Recent Articles:

News 2/26/16

February 25, 2016 News 10 Comments

Top News


The White House announces several commitments to its Precision Medicine Initiative call to action, including:

  • The Advisory Board Company will create APIs for up to five pilot sites interested in building FHIR-based applications.
  • Allscripts, Athenahealth, Drchrono, Epic, and McKesson will pilot open APIs that will allow patients to contribute their EHR data to research in “Sync for Science” pilot projects.
  • The CRISP HIE will enable consumer “data donation” to support research.
  • Get My Data will initiate a “virtual march” of consumers via pop culture events, social media, and media campaigns.
  • Hackensack University Medical Center will adopt FHIR and open APIs for patient access.
  • Intermountain Healthcare will create a patient portal for cancer genomic data.
  • Ochsner Health System will expand its wearables data pilots.
  • PicnicHealth will publish a guide explaining how consumers can get access to their data and will create a Web-based portal for requesting data from the country’s 500 largest health systems.
  • PCORnet will help patients get access to their EHR data and contribute it for research.
  • Sage Bionetworks will create a way for study patients to contribute data for research.
  • St. Joseph Health will make data from Allscripts and Meditech available through an API and allow patients to see, edit, and contribute their own data.
  • Surescripts will give patients participating in the first precision medicine cohort the ability to contribute their medication and health information.
  • University of California Health System will give patients tools to download their information from all five of its medical centers and to share the information with providers and researchers. It will also develop a Blue and Gold Button, working with Cisco on a standards-based interoperability platform.
  • Validic will give users an opt-in form that will allow them to donate their patient-generated data to researchers.
  • Yale New Haven health will give patients access to their full medical record and allow them to share or donate their information.
  • New York Genome Center will use IBM Watson to generate cancer insights.
  • Inova Health System will create a $100 million precision medicine venture fund.
  • UPMC will make its legacy EHR data available to applications and services via a FHIR API.
  • University of Arizona Health Sciences will spend $22 million to expand its open-source analytic methods for disease-associated gene expression changes.

Reader Comments

From Sage on the Stage: “Re: same old HIT problems. Usability, interoperability, and security require addressing socio-technical challenges that start-ups and politicians are reluctant to admit, much less address. For those going to the HIMSS conference, ask vendors the hard questions.” Here’s the list from SOTS:

  • Do your system designers observe real clinician users in their busy clinical setting, recording how many errors they make, the problems they have finding data, or workarounds used in providing care to someone’s mother? If you have conducted those observations, what are you doing to correct the problems? If not, do you have any free tee shirts?
  • How does your EHR identify patients from disparate organizations, reconcile clinical terminologies, and normalize the clinical and administrative data before importing it and integrating it into your EHR and displaying it to clinicians? If so, can you connect me with a customer using those features? If not, do you have any free golf balls?
  • Does your product use two-factor authentication for remote access? How do you ensure that clients have implemented all the appropriate security precautions and most recent application and OS updates? Do you perform announced penetration tests on your clients’ networks and databases?

From Boy Wonder: “Re: HIMSS conference. Today in our company-wide prep meeting we reviewed your ‘booth rules for vendors’ rant from a few years ago … such good content. Hopefully our team members will learn from it and not screw up!” It was a culmination of my life’s work a couple of years ago to capture the fleeting image of every single employee in one vendor’s booth simultaneously tuning out passers-by while obsessing over their phones. I can’t top that, but I will be on the prowl for inhospitable booth behavior that disrespects attendees and robs employers. I would offer to mystery shop for companies interested in my blunt, objective opinion, but I fear I would be overwhelmed with requests.

image image
image image

image image

From Blown Cover: “Re: HIMSS spelling. It’s crazy after decades that people in the industry don’t know the difference between HIMSS and HIMMS. Come on, people – get it together!” Googling “HIMSS16” gives 5,410 results, while searching for just “HIMMS” returns  577,000 results. Even hashtag “#HIMMS16# “ turns up usage by tweeters like CHCF Innovations, Carestream, GetMyHealthData, CSC Health, and Cylance. You might find this startling lack of attention to detail is concerning given that, by definition, it involves companies offering patient-impacting technology products.


From Gone Guy: “Re: HIMSS and SIIM. Last time I checked they dealt in the digital world.” The stock photography doctor not only is peering intently at a now-antiquated film, she’s got a giant, turquoise syringe handy should she feel the need to inject something unsterile into someone. I can only imagine how often the HIMSS-SIIM Enterprise Imaging Workgroup’s name will be mangled into HIMMS-SIMM.

HIStalk Announcements and Requests

image image

We provided an Osmo learning system in funding the DonorsChoose grant request from Ms. Murphy in Wisconsin, who emailed, “As you look around the room when students are using these materials, you can see the excitement on their faces, how highly engaged they are in the math, and the social skills that are being developed. You can hear mathematics vocabulary being used in their discussions and how they work together to solve problems, whether they are academic or social.”

image image

We also provided math picture books for Ms. Schmidt’s Indiana kindergarten class, which she says are so popular that the kids are reading them outside of their math workshop sessions.

This week on HIStalk Practice: The US Oncology Network and McKesson Specialty Health help oncologists move to value-based payment models. Family Health Care of Siouxland sees success in depression screening with new check-in tablets. : Andy Slavitt addresses physician burden, MACRA next steps at AMA conference. MBS/Net merges with Medsphere. KP Northwest enters the standalone – and telemedicine-friendly – clinic market in Portland. Georgia rolls out HIV telemedicine program at its public health clinics.

This week on HIStalk Connect: Fitbit shares fall 20 percent on low Q1 earnings and revenue guidance. Insurance startup Oscar Health raises a $400 million private equity round to expand its geographical footprint. Crisis Text Line releases a dataset containing more than 13 million de-identified text messages between its crisis counselors and teens that use the service. Opternative raises $6 million to ramp up its online eye exam business.


Welcome to new HIStalk Platinum Sponsor Ability Network. The Minneapolis-based company has for 20 years been helping providers and payers simplify the administrative and clinical complexities of healthcare through innovative applications and data analytics. It has helped hundreds of health IT vendors connect to Medicare and commercial payers, giving easy EDI payer access and embedding eligibility and claims management directly into the vendor’s software. Hospitals can take advantage of platforms for Medicare billing management, FISS/DDE connectivity, all-payer eligibility and claims, and Medicare claims submission and remittance advice. The company has grown tremendously, fueled by over $500 million in capital investment and several notable acquisitions, the most recent being Thursday’s acquisition of RCM and analytics services vendor G4 Health Systems. Industry long-timer, pharmacist, and former McKesson President and CEO Mark Pulido is Ability’s CEO and board chair. Thanks to Ability Network for supporting HIStalk.


image image

The folks at Peer60 helped me survey C-level executives from Epic-using organizations to create a free report, “Epic: the cold hard facts.” I came up with questions I always wanted to ask Epic sites. Are provider executives willing to speak up if they find Epic-related issues that could impact patient safety? Does Epic provide competitive advantage? Do Epic-using CIOs prefer Epic sites when looking for a new job? Did Epic go in on budget and do CFOs think it’s worth the cost? Are customers happy with Epic’s interoperability? It’s a free download – the form asks for basic information just for my use in understanding who is reading it, but you can enter dummy data if you aren’t comfortable sharing with me. It’s been crazy trying to get this finished during all the HIMSS hoopla and I’ve already noticed that I made a couple of aggravating minor typos, so forgive me for those. Free really is free: there’s no advertising, no charging vendors for copies, and no behind-the-scenes selling of data. Thanks to the provider executives who participated.

I’m heading to Las Vegas early this weekend, just to get settled in before the wave of HIT immigrants overwhelms the baggage carousels, taxi lines, and check-in desks. Nothing really happens until Monday, so I’m hoping to finally take a breath and get into HIMSS mode after a way too busy February.


None scheduled soon. Contact Lorre for webinar services. Past webinars are on our HIStalk webinars YouTube channel.

We’re running a HIMSS special on webinars – 25 percent off produced and two-for-one on promoted. Contact Lorre or see her at our booth next week.

Here’s this week’s webinar, sponsored by LifeImage, titled, “Completing Your EMR with a Medical Image Sharing Strategy.”

Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock


Google’s DeepMind Technologies forms DeepMind Health, offering two apps it acquired. Streams, for acute kidney injury detection, was developed by Royal Free Hospital London, while clinical task management  and communication app Hark was created by an Imperial College London team. Neither app uses DeepMind’s machine learning or artificial intelligence capabilities – these are apparently simple, hospital-built apps that don’t do a whole lot despite the Tweeters wetting their pants in anticipation of Google mounting an undeclared challenge to IBM Watson.


E-prescribing and electronic prior authorization network vendor CenterX raises $3.3 million in funding.


UPMC makes an unspecified investment in Vivify Health and will implement its care management and patient engagement technology. UPMC’s investment completes a round that was started in November 2014, increasing the company’s total to $23.4 million.


Meditech solutions provider Park Place International will rename itself CloudWave. 


Minneapolis-based employee health benefits management technology startup Gravie lays off 21 employees – 25 percent of its workforce, with CEO Abir Sen explaining, “It’s a bad market out there and we need to invest in growth.” Crunchbase reports that the company has raised $25.6 million, with its last round of $12.5 million being completed in April 2015.

VitalWare receives an unspecified growth investment from F-Prime Capital Partners, which gets two board seats.

Medsphere merges with EHR implementation consulting firm MBS/Net.


The State of Oklahoma chooses Orion Health’s Healthier Populations Solutions Suite for Health-e Oklahoma.

Mission Health (NC) selects PeraHealth’s clinical surveillance solution.


Maine Medical Center (ME) chooses Lexmark’s accounts payable automation, which includes Perceptive Intelligent Capture and Perceptive Content.


University of Kansas Hospital (KS) selects Cerner’s HealthIntent population health management system. I was distracted by the press release’s use of two pompous substitutions (“leverage” and “utilize”) for the perfectly serviceable “use,” but I’ll give them a bye for whipping out “proactive” a couple of times, which is two too many.

Intermountain Healthcare will use Ayasdi’s clinical variation management software.



LifeImage promotes Jim Phillips to SVP.


Orion Health prometes Wayne Oxenham to president of its North America operations.


Huron Consulting Group hires LaDonna Sweeten (Leidos Health) as managing director.


PatientSafe Solutions promotes co-founder Si Luo to president and CEO.

image image image

HIMSS announces pre-conference organizational changes: HIMSS Analytics EVP John Hoyt retires, Blain Newton is promoted to replace Hoyt, and HIMSS EVP/COO R. Norris Orms announces his retirement.

Announcements and Implementations


Catalyze announces Stratum, a compliance layer for healthcare infrastructure.


Aprima adds Chronic Care Management functionality to its EHR.


American Well releases a software development kit that allows providers to embed the company’s online doctor visit technology into their mobile apps.


LogicStream Health adds an executive overview area to its clinical process measurement platform, allowing leaders to monitor care activity at levels ranging from specific conditions (such as CAUTI or VTE) to overall quality.

CHIME announces a “unique partnership” with OpenNotes, with the press release babbling endlessly without actually saying what the partnership involves until Paragraph 7, which finally gets to the point in explaining that CHIME’s task is to “bring greater awareness.”

First Databank announces its OrderSpace CPOE medication ordering content system, with McKesson Paragon being the first inpatient system to make it available to users.


Geisinger spinoff xG Health Solutions will use Cerner’s HealtheIntent population health management platform, while Cerner will use xG’s clinical content in its HealtheCare and HealtheAnalytics solutions.


The Partnership for Health IT Patient Safety releases Toolkit for the Safe Use of Copy and Paste.


Elsevier lists its activities at the HIMSS conference, including serving as the red carpet sponsor of HIStalkapalooza. I’ve worn  the sunglasses they provided last year in Chicago countless times while running, sunning, or doing yard work — I call them my Elsevier safety glasses.

Government and Politics


ONC announces its Interoperability Proving Ground, a community for sharing information about interoperability projects.


The National Institutes of Health says during Thursday’s White House summit on precision medicine that it hopes to be gathering data on 1 million people by 2019, also announcing that it will fund a Vanderbilt University study involving Verily (the former Google Life Sciences) to determine how to attract those volunteers.

Army veteran Dennis Magnasco spent two days trying to schedule an appointment with the VA clinic in Bedford, MA, but could never get through the phone tree to reach an actual human. He works for Rep. Seth Moulton (D-MA), who filmed Magnasco’s attempt and posted it to Facebook, where it received more than 2 million views. The outcry motivated the Bedford clinic to fix its PBX and earned Moulton several new sponsors for his Faster Care for Veterans bill that would require the VA to run an 18-month pilot project in which veterans can self-schedule using a smartphone app. Moulton criticized the VA’s plan: “They were planning to spend $623 million developing their own app. This is available today. God knows how long it would take them to spend that.” He says the VA just likes building its own proprietary systems, adding, “They gave a variety of silly excuses.”

Privacy and Security

A law professor’s USA Today op-ed piece that appears to be satirical proposes going back to paper to thwart hackers, explaining:

The truth is, paper records are inherently more secure. To steal 10 million electronic user records from a government agency, all you might need is a cracked password and a thumb drive. To steal that many records on paper, you’d need a fleet of trucks and an uninterrupted month. And ransomware wouldn’t work on paper records. What would you do – put a padlock on the file cabinets and demand ransom for the key? And often, putting things on computers is a crock anyway. Electronic medical records, touted as saving money and streamlining care, are a major cause of physician burnout. It’s gotten so bad that some hospitals actually advertise the lack of electronic medical record systems as a selling point in recruiting doctors. If I were running an intelligence agency, I’d have all my important stuff done in handwriting or on mechanical typewriters and distributed in sealed envelopes. If I were setting up a voting system, I’d use paper ballots. And if I were running a hospital, I’d seriously consider doing everything on paper. There’s a place for computer records, of course. But for things that really matter and that need to be genuinely secure, we should try a more advanced technology: Paper and ink. Take that, hackers.


A Venafi survey finds that CIOs are not properly managing security keys and certificates. You will no doubt be shocked to learn that Venafi sells tools to secure keys and certificates. The survey suggests that more hackers are attacking using untrusted keys and certificates that can be bought on the black market for around $1,000 to encrypt their evil-doing traffic.

Pro football player Jason Pierre-Paul sues ESPN and one of its reporters for violating his privacy in running a photo of a surgery schedule proving that he had blown off a finger playing with fireworks on July 4, 2015. Jackson Memorial Hospital (FL) fired a nurse and a secretary earlier this month for sending the information to ESPN. JPP is suing under a Florida health professions regulation, which seems to hold little chance for legal victory since, like HIPAA, it covers providers but not sports networks running celebrity news.



Apple sold 11.6 million Watches in 2015, placing it in wearables third place behind Fitbit and Xiaomi. I knew little about China-based Xiaomi, but learned that its $15 Band Plus Pulse (pictured above) added a heart monitor to its existing step counting, sleep analysis, incoming call alert, and integration with the iOS Health app.


NHS England Nursing Technology Fund provides Princess Alexandra Hospital with $1.4 million to purchase Nervecentre’s mobile clinical platform software for iPad-based documentation.


An analysis of LinkedIn’s share free-fall says the company’s problems are fundamental to its business model as somewhere between business card holder and spam delivery service: its only content is generated by self-promoting but sporadic users (often only when they’re looking for work) who are then pestered endlessly by recruiters. The article says LinkedIn should stop rewarding bad user behavior, allow users to block unwanted communications, and integrate better with email.

A Pennsylvania VA nurse is charged with assisting in an emergency surgery while drunk. The nurse, who says he forgot he was on call, drove recklessly from a casino bar and was caught on hospital security video stumbling into the facility. He then had problems logging in to the OR computer and documenting the procedure.

Sponsor Updates

  • The Atlanta Business Chronicle interviews Liaison Technologies President and CEO Bob Renner.
  • Allscripts announces that its APIs have been used to exchange data one billion times in three years.
  • HCI Group partners with Securonix to enhance its security offerings.
  • Extension Healthcare will add AirStrip’s mobility platform to its Engage Mobile, providing event notifications and waveforms 

Blog Posts


Mr. H, Lorre, Jennifer, Dr. Jayne, Lt. Dan.
More news: HIStalk Practice, HIStalk Connect.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.


View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 25, 2016 News 10 Comments

EPtalk by Dr. Jayne 2/25/16

February 25, 2016 Dr. Jayne 1 Comment

This week has been completely off the rails, with all my best-laid HIMSS preparation plans left undone. There’s nothing like five inches of mucky wet snow, flight delays, and a case of pinkeye to throw a girl off her game. Luckily I made it home, saw one of my partners for some eye drops, and am now playing a frantic game of catch up.

The pre-HIMSS news cycle is pretty slow. There was a flurry of mailings earlier in the week, most of which were nondescript post cards that wouldn’t lure me to a booth. Today there was nothing, but there will always be those post-HIMSS straggler mailings to look forward to.


Several readers have been sending me their shoe pics, wondering if they’ll give them a proverbial leg-up on the competition. There’s even a HIMSS Style 2016 board  on Pinterest, with suggestions for both ladies and gents. I do like the pink socks and fetching wing tips pinned from


Another sent me a pic of this two-heeled number from Christopher Dixon, which are supposed to be extremely comfortable. They’re also tech savvy, using Silicon Valley partner Chronicled to ensure authenticity. Shoes are tagged using a microchip and registered from a mobile app, allowing a future secondary market for non-knockoffs. Accessing the shoe’s chip via the app also displays a story about the inspiration behind the shoe and the sourcing of its materials. I doubt we’ll see any on the show floor, but a girl can dream.

