GM of LodgeNet Healthcare, will serve as president.
Microsoft establishes a Web page for Google Health users interested in transferring their data to Microsoft’s HealthVault record. The site includes step-by-step instructions on how to move the data.
Government and Politics
HHS’s Office of Inspector General finds that 12 of 13 states do not plan to verify all the eligibility requirements for paying Medicaid EHR incentives to doctors and hospitals . The reason: most states lack the data necessary for complete verification because data collection requires too much effort and too many resources.
The federal government files a complaint against a Kentucky nursing home for fraud, but also alleges that five residents died from “worthless care.” Nurses were accused of failing to administer diabetes meds, diapering patients who had normal bladder function, ignoring physician orders, and not showing up at all for one 2.5 day period in which the nursing home had no RN coverage at all.
The Industrial Designers Society of America awards Silver recognition to Seattle-based Artefact for its design work on the prototype of the Seattle Children’s Patient Information System.
Use of a real-time alerting system for patient deterioration reduced LOS 9.7 to 6.9 days and increased clinician response from 29% to 78% in a UK study. The $1.5 million Patientrack system was developed by an intensivist in Tasmania, but no Australian hospitals were interested in trying it. The weak link seems to be that it requires the nurse to manually enter the vital sign values.
The VA offers a $50,000 prize to a developer who implements Internet-based technology similar to the government’s Blue Button program, which allows patients to download a summary of their health records. The competition started Monday and ends when a winner is chosen or on October 18, whichever comes first.
According to the local paper, independent physicians wanting to tie into Lee Memorial Health System’s Epic EHR would have to pay $15,000-$16,000 for the software license plus $25,000 to $80,000 per practice to cover implementation fees. Annual maintenance is an additional $4,500 per provider. Depending on the size of the practice, that could be a hard sale. Independent physicians in the area control about 84% of outpatient care.
UPMC removes 29 of its 51 directors following a consultant’s recommendation for improving the board’s effectiveness. Its membership had swelled over the years as representatives were added from acquired hospitals.
Memorial Health System (CO), the hospital whose electronic patient records were breached by a city-employed nurse and part-time psychic, says it has fired 22 employees in the past three years for privacy issues. One of them was caught looking up the records of friends so she could create a birthday database.
Odd: a woman sues a Pennsylvania hospital and the county child protection agency when her newborn baby is turned over to foster care after testing positive for opium, which the mother blames on her own ingestion of poppy seed-containing salad dressing. Both organizations had been sued by another mother a few months ago for exactly the same thing, except that particular mom blamed a poppy seed bagel.
- MEDSEEK announces its fifth consecutive year on the HCI 100 list, based on its 2010 revenue performance.
- Sentry Data Systems CMO William Kirsh DO, MPH participated as a writer and editor for a HIMSS Revenue Cycle Task Force white paper.
- Surescripts recognizes Allscripts as one of seven vendors to achieve Gold Solution Provider Status for e-Prescribing. Surescripts also awards e-MDs its White Coat of Quality.
- AdvancedMD announces the release of its ONC ATCB-certified EHR 2011 solution that includes an enhanced patient portal, new Meaningful Use reporting tools, and utilities for submitting immunization and health surveillance data.
- API Healthcare is offering a variety of sessions on creating more effective workforce management at its annual user group meeting this week in Milwaukee.
- Orion Health’s Rhapsody Integration Engine and Rhapsody Connect earn ONC-ATCB EHR module certification .
- Providence Health & Services selects Elsevier / CPM Resource Center as its vendor of choice for evidence-based clinical content.
- Concerro releases a series of white papers collectively called the Workforce Management Wellness Series.
- Kony hires Peter Buscemi to lead the company’s global marketing efforts.