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Morning Headlines 12/7/16

December 6, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Meet Emily, Ireland’s first ‘digital baby’

In Ireland, Cork University Maternity Hospital goes live with Cerner as the first hospital in a plan to deliver a single, shared maternity EHR across the nation.

Political donor pleads guilty to investment fraud scheme

Sreedhar Potarazu, an ophthalmogist and political commentator on cable news outlets, pleads guilty to criminal investment fraud charges after lying to investors about his health technology startup’s finances to secure $30 million in investments.

IBM’s Watson Now Fights Cybercrime in the Real World

IBM’s Watson business unit has launched a pilot program aimed at developing cybersecurity monitoring tools for healthcare and several other industries.

Security Experts Warn Congress That the Internet of Things Could Kill People

Harvard University professor and cybersecurity scholar Bruce Schneier discusses the recent IoT-based denial-of-service attack on Dyn servers and the risk that such attacks pose to hospitals and public safety.

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December 6, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Morning Headlines 12/5/16

December 4, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Allscripts to extend EMR offerings in Australia

Allscripts acquires Australian EHR vendor Core Medical Solutions. adding both localized software and employees with deep knowledge of Australian healthcare workflows to Allscripts.

Harris Computer Corporation Acquires IMDSoft

Harris acquires iMDSoft, expanding its footprint in healthcare. The company will be run as an independent business within Harris and will be run by iMDSoft EVP Shahar Sery. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Epic Systems sued again for overtime wage issues

Epic quality assurance employees file a class-action lawsuit against the company arguing that they were misclassified by Epic as exempt from overtime rules.

Legal battle delays fourth Vancouvercenter building

Cerner sues iCapital founder Ahmed Saeed Mahmoud Al Badi after his company subcontracted Cerner to help develop a national EHR for the United Arab Emirates but stopped paying once work was complete. Cerner has filed complaints in Washington and Oregon, where it is seeking $60 million in real estate assets owned by Mahmoud Al Badi.

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December 4, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Morning Headlines 12/2/16

December 1, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Millions Of People Are Having An Easier Time Paying Medical Bills

A CDC report finds that the number of people struggling to pay their medical bills has fallen sharply in the last five years. Researchers cite reduced unemployment and the implementation of ACA as the primary reasons.

California Tests Electronic Database For End-Of-Life Wishes

California will create an electronic registry to store end of life orders of residents which will be accessible by local emergency and social service providers.

Omnicell to Acquire Leading Pharmacy Provider Ateb, Inc.

Omnicell will acquire Raleigh, NC-based Ateb, Inc. for $41 million in cash. Ateb develops pharmacy-based medication adherence and chronic disease management solutions and has a customer base of 15,000 pharmacies across the US and Canada.

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December 1, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Morning Headlines 11/30/16

November 29, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Donald Trump Picks Rep. Tom Price to Lead Department of Health and Human Services

President-elect Donald Trump selects Tom Price to replace Sylvia Burwell as the next HHS secretary.

Trump picks Seema Verma to head Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services

Seema Verma, a health policy consulting firm CEO with ties to VP-elect Mike Pence, has been chosen to replace Andy Slavitt as the next CMS administrator.

US Department of Veterans Affairs Will Collaborate With Flow Health to Bring Artificial Intelligence and Precision Medicine to Veterans

The VA will work with artificial intelligence software vendor Flow Health to comb through the medical records of 22 million veterans and use the clinical data to help create software capable of offering meaningful clinical decision support and generating personalized care plans.

Big Names Take Hit on Theranos

Rupert Murdock will likely lose $200 million in Theranos investments after his own newspaper, the Wall Street Journal, exposed the company for misleading investors.

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November 29, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Morning Headlines 11/29/16

November 28, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Republicans reach deal to pass Cures Act by end of year, but Democrats pushing for changes

The House will vote Wednesday on a final version of the 21st Century Cures Act, a $6.3 billion piece of legislation that will target opioid addiction, fund Obama administration research programs for the next 10 years, and speed federal approval of new drugs and devices.

CMS’ star ratings for hospitals linked to social, economic factors

A new JAMA study finds that a hospital’s CMS star rating is “heavily influenced by its location’s socio-economic conditions,” reinforcing longstanding concerns voiced by industry stakeholders.