I’m putting together my final social schedule for next week. Unfortunately, there are way too many events on Wednesday night and too few on Tuesday night. Most of the vendors who are hosting events are either gracious enough to allow public registration or are swayed by the MD accompanying my generic-sounding practice name.

I did have one of them question exactly how I received their invitation since it didn’t match their list. I had to just ignore it because I couldn’t exactly say, “Well, someone on your marketing team thought it was worth inviting Dr. Jayne.” One vendor offered to add me to its attendee list if I would send my real name – nope, not happening.

If you have an event on Tuesday that’s open to all readers, let us know. We’d be happy to have a member of the HIStalk team cruise by if time permits.


I tried to attend a Google Hangout this week, where NCQA was going to talk about the pilots for their redesigned Patient-Centered Medical Home program. The audio from the moderator’s PC was so bad that people couldn’t hear, which turned some attendees away. There were also a lot of people who weren’t muting their own microphones, adding to the problem.

Once the featured speakers started their talks, things got better, but it goes to show that Web conferences still can be tricky for a lot of people. At least the comments were fun to read.

I followed up after with one of my friends who does a lot of PCMH consulting work. She’s personally steering people away from NCQA, not only due to the complexity of their process, but also the growing fees. I haven’t had a chance to look at their new measures in depth, but she has seen them and thinks there are a few in there that are nonsensical. Looks like I have some reading to do.

CMS shut down the Medicare/Medicaid EHR Incentive Program attestation website over the weekend to correct an error preventing Eligible Professionals from claiming an exclusion for one of the measures in the Patient Electronic Access Objective. Those whose attestations were rejected previously must resubmit their information.

ONC has released a new Health IT Buzz post about “The Real HIPAA,” giving examples from care coordination and case management. This should be required reading for all the people who continually try to use HIPAA as an excuse not to share patient information when it is clearly permissible. The next installment is slated to cover Quality and Population-Based Activities and I’m looking forward to seeing what they have to say.

If you’ll be in Las Vegas next week and are interested in giving feedback to CMS, they will be hosting three Design Lean Planning Sessions during HIMSS. The goal is to receive feedback on the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS). Sessions are one hour long and will be held March 1 at 2:30, March 2 at 2:30, and March 3 at 11:30 in the CMS Meeting Room, Venetian Level 4, Zeno 4603. Space is limited and you must email  with your session choice, name, title, role, and organization to register.


Another reader recommended I not spend too much time at HIMSS job hunting, suggesting that I consider a position in New Zealand. They’ve been trying to recruit a primary care physician for more than two years with no takers. The position has good compensation, no nights or weekends, and 12 weeks of holidays. I’m not ready to live in the southern hemisphere, but a nice locum tenens gig might hit the spot. Unfortunately, he’s been inundated with applications of dubious merit, so he probably won’t see mine.


My week also went askew thanks to the usability efforts (or non-efforts) of Microsoft, who decided in their infinite wisdom to “update” Office 365 with a feature that completely broke my workflow. I have been enjoying my Surface tablet, especially the Surface Pen, which I use in lieu of a mouse or the touchpad on the keyboard. I have been working on a huge editing project (textbook chapter, anyone?) and two days ago the pen stopped working as a selection device and only worked for annotation. Using classic user psychology, I assumed I had done something wrong or activated something unknowingly. I immediately knew better when I did a Google search and typed “Microsoft Surface Pen” and it automatically suggested adding “stopped working” to the search.

Apparently Microsoft engineers decided we no longer want to use a pen or stylus for anything but annotation — the pen is now locked in Ink mode while using Office products. Although there appears to be a button to return it to selection mode, it doesn’t work. Multiple users have already weighed in on a Word suggestion forum that there needs to be an option to go back, with several comments from people who used the pen as an accessibility and adaptation tool to help with physical limitations. I use mine with the keyboard, so I can use the touchpad even though I don’t like it, but I truly feel for those actually using it as a tablet. Having to use the touchpad reduced my editing productivity by more than 50 percent.

Even worse, the on-board Microsoft Help seems to brag that the “select objects” button (which should turn inking off) no longer works. The Microsoft Answer Tech gave me an escalation link that wasn’t customer facing and the escalation site shows they don’t know the difference between a country and a language (featured above).

Help a girl out by sharing the link and helping us tell Microsoft they’re offending their users. If I scurry home from HIMSS, I’ll still have two days left in my return window to offload it.

I won’t post again until I get to HIMSS, If I have to ditch the Surface, what’s your advice on a tablet? Email me.

Email Dr. Jayne.

View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 25, 2016 Dr. Jayne 1 Comment

Morning Headlines 2/25/16

February 24, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Dr. Robert Califf Wins Senate Confirmation to Run FDA

In an 89-4 vote, Robert Califf, MD, a cardiologist and clinical researcher from Duke University, has been confirmed by the Senate as the next FDA commissioner.

CommonWell Announces National Deployment of Interoperability Services to the Post-Acute Market

CommonWell will begin offering integration services in the post-acute care market in 2016, noting in its announcement that CommonWell members Brightree, Cerner, and McKesson have agreed to deploy the new services.

Google’s DeepMind AI group unveils heath care ambitions

Google announces that it has teamed up with researchers from the NHS to co-develop a version of its DeepMind AI platform focused on developing healthcare applications.

WebMD sees opening to tap into telehealth space

WebMD CEO David Schlanger says on its most recent earnings call that the company would likely enter the telehealth space, through either an acquisition or a partnership.

View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 24, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Readers Write: HIMSS, Ice Cream, and the Law of Diminishing Returns (LoDR)

February 24, 2016 Readers Write 10 Comments

HIMSS, Ice Cream, and the Law of Diminishing Returns (LoDR)
By Mike Lucey


“Clearly the third scoop has fewer calories than the first and second. It is simply the law of diminishing returns.” This perverse application of the LoDR only returns a derisive, “You are pathetic” from my wife when used to justify the purchase of a large ice cream sundae. But I carry on and get the nuts on top — they are healthy.

It’s not that the LoDR doesn’t apply, just that I apply it to the wrong side of the counter. The medium at $2.75 (two scoops) and the large at $3.25 (three scoops) delivers less value to the ice cream lady. Extended (five or six scoops?), it would reach the breaking point where the ice cream would cost more to scoop then it would return in cash.

I wonder if some in our industry are confused as to which side of the counter they are on? More importantly, that the LoDR will flip the counter when we are not looking. Are we effectively and consistently asking the question, “Am I getting more than giving, or giving more than getting as I continue down this project path?”

Back in my days in financial services (maybe because our product was money), every project was systemically graded for current value. “Current” being the critical word. Not graded against the expected value we assigned at the start, but against the current costs, current value, and (here’s the kicker) current alternatives.


The Boston Globe recently published an article citing a Health Policy Commission study of the disparate cost of care in Boston-area hospitals. Using maternity services as an example, the study found large differences in what hospitals charge.

For us in the healthcare IT industry, it is notable that four of the five top hospitals are actively using or have recently installed Epic  with a big price tag (three Partners hospitals, one UMass). This correlation raises the question: how much IT cost flows through the system, and are there effective checks against these rising costs? Did LoDR flip the counter in these cases?

To Epic’s credit, there is a concerted effort on their part to control costs that are often embedded in questionable customization. In other words, the folks at Epic are applying the concern of LoDR against the impulse of the client to work toward the elusive “best” at an ever-growing expense.

As we head toward HIMSS, our annual festival of IT goodies, we get to see a whole new set of “current” alternatives. Can we review the new stuff through the filter of LoDR? Stuff that is truly new for me, does it get me more then I need to give? And the stuff that is newer than what I have, does it keep me on (or get me back on) the right side of the counter?

And for me the ultimate question: who’s giving away free ice cream? Because free ice cream has no calories. Everyone knows that.

Mike Lucey is president of Community Hospital Advisors of Reading, MA.

View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 24, 2016 Readers Write 10 Comments

Readers Write: Removing Tunnel Vision from Enterprise Imaging

February 24, 2016 Readers Write 2 Comments

Removing Tunnel Vision from Enterprise Imaging
By Karen Holzberger


I find the evolution of technology to be fascinating. Just think about music. Fifteen years ago, CDs were the most popular way to access music. Now you can listen to music anywhere, instantaneously, from tiny devices. The population has universally embraced the change. Why has accepting change in healthcare been so slow and difficult?

I’m not saying we all need to be on the bleeding edge of innovation, but it’s important to remove the tunnel vision and recognize advances not just in diagnostic medicine or medical research, but also in health IT innovations that make things faster, easier, and less costly.

I was surprised when I read a recent report on enterprise imaging that their research and results was limited only to organizations with a vendor-neutral archive (VNA) or universal viewer (UV) technologies.

The need to access and store medical images has been the most common demand of radiology departments for decades, but to think that in 2016 enterprise imaging is only done with these two approaches – it’s like taking a Polaroid camera to the beach and waiting a week for the film to be developed.

Don’t get me wrong. This report got it half right, but VNA and UV solutions don’t fit the needs of every organization, and that can lead people down the wrong path. If healthcare facilities are going to succeed in advancing the quality of patient care, then it is time to accept new and nimble health IT solutions for enterprise imaging today that bring patient images to people’s fingertips as swiftly and securely as the cloud delivers your favorite song.

Over the last few years, cloud-based image exchanges have gained popularity as an option for enterprise imaging. A HIMSS Analytics Cloud Survey showed that 83 percent of healthcare organizations used cloud-based apps in 2014. While this simpler approach is not the same as a VNA, it allows facilities to achieve the same overall goals, often more efficiently. Facilities can be up and running on an image exchange in as little as two weeks and have central access to all necessary images via the cloud – anywhere, anytime.

VNAs are one of the oldest imaging technologies. When introduced, they finally allowed healthcare sites to collect data from all departments in one location and exchange that information with a broader audience. But what about patient care happening elsewhere and other types of patient data?

Today, it’s critical that facilities share information with other facilities, not just other departments within the same building. In addition, the shift to value-based care means facilities require quick, efficient technology that follows patients across a continuum, which takes more than just sending an image from point A to point B. Imagine only being able to listen to your favorite song on your iPod and not on any of your other connected devices.

VNAs can take up to two years to implement and can be horribly expensive. Further, since they don’t encapsulate all of a patient’s data, sites need to use them in connection with other solutions, like a picture archiving and communication system (PACS), to have a complete enterprise imaging strategy.

Cloud-based imaging, on the other hand, provides more than the seamless sharing of images. It delivers real value and efficiencies like capturing and sharing all relevant patient data, just like how the cloud allows you to access your music, videos, and playlists effortlessly between your phone, tablet and laptop. Which is why I’m perplexed that society openly welcomes this technology in our lives, but accepting technology that can make life-saving differences has proved to be so challenging.

The time to embrace is now. If not, I fear that we will only continue set back an industry that so desperately needs to move forward.

Karen Holzberger is VP/GM for diagnostics at Nuance of Burlington, MA.

View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 24, 2016 Readers Write 2 Comments

Morning Headlines 2/24/16

February 23, 2016 Headlines No Comments

ResMed to Acquire Brightree for $800 Million

ResMed, a sleep apnea medical device manufacturer, will acquire Brightree, a software vendor focused on the clinical and business needs of home health and hospice markets, for $800 million.

Our Next Chapter for Standards and Technology: Introducing the ONC Tech Lab

ONC introduces the ONC Tech Lab, a group that will focus on standards coordination, development of testing tools, pilot project coordination, and health IT innovation.

eClinicalWorks Enters Acute Care Market

eClinicalWorks announces that it will develop a cloud-based acute care EHR with an anticipated general release sometime in 2017.

Oscar Health Gets $400 Million And A $2.7 Billion Valuation from Fidelity

Tech-savvy insurance startup Oscar Health raises a $400 million private equity investment from Fidelity on a $2.7 billion valuation. The company plans to expand to three or four new states per year as its works to grow its membership level to one million subscribers within the next five years.

View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 23, 2016 Headlines No Comments

News 2/24/16

February 23, 2016 News 2 Comments

Top News


Sleep apnea technology vendor ResMed will acquire home health and durable medical equipment billing software vendor Brightree for $800 million in cash. ResMed, which also gets a $300 million tax benefit, will pay seven times revenue and 19 times earnings for Brightree.

Battery Ventures was an early Brightree investor and expanded the company with several acquisitions. It announced in December that it was exploring a sale of the company.

Reader Comments


From Pointed Commentary: “Re: Practice Fusion. Tough times, per the Wall Street Journal. While the article doesn’t focus specifically on health IT, I believe the current investment environment will be brutal on startups and companies working to scale. I predict we are going to see accelerated consolidation of the space and private equity players are going to have a field day picking up companies that are struggling.” The article, titled “For Silicon Valley, the hangover begins,” gives Practice Fusion as its opening example of venture capital drying up and forcing cash-challenged companies to frantically change their business before their financial runway ends. That isn’t really surprising — it’s the usual cycle where innovative startups strike amazing business gold, the VC money flows in indiscriminately chasing the Next Big Thing before it takes someone else’s cash, and flawed startups ruin the party by going up in flames fueled by the money investors poured into them. It’s a cruel but necessary Darwinian process.

HIStalk Announcements and Requests


Welcome to new HIStalk Platinum Sponsor ECG Management Consultants. The Seattle-based, healthcare-only, full-service management consulting firm has offices in eight US cities. Its technology practice supports achievement of strategic, financial, and operational goals. The company has industry-leading expertise in system strategy, selection, implementation, and optimization, with a particularly notable history of helping ambulatory clinics improve their operations via technology, revenue cycle, and EHR systems. The company just announced formation of its bundled payments practice. Give their Value-Based Readiness Quiz a try or scroll through its impressive list of experts. Thanks to ECG Management Consultants for supporting HIStalk.

I found this ECG Management Consultants intro video on YouTube.

image image

Ms. Stitt from North Carolina says her second graders were so excited when our DonorsChoose package came with a library of books that they insisted she immediately read one of their new volumes, voting to skip recess.

image image

Also checking in was Ms. Tyler from California, whose Algebra 2 students are enjoying the eight scientific calculators we provided for students who can’t afford to buy their own.


CenterX donated $1,000 to DonorsChoose to attend my CIO lunch at the HIMSS conference next Wednesday, which funded these projects:

  • A programmable robotics kit for Mrs. Buchanan’s K-5 technology classes in Fort Mill, SC.
  • Electrical components for a student-led project at Ms. Read’s all-girls school in Austin, TX.
  • Eight motorized robot kits for the third-grade class of Mrs. Cespedes in Arcadia, FL.
  • Pizza gift cards to feed the after-school robotics team and their college engineering student advisors of Mr. Chen’s high school in Boston, MA. The student who is leading this project explains, “We are not trying to use the gift cards to start a feast, but we plan to use it slowly throughout the season. Also, Vivian sees that I, as the coach teacher, often provide my pocket money for getting the team food. As a result, she wants to take the lead to write this student-led project to get food for our team.” They emailed me to say, “Wow! Thank you so much for funding our project! We are writing to confirm with you that we have got the funding from you! We cannot be more excited to know about this! In the near future, we will share some pictures with you on how your donation helps our Robotics program! There are times that we hope that we can go easy on expenditures on food! Your help truly makes a huge difference! We cannot thank you enough for all this!”
  • An iPad Mini, case, and headphones for Ms. Alley’s elementary school class in Richmond, VA.
  • A 18-book STEM library for Mrs. Ochoa’s elementary school class in Phoenix, AZ.
  • A listening center and audio books for Ms. Bolinger’s elementary school class in Indianapolis, IN.

A couple of CIOs had to cancel their plans to attend the lunch. If you are a health system CIO who can spare a couple of hours next Wednesday to socialize and enjoy a delicious lunch (on me) with my donating vendors who are supporting DonorsChoose, contact Lorre.


Welcome to new HIStalk Gold Sponsor Audacious Inquiry. The Baltimore-based information policy and technology company helps government, private, and non-profit organizations share, manage, leverage, and protect information. Its implementation of master data management tools for health information exchange set the standard for HIEs throughout the US. Its Encounter Notification Service has securely delivered 10 million real-time event notifications and clinical summaries to patient hospitalization stakeholders in three years and powers FLHIE’s Event Notification Service, DHIN’s Encounter Notification System, UHIN’s cHIE alerts, CRISP’s Encounter Notification System, and HSX’s Encounter Notification Service. Here’s an overview of Audacious Inquiry’s Event Notification Services that I found on YouTube. Thanks to Audacious Inquiry for supporting HIStalk.

HIMSS Conference

The HIMSS ramp-up in HIStalk page views has started, with 8,700 of them in 6,700 unique visits Monday. The 52-week high is 13,500 page views on the Wednesday of HIMSS15. It would be cool to break the record this year.

I was looking over the HIMSS education schedule, which is indistinguishable from the exhibit hall stage talks given the number of sessions that have been turned over to vendor presenters, some of them using an entire slot just to talk about their products. It’s remarkable how the once-vital educational track has degraded into a lot of lame-sounding sessions presented by people I’ve never heard of. I’m clicking through the awkwardly designed session list on the HIMSS site trying to find something worth the time, but following my rule of never attending anything with a vendor presenter, there’s really not much left. Maybe providers are too busy cruising the exhibit hall for freebies to present.

I get this feeling that once I’m at the conference, I’ll just skip the education sessions and cruise the exhibit hall. The online guide shows 1,285 exhibitor booths, staffed by thousands of bored employees using them as the world’s most expensive telephone booths in screwing around with their phones instead of paying attention to attendees (although I admit that most of those attendees aren’t prospects or decision-makers anyway). I’m feeling sorry for the vendors banished to the downstairs Siberia that is Hall G (Booths # 9900 – 15209), which at HIMSS12 would have had few casualties if a bomb had leveled it. HIMSS must feel bad, too since they’re opening up only Hall G during Monday’s opening reception, giving it a few hours of undivided attention. We’ll be on the main floor in #5069 with our usual parade of interesting people sharing our area rug-sized space.

I doubt I’ll be the only attendee leaving Las Vegas long before Peyton Manning takes the mop-up snap after lunch on Friday to end the lamest set of keynotes I can recall. At least there’s no insurance company executives, Clintons, Bushes, Dana Carvey, or mountain climbers who hacked off their own arm this time around.

2-21-2012 1-58-54 AM

I was reading over my HIMSS12 Las Vegas coverage and decided I liked this line I wrote best: “Here’s a shot taken from the Venetian looking out to Las Vegas Boulevard. Inside, it’s a fake canal under a fake sky, women with fake breasts, and men with fake tans. Finally the exhibit hall isn’t the only place where things aren’t as they seem.” I opined that Las Vegas is like Orlando except with obnoxious adults instead of obnoxious kids.

DrFirst will be doing video interviews again at the HIMSS conference in the DrFirst-HIStalk “Roving Reporter” series. Healthcare IT leaders willing to share their experience, challenges, and perspective with their HIStalk-reading colleagues can schedule an interview time with Wendy Johnson.


HIStalkapalooza Sponsor Profile – NEC


Being the first enterprise communications technology provider in healthcare, NEC is proud to be part of HIStalk and the dedicated professionals who have grown with us and made this the most exciting, challenging and rewarding vertical industry. Leveraging 65,000 patents and over 100 years, NEC continues to develop healthcare industry-focused applications in communications infrastructure, IT/networking solutions, and award-winning biometrics. Want to learn more about NEC’s mission to orchestrate a brighter world through optimized solutions for healthcare? Follow us @NECHealthcare or #NECHIMSS16 and join our traveling “meet and greet!” We will post our positions to host you for coffee or a libation several times a day throughout HIMSS.


February 24 (Wednesday) 1:00 ET. “Is Big Data a Big Deal … or Not?” Sponsored by Health Catalyst. Presenter: Dale Sanders, EVP of product development, Health Catalyst. Hadoop is the most powerful and popular technology platform for data analysis in the world, but healthcare adoption has been slow. This webinar will cover why healthcare leaders should care about Hadoop, why big data is a bigger deal outside of healthcare, whether we’re missing the IT boat yet again, and how the cloud reduces adoption barriers by commoditizing the skilled labor impact.

February 25 (Thursday) 1:00 ET. “Clinical Analytics for Population Health: Straddling Two Worlds.” Sponsored by HIStalk. Presenters: Brian Murphy, lead analyst, Chilmark Research; Jody Ranck, senior analyst, Chilmark Research. The Chilmark Research clinical analytics team will be sharing some of their key findings from the recently released “2016 Clinical Analytics for Population Health Market Trends” report. This will be followed by a Q&A session to make sure everyone goes to HIMSS16 well informed.

We’re running a HIMSS special on webinars – 25 percent off produced and two-for-one on promoted. Contact Lorre or see her at our booth next week.

Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock


CTG announces Q4 results: revenue down 14 percent, EPS $0.16 vs. $0.08, beating earnings expectations but falling short on revenue and guiding down.  

Insurance startup Oscar Health receives a $400 million investment that values the company at $2.7 billion, up $1 billion since its last round in September 2015.



Northwell Health (NY) chooses SigmaCare’s EHR for its skilled nursing facilities.



Raj Sundaramurthy (Equifax) joins Catalyze as chief product officer.


Huntzinger Management Group hires Ed Fisher (E.L. Fisher Consulting) as practice executive of technical services.


PM/EHR vendor MedEvolve names private equity investor Jim Crook and Jon Phillips (Healthcare Growth Partners, above) to its board.


Tim Zoph (Northwestern Memorial Hospital) joins Impact Advisors as strategic advisor and client executive.


Former Merge Healthcare CEO Justin Dearborn is named CEO of Tribune Publishing, which owns the Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, and several other newspapers. Merge Healthcare was controlled by Michael Ferro, whose investment company bought a $44 million stake in Tribune Publishing in February. Ferro’s $20 million Merge investment in June 2008 netted $190 million when IBM acquired the company  in October 2015 for $1 billion.

Announcements and Implementations


St. Clair Hospital (PA) launches a cost transparency portal, powered by Experian Health’s Patient Estimates, that allows patients to determine their estimated out-of-pocket cost for services using actual contracted cost.


EClinicalWorks announces that it will develop a cloud-based, single patient record EHR called EClinicalworks 10i that will span inpatient, ambulatory, and allied health. Tidelands Health (SC) will serve as development partner. The initial release in 2017 will focus on operations modules such as CPOE, bed management, inventory management, ED, surgery, and analytics. The CIO/SVP of Tidelands Health is Todd Rowland, MD, who completed a medical informatics fellowship at Harvard. I believe Tidelands is using Meditech.


Epic will integrate genetics-powered drug ordering clinical decision support from Genelex into its product. Genelex’s YouScript Precision Prescribing software provides alerts if the patient’s genetic profile places them at higher risk for drug-specific adverse events. I see that Genelex will be exhibiting at the HIMSS conference, suggesting that it may be seeking additional EHR partners.


Forward Health Group’s PopulationManager achieves Oracle Validated Integration with Oracle Enterprise Healthcare Analytics.


FormFast announces its Mobile Bedside Consent Solution.


Clinical Architecture launches a natural language processing application for converting free text to discrete data, with the SIFT for Meds Web API service translating free text from clinical documents into RxNorm codes. It can also be used in real time to suggest coding as free text is being entered.


ZeOmega and Vivify Health will integrate their respective population health management and remote patient monitoring technologies.


Zynx Health announces a new release of its Knowledge Analyzer for management of clinical content and documents.

Government and Politics


ONC announces the ONC Tech Lab that will coordinated interoperability standards, work on testing tools, conduct standards implementation pilots, and run challenge contests.


The Healthcare Leadership Council calls for six immediate steps to improve US healthcare, including setting a firm date of December 31, 2018 for achieving nationwide health IT interoperability.

A Harvard Business Review op-ed piece by David Blumenthal, MD and Aneesh Chopra calls for penalties “for providers and vendors that slow-walk the digital revolution to protect their economic interests” and a payment system that rewards improved quality and cost. It says, “If healthcare markets functioned well in the US, HITECH would have been unnecessary. The industry would have wired itself like our financial, travel, and retail sectors.”

The Wall Street Journal says New York’s hospitals and physicians will struggle to meet the state’s mandatory e-prescribing law that eliminates paper prescriptions as of March 27, 2016. Some providers are demanding an extension to the date that had already been moved back a year.

In Western Australia, the Labor party calls for the resignation of the health minister following an auditor’s report released last week that concluded that a $32 million data center contract has run $58 million over budget. The agreement with Fujitsu was amended 79 times, often by employees who were not authorized to make changes. The case has been referred to the state’s Corruption and Crime Commission.

Privacy and Security


Dartmouth College researchers announce a commercial prototype of a digital “magic wand” that allows non-technical home users to easily and securely configure new Wi-Fi devices, such as medical monitoring tools.


St. Joseph’s Healthcare (NJ) notifies 5,000 employees that their information has been exposed in a phishing scam.


Child activity tracker uKnowKids announces that its database was breached by a white hat hacker who was trying to convince the company that its security systems were inadequate, exposing 6.8 million text messages, 1.8 million images, and the names and addresses of its young users.

Office of Personnel Management CIO Donna Seymour resigns two days before she is scheduled to face a House committee on the massive China-based theft of government personnel records last year. OPM’s OIG warned the office that the systems were insecure and therefore operating illegally, but Seymour overrode those concerns.

Innovation and Research

A small study funded by the Gates Foundation finds that fingerprick-drawn blood can give wildly different hematology results compared to venipuncture due to significant drop-by-drop variability. This could be important for point-of-care hospital testing and certainly adds another question mark to the nanotainer draws used by Theranos.



Google announces a Watson-like service called Cloud Vision API, which will generate insight from images. It can detect common objects, analyze the emotional attributes of people in the photos, and extract text using optical character recognition. Pricing is $2 per 1,000 images for label detection and $0.60 for 1,000 images for OCR.


A man’s lawsuit against the nursing home in which his mother was killed by her roommate will test the legal validity of the arbitration clauses nursing homes insert into their contracts. Judges have consistently ruled that the clauses, which are also common in cell phone and credit card contracts, are binding if signed by the purchaser, even in cases where purchaser can’t read or write. The woman’s son argues that the contract he signed was not binding on his mother since he did not have power of attorney.

Alibaba Health shares drop 14 percent when the Chinese government’s version of the FDA decides to allow alternatives to its drug supply chain tracking system, support of which generates half of Alibaba Health’s revenue.

Healthgrades announces its top hospitals for 2016.

Sponsor Updates

  • Awarepoint customer Zion Medical Center (CA) – a Kaiser Permanente organization – wins the IHA 2016 Award for Innovative Healthcare.
  • Besler Consulting releases a podcast on the future of bundled payments.
  • Bottomline Technologies wins a Killer Content Award in the Agency/Publisher Partnership category from Demand Gen Report. 
  • Divurgent publishes a new white paper, “Improving Your ICD-10 Program: Preparing for Oct. 1 2016 & Beyond.”
  • CTG Advisory Services delivery directors Vivian Chun and Patricia Newcomb achieve the Patient-Centered Medical Home Certified Content Experts certification from NCQA.
  • Extension Healthcare is nominated for a Mira Award honoring the “Best of Tech in Indiana.”
  • SK&A publishes a market profile of US orthopedic surgeons.

Blog Posts


Mr. H, Lorre, Jennifer, Dr. Jayne, Lt. Dan.
More news: HIStalk Practice, HIStalk Connect.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.


View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 23, 2016 News 2 Comments

Morning Headlines 2/23/16

February 22, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Coalition of Healthcare Leaders Urges 6 Key Reforms

A coalition of payers, providers, patient advocates, and vendors has issued a report calling for legislative action to help the US health system improve six key issues, including interoperability, care coordination, and patient engagement.

Tenet Swings to Loss Amid Charges

Tenet reports Q4 results: revenue was up slightly to $5.03 billion, adjusted EPS $0.35 vs. $1.03, beating estimates on both. The company recorded an overall net loss of $97 million.

Speeding Up the Digitization of American Health Care

Former National Coordinator for Health IT David Blumenthal, MD and former US CTO Aneesh Chopra, MD co-author a HBR article calling for improvements to the usability of EHRs and “penalties for providers and vendors that slow-walk the digital revolution to protect their economic interests.”

Why DOD cares about hospital network attacks

During a panel discussion, DoD deputy CIO Richard Hale calls for improved network cybersecurity at DoD hospitals and an increased emphasis on identifying and prosecuting hackers.

View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 22, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Curbside Consult with Dr. Jayne 2/22/15

February 22, 2016 Dr. Jayne 3 Comments


I’ve mentioned a couple of times about having issues in the office recently, where our cloud-based EHR is down. A reader asks: “Please explain to me as an IT physician expert why your cloud EMR was ‘down again.’ Mission-critical systems should have backups. I also believed that bigger organizations should have more resources (like you) to prevent/remediate these events. Please tell your readers why this is happening and what procedures your organization has in place to prevent this?”

We actually went down again while I was seeing patients last week, although it only lasted for a few minutes. I’m happy to tell my story.

In my current clinical situation, I’m more representative of the “average Joe” (or Jayne) physician than an IT physician expert. Like many other physicians in practice, I am employed. Although I used to own my own practice, that was more than a decade ago and the demands of running the business took all the joy out of medicine, sending me into employed practice in the first place.

That was the position I was in when I became a CMIO – homegrown by my hospital/health system to take the reins as we moved into the EHR world, long before Meaningful Use was even thought of.

From a physician informatics consultant perspective, I live and breathe downtime strategy. Clients hire me to engineer their downtime strategies and ensure that being down is something they never have to encounter. Whether it’s the threat of utility providers with backhoes or a natural disaster, I’m all over it.

The downtime solutions I helped engineer when I was a CMIO were initially ridiculed by the IT department as overkill, but they proved themselves time and again as we encountered a variety of unstable situations. Car crash into the data center, knocking out power? Check. Flood in the backup data center? Check. IT guy pulls the Halon fire suppression system on accident, shutting down the building for half a day? Check. Network switch down? Check. Vendor fries your database with a bad upgrade? Check. We had it covered and I learned a great deal along the way.

However, when I go into the office now, I put on my physician hat. My employer knows full well what I do the rest of the time, and although we are a good-sized independent physician group, we don’t have the level of dedicated informatics or IT resources that a hospital-owned group or academic medical center might have. We sometimes run on paper-thin margins as we deal with shifting reimbursement schemes and a rising balance of patient pay accounts.

The bottom line is that that our management (like many other private practices) are not able (or perhaps willing) to pony up to have a full-time or even part-time expert deal with the situation.

That scenario is exactly why I went into consulting in the first place. I started my consulting practice on the side while I was still a CMIO, working with practices that might be on the smallish (or cheapish) side but that still wanted expert advice. Practices who may not feel like they can afford ongoing expert assistance, but might be willing to hire someone to come in, do an evaluation, and give them advice. But despite dire warnings and imperatives, clients don’t always take my advice and sometimes simply cannot afford to do so.

Eventually my consulting practice grew to where I also handle large hospitals and health systems, especially ones with more than their share of challenges. I left the hospital-based world some time ago and hung out my consulting shingle full time.

I had several locum tenens and urgent care-type assignments before settling in at my current practice. In my employment as “staff physician,” I am somewhat blinded to what our owners are doing with regard to the EHR vendor and the ongoing issues. I do receive direct emails from the vendor when the system goes down, and they’re “all customer” type bulletins, so I know that our outages aren’t due to local connectivity issues.

The level of redundancy our vendor may have is a black box to me as an end user. Although I have made suggestions about improving the downtime documentation tools and having regular drills, as an end user employee, dealing with the vendor is not my responsibility. (As a CMIO, I’d have had a vendor exec on a plane and hundreds of thousands of dollars of maintenance credits by now, had we had these issues.)

I’m not excusing the actions of my employer, but just sharing how it is in my world as an employed physician. They know what I do. They know I’m available if they want my opinion. Otherwise, my role is to care for patients and let management do the managing.

I will be visiting the vendor’s booth at HIMSS and asking a lot of pointed questions, but I won’t be doing anything to jeopardize my employment. A practice that lets me work a relatively limited schedule and is flexible with the demands of my consulting practice is rare. One that actually performs (from a clinical standpoint) at the level of my current employer is even more so. Despite the recent failures of our EHR, it does generate mounds of quality data that put us in the top decile for many benchmarks. Patients are voting with their feet as well, allowing the group to continue to grow.

You can bet that things would be different if I held a leadership or ownership position. But much like many other physicians across the country, I don’t. I am subject to the decisions of my employer. Maybe someday they’ll reach a place where they have dedicated informatics resources, but until then, I’m going to put my stethoscope around my neck and see patients.

How do you feel about being an employed physician? Email me.

Email Dr. Jayne.

View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 22, 2016 Dr. Jayne 3 Comments

HIStalk Interviews Michael Mardini, CEO, National Decision Support Company

February 22, 2016 Interviews No Comments

Michael Mardini is CEO of National Decision Support Company of Andover, MA.


Tell me about yourself and the company.

This is company number three for me in my career. It’s been 27 years in healthcare IT. I started back in 1992. I think that’s before healthcare IT was even an industry. [laughs]

I’m an entrepreneur focused on disrupting inefficient processes, keyed in on healthcare. It’s never really been about a market size opportunity for me. It’s something that somehow clicked for me, something that I found my passion for.

Startups won’t succeed unless you are waking up in the morning ready to take on the world. It’s intense. It’s pressure packed. I’ve been fortunate to have found a love in virtually everything that I’ve been involved in.

I’m getting a big charge out of NDSC. We’re at the precipice of defining how guidelines and pathways can be used in an actionable way, beyond paper and flowcharts, to impact outcomes in a positive way. We wake up every morning thinking that we’re doing something great.

What is the status of Medicare’s imaging appropriate use criteria?

It’s for outpatient Medicare imaging, the use of appropriate use criteria for all high-tech diagnostic imaging services. The original target was January 1, 2017. That has since been delayed. They haven’t set a specific date, but if you look at the regulations, all the timelines line up to January 1, 2018.

Is it a given that properly presented appropriateness guidance will change usage patterns?

How wouldn’t it? It really comes down to how it’s implemented. If you’re going to put guidance in front of a doc who’s about to do something wrong, where normally that order would just go through, and you give him guidance, how would it not have a positive impact?

The mechanisms that commercial providers use are radiology benefits management services. That’s an old-world version of what CDS does. It’s phone call driven. I’m going to make a call. I’m going to tell somebody that I want to order a test for a given reason. They’re going to look in a book. They’re going to say that’s a good reason or it isn’t.

CDS is embedded in the ordering process. It’s at the point of service. The easiest way I can describe it is that it’s the difference between calling the travel agent back in the day or logging onto Expedia. Implemented properly, there’s absolutely no reason why it won’t work. There’s evidence that shows this in multiple studies.