Theranos Sued for Alleged Fraud by Robertson Stephens Co-Founder Colman

Lawsuits continue to pile up for Theranos, with investment firm Robertson Stephens & Co founder Robert Colman accusing the company of making false and misleading claims about operations and technology during its investment talks.

HIMSS17: Stealing Your Life

Former conman and world renown authority on forgery and fraud, Frank Abagnale, will speak at HIMSS17 at a session called Stealing Your Life that will address data breaches and identify theft within the healthcare industry.

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November 28, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Morning Headlines 11/28/16

November 27, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Cyber security and resilience for Smart Hospitals

The European Union Agency for Network and Information Security publishes cybersecurity recommendations for healthcare executives.

Incoming Regenstrief Institute president Embi named chair-elect of AMIA board of directors

Regenstrief Institute president and CEO Peter Embi, MD is selected as the chair-elect of the board of directors of AMIA.

Governor Baker Establishes Massachusetts Digital Healthcare Council

In Massachusetts, Governor Charlie Baker creates a digital health advisory council comprised of leaders healthcare technology, insurance, medical devices, healthcare delivery, life sciences, academia, and government.

Independent doctors say hospital thwarts competition

In Vermont, local providers are complaining that UVM Medical Center operates as a monopoly, filing lawsuits against new local practices to shut down competition.

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November 27, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Morning Headlines 11/23/16

November 22, 2016 Headlines No Comments

UMass settles potential HIPAA violations following malware infection

UMASS will pay $650,000 to settle a HIPAA violation stemming from a 2013 malware infection that led to the disclosure of 1,670 records. The breach exposed names, addresses, social security numbers, dates of birth, as well as insurance, diagnosis, and procedure data.

Repealing Obamacare With No Replacement Will Cause Chaos, Obama’s Health Chief Warns

HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell warns that repealing ACA without enacting a replacement would wreak havoc on health insurance markets.

Ireland to go-live with national maternity electronic record

In Ireland, Cork University Maternity hospital will go live with Cerner on December 3 as the nation moves forward with plans of consolidating all of its 19 maternity hospitals on one system.

Novartis backs off from 2016 date for testing Google autofocus lens

Novartis cancels plans to test the autofocus contact lenses it is co-developing with Google, citing technical issues and declining to comment on when testing would begin.

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November 22, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Morning Headlines 11/22/16

November 21, 2016 Headlines 4 Comments

The Bigger Story, and Agenda, Behind GOP Changes to Obamacare, Medicare and Medicaid

Kaiser Family Foundation president and CEO Drew Altman outlines the GOP proposal to repeal and replace ACA and reform the Medicare and Medicaid programs, plans he describes as “the biggest changes in the direction of federal health programs since the passage of Medicaid and Medicare.”

Top Management and Performance Challenges Facing HHS

OIG lists the top ten challenges facing HHS in the coming year, with health IT coming in third on the list.

UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention Renews Relationship with Cerner to Provide Electronic Health Record

The UAE’s Ministry of Health continues its system-wide implementation Cerner with a contract extension that will add anesthesia management and medication barcode scanning to from Cerner.

US government releases official guidelines for smart guns

The Department of Justice releases voluntary guidance for firearms manufacturers outlining the kinds of “smart gun” safety technology it would like to see in pistols. While adopting the recommendations is optional, DOJ reports that the features will be part of the baseline specifications for law enforcement service pistols. 

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November 21, 2016 Headlines 4 Comments

Morning Headlines 11/18/16

November 17, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Neal Patterson’s Remarks from CHC

Cerner CEO Neal Patterson speaks at the Cerner Health Conference, discussing his ongoing cancer treatment and his new perspective of EHRs as a patient.

Theranos Whistleblower Shook the Company—and His Family

The Wall Street Journal’s John Carreyrou tells the story of Tyler Shultz, the inside source that broke the Theranos story to the media and government officials.

Obamacare startup faces losses

Tech-savvy insurance startup Oscar Insurance continues to lose money on public exchanges, its primary business. The startup is now exiting a number of exchange markets in efforts to diversity its revenue stream.

CMS launches new online tool to make Quality Payment Program easier for clinicians

CMS releases an API that will give developers access to Quality Payment Program data.

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November 17, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Morning Headlines 11/17/16

November 16, 2016 Headlines 1 Comment

Sign-Ups Under Affordable Care Act So Far Seem Not Hurt by Donald Trump’s Win

Healthcare.gov has processed over a million applications during the first 12 days of open enrollment, outpacing last year by 53,000.