Did you look at existing clinical decision support models to decide how to present the guidance without being obtrusive or causing resentment?

There are two things that we hold near and dear to our hearts. First is the source of those criteria, meaning s credible source using a defined process for the answers that are given. It doesn’t mean that everybody’s going to agree with every piece of guidance. That’s impossible. But having a defined process and a recognizable and a reputable source is key.

The second big one is that workload has to be a seamless in what they’re working in. There were earlier CDS products in the market. They were standalone solutions. It was go to this portal, click 14 times, and it will give you an answer.

Everything that we do leverages the existing EMR infrastructure, whether it’s Epic, Cerner, etc.. The user never leaves their environment. In the best integration, they don’t even know that it’s there unless they do something outside of the guidance.

Even then, the advisories are those that are native to the EMR. It’s like any other advisory that they would see. There is no ACR Select physically on a user’s desktop when they’re working inside of an EMR.

That level of integration requires both technical work as well as convincing those EHR vendors to allow a separate system to present messages to their users. How did you make that happen?

The source of the content as a standard really got their attention. That was one thing. The fact that we were coming to the market, there was something that recognizable, that it’s something that they believe that if they did it right, all their customers would use it, gave us a platform to get in front of them and work with them.

I would argue that these guys get a little bit of a bum rap with respect to interoperability. I know the stories. We’ve had nothing but positive experiences with the major EMR vendors out there. There are always improvements that need to be made. There’s always timing issues with release cycles. But we use whatever industry standards are out there and are available, whether it’s XML or Web services. Even now they are working with us on the new FHIR and SMART standards.

It was hard. It took time and an unbelievable amount of patience. Every release, the integration gets better. We are reliant on their release cycles. We move faster. We’re a smaller company. These guys have thousands of users. Even if they wanted to turn on a dime, they couldn’t. It’s just taken time, an open mind, and some patience.

Who pays NDSC?

Primarily it’s whoever is at risk for payment. The majority of our clients now primarily use ACR Select for their at-risk population. In scenarios where there’s a third-party payer involved, there’s a relationship there, too. Bit it’s primarily the providers, because it’s an efficiency on their end and a savings on their end. If the risk starts to shift to the providers, we’re going to see even more of that.

Your website suggests that you’ll be moving into other types of order guidance.

Yes. ACR Select keeps me up at night. The new stuff, which is something called Care Select — which we’re announcing at HIMSS — is what gets me up in the morning. Care Select is going to be a revolutionary way of looking at how to put guidance at the point of care for a clinician around these high-impact areas in an actionable way and a credible way.

We’re leveraging everything that we learned, everything from how to structure content so it can be read by an EMR to integration into the physician workload. Everything that we learned through ACR Select, we are leveraging for Care Select. Whether it’s for high-cost drugs, antibiotic stewardship, admission criteria, or anything in that area where providers are identifying high variability of care that is resulting in quality issues, Care Select is going to be able to handle.

We’re focusing right now on our Choosing Wisely criteria as well as criteria from the Number Needed to Treat, which will be very familiar to the ED docs out there. That’s our baseline. Like I said, that’s what gets me out of bed in the morning.

What kind of employees do you have to get the clinical content into the technology?

We don’t create our own content. We are shepherding. We’ll work with NCCN. We’ll work with the Choosing Wisely guys. We work with the ACC and American College of Emergency Physicians.

The thing with their criteria is they’re all narratives. I’ll look at a 40-page document that talks about how to image for low back pain or how to treat a full thickness rotator cuff tear. Literally, it’s a 40-page narrative. How do you turn that narrative into structured data of inputs and outputs that are consumable and known by the EMR so you can put it into the workflow?

We have informaticists on our team that do nothing but that — take these known sets of guidelines, criteria, and narratives and turn them into something that is consumable by the EMR. We have tools to do that. We have tools to localize them for site-specific needs, too.

That’s a big piece of the organization. I would say 75 percent of the company is informaticists and engineers. The rest are admin, sales, and marketing.

Since the clinical content is managed by mostly non-profit associations that have already earned the respect of your users, do you have to license that intellectual property from them?

In some, cases we have to. In others, we don’t.

We actually prefer to license. We’ll run into a society that has built criteria just because it’s the right thing to do. We’ll approach them and show what we’re going to do. Get someone excited. Then we tell them that we want to give them money.

We want to give them money because we want them to have the resources to continue to build and support. It costs money to do that. These are not-for-profits. To the extent that we’re able to generate dollars for them to continue doing good work, we want to facilitate that. We want to foster that.

There have been scenarios where we have started with, "Here is licensing" where they’ve asked us, and there have been scenarios where we’ve offered and facilitated.

Where do you see the company in five years?

Healthcare is undergoing a significant change, driven by alternative payment models and everything else. Everything else fixed and situated on and what we hear every day about how we’re spending too much money on care without comparable outcomes to Finland or Sweden or whatever other homogeneous population that is out there. We see ourselves as at the precipice of helping the market to define and to drive standards of care and put those at the point of service such that they can be acted on.

There’s a lot of effort being spent on deep analytics to understand outcomes and understand where the problems are. Once they’re defined, how do you act on it? How do you impact on a doc’s decision when they’re in front of the patient, when they’re documenting in the EMR? That’s the next step. 

We see ourselves as a company that is well positioned to do that. We want to work with our partners. We want to work with providers, content partners, payers, and others to understand where those high-impact areas are that we’re able to impact immediately.

I could never predict five years out. But where we’re going is around actionable guidance embedded seamlessly in a physician’s workflow that will prevent mistakes from being made, driving appropriate care in accordance with agreed-upon pathways and guidelines. Five years from now, we’ll go from 100 customers to 1,000. That’s as accurate a statement as I can give you.

View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 22, 2016 Interviews No Comments

Empowering Patient-Centered Care – Will New OCR Guidance be Enough?

February 22, 2016 News No Comments

We dig into the ramifications of OCR’s new clarifications on patient access to PHI.

Since its introduction 20 years ago, HIPAA has come to mean a number of things to a number of people. Patients typically associate it with yet another form to be filled out without reading when visiting the doctor’s office, a vague reassurance via a Notice of Privacy Practices that their PHI will be protected from prying eyes.

Providers, meanwhile, see it as a framework governing security of that same health data – one that seems to have evolved into a rigid set of processes aimed at denying patients their PHI access rights. Business associates and payers likely look upon it with trepidation, wondering if and when their trove of hopefully secure health data will be breached.

What nearly all healthcare stakeholders seem to have forgotten is that HIPAA is also intended to be a means by which patients have clear rights of access to their data, a playbook that providers and patients can rely on to ensure timely delivery of sensitive – and sometimes life-saving – information.

Patient access complaints continue to mount even as the federal government widely publicizes its push for patient-centered and empowered care, a contradiction to be sure. To remedy the situation and send a reminder of what HIPAA is truly about, OCR issued updated guidance last month on how providers can best comply with patient PHI requests in a timely manner that doesn’t burden the patient with delay or expense. But will it be enough to truly turn the tide on an issue that seems to have historically been swept under the rug by both providers and OCR?

The Precision Medicine Push


OCR Deputy Director for Health Information Privacy Deven McGraw is confident the new guidance will bring HIPAA’s patient-empowerment side to light. “We have long wanted to provide additional guidance on this issue,” she explains. “When we began to get more involved in the White House’s effort to create the Precision Medicine Initiative, we could clearly see how the right of the individual to access a copy of her health information and send that information directly to a third party, like a researcher, could be very important. It would be very driven by the individual and their donation of data. The Precision Medicine Initiative really provided a hook to move this access issue up the priority list and get the new guidance out in a timely way.”

McGraw says that it’s been a long time coming, an issue that she has wanted to address from Day One. “The inability to access health information has always been one of the top five categories of complaints that we’ve received,” she explains. “When I interviewed for this position, I said, ‘I really want to work on the access issue,’ and it just so happened that they were thinking along the same lines.”

Understanding the Numbers

The sheer volume of patient access complaints (including Mr. HIStalk’s still-unresolved, six-month-long records request drama) may help explain why OCR has at times been sluggish in enforcing compliance with offending healthcare organizations.

“We get so many complaints that come into our office every year — in the tens of thousands,” says McGraw. “If one-fifth of those are complaints about access, we can’t investigate all of them. We try to deal with many of them by contacting the covered entity and just telling them they have to comply with the rules. I do suspect that often times what the individual or patient ends up getting may not be exactly what they want, and may not follow the letter of the law. Sometimes those people will complain again to our office and we’ll try to follow up, but often times they’ll just give up and take what they received, which is obviously not an ideal situation.”

The Root of the Problem

The access issue seems to stem from a lack of knowledge on the part of patients and a lack of efficient processes on the part of providers. Patient requests for records have historically been treated by providers as unusual occurrences. “It has not been built in as an ordinary function of providing healthcare,” says McGraw. “It’s really been dependent on people asking, and a lot of people didn’t know they had the right to ask. Sometimes they get turned away under the misimpression that HIPAA doesn’t allow them to obtain a copy of their own records, when in fact the truth is the exact opposite.”

McGraw continues, “An entity is required to give an individual a copy of their medical records. There has been a lot of misconception out there about what our rules require in terms of the actions that have to be taken by providers and health plans to respond to individual requests. That’s why we put the guidance out there.”


Because patients have been in the dark about their access rights, providers have in turn not rushed to make the process of delivering PHI efficient. “These processes may be antiquated for a variety of reasons,” says Erin Whaley, a partner at Troutman and Sanders law firm in Arlington, VA. “For instance, some providers still require individuals to deliver a request for access in person so that the individual’s identity can be confirmed. The provider isn’t trying to create a barrier to access. They’re trying to employ a best practice to verify the authenticity of a request.”

“They’ll need to make sure that they provide multiple avenues for an individual to request access, know which electronic formats they are capable of producing above and beyond the standard PDF, and enable various methods for transmitting the responsive information,” she adds. “Developing a new request form with all of this is obviously the first step. To the extent OCR has reviewed forms that it thinks represent the gold standard, it would be helpful to share those with the provider community.”

Getting the Word Out

McGraw and her team at OCR plan to move beyond the new guidance’s initial release with awareness campaigns aimed at trade groups, healthcare organizations, and patients. The office will release more in-depth FAQs into fees and the right of the individual to send their records to a third party within the next several months. It will also reach out to professional associations like AMA to help spread the word.

More consumer-friendly materials are also in the works via a partnership with ONC. “We’ve done some strategic thinking about how we’ll get these patient-centric materials out to people,” McGraw notes. “We’ve been in preliminary contact with other government agencies about how we can piggyback on their community outreach efforts. It’s premature to release any details about that.”

Enforcement is Coming

Enforcement is also a big part of the issue. That seems challenging given OCR’s bottlenecks in even responding to complaints, much less following up with enforcement.

McGraw emphasizes that enforcement isn’t an efficient process, with cases often taking years to resolve. She points to the civil monetary penalty levied against Cignet Health (MD) in 2011 – the only time a provider has been taken to such public task for violating the HIPAA Privacy Rule. Cignet willfully ignored the medical records requests of 41 patients between 2008 and 2009, and then disregarded OCR’s attempts to resolve the situation and subsequent subpoena in the years following. All to the tune of an eventual $4.3 million fine.

“The Cignet case was obviously an egregious one where there was a pattern of non-compliance,” McGraw explains. “It wasn’t just that they were making patients jump through hoops, but that they were refusing to give people copies of their records. Then on top of that, they didn’t cooperate with us. That was a pretty egregious set of circumstances.”

McGraw says OCR will step up enforcement. “Given the new guidance, we’re working with our regional office heads to come up with a strategy for how to step up our enforcement of these access cases. Clearly we’re going to have to pursue more of these. We will start enforcing this more aggressively. When we’re able to put out more details about this, we’ll do so. People shouldn’t put their heads in the sand about this. We’re quite serious.”

But Are Providers Ready?

Whatever the level of enforcement, Whaley believes providers are not ready for the increased scrutiny. “Providers know that OCR is looking to launch Phase 2 of its HIPAA audit program in early 2016 and are making sure that their house is in order in case they’re selected,” she explains. “While individual access is certainly part of HIPAA compliance, providers, for the most part, have been focusing their compliance efforts in other areas. There are still far too many who are not conducting a comprehensive annual risk analysis, or who have never updated their BAAs following the passage of the HIPAA Omnibus Rule. These providers are focusing on closing these gaps and not on their individual access processes. Hopefully, OCR will understand that while the individual access right is not new, there is a lot of new information in the guidance that will take providers time to implement. If providers are making good-faith efforts to respond to requests from individuals for access to their records, hopefully OCR will recognize this.”

Patients are the Decision-Makers

McGraw is enthusiastic about OCR’s efforts to shed more light on the patient access issue, and believes that fewer barriers will ultimately help speed up the road to interoperability and truly patient-centered care. “The role of the HIPAA rules is to create a baseline,” she says. “Nobody can fall below what we require in terms of access, but people can certainly go above and beyond. To be really patient-centered as a healthcare provider, even as a health plan, I think you have to give people the same access to the data that you have in terms of patient care and payment for care. Patients are the ultimate decision-makers for the type of treatment that they want. We have to give them information in order to enable them to make those choices.”

View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 22, 2016 News No Comments

Morning Headlines 2/22/16

February 21, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Operations postponed at Royal Berkshire Hospital due to IT issues

In England, surgeries had to be rescheduled at Royal Berkshire Hospital after malware infected the hospital’s Windows XP pathology system.

Schedule 13G: Computer Program and Systems, Inc.

Francisco Partners buys an additional 2 million shares of CPSI, bringing its total ownership in the company to 14.6 percent.

Allscripts Healthcare Solutions Paul M. Black on Q4 2015 Results – Earnings Call Transcript

During Allscripts earnings call, CEO Paul Black notes that Q4 bookings of $1.1 billion topped its 2011 record and beat bookings from Q4 2014 by 20 percent.

The Big Mega HIT Purchasing Report

Peer60 releases a report on HIT purchasing trends, finding that population health management and patient engagement solutions are the top purchasing priorities for healthcare executives. 23 percent of respondents reported that their organization plans to switch EHR vendors, with Epic leading in mindshare.

View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 21, 2016 Headlines No Comments

Monday Morning Update 2/22/16

February 21, 2016 News 1 Comment

Top News


In England, Royal Berkshire Hospital cancels surgeries after its Windows XP pathology systems are taken down by malware delivered as an email attachment. Australia’s Royal Melbourne Hospital had a similar problem a few weeks ago as malware affected its Windows XP pathology servers.

Reader Comments

From Red Zone: “Re: Allscripts India. President Nitin Deshpande is leaving Allscripts to join Valence Health. He set up the India office of Eclipsys from scratch in 2007.” Unverified.

HIStalk Announcements and Requests


Job seekers would choose Epic’s offer first, followed by Athenahealth. Allscripts and McKesson are the least-favored hiring companies. New poll to your right or here: is IBM Watson Health real or just hype?


A reader asked this question that I agreed to run as a poll for provider organizations: to what degree do you allow creating test patients in production systems? Feel free to help the reader out by clicking “comments” to explain after voting.


This weekend’s Las Vegas weather will be nice: high 70s and sunny, around 50 at night. It should be good HIMSS conference weather.


I feel like I’m running my own “Just Say No” campaign in fending off people determined to selfishly waste my crazy, pre-HIMSS time:

  • Can I bring a colleague HIStalkapalooza who didn’t sign up? No.
  • Can you interview my CEO right now so it will run right before HIMSS? No.
  • Can I pay you to run our article on your site? No.
  • Will you run a list of our HIMSS booth and speaking activities in your news post? No.
  • Can I schedule time to meet with you in our HIMSS booth? No.

I’m thinking this week will be slow as everybody saves their energy for next week’s conference.


Check out what HIStalk sponsors are doing at HIMSS with our online (and printable) guide. It lists everything from giveaways to educational presentations. For those sponsors who aren’t exhibiting, it includes their contact information for scheduling a meeting. Thanks for supporting the companies that support HIStalk.


Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center’s decision to pay a hacker’s ransom to regain access to its malware-locked systems was probably a great business call by them – they had been without access for 10 days and were diverting patients as a result, so their $17,000 was well spent. Unfortunately for everybody else, their widely reported decision at will encourage ransomware hackers to step up their hospital attacks. The right thing for the hospital to do is to share what happened, how they detected it, how it affected their operation, and whether the FBI or other involved agencies advised them to pay up.


Mr. Ventura’s Nebraska school requires blurring student faces in photos, but he sent the one above showing a student using the green screen we provided in funding his DonorsChoose grant request. She is performing a Winter Concert reading as Apple’s iMovie projects behind her on the green screen, making it appear that she’s outdoors. They’re also using the green screen to allow students of the month to record their accomplishment. Next up is increasing the confidence of students by having them do Readers Theater projects on screen.

image image

I will allow Mrs. Swope from Alabama to describe the listening center project we funded in her own words: “The air in my class was charged with excitement when my students and I received a ‘mystery box’ one day after lunch. As I opened the box, my students couldn’t help themselves. They gathered around and proceeded to help me open our special gift (this has never happened to me before). It was almost as exciting as Christmas morning! As I unpacked each component to our new listening center, the children marveled at the equipment. They were so overwhelmed. The looks on their faces were priceless. My students couldn’t wait to get their hands on our new listening center. EVERY child has felt empowered when they have used the listening station to read books.”



Reminders for those invited:

  • You must RSVP the emailed Eventbrite order confirmation (click the “Attend Event” button). Once you’ve done that, you get a second email containing your actual PDF ticket. Once you get your ticket, you are set.
  • Print your ticket out in advance or installed the Eventbrite app on your phone – you’ll be checked in by scanning the unique barcode on your ticket.
  • We will close the check-in desk no later than 8:30, so arrive before then.
  • Security will turn away anyone without a ticket, just like at a Taylor Swift concert.

Last Week’s Most Interesting News

  • IBM announced plans to acquire Truven Health Analytics for $2.6 billion, rolling it into IBM Watson Health, the fourth such acquisition.
  • Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center (CA) pays hackers $17,000 to return access to its systems that were crippled for 10 days by ransomware.
  • An investigative article warns consumers who might want to buy life, long-term, or disability insurance that any genetic testing results can legally be used to deny them coverage.
  • Cerner announced results that beat expectations, but shares dropped on the company’s first bookings miss since 2008.
  • Partners HealthCare’s $1.2 billion Epic project takes a hit on its operating profit.


February 23 (Tuesday) 1:00 ET. “Completing your EMR with a Medical Image Sharing Strategy.” Sponsored by LifeImage. Presenters: Don K. Dennison, consultant; Jim Forrester, director of imaging informatics, UR Medicine. Care coordination can suffer without an effective, cost-efficient way to share images across provider networks. Consolidating image management systems into a single platform such as VNA or PACS doesn’t address the need to exchange images with external organizations. This webinar will address incorporating the right image sharing methods into your health IT strategy.

February 24 (Wednesday) 1:00 ET. “Is Big Data a Big Deal … or Not?” Sponsored by Health Catalyst. Presenter: Dale Sanders, EVP of product development, Health Catalyst. Hadoop is the most powerful and popular technology platform for data analysis in the world, but healthcare adoption has been slow. This webinar will cover why healthcare leaders should care about Hadoop, why big data is a bigger deal outside of healthcare, whether we’re missing the IT boat yet again, and how the cloud reduces adoption barriers by commoditizing the skilled labor impact.

February 25 (Thursday) 1:00 ET. “Clinical Analytics for Population Health: Straddling Two Worlds.” Sponsored by HIStalk. Presenters: Brian Murphy, lead analyst, Chilmark Research; Jody Ranck, senior analyst, Chilmark Research. The Chilmark Research clinical analytics team will be sharing some of their key findings from the recently released “2016 Clinical Analytics for Population Health Market Trends” report. This will be followed by a Q&A session to make sure everyone goes to HIMSS16 well informed.

Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock


Opternative raises $6 million in Series A funding to further develop its app that allows consumers aged 18-40 to conduct their own vision exam, then send the result electronically to an eye doctor to have a prescription written. I’m sure it’s fine for generating a convenient eyeglass or contact lens prescription, but an exam should cover checking retinal health and screening for glaucoma. It seems like one of those bad ideas in which consumers get what they want instead of what they need. As the company’s disclaimer describes, “Opternative’s service does not include any type of eye health exam … our doctors recommend that all patients between 18 and 40 years old receive an eye health exam at least once every two years from a local eye care professional … Opternative’s technology is only intended and suitable for use by licensed ophthalmologists to perform online refractive eye exams on patients between the ages of 18 and 40 and in good health.”


Francisco Partners increases its ownership of CPSI to nearly 2 million shares, 14.6 percent of the company. Above is the one-year share price chart of CPSI (blue, up 4.5 percent) vs. the Nasdaq (red, down 9.2 percent).


From the Allscripts earnings call:

  • Recurring revenue made up 76 percent of 2015’s total.
  • Q4 bookings exceeded the company’s 2011 record quarter.
  • The company sells all products are being sold as subscriptions rather than upfront licenses.
  • Service volumes are down as clients choose hosted options.
  • The company expects growth in UK, Canada, Australia, and Southeast Asia.



Connecticut Children’s Medical Center (CT) chooses Fujifilm’s Synapse VNA version 6.0.

Sarah Bush Lincoln Health System (IL) chooses Cerner, which will replace Meditech.

Announcements and Implementations


Peer60 releases a new report called “The Big Mega HIT Purchasing Report.” The top purchasing plans for 2016 involve population health management and patient engagement. Epic continues to hold the top inpatient and outpatient EHR mindshare, although the outpatient figure really is hospital-based since only hospital employees were surveyed. Epic also holds the top mindshare for population health management and patient engagement, although that finding might call into question the interpretation of respondents. Cerner leads in enterprise analytics.


Here’s another pretty funny Athenahealth commercial.

Weird News Andy says his proposed title of “Pharmacists > Crooks” is not a menu, but a mathematical representation. An Alabama pharmacist resolves situation in which a gunman took hostages and demanded drugs. She chose drugs that put the gunman to sleep, after which she took his gun and waved in police to arrest him. Or as WNA says, “Say ni-night, Mr. Robber. Hope you were not to surprised when you woke up in the Greybar Motel.”

Sponsor Updates

  • The St. Louis Business Journal profiles TierPoint’s new $30 million data center in Oklahoma City.
  • WeiserMazars donates books to the Ronald McDonald House New York as part of its #HookedOnBooks campaign.

Blog Posts


Mr. H, Lorre, Jennifer, Dr. Jayne, Lt. Dan.
More news: HIStalk Practice, HIStalk Connect.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.


View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 21, 2016 News 1 Comment

HIStalk’s Guide to HIMSS16

February 20, 2016 News No Comments

Download and print a PDF version of this guide.



Booth 4761

Contact: Lindsey Keith, sales and marketing operations manager

One place. One view. ALL of your forms. Access develops electronic forms management solutions that clear your paper path—eliminating the expense, risk, and inefficiency of paper forms. Our software, including Web-based Access Passport and Formatta, enables organizations to capture, manage, sign, and share e-forms data with other systems without paper, printers or scanners. Staff can interact with paperless e-forms anywhere, anytime using any device. By integrating e-forms, e-signatures, and clinical data into EHRs and other healthcare or business applications, you can improve care, remove the impact of paper, and enhance patient safety, compliance, and downtime planning initiatives. Everything related to forms is in one place with Access — so reduced costs, paper-free routines, and complete EHRs can be real-world destinations.    And, if you’re feeling worn out from all those educational sessions, stop by our booth (4761) for a free latte, Americano or whatever you need to keep you going for the rest of the show.



To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Aaron Glauser, director, product marketing

Since 1999, AdvancedMD has helped private practices improve clinical outcomes, patient experience, staff productivity, and financial performance. Our cloud EHR and PM suite is exclusively designed for independent physicians and includes financial analytics, peer-to-peer benchmarking, patient engagement, and telemedicine. Control your destiny.

The Advisory Board Co.


To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Jordan English, senior director, strategic marketing

Please come to our HIMSS16 presentations: Closing Keynote for the Nursing Informatics Symposium: Shifting from Implementation to Optimization: “Looking Towards the Future; Imagine the Possibilities” with Edward Marx (Monday at 3:15 pm in Marcello 4404) – Innovation Symposium opening presentation: “The Rise of Intelligent Machines in Health Care” with Ken Kleinberg (Monday at 8:15 am in Galileo 901) – “PQRS and Alignment Opportunity – Concept to Operationalization” with Tony Panjamapirom (Tuesday at 2:30 pm in Palazzo D) – “The Rise of Intelligent Machines in Health Care” with Ken Kleinberg (Wednesday at 4:00 pm in Galileo 1004) – “Planting Seeds: Developing a Mature Health IT Team” with Ernie Hood (Friday at 10:30 am in Marcello 4401). The Advisory Board Company is the leading provider of insight-driven analytics, research, and services for healthcare organizations. Through its innovative membership model, the Company collaborates with more than 230,000 leaders at 5,200 member organizations to elevate performance and solve their most pressing problems. The Company provides strategic guidance, actionable insights, cloud-based software solutions, and comprehensive implementation and management services. For more information, visit



Booth 6642

Contact: Chris Lato, director, marketing communications

Experience how the AirStrip ONE mobile interoperability platform transforms care coordination and drives health system innovation. AirStrip ONE lets you achieve true interoperability. Mobilize your existing technologies to give caregivers the insights they need to provide patient-centered care — anytime, anywhere. Enter our daily social media drawing to win:  Bose SoundLink On-Ear Headphones and a GoPro Hero4 Session Camera  Apple TV 4 (32 GB).

Aprima Medical Software


Booth 7314

Contact: Judy Friedman, marketing and events

A single application, built on a single database, the Aprima EHR and PM systems are fully integrated. That’s why our software continues to be one of the fastest products for doing complete visit documentation in real time. Stop by booth 7314 at HIMSS to take our Stopwatch Challenge and compare Aprima to ANY EHR! When you take the Stopwatch Challenge, we’ll give you a stopwatch so you can do your own comparison.     Thousands of providers have left their old EHR and made the move to Aprima. When you work in the ever-changing world of healthcare, your medical practice needs systems that are agile and responsive. That’s why over the last 10 years more than 95 percent of our customers have stayed with us, and why thousands of providers have recently made the switch to Aprima. Aprima is one of the few companies with a 18-year track record of success. To learn more about Aprima, visit us at HIMSS in booth 7314 or visit

Arcadia Healthcare Solutions


Booth 4612

Contact: Greg Chittim, vice president, strategic marketing

Think aggregating high-quality data from many different EHRs is impossible? Come see how we’ve been doing it for a decade. Come to booth #4612 (near the main entrance behind McKesson) to receive: HIStalk’s "best giveaway of HIMSS15" – a conference survival kit and a bottle of water; a look at our "Data Gallery" – an art gallery of visualizations from our provider benchmark database; a demo of our platform recently rated by Chilmark as the best "User-centered Design" among Analytics platforms for Population Health Management; and a raffle for fantastic prizes.  Arcadia Healthcare Solutions ( is an EHR data aggregation and analytics technology company delivering managed care to ambulatory networks taking on value-based risk. Arcadia specializes in the integration of data from 30+ EHR platforms, enriching them with claims and operational data, and using that data to drive improvements in patient care quality, practice efficiency, and financial performance. Trusted by independent provider groups, health plans, and integrated delivery networks nationwide, with expertise in both fee-for-service optimization and value-based performance environments, Arcadia supports providers with the benchmark data, insights, and outsourced services to excel in the evolving landscape of American healthcare. Founded in 2002, Arcadia is headquartered outside Boston in Burlington, MA, with offices in Seattle and outside Chicago in Rockford, IL.



Booth 1324

Contact: Jennifer Haas, vice president, marketing

With Aventura, security and clinical efficiency doesn’t have to be black or white. Aventura’s Sympatica platform leverages situational awareness to deliver a highly secure, personalized clinical desktop. With security, personalized desktop and interoperability functionality, Sympatica is a flexible, modular offering that fits every operational need and budget. Choose from three levels of functionality to solve a specific issue or leverage all three for a complete, integrated clinical desktop solution. Stop by booth 1324 for a demo and pick up a copy of our Iris & Friends coloring book.

Besler Consulting


To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Jim Hoffman, COO

Billian’s HealthData


Booth 1459

Contact: Ben Mauldin, national sales manager

Billian’s HealthData offers unparalleled business intelligence on 875,000 US healthcare providing organizations, including 2M+ healthcare executive contacts. Insight into breaking hospital news, RFPs, emails, financials, HIT utilization, CRM integration, and more offer you an unprecedented amount of data you can use to reduce prospect and market research burdens, identify best-fit partners, and initiate relevant correspondence. Search profiles at or visit booth 1459 for a data demo.

Boston Software Systems


To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Nick Topping, marketing program manager

Boston Software Systems revolutionizes how healthcare works by providing error-free automation for any application, enabling successful EHR migration, streamlined business processes, and improved productivity. Our Active Data Quality (ADQ) platforms are the most sophisticated automation platforms available, giving customers’ peace of mind that critical data is 100-percent error free. We have the best reputation for ease of use and customer support, helping organizations bridge the gap between technologies to help provide optimal patient care. Hospitals and healthcare vendors worldwide respond to regulatory and business initiatives by using technologies from Boston Software Systems to automate and improve processes throughout a variety healthcare organizations and departments. For more information, please visit the company’s website at or call 866.653.5105.

Bottomline Technologies


Booth 5046

Contact: Heather Barr, marketing manager

Bottomline Technologies powers mission-critical business transactions. Our privacy and data security solution for healthcare protects healthcare information, prevents fraud, and helps customers with their compliance of the HIPAA and HITECH mandates. Our healthcare solutions improve patient and clinician satisfaction while reducing costs with digital forms management, discrete data capture, and eSignature across platforms and devices. Based on our deep market knowledge combined with development and business expertise, we constantly set, anticipate, and respond to changing industry and organizational demands.



Booth 5427

Caradigm is an award-winning population health company dedicated to improving patient care, advancing the health of populations, and reducing healthcare costs. Its enterprise software portfolio encompasses all capabilities critical to delivering effective population health management, including data control, healthcare analytics, care coordination and management, and wellness and patient engagement. See a live demo by visiting us in booth 5427 at HIMSS16 or learn more at



Booth 147

Contact: Courtney Larned, vice president of marketing and corporate communications

CareSync is the leading patient-centered engagement solution that combines technology with 24/7 nursing services to facilitate care coordination among patients, family and caregivers, and all providers. CareSync provides turnkey chronic care management services and a software-only option, allowing practices of any size to easily meet the billing requirements for CPT code 99490. CareSync patients are at the center of their healthcare, with access to health information, actionable goals, and comprehensive care plan tasks, and as a result, are experiencing more productive medical appointments and better health outcomes.



To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Kevin Lindbergh, vice president, sales



Booth 3073

Contact: Christopher Marshall, president

CenterX is a is a comprehensive e-prescribing network that helps your physicians spend more time with their patients and less time completing prior authorizations. The CenterX ePA solution will execute all PA types electronically – pharmacy, medical, and specialty – decreasing PA turn-around time by 90 percent. Save time by identifying, capturing, and automating the PA process in your EHR – before the patient leaves the office. Giveaway: Stop by booth 3073 to learn how CenterX can help you save time and grab a free swag bag, pen and notepad.

The Chartis Group


To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Daniel Herman, director and informatics and technology practice leader

The Chartis Group is a national advisory services firm dedicated to the healthcare industry. We provide strategic and economic planning, accountable care, clinical transformation, and informatics and technology consulting services to the country’s leading healthcare providers. Our firm is comprised of experienced healthcare professionals who apply a distinctive knowledge of healthcare economics, markets, clinical models, and information technology to help clients achieve demonstrative outcomes. Chartis has been privileged to work with leading healthcare organizations across the world. Our collective experience across many organizations provides us a deep knowledge base, client network, and perspective on what it takes to make meaningful and sustainable change. Over the past decade, we have worked with leading healthcare organizations across the country and throughout the world including over two-thirds of the academic medical centers on the US News & World Report “Honor Roll of Best Hospitals,” seven of the 10 largest integrated healthcare systems, four of the five largest not-for-profit health systems, nine of the top 10 children’s hospitals, emerging and leading ACOs, hundreds of community-based health systems, and leading organizations in healthcare services.

Clinical Architecture


Booth 721

Contact: Mark DuBois, executive vice president of sales

We develop software focused on the quality and usability of clinical information. Our solutions address industry gaps in content acquisition, terminology management, interoperability, decision support, and analytics. Each day we will donate $500 to the charity of the winner’s choice. Stop by our booth (#721) to enter.



Booth 754

Contact: Alison Bechtel, marketing manager, EHR solutions

More than 500,000 providers choose CoverMyMeds, the nation’s largest electronic prior authorization platform. CoverMyMeds is integrated with over 360 EHR systems including Epic, Cerner, and Allscripts. Providers submit requests for medications in workflow at the point of prescribing for the fastest, most efficient way to complete prior authorizations. Check your integration status at CoverMyMeds is located in booth 754 in the main exhibit hall. Stop by and mention "HISTalk" to be entered to win a $100 VISA gift card.



To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Rick Weissinger, vice president, marketing communications

Craneware executives will be at HIMSS to speak about the value cycle, an exciting new strategy for achieving quality patient outcomes and optimal financial performance and how Craneware is building their solutions for a value cycle future. Attendees can expect to learn more about the switch from revenue cycle to value cycle, and how this will impact the healthcare IT community.



Booth 5255

Contact: Amanda LeBlanc, vice president and CMO

We’re Computer Task Group (CTG), the most reliable IT services provider – built on 50 years of meeting our commitments to make technology work for you and deliver real business value. Our customers come to us from industries worldwide including healthcare and life sciences, energy, financial services, government, technology, and telecommunications. Visit us at booth #5255 to join the celebration! CHEERS T0 50 YEARS.  Toast innovations in healthcare and CTG’s success over the past half century with our CEO and team members.

Cumberland Consulting Group


To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Dave Vreeland, managing partner

Founded in 2004, Cumberland Consulting Group is a leading full-service strategic advisory, performance improvement, information technology implementation, and support services firm. Cumberland provides technology implementation and project management support to help its clients advance the quality of services they deliver and to improve their overall business performance. Our experienced consultants deliver results for clients through technology optimization and process improvement. Need help with IT planning? Integration? Upgrades? Optimization? RCM? If so, we can help. For more information on Cumberland, please visit



Booth 12144

Contact: Bud Walder, vice president, marketing
973.455.1245 x512

DataMotionHealth at HiMSS16: Sharing information is at the heart of healthcare reforms and initiatives! At HIMSS16, DataMotion Health will showcase the latest in secure health information delivery services and solutions. Learn about empowering your team to share information for care coordination, patient engagement, population health, and more. Stop by Booth #12144! Or if you prefer, contact us  at to schedule some time for a meeting at our booth or hospitality suite at the Venetian.