Trump May Repeal Obamacare But He Won’t Touch Obama’s Other Major Health Law

According to Forbes, MACRA, which was passed with bipartisan support, will not be targeted for repeal or revisions under a Trump presidency.

Trump’s HHS secretary could be surgeon Rep. Tom Price

Trump is reportedly considering Representative Tom Price (R-GA) for HHS Secretary. Price was an early Trump supporter and has been a longstanding critic of the ACA.

Health Technology And Human Touch Need Not Be At Odds

In a Health Affairs blog, Eric Topol MD discusses the needed balance between technology and presence in the exam room.

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November 16, 2016 Headlines 1 Comment

Morning Headlines 11/16/16

November 15, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Report on the Safe Use Of Pick Lists In Ambulatory Care Settings

Citing a high frequency of pick list-related errors, ONC publishes a report on the safe use of medication and patient pick lists in ambulatory EHR with recommendations for vendors, CMIOs, and end users on how to minimize risks.

CareCloud Completes $31.5 Million Series C Funding Round to Further Modernize Healthcare

Ambulatory EHR vendor CareCloud raises an oversubscribed $31.5 million Series C, bringing its total funding to $103 million.

The American Heart Association and Amazon Web Services Launch Cloud-Based Precision Medicine Data Marketplace to Accelerate Scientific Discovery

The American Heart Association announces that it will begin storing data sets from drug companies, research institutes, and universities in the cloud for researchers to analyze in hopes of advancing cardiovascular disease research.

White House Official Warned VA About New Vets.gov Enrollment App; Records Crisis Continues

The VA goes live with a new online healthcare application without getting approval from the agencies lawyers because of legal and technical issues that ultimately led to 65 percent of applications being lost.

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November 15, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Morning Headlines 11/11/16

November 10, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Siemens plans public listing of healthcare business

Siemens announces plans for an IPO of its $15 billion Siemens Healthineers medical business.

Red Hat mHealth survey shows strong ROI and anticipated growth despite budget headwinds

A Red Hat survey of healthcare organizations finds that 82 percent have a fully implemented mobile strategy, outperforming commercial enterprises. 78 percent of those healthcare organizations also report an ROI on their mobile app investments.

VA to launch online appointment scheduling

The VA will begin offering online appointment scheduling in January 2017, starting first with primary care appointments, and then followed by mental health, optometry, and audiology appointments.

‘The polls clearly got it wrong’: The autopsy will take months

Experts say that understanding how statisticians got the election polling forecasts so wrong will take approximately six months of analysis.

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November 10, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Morning Headlines 11/10/16

November 9, 2016 Headlines 3 Comments

Policy experts say quick repeal and replace of ACA unlikely

Health policy experts say that despite GOP control of the White House, Senate, and House of Representatives, and persistent promises from Congress to repeal or replace, a full repeal of ACA remains unlikely due to the simple fact that millions of Americans would lose their health insurance.

Cerner, HCA stocks dip with ACA uncertainty

On the stock market, healthcare stocks are slipping on uncertainty around a potential ACA repeal. Cerner stock fell 4.6 percent overnight, while HCA’s stock price fell 12.4 percent.

Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals Report Year-to-Date and Third Quarter 2016 Financial Results

Kaiser Permanente reports Q3 results: revenue grew to $48.3 billion, resulting in $672 million in operating income, up from $363 million for the same quarter last year.

How some hospitals are replacing pricy EpiPens with a $10 version

In response to increasing EpiPen prices, the University of Utah Health Care system is replacing EpiPen’s within the system with a $10 EpiKit, which will include a vial of epinephrine, two needles, alcohol wipes, two syringes, and instructions.

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November 9, 2016 Headlines 3 Comments

Morning Headlines 11/9/16

November 8, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Healthcare company laying off 60 workers in Charlotte

McKesson lays off 60 Charlotte, NC-based employees from its Enterprise Information Solutions (Paragon) business.

Knowing When and How to Use Medical Products

CMS Acting Administrator Andy Slavitt co-authors a JAMA article with two senior FDA officials calling for more diverse clinical trial populations and an increased use of data from EHRs, claims, and registries to support the decision to approve and pay for new drugs.