Direct Consulting Associates


To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Frank Myeroff, president

Direct Consulting Associates provides a broad range of healthcare IT consulting and staffing solutions including staff augmentation, temp-to-perm, and direct hire. Healthcare organizations trust us to acquire the best IT talent in the industry in order to meet their IT initiatives.



Booth 11612

Contact: Keri DeSalvo, marketing director

Back by popular demand … Divurgent will host a fast-paced, fun-filled interactive High Roller Charity Drive to raise $5,000 for the Children’s Hospital of Nevada at UMC. HIMSS attendees are encouraged to stop by booth #11612 and toss the bright red, oversized inflatable dice high into the air – whatever number the dice lands on, will determine the donation value that Divurgent will contribute on the attendee’s behalf!

Divurgent will also be announcing some very exciting, industry-breaking news during the HIMSS conference centered around our cybersecurity, MACRA/MU, and revenue cycle optimization strategies … stay tuned!

Divurgent is a nationally recognized healthcare IT consulting firm, specializing in cybersecurity and privacy solutions, population health management, clinical documentation improvement, and activation management and implementation. Visit booth #11612 to learn how Divurgent can help improve your operational effectiveness, financial performance, and quality of patient care.  To view all of Divurgent’s exciting events and happenings during HIMSS, click here.



Booth 943

Contact: Ellie Whims, director, marketing communications
301.231.9510 x2808

DrFirst ( pioneers healthcare technology solutions that inform the doctor-patient point of encounter, optimize provider access to patient information, enhance the doctor’s clinical view of the patient, and improve care delivery and clinical outcomes. Our growth is driven by a commitment to innovation, security, and reliability across a wide array of e-medication management and secure communication and collaboration services. We are proud of our track record of service to over 335 EMR/EHR/HIS partners and an extensive network of hospitals, post-acute care facilities, ambulatory practices, and pharmacies nationwide. Come by the DrFirst booth on Tuesday, March 1st at 5 PM for a special reception, and world premiere of a new ZDogg Video!

ECG Management Consultants


To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Michelle Holmes, principal

ECG is a strategic consulting firm that is leading healthcare forward, using the knowledge and expertise built over the course of more than four decades to help clients see clearly where healthcare is going and to navigate toward success. We work as trusted, professional partners with medical groups, hospitals, health systems, and academic medical centers across the country. With deep expertise in technology, strategy, finance, and operations, ECG builds multidisciplinary teams to meet the unique needs of every client. We’re proud to partner with providers across the country to better leverage technology and achieve their goals. For more information, visit



Booth 3039

Contact: Yazmin Zayas, senior manager, events/exhibits

Encourage Quality. Enhance Efficiency. Improve Outcomes. Consistent, high-quality patient care requires evidence-based content incorporated into the care process. Elsevier provides more than 25 percent of the world’s clinical content and serves more than 20 million healthcare professionals. Integrated into clinical workflows and EHRs, this content empowers healthcare professionals and their patients to make better decisions at every stage of the patient journey. Reference and Decision Support • Order Sets and Care Plans • Learning and Competency Management • Patient Engagement • Professional Practice Services • Academic Education and Certification. When you visit our exhibit, be sure to step inside our Rewarding Knowledge prize booth for a daily chance to win a FitBit, Beats by Dr. Dre, or a $100 VISA gift card. It’s the one place in Vegas where the odds are in your favor. Empowering Knowledge. Enabling Action.



Booth 5222

Contact: Allison Jones, director, marketing

E-MDs is a leading provider of integrated EHRs, PM software, revenue cycle services, and credentialing solutions for physician practices and enterprises. Founded by physicians, the company is an industry leader for usable, connected software that enables physician productivity and a superior clinical experience. E-MDs software has received top rankings in physician and industry surveys including those conducted by the AAFP’s Family Practice Management, AmericanEHR Partners, MedScape, and Black Book. E-MDs has a proven track record of positioning clients for success as demonstrated by Meaningful Use attainment in 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014. According to data provided by CMS, E-MDs clients are attesting in the top proportion of all major vendors. For more information, please visit

Etransmedia Technology


Booth 1469

Contact: Connie Smith

Etransmedia helps improve revenues and clinical outcomes, enabling physicians to focus on patient care. Etransmedia is a leading healthcare information technology company delivering integrated software, service, and connectivity solutions to simplify critical functions for healthcare providers. Our clients include some of the country’s leading healthcare systems and hospitals, as well as affiliated physician practices. Eight consecutive years, Inc 5000 and four consecutive years, Deloitte Technology Fast 500.

Extension Healthcare


Booth 1261 and Intelligent Hospital Pavilion Booth 11655-17

Contact: Jenny Kakasuleff, social media PR manager

Learn what Extension Healthcare has done for Kaiser Permanente, St. Joe’s, University of Maryland Medical Center, Parkland, and 200 more customers at HIMSS16 booth 1261. Our team at HIMSS will be demonstrating our award-winning, event-driven care team communication workflows, including our real-time waveform integration, and can answer any questions about new features, functionality, and enhancements to Extension Engage Mobile. On Wednesday, March 2, at 11:30 am, NYU Langone Medical Center, an Extension Engage customer, will present the details of their deployment in the Intelligent Hospital Pavilion. Visitors to either Extension booth will be entered into a drawing for an Apple Watch upon completing a survey.



Booth 4849

Contact: Aaron Vaught, director, marketing

FormFast’s enterprise software platform automates documents and workflow, capturing data and streamlining processes. With more than 20 years exclusively focused on healthcare needs and over 1,000 healthcare clients, FormFast is considered the #1 in eForms for hospitals, according to HIMSS Analytics. At booth #4849, FormFast will give HIMSS16 attendees a test-drive of their automation offerings, which include solutions for registration, mobile bedside consents, electronic signature capture, human resources, clinical documentation, and more. Learn more at: and follow us on Twitter @FormFast. Booth Promotions: Register to win the Ultimate Supercar Driving Experience! Visit FormFast at booth #4849 to register! Includes: -Exotic Supercar Test Drive on Course  – Round Trip Airfare for 2   -3 Day/2 Night Deluxe Hotel Stay  -$250 Gift Card. FormFast will also have a premiere, luxury car on display at booth #4849 for attendees to check out and to capture an amazing photo opportunity!

Forward Health Group


Booth 2477

Contact: Barry Wightman, director of marketing

Forward Health Group to unBooth at HIMSS16! A visual extravaganza is rolling into booth #2477. FHG, a leader in value-based population health management solutions, zigs when everyone else zags. The fast-growing company will feature prodigious, on-the-fly artistic talents, generating marvelously whimsical graphic population health management collaborations with HIMSS visitors. Producing giant, eight-foot hand-drawn murals each day, recording booth visitors’ visions of their value-based population health futures. FHG will also provide demonstrations of five new PopulationManager products – including innovative pre-packaged FastStart PopulationManager solutions for chronic care, acute episodes, behavioral health, bundled payments, and national standards reporting. Fresh oranges, too. A splendid time is guaranteed for all! Don’t miss the unBooth #2477.

Galen Healthcare Solutions


Booth 3273

Contact: Justin Campbell, vice president

Galen Healthcare Solutions is an award-winning, #1 in KLAS, healthcare IT technical and professional services and solutions company providing high-skilled, cross-platform expertise. Galen Healthcare Solutions was one of the few vendors to receive multiple 2015/2016 Best in KLAS awards, winning #1 in Technical Services and #1 in HIT Implementation Support & Staffing. For over a decade, Galen has partnered with more than 300 specialty practices, hospitals, HIEs, health systems, and integrated delivery networks to provide high-quality, expert-level IT consulting services including strategy, optimization, data conversion, archival, project management, and interoperability. Galen also delivers a suite of fully integrated products that enhance, automate, and simplify the access and use of clinical patient data within those systems to improve cost-efficiency and quality outcomes. We will be giving away three Apple Watches. HIMSS attendees can enter the contest by scheduling a time to meet during HIMSS:   

GE Healthcare


Booth 3055

Contact: Chris Bowler, general manager, Americas region marketing

Visit GE Healthcare at booth 3055 to learn how actionable insights can help you improve clinical, financial, and operational outcomes. With over 20 demo stations showcasing solutions for financial management, workforce management, enterprise imaging, and care delivery management, you’ll see first-hand how our software, services, and partners can help spark your success. And don’t miss the chance to talk to our experts and see live presentations featuring our newest solutions: GE Health Cloud – a scalable, secure, connected cloud ecosystem that will enable you to manage data as you need it; and Analytic Applications – an advanced analytics platform and consulting service that helps healthcare organizations quickly generate actionable insights that drive better outcomes.

The HCI Group


Booth 6832

Contact: Chris Parry, marketing director

The HCI Group is recognized as a world leader in healthcare IT consulting. Our services include implementation and training of all EHR vendors as well as service lines in optimization, clinical adoption, integration and testing, go-live, and advisory services, among others. From Johns Hopkins and Tenet Health to, Canada, Europe, Asia and beyond, we’ve developed a track record of proven excellence in developing smarter approaches to solving healthcare IT challenges.

Healthcare Growth Partners


Booth 10650

Contact: Christopher McCord, managing director

Healthcare Growth Partners is an investment and merchant bank focused exclusively on health IT, digital health, and health information services. Since its founding in 2005, HGP has closed over $2 billion across over 80 health informatics and digital health transactions. Services include M&A advisory, capital raising, and strategy, as well as principal investments through HGP Capital. Through our advisory relationships and investments, HGP aims to unlock health IT’s great potential in solving fundamental challenges in the management and sustainability of health.

Health Catalyst


Booth 3069

Contact: Patty Burke, program manager

Come by booth #3069 and read any one of our 50 client success stories on display in and around our booth.

Health Data Specialists


Booth 8402

Contact: Steve Grenier, vice president

Health Data Specialists (HDS) is a privately held, healthcare information services company that has been providing quality consulting services to healthcare organizations nationwide since 2003. Our mission is to provide exceptional consulting services, valued specialists, and trusted advisers to facilitate the IT business strategies of our clients. We focus on assisting healthcare organizations in meeting their IT goals in a cost-effective, efficient manner. HDS is committed to bringing value and proven solutions to our clients’ information technology initiatives. HDS has assisted facilities of all sizes – from large teaching facilities to multi-entity IDNs to regional healthcare centers. We offer a full range of staff augmentation, optimization, and consultative services with expertise in software solutions for Epic, Cerner/Siemens, and Meditech. We provide expertise in Meaningful Use, mock audit services, revenue cycle and ICD-10 support. We value our intangibles, such as our ability to relate to clients regarding their needs, management style, corporate culture, commitment, and confidentiality. These elements differentiate us from other consulting firms and give us a sustainable competitive advantage while strengthening our long-term relationships with our clients.



Booth 10828

Contact: Karen Hitchcock, vice president, marketing

Healthfinch’s practice automation platform, Charlie, leverages EHR data to automate, delegate, and simplify routine, repeatable tasks, like prescription refill requests, visit planning and diagnostics results management. Our flagship application, Swoop for prescription refill requests, is used by major health systems to improve workflows and get providers working top-of-license by reducing their inbox volume.    Healthcare leaders who want to improve efficiencies, workflows, and maximize their investment in their EHR should stop by booth 10828 to learn how "Charlie" can help.



Booth 3617

Contact: Dave Mink, market solutions director

Stop by Healthwise booth 3617 and check out our demo stations to discover how to effectively engage your health populations. Healthwise solutions for episodic care, care coordination, automated programs, and patient portals will deepen the impact of your patient touchpoints. Visit our kiosk in the Population Health Knowledge Center and learn how the right population health strategy can broaden the reach of your care team without adding resources.

Iatric Systems


Booth 7730

Contact: John Danahey, executive vice president

We invite you come by the Iatric Systems booth #7730 in the Venetian Ballroom to see how we can help you enhance your existing healthcare technology investments. Your challenges around analytics, EHR optimization, interoperability, and patient privacy are serious. We look forward to a great conversation around how our diverse healthcare experience, extensive partner network and advisory/consulting services are the foundation for solutions that enhance your healthcare technology investments. It’s serious business, but you won’t want to miss The Magic Castle performer and professional magician Chef Anton’s entertaining and amazing magic tricks – and be entered to win not just one, but TWO Apple Watches.



Booth 4221

Contact: Dennis Carson, director, marketing and tradeshows

IMO provides the most widely-used and physician preferred medical terminology solutions for EHRs.  Visit us at booth 4221 to see the latest innovations around IMO Problem IT Terminology and IMO Procedure IT Terminology. New at HIMSS16: IMO Anywhere – the mobile-enabled solution that lets users access IMO Terminology anytime, anywhere, on any device. IMO 2.0 Enhanced Terminology Platform (ETP) – a new, feature-packed platform that keeps dictionaries updated long into the future. IMO Problem IT Plus – now with our unique intelligent Problem List to give users a clear, concise, and organized view of their patient Problem Lists. IMO SurgIT – the new service that provides highly accurate IMO codes for surgical procedures. Come learn about “The IMO Way” to capture and preserve true clinical intent because The Patient Story is too important to lose. At the vendor solutions sessions, don’t miss “How Capturing True Clinical Intent Improves Patient Care” Tuesday, March 1 at 2.30 pm in Galileo 1001 at the Sands Expo Convention Center. Cool giveaways include T-shirts, flashlights, and more!

Influence Health


Booth 6232

Contact: Anna Powell, vice president, marketing

Momentum demands movement, movement demands Influence Health. Run, walk, skip or hop toward booth 6232, where a specialized team can help you explore solutions to support your population health and patient engagement efforts. Learn how we can help your organization gain the momentum you need to provide successful, value-based care and improved outcomes. Influence Health’s digital solutions are helping hospitals and health systems nationwide close the gaps in care by providing aggregated patient data and reporting quality measures and outcomes. Stop by the Influence Health booth 6232 Tuesday-Thursday at 11 am and 2 pm for a product demo and a chance  to win NIKEiD custom shoes!* * Winners will be randomly selected at the end of EACH demo. Must be present to win.



To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Nick Challen, vice president, strategic partnerships

InMediata drives innovation in healthcare payments by focusing on solving complex reimbursement issues for large provider groups, hospitals, and billing services. We believe in challenging the status quo, utilizing our experience and knowledge to provide tailored solutions that address specific client and industry needs. For example, our InBanking product suite bridges the gap between banking and healthcare claim payments. By automating the payment reconciliation process, healthcare entities are able to gain greater insight into their finances and cash flow while reducing the administrative inefficiencies involved with processing payer and patient revenues. At inMediata, we’re different for a reason. Please contact us to discuss strategic partnership opportunities, and to register for our $500 drawing, which will take place on Wednesday at 5:00 pm.



Booth 4443

Contact: Ross Whittaker, market development manager

InterSystems provides the information engines that power some of the world’s most important applications. In healthcare, finance, government, and other sectors where lives and livelihoods are at stake, InterSystems has been a strategic technology provider since 1978. InterSystems is a privately held company headquartered in Cambridge, MA (USA), with offices worldwide, and its software products are used daily by millions of people in more than 100 countries. HIMSS2016 – THEME  Right Connections, Right Conclusions, Right Actions – FEATURED  HX360, Transforming End-of-Life Care, HIE Community Networking Breakfast  The Path to Deriving Clinical Value from FHIR, The Internet of Healthy Things presentation and book signing by Joseph Kvedar, MD. SAMPLE PRESENTATION TOPICS  HIE cost and care improvements – HIE support for population health – Hospital in “The Cloud” – Genomic data – Remote patient monitoring. GIVEAWAY – Conference Survival Kit. More info about InterSystems at HIMSS16

Legacy Data Access


Booth 949

Contact: John Hanggi, director, business development

Running old applications just to get to the data? STOP! We need to talk … With a singular focus on the healthcare industry, Legacy Data Access provides the industry’s most comprehensive set of software tools and solutions for working with data from retired systems. Legacy Data Access stores data from systems that are being retired and provides secure, Web-based, interactive access to the information. Please visit us to discuss how we have successfully retired 192 different healthcare applications – a total of 463 applications. We will be providing “Coffee, Tea, and Legacy” Tuesday morning in our booth. Giveaways include ear buds, tote bags, and the best dark chocolate in the Exhibit Hall. Sign up for a chance to win an Apple Watch or one of two Apple TVs.

Leidos Health


Booth 3432, 9908, and 13329

Contact: Matt Maloney, director, marketing

For more than 25 years, Leidos Health has been helping our clients improve care and reduce costs by leveraging information technology and best practices. As one of the largest and most experienced health IT consulting firms, and a provider of health IT services to nearly every federal agency focused on healthcare, we bring diverse perspectives and proven solutions to help you succeed. Our experts will be available to discuss the latest happenings and challenges in healthcare, and share how we’re helping organizations with solutions for implementation, optimization, interoperability, cybersecurity, federal health IT, and more. Come by our booth to register for a chance to win an Apple Watch ($350 value). We’ll be giving one away each day.

Lexmark Healthcare


Booth 6225

Contact: Katie Booth, manager, global healthcare marketing

Patients are anxious. Clinicians are frustrated, and IT staffs are overwhelmed. All because the EHR is missing vital patient information. Lexmark Healthcare can help. Our solutions uniquely deliver comprehensive information — medical images, documents, and clinical photos — in one view within the EHR. Ready to transform your tomorrow? Visit HIMSS booth 6225.

Liaison Technologies


Booth 11610

Contact: Amanda Thomas, director of marketing

Liaison Technologies will be giving away a Drone a Day! You can also enter to win a Hoverboard. Stop by the booth to find out how!



Booth 968

Contact: Jackie Leckas, vice president, marketing
617.244.8411 x203

LifeImage is a network for connecting users and systems to patient imaging histories online. Our platform has been adopted by more than 120 multi-site health systems across the country, which use it to extend their enterprise imaging infrastructure to exchange data with outside facilities, physicians, and patients. This improves care coordination, increases referral business, and eliminates redundant imaging. Visit us at booth #968 during HIMSS16 to learn: •Best practices for integrating external imaging data into your EHR. •Common workflows for exchanging images with patients. •How to ensure your image sharing platform is interoperable with needed applications. We’ll also be giving away an Apple Watch Sport each day of the conference. For more information, visit us at

LogicStream Health


Booth 4977

Contact: Nicole Nash, marketing coordinator

Stop by LogicStream’s booth to enter a drawing to win a hover board. Schedule your show floor demo and get a Starbucks gift card at the booth (email



To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Jerry Thomas, chief sales officer

Contact MEA|NEA|TWSG at and find out how our solutions for hospitals, including those for esMD (Electronic Submission of Medical Documentation) – a topic that will be discussed in the HIMSS16 Session: Improving Workflow and Increasing Efficiencies with the CMS esMD Electronic Solution on March 3 – along with a suite of highly-integrated software solutions facilitate the secure exchange of health information and the efficient management of healthcare communication via voice, fax, image, data, and electronic documents. Our solutions allow clients to effectively manage critical information that typically resides outside the EHR, closing the continuum on a fully accessible patient record. /



Booth 418

Contact: Malachi Charbonneau

MedAptus solutions streamline the process of delivering patient care. From simplifying pre-care clinical workforce needs to automating administrative tasks at the point-of-care, our offerings provide customers with a foundation for improved operational efficiency, personal productivity, and ultimately, optimized financial performance. Adoption of the MedAptus suite enables providers to spend their time where it matters most – with patients.



Booth 435

Contact: Gabriela Benincasa

Visit medCPU’s booth (#435) at HIMSS 2016 and experience a quantum leap in healthcare IT. MedCPU proudly hosts Key Opinion Leaders in Decision Support at HIMSS 2016. MedCPU joins Froedtert/Medical College of Wisconsin and UPMC at HIMSS 2016 for a timely presentation on decision-support challenges and solutions.



Booth 5065

Contact: Chris Farrell, vice president, marketing

MedData is among the nation’s leading providers of RCM services including coding, billing, patient reimbursement, eligibility and enrollment, third-party liability, and patient satisfaction services – all with a proven compliance record. For more than 35 years, we’ve been committed to delivering industry-leading and patient-focused RCM solutions to our growing network of more than 1,000 hospital sites nationwide.    Giveaways and promotions: Retro candy throughout the day and craft beer in the afternoons/evenings * ICD-10 or Not Game – Test your knowledge of the new codeset for a chance to win gift cards and other prizes.



Booth: 3438  Population Health Knowledge Center: 14115  Career Center: 13329-8

Contact: Sherri Stuart, senior vice president, marketing services

Make Accountable Predictable at HIMSS. Be sure to drop by to experience Aerial for Population Health Management. You could be the winner of Nest, a programmable WiFi learning thermostat.



Booth 3821

Contact: Tom Mitchell, vice president, marketing

Medhost HIMSS16 – Solutions to Manage your Facility, Provide Care, and Build a Brand. Visit us at booth #3821 to discover tools to transform healthcare in your community. We offer integrated EHR solutions and an engagement platform that not only empowers providers but also promotes healthy consumers while helping you build a brand and consumer loyalty. Medhost has the solutions you need to optimize patient care while running your healthcare organization with a strong bottom-line.



Booth 4049

Contact: Lauren Tilelli, director of marketing

Medicity, a Healthagen business, has been creating clinically connected communities for more than 15 years. Today, the company provides population health solutions for more than 90 million people. Medicity makes data smarter, removing the noise and turning it into a strategic asset that enables better sharing of information across the health system. This creates a new dimension in population health, one that leads to more robust analytic insights, more effective care management, and more proactive physician engagement. Medicity’s solutions further enable clinician engagement, improved transitions of care, reduced duplicative services and the opportunity for patients to take an active role in their personal health. Medicity’s breadth of industry reach includes: · 1,000 hospitals · 27 million lives in its analytics solution · 3.6 billion annual transactions · 265 unique EHRs integrated · 250,000 end-users. For HIMSS16, Medicity will be showcasing its entire suite of population health solutions, with a spotlight on Manage, its most recent care management offering. The company also will be launching its new network analytics solution, Explore SmartNetworks, which provides a more complete picture of network leakage and opportunities for network development.

Medicomp Systems


Booth 1354

Contact: Dave Lareau, CEO

Lights, camera, action! Let’s play Quipstar. Back by popular demand, Medicomp Systems invites you to play Quipstar, the World’s Favorite HIT Quiz Show. This interactive health information technology quiz show will show the live, studio audience why doctors love Quippe, and how easy it is to learn and use. New this year, teams of contestants will compete for cash and prizes using Medicomp’s newest member of the Quippe family of products, Quippe Clinical Lens. Working with existing EHR systems, Quippe Clinical Lens provides problem-oriented views of relevant clinical information at the point of care. After a brief training, Quippe contestants will utilize Quippe Clinical Lens to answer questions in a game show format. Register to reserve a seat at Show times are Tuesday and Wednesday at 11 am and 4 pm, and Thursday at 11 am and 2 pm. Giveaways: At each show, participants will have an opportunity to win one of 5 iPad Pro tablets and cash prizes. That is a total of 30 iPad Pros over the course of HIMSS16. Register now!

Merge Healthcare


Booth 2116

Contact: Kayley Weinbaum, marketing communications lead

At HIMSS 2016, we will be showing multiple demonstrations of work in progress that unites IBM Research, Watson Health Imaging, and Merge technologies to help transform HIT in addition to our full solutions suite, including our Best in KLAS solution, IConnect Enterprise Archive (our VNA). IConnect Enterprise Archive helps organizations easily collect, manage, archive, and present growing volumes and variances of patient images – DICOM or non-DICOM – both from inside and beyond the walls of your healthcare enterprise.



Booth 5029

Contact: Lisa Martin, manager of marketing

MModal’s Fluency is the only closed-loop clinical documentation platform on the market today. What does this mean to you? It means that from technology to tools to services, MModal’s Fluency platform delivers everything a healthcare provider needs to create, complete, and use clinical information in one connected platform. Learn more about our: •Front-end speech recognition •Intelligence-driven CDI •Enhanced coding workflow •Flexible transcription platform •Radiology reporting solution •Technology-enabled transcription, CDI, and coding services. MModal’s closed-loop clinical documentation solutions support the revenue cycle, facilitate compliance and quality, and most importantly, deliver information where and when it is needed most –  to the physician at point-of-care. Come see us at HIMSS, booth #5029, to learn more.

National Decision Support Co.


Booth 11010

Contact: Bob Cooke, vice president, marketing strategy

NDSC is a globally recognized provider of innovative clinical decision support (CDS) solutions widely adopted by healthcare providers and integrated with leading EHR vendors. We offer a scalable, cloud-based architecture for delivering actionable CDS based on nationally recognized guidelines into provider workflows. Through production and delivery of its flagship solution, ACRselect, NDSC has developed a proven process for digitizing consensus medical guidelines and delivering them at the point-of-care. Healthcare is evolving and so is National Decision Support Company. As part of our commitment to making medicine safer, more effective, and accessible, we have launched CareSelectDS to better reflect our company’s scope, competency, and mission. With CareSelectDS, we have broadened the current solutions portfolio in diagnostic imaging and extended its reach into lab and care pathways with the CareSelectDS content community. Whether you’re looking for more information about National Decision Support solutions and services, have specific questions about workflows and integrations, or just have some thoughts to share — we’re always interested in hearing from you.



Being the first enterprise communications technology provider in healthcare, NEC is proud to be part of HISTalk and the dedicated professionals who have grown with us and made this the most exciting, challenging, and rewarding vertical industry. Leveraging 65,000 patents and over 100 years, NEC continues to develop healthcare industry-focused applications in communications infrastructure, IT/networking solutions, and award-winning biometrics. Want to learn more about NEC’s mission to orchestrate a brighter world through optimized solutions for healthcare? Follow us @NECHealthcare or #NECHIMSS16 and join our traveling “meet-and-greet”!  We will post our positions to host you for coffee or a libation several times a day throughout HIMSS.



Booth 5057


Netsmart is committed to helping health and human services providers deliver effective, outcomes-based care to more than 25 million consumers. Netsmart serves more than 20,000 clients organizations across all 50 states, resulting in approximately 450,000 users of its software and technology solutions. Netsmart clients include mental health and addiction services agencies, health homes, psychiatric hospitals, private and group mental health practices, public health departments, social services and child and family services agencies, managed care organizations, and vital records offices. Netsmart’s CareFabric, a framework of innovative clinical and business solutions and services, supports integrated, coordinated delivery of health services across the spectrum of care. Netsmart’s HIT Value Model, a vendor-agnostic planning and measurement system, provides a path for health and human services organizations to evaluate where on the healthcare IT spectrum they should focus their efforts, the value associated with that strategic decision and a comparison with peer organizations nationwide. Netsmart is pleased to support the EveryDayMatters Foundation, which was established for behavioral and public health organizations to learn from each other and share their causes and stories. For more information, visit Learn more about how Netsmart is changing the face of health care today. Visit or call 1-800-472-5509.

NextGen Healthcare


Booth 4421

Contact: Lynn Belanger, marketing director

NextGen Healthcare is a leader in value-based care, population health, interoperability, and revenue cycle services. See demos and speak with our experts on how we help practices foster healthy communities, engage patients, manage care, and deliver healthy bottom lines – all key elements for a successful transition to value-based care. We will be showcasing solutions designed to help you transform your practice to a value-based revenue entity. To totally understand the costs associated with your provider model, you’ll need to meet at least three goals: Achieve interoperability – data exchange and aggregation across hospitals, physicians, and other systems for a clear, longitudinal view of the patient and your population; enhance the patient experience ― patient access, patient engagement, and communication; and improve financial performance ― revenue cycle management and operational efficiencies. While you’re at our booth, pop across the aisle and visit booth #4429 to see how NextGen interoperability, powered by Mirth technology, is changing the game for interoperability and patient data management, and helping to facilitate care for over 150 Million patients. Happy Hour each day!  Of course, we’re not all work and no play! We invite you to stop by the booth after a long day pounding the convention floor for a pick-me-up. Happy hours run the last hour of the show each day at our booth. Get your headshots at the NextGen Healthcare booth: Drop by and “Say Cheese!” If the last headshot you got was in high school or college, then you NEED to stop by NextGen Healthcare booth #4421. We know you look good and we want to give you proof. We’ll be taking professional headshots for attendees, so stop by and let us get your best side! Headshots will be available about a week after HIMSS16.



Booth 8233

Contact: Drew Madden, president

Visit Nordic, Help a Charity – Stop by booth #8233 and vote on one of three charities to which Nordic will donate money at the end of HIMSS. The charity with the most votes will get the largest donation. As a bonus, while you’re at the booth, you can chat with any of our health IT experts about improving health outcomes and the health of your business with our #1 in KLAS EHR consulting services. Visit booth #8233. Vote on a charity. Have a great HIMSS16.

NTT Data


Booth 3854

Contact: Larry Kaiser, senior marketing manager

NTT DATA offers IT solutions that increase efficiency, reduce medical errors, and enhance the revenue cycle. Our ONC-ATCB certified solution, Optimum, features an industry-leading RCM solution, EHR, ERP, portal, and post-acute solutions. Reasons attendees should visit the NTT DATA booth: 1. Discuss current industry trends and see how NTT DATA is addressing them.  2. Learn about what NTT DATA offers.  3. Have your mind read by our mentalist. NTT DATA will be giving away a drone to attendees who watch our show and get a raffle ticket.



Interoperability Showcase Booth 11954-38

Contact: Debbi Gillotti, CMO and VP/GM Healthcare

NVoq is a cloud-based provider of speech recognition services for the healthcare industry headquartered in Boulder, CO. We offer a real-time client application and RESTful API services for developers to voice-enable their applications, and optional point-of-care coding support for ICD-10 and other standards. No voice training is required to use SayIt, so providers can be productive immediately. Our proven cloud solution works anywhere there’s an Internet connection and there’s no network software or equipment to purchase. In the 2016 Interoperability Showcase, we’ll be demonstrating how simple SayIt voice commands can convert audio to text, create structured data using NLP, and interface structured data directly to major EHRs. We’ll be presenting a variety of specialty use cases illustrating the range of workflow automation powered by SayIt. Didn’t think you had options for speech recognition? You do now. Come see us in booth 11954-38.

Obix by Clinical Computer Systems


Intelligent Health Pavilion Booth 11655 and Booth 6052

Contact: Heather Ruchalski, director, marketing

Obix by Clinical Computer Systems, a medical software company, will be participating in the Intelligent Health Pavilion at HIMSS. We are sponsoring the LDR Suite in the pavilion, which will highlight ours and other technologies associated with labor, delivery, and recovery of mother and baby. Within the pavilion, we will be in Kiosk 6, where you can learn more about our strategic perinatal software solutions. The Obix Perinatal Data System is a comprehensive, computerized system for central, bedside, and remote electronic fetal monitoring. It includes archiving, point-of-care charting, single-click management reports, and Internet-based physician access. We will also feature the TrueLabor Maternal Fetal Monitor, which offers a unique digital signal processing technology that enhances fetal monitoring in evaluating uterine contractions and FHR information. We would like to spotlight two speakers that will be presenting in the Leadership Theater within the pavilion on Tuesday, March 1. 1 pm – 1:30 pm Sean Blackwell, MD will speak to:  Resign of Patient Care Work Flow for the Diabetic Gravida: What Should We Be Doing in the Digital Age? 3:15 pm – 3:45 pm Dick Taylor, MD will speak to:  A Clinician in the Intelligent Hospital: Free to be Me. You will have the opportunity to ask questions following their presentations.

Oneview Healthcare


Booth 8215

Contact: Jeff Fallon, president, North America

Oneview Healthcare, founded in Dublin, Ireland in 2007, is a patient engagement technology company. Come to our booth (8215) for a pint of Guinness, Irish music, and Irish dancers from 4:30 to 6:00 pm on Tuesday, March 1 and Wednesday, March 2! Or stop by any time for a demo and to meet the team. Oneview Healthcare’s patient engagement solution integrates seamlessly with a hospital’s existing EHRs to connect patients with their care teams across the care continuum. While patients enjoy movies on demand, games, meal ordering, hospital concierge services, educational content, and more at their fingertips on a bedside device, the solution works behind the scenes, gathering valuable data for hospitals. Tasks and requests are routed seamlessly to the right resources at the right time, streamlining hospital workflows and creating a relaxed environment for patients. Perhaps most importantly, hospitals can keep a real-time pulse on patient satisfaction through customized surveys they can distribute at any time. Oneview’s ambulatory solution, Oneview Connect, brings patient engagement full circle on patient mobile devices. Patients receive pre-admission scheduling, notifications, and education to prepare them for their hospital visits. They can view maps and check in once they arrive. The high-touch interaction continues post-discharge as patients receive follow-up care notifications, appointment scheduling and continued education, all with care team messaging capabilities to ensure all questions are answered and patients are fully equipped to take care of themselves at home.

Optimum Healthcare IT


To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Jenny Paal, marketing manager

Optimum Healthcare IT is committed to building a true business partnership with our clients. We are not just another staff augmentation vendor or consulting firm. Our motivation and passion is about supporting your success and healthy outcomes for your patients. We understand patient care does not stop so your health system can implement new IT processes. That is why our clients rely on our expert IT consultants and FTEs to manage the IT side of the implementations so our clients can focus on their patients. Our commitment to providing excellence in service is driven by a Leadership team with more than 50 years of experience in providing expert healthcare staffing and consulting solutions to all types of organizations. We are passionate about what we do and work hard to deliver premium services to our clients. This philosophy starts at the top of our organization and is the core set of values we impart in all of our employees and consultants. Optimum Healthcare IT is different from the rest because we have built our business on personal experience, based on years in the healthcare industry. We have been on both sides of the transaction and know what is most important to our clients and our consultants. We have based our business model on attracting the best and brightest consultants the industry has to offer, who are experienced clinicians and hospitalists and are considered to be experts in Healthcare Information Technology and business. Working with these stellar consultants make our presentations to healthcare systems that much more impressive. Our ability to view the client from this holistic perspective gives us the advantage of providing superb services, which span a large spectrum of Service Lines. When our clients have a need, we can fulfill it.

Orchestrate Healthcare


Booth 7520

Contact: Charlie Cook, president

What Happens In Vegas … Helps You Positively Impact Your Organization!  Stop by booth #7520 to hear how our consulting philosophy is Best In KLAS, share with us your upcoming projects and learn how we come in on-budget and without scope creep, and discuss how our information security practice can proactively help your organization. See how 30 impactful minutes with us will change your IT consulting direction!



Booth 14034

Contact: Annie Czarnecki, sales representative
888.747.2455 x401

Patientco empowers healthcare providers to optimize and increase patient revenue cycle efficiency with cloud-based patient payment technology. Patientco goes beyond basic payment processing to connect every patient payment event throughout multi-facility healthcare networks—delivering unrivaled visibility into and control over the patient revenue cycle. The result is improved cash flow, reduced A/R days, cost-saving efficiencies, and increased patient and provider satisfaction. Any provider who schedules and attends a Patientco demo will receive a $25 Amazon Gift Card.