Walgreen Sues Theranos, Seeks $140 Million in Damages

Once a key strategic customer, Walgreens sues Theranos for breach of contract, seeking $140 million in damages, equal to the amount it invested in the startup.

Adelaide hospitals hampered by nine-hour system outage

In Australia, three major hospitals report that a nine hour network outage prevented clinicians from accessing its Allscripts EHR.

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November 8, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Morning Headlines 11/8/16

November 7, 2016 Headlines No Comments

2016 Report To Congress on Health IT Progress

ONC submits its HITECH-mandated annual report to Congress. The report predictably focuses on the current state of interoperability and the path to improvement.

HealthCare.gov Site Straining to Keep Up With Enrollees

Since the November 1 start of the 2016/2017 enrollment period, HealthCare.gov has been using virtual waiting rooms to temporarily hold end users during peak enrollment periods so that the site does not crash under the increase in traffic.

Head of NYC’s cash-bleeding public hospital system to step down

NYC Health & Hospitals president Ram Raju, MD will retire at the end of this month, and will be temporarily replaced by Stanley Brezenoff, who ran New York’s health system in the 1980s, until a permanent replacement is named.

Dangerous Infusion Errors Top ECRI Institute’s Annual Health Technology Hazards List

ECRI Institute publishes a list of the top 10 health tech hazards for 2017.

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November 7, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Morning Headlines 11/7/16

November 6, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Grant Aims to Boost Health IT Safety Initiative

ECRI Institute lands a $3 million grant to fund a 3-year project aimed at improving the design, implementation, and use of EHR and other health IT products.

Data Analytics in Healthcare | 2016

A Peer60 report finds that 90 percent of health systems have a data analytics strategy in place, but that 22 percent rely on a homegrown solution, and another 43 percent use multiple analytics vendors to cobble together actionable intelligence.

Tracker flags up failures to report clinical trials

Researchers create an automated tool that identifies organizations that withhold clinical trial results by comparing completed clinical trials listed in ClinicalTrials.gov with reports in PubMed and then calculating what percent of an organization’s trials have no published results. Sanofi was found to be missing results from 65 percent of their trials, while Mayo Clinic is missing 50 percent of its results.

Remarks by Andy Slavitt: The Need to Partner on Drug Innovation, Access and Cost

In a speech given at a pharma conference, CMS Acting Administrator Andy Slavitt warns that significant drug price increases has become the healthcare issues Americans most want action taken on, noting that in the next few years “these costs will put unsustainable pressure on the Medicare program and action is going to be necessary to address them.”

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November 6, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Morning Headlines 11/4/16

November 3, 2016 Headlines 3 Comments

Allscripts announces third quarter 2016 results

Allscripts reports Q3 results: revenue climbs 11 percent to $392 million, adjusted EPS $0.14 vs. $0.13, missing on both.

Cerner (CERN) Q3 2016 Results – Earnings Call Transcript

In its Q3 earnings call, Cerner CFO Marc Naughton explains that revenue and bookings came in below guidance because of lower than expected technology resale and software licensing sales, with technology resale revenue declining 21 percent and software licensing declining 12 percent.

University College London Hospitals set for Epic adventure

In England, University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust selects Epic as its next EHR vendor.

HHS announces Phase 1 winners of the Move Health Data Forward Challenge

HHS selects ten teams as the winners of the first phase of its Move Health Data Forward Challenge, which asks developers to use APIs to help patients securely share their health data with providers, family members or other caregivers.

Inside Magic Leap, The Secretive $4.5 Billion Startup Changing Computing Forever

Forbes profiles Magic Leap, a secretive virtual reality startup that has raised $1.4 billion in investments from major firms, including Google, Andreessen Horowitz, and Kleiner Perkins.

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November 3, 2016 Headlines 3 Comments

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Reader Comments

  • Mobile Man: I think Mr. H very cleverly put the Theranos and the Grail updates right next to each other......
  • CongressComputerScience: Theranos is currently under criminal investigation. Holmes and Co. will get theirs....
  • Speechless: HOW in the world is Elizabeth Holmes still legally playing her borderline mental -illness CEO game when we ready storie...
  • @PM_From_Haities: Really, PM? Quip or no quip, this makes you sound like a talking head without the head. Do you think Price has the abili...
  • PM_From_Haities: Glad to see this is likely the last year of meaningful uselessness in health care. Tom Price is going to make this go a...

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