Booth 5249

Contact: Cristina Christy, senior events manager
(781) 373-6378

PatientKeeper believes in the promise of IT to enable better healthcare, just as numerous medical technology innovations over the years have dramatically improved our quality of life. Visit our exhibit at HIMSS16 to discover the many ways PatientKeeper is making physician lives better through intuitive applications that streamline order entry, medication reconciliation, documentation, charge entry, and other common workflows. While you’re visiting, have your picture taken in our Pioneers of Modern Medicine photo booth.



To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Sheila Schweitzer, CEO

PatientSafe Solutions


Booth 4257

Contact: Alex Condurso, senior manager, marketing

Schedule your show floor demo and get a Starbucks gift card at the booth!



Booth 1068

Contact: Todd Helmink, national senior vice president, business development

Trusted by generations of healthcare providers, PDR delivers innovative health knowledge products and services that support prescribing decisions and patient adherence to improve health. As a leading provider of behavior-based prescription management programs, PDR provides event-driven and clinically relevant healthcare messaging through its patented process that improves patient compliance and outcomes, while preserving privacy. This network is made up of e-prescribing, EMR, and EHR applications, chain and independent pharmacies, and sponsors of healthcare-related education such as pharmaceutical manufacturers, health plans, payers, and pharmacy benefit managers. Learn more at



To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Chip Long, senior vice president, growth and development

PeriGen offers the only fetal surveillance software solution that is single-vendor, comprehensive, and fully-integrated. While at HIMSS, preview our new "on-demand" perinatal integration feature.



Booth 225

Contact: Leigh Ann Myers, chief clinical officer

PerfectServe delivers healthcare’s only secure care team collaboration platform, making it easy to quickly connect with the right care team member in any situation. Using a cloud-based system, PerfectServe Synchrony features Dynamic Intelligent Routing, high reliability notifications, cross-organizational connectivity, and proven interoperability. Nearly 58,000 physicians use the platform for improved care team productivity, better patient experience and HIPAA-compliant messaging. At PerfectServe booth #225, you’re going to feel like a kid in a candy store. Not only will you be surrounded by sweet treats, you’ll get to play with devices and experience first-hand how PerfectServe Synchrony can enable more efficient and productive care teams.

Phynd Technologies


Booth 10728

Contact: Tom White, CEO
855.749.6363 x710

The Phynd Unified Provider Management (UPM) Platform allows healthcare organizations to unify, manage, and share a single, verified, custom profile on each of their providers, regardless of where that data exists in their multiple legacy IT systems. With the UPM Platform, hospitals and health systems have the ability  to manage their provider (referring and credentialed physicians, nurses, and mid-levels) profiles  across all of their core IT clinical, financial, and operational systems. This single, accurate source for provider information streamlines workflow, improves productivity,  speeds up billing, optimizes the revenue cycle, and enhances care coordination enterprise-wide.

Point-of-Care Partners


To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Tony Schueth, CEO and founder

Point-of-Care Partners is a leading management consulting firm assisting healthcare organizations in the evaluation, development, and implementation of winning health information management strategies in a rapidly evolving electronic world. Our accomplished healthcare consultants, core services, and methodologies are focused on positioning your organization for success in the integrated, data-driven world of value-based care. Areas we can help you achieve success include: •ePrior Authorization (drug, device, procedure) •ePrescribing/EPCS/Specialty •Clinical Decision Support •Biosimilars (tracking, tracing, naming) •Health Information Exchange •Long-term, Post-Acute Care •Patient Engagement •Population Health/Analytics •Specialty Pharmacy Automation •Telehealth •Medication Therapy Management. In addition, we provide resources to help you stay up-to-date with frequent changes in US healthcare regulatory requirements for both ePrescribing and electronic prior authorization. Visit to learn more.

Porter Research


To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Cynthia Porter, president

Porter Research has been in the healthcare IT industry as a proven go-to-market research firm for HIT vendors, healthcare payers, providers, biomedical companies, and consumers for 25+ years. Porter Research offer seven proven services: •Go to Market Strategy Research •Win-Loss Analysis •Brand /Competitive Analysis •Content Development •Customer Experience •Prospect Profiling/Lead Generation •Mergers and Acquisition Research Services. “So many companies in healthcare attempt to package and launch new solutions without fully understanding their target market, articulating their value proposition, and correctly positioning their solution,” says Cynthia Porter, president, Porter Research. We solve these foundational business problems through data-driven research and decades of healthcare experience. “By truly listening to the market and building strong value propositions that resonate with targets, our clients achieve faster brand awareness, market penetration, and business growth.” Porter has worked with over 300 HIT vendors, payers, providers, and biomedical companies since its inception in 1989.

Qpid Health


Booth 11421

Contact: Amy Krane, senior director, marketing

Is your CFO asking if your value-based reimbursement is what it should be? Do your clinical leaders doubt you are getting credit for the care you deliver? Is manual data abstraction to fill the gaps your current – and costly – solution? If so, it’s time to take a fresh look at how you are reporting on quality measures. Please visit us in Booth #11421 to learn how QPID Health’s clinical reasoning technology locates and synthesizes information from anywhere in patient records to streamline quality reporting, clinical data registry submissions, and medical necessity reviews. Sorry no raffles or giveaways. But … we guarantee that you will be a Super Hero to your team back home when you tell them there’s a new way to optimize the data in your EHR.

Recondo Technology


To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Jay Deady, CEO

Now THIS is a game-changer…. If you are interested in learning about the FIRST true, self-service price transparency solution in healthcare, reach out to Recondo’s CEO, Jay Deady, to schedule some time to connect at HIMSS2016. View a demo of the first self-service price transparency solution in healthcare and receive a FREE Amazon gift card.

Sagacious Consultants


Booth 4770

Contact: Stephanie Speth, manager, marketing

Sagacious Consultants leverages its extensive Epic and healthcare industry experience to drive financial performance and improve patient care in organizations worldwide. Using proven methodologies for revenue and clinical transformation, Sagacious Consultants improves KPIs and enhances provider efficiency. Sagacious Consultants is now part of Accenture, expanding its breadth of services and geographies served. Visit Sagacious Consultants at HIMSS booth #4770 to chat with our EHR experts and pick up some great swag! Hear our revenue cycle presentations: 1) “Rady Children’s Hospital Recharges its Revenue Cycle” on Tuesday, March 1 at 11:00 am in the Accenture Booth #7710; and 2) “IT Transformation: Rev Cycle Insights from the CIO” on Wednesday, March 2 at  2:30 pm in the Rock of Ages Theater, Session ID: 155.

Santa Rosa Consulting


Booth 2157

Contact: Ashley Burkhead, sales operations and marketing manager
972.804.4216 (texts welcome)

Booth Giveaway: This year, we will have another tiered giveaway program. We will be giving away 2 items: a $100 Amazon gift card and a tablet (winner’s choice – value up to $400).



Booth 11612 (Divurgent’s booth)

Contact: John Gomez, CEO

Cybersecurity – one of the hottest and most challenging topics facing HIT leaders this year. Unfortunately, the topic is surrounded by hype, conjecture, and a healthy dose of myth.  Practical strategies, approaches, and real-world solutions are fast becoming unicorns. Sensato is a small, boutique healthcare cybersecurity firm – we are 100-percent focused on HIT and our DNA is HIT.  We don’t use hype, fear, or uncertainty to establish long-term partnerships. Rather, we focus on earning the trust and support of our clients by providing real-world, practical cybersecurity solutions that are respectful of an organization’s challenges and economics. Medical Device Security – Managed Security Services – Compliance – Security Operations Center – Education – Incident Response – Incident Simulation – Strategic Planning – Virtual CISO – Friends – Partners – Coaches … yes … stop by … introduce yourself … changing the world starts by just saying hello! 😉



Booth 4829

Contact: TJ Fisher, business solutions advisor

Spok is proud to be a leader in critical communications for healthcare, government, public safety, and other industries. We deliver smart, reliable solutions to help protect the health, well-being, and safety of people around the globe. Organizations worldwide rely on Spok for workflow improvement, secure texting, paging services, contact center optimization, and public safety response.  When communications matter, Spok delivers. JOIN SPOK AT HIMSS IN BOOTH 4829 TO SEE HOW YOU CAN: • Manage patient alarms to reduce alarm fatigue and improve the patient experience • Encrypt smartphone communications for HIPAA compliance • Deliver patient test results quickly to speed discharge times • Reach the right on-call clinician quickly for well-coordinated care. Spok will do one drawing at the end of each exhibit day for a chance to win an Amazon Echo.

Stanson Health


Booth 162

Contact: Kimberly Denney, vice president, commercial operations

Stanson Health recently launched version 2.0 of its closed-loop analytics platform. This powerful platform pulls in all alert data of every type from best practice notifications to drug-drug, barcode, health maintenance, allergy, duplicate checking, etc. to provide more meaningful provider insights across your EHR’s entire alerting environment. During our in-booth demonstrations, we can show you how Stanson Health’s closed loop analytics and active CDS have helped our clients save on average $3k per provider.

Stella Technology


Interoperability Showcase Booth 11954 |Exhibit Hall G Use Case #11

Contact: Salim Kizaraly, senior vice president, business development and founder

Visit the Stella Technology kiosk located in the HIMSS16 Interoperability Showcase booth 11954 in Exhibit Hall G. Stella Technology will be conducting the following product demonstrations and theater presentations:

  • Interoperability Showcase Use Case #11 – Stella Technology will participate in this use case by ensuring that the clinical documentation (CCDA) sent by the PCP to the specialist as part of the referral is of high and meaningful clinical quality, as measured by its IQHD (Inspector of Quality Healthcare Data) tool.
  • Demonstration of the Interoperability Test Tool (ITT) used by the ConCert by HIMSS 
  • lnteroperability Showcase Theater Sessions:
    Tuesday, March 1st at 1:00 pm PT. Come listen to our interoperability expert and CTO, Lin Wan, who will be presenting on the topic of “Content Interoperability” and how to overcome any challenges your organization is having around the quality of your clinical data.
    Wednesday, March 2nd at 12:00 pm PT. “ConCert by HIMSS: The Trusted Solution for Interoperability.” Learn how the ConCert by HIMSS certification program is defining interoperability. 
  • HIMSS Blog: "Content Interoperability: Achieving Clinical Data Quality Success" by Lin Wan, CTO, Stella Technology – We look forward to seeing you at the Interoperability Showcase!

Strata Decision Technology


Booth 119

Contact: Rachael Britnell, senior marketing specialist

Strata Decision Technology provides an innovative, cloud-based financial analytics and performance platform that is used by healthcare providers for financial planning, decision support, and continuous improvement. Founded in 1996, the company’s customer base includes 1,000 hospitals and many of the largest and most influential healthcare delivery systems in the US including CentraCare Health System, Fairview Health Services, Mission Health, and Yale New Haven Health System. The Company’s StrataJazz application is a single integrated software platform that includes modules for capital planning, contract modeling, cost accounting, cost management, decision support, financial forecasting, management reporting, operational budgeting, and performance improvement and strategic planning. StrataJazz earned top honors for the second consecutive year as the KLAS 2015/2016 Category Leader for Decision Support – Business in the 2015/2016 Best in KLAS: Software and Services report. The company has also been recognized with the Chicago Innovation Award, as one of Becker’s Healthcare 150 Great Places to Work in Healthcare, #1 in Black Book Ranking, and inclusion on the Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Companies list, among many other industry accolades.

Summit Healthcare


Booth 3700

Contact: Sara Wildes

Summit Healthcare offers an array of integration/automation solutions. Our Summit Downtime Reporting System delivers access to critical data during downtime, while the Summit Scripting Toolkit and Summit InSync cover your automation needs. The Summit Interoperability Platform features the Summit Express Connect interface engine; Summit Care Exchange, which supports CCD data exchange with an integrated HISP; and Summit Provider Exchange, which simplifies bi-directional physician office integration. Visit us at booth #3700.

Sunquest Information Systems


Booth 1925

Contact: Corrine Tso, vice president, marketing

At HIMSS16, Sunquest is demonstrating its solutions to enable fully-connected diagnostic communities across the care continuum. Attendees can receive in-booth demonstrations of Sunquest’s clinical and anatomic pathology solutions, as well as learn more about how GeneInsight, Atlas Medical, and Data Innovations can enhance the Sunquest solution. In addition to solution demos, Sunquest and Jitin Asnaani, the executive director of the CommonWell Health Alliance, will co-present on the future of interoperability and Sunquest’s strategy. Join Sunquest at HIMSS16, booth #1925.



To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Kyle Silvestro, CEO



Booth 2272

Contact: Josh Mogilefsky, finance manager
866.966.4700 x6023

The Coolest thing in Healthcare! Giveaways include coolers and beverage coozies.

Fujifilm Medical Systems – TeraMedica Division


Booth 1024

Contact: Beth Roncke, manager, marketing communications

Synapse VNA integrates more specialties, more devices, and more data than any other VNA. Period. With 16 years of industry leading experience, our TeraMedica Division remains independently focused on advancing VNA technology and healthcare interoperability, while now leveraging Fujifilm’s clinical capabilities. As the centerpiece of Fujifilm’s comprehensive medical informatics portfolio, Synapse VNA provides the industry’s leading image management solution. Schedule your private HIMSS16 appointment at and visit us in booth 1024.

TransUnion Healthcare


Booth 11318

Contact: Pat Gilmore, vice president, sales

TransUnion’s ClearIQ patient access platform and coverage discovery solutions (eScan) more accurately identifies and helps providers understand, predict, and integrate the financial behavior of patients so they can efficiently maximize reimbursement for the care provided, which ultimately help providers reduce uncompensated care and deliver a more transparent and improved patient experience.



To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Ann Baty, senior marketing communications manager

Robert Hitchcock, M.D., FACEP, T-System Chief Strategy Officer will be leading an educational session alongside Joseph Pocreva, M.D., Col., USAF, MC, Medical Director, Keesler Medical Center at HIMSS16. Learn how to leverage the power of EHR data to facilitate process change and improve key performance indicators. Using the U.S. Air Force’s Keesler Medical Center as an example, this session discusses utilizing EHR data to actively manage and make decisions related to clinical flow, throughput, staffing resources, bottlenecks and more.

HIMSS Presenter Session ID 57:

Valence Health


Booth 1368

Contact: Kevin Weinstein, chief growth officer

If you’re not familiar with Valence Health, we’ve been helping provider organizations accept financial responsibility and rewards for the care they provide since 1996. With our integrated set of population health technology, advisory services, and managed services, our goal is to help you make the essential volume-to-value transition as seamless as possible. Visit us at booth #1368, where we’ll be showcasing our population health technology solutions, which help you: •Aggregate multiple data sources to create a comprehensive patient view  •Identify and close care gaps to manage populations •Measure performance to align clinical and financial goals and •Track patient adherence to care plans.



To schedule a meeting:

Contact: Chris Edwards, chief marketing officer

Validic is the healthcare industry’s leading cloud-based, digital health platform. Validic provides convenient and quick access to patient data from in-home clinical devices, wearables and patient healthcare applications. By connecting its growing base of customers – that includes providers, pharmaceutical companies, payers, wellness companies and health IT vendors – to the continuously expanding list of digital health technologies, Validic enables healthcare companies to better coordinate care across their communities, improve their patient engagement strategies and more efficiently manage their patient populations. Validic’s innovative, scalable and FDA Class I MDDS technology delivers actionable, standardized, and HIPAA-compliant consumer health data from the best in-class mobile health devices and applications. Validic was recognized for healthcare innovation by Gartner and received Frost & Sullivan’s Best Practices and Best Value in Healthcare Information Interoperability award, as well as Top Ten Healthcare Disruptor award. Validic’s leading global digital health ecosystem reaches over 160 million lives in 47 countries and continues to grow daily. To learn more about Validic, follow Validic on Twitter at @validic or visit

Versus Technology


Booth 5246

Contact: Jeanne Ehinger, marketing communications manager

Are you looking for locating technology but can’t decide on a direction? With our multi-platform, scalable approach, you’re always on the right path with Versus. Whether you want to leverage WiFi infrastructure for enterprise visibility or delve into advanced locating to optimize clinical workflow, your first step begins at HIMSS16. The only live RTLS demonstration on the exhibit floor, our Experience Center features a fully operational Versus Sensory Network, demonstrating real-time cues for clinical workflow. Learn how we use location data combined with powerful workflow intelligence to not only drive efficiency at the point of care, but also automatically document key measures – helping you measure and manage your operations. We also offer ample opportunity to speak peer-to-peer with RTLS users. Visit the Versus booth to meet a client with 10 years of experience using RTLS automation across eight different solutions. Or, visit us during our exhibit hall cocktail reception, where you’re sure to meet more Versus clients – Wednesday from 4-6pm.

Vital Images


Booth 732

Contact: Nichole Gerszewski, corporate brand and PR manager

Visit Vital’s booth (#732) to get your All Access Pass to our VIP Suite featuring game-changing technology. Learn more about VNA on demand, zero-cost data migration, personalized viewing, enterprise interoperability, ACO image governance, and more.



Booth 6251

Contact: Leslee Paganelli, ambassador, company culture and communication

VitalWare makes the business of healthcare easier through intuitive cloud-based technologies and advanced knowledge sharing. Our team shapes businesses in the marketplace by delivering best-in-class products and service for a powerful user experience. We identify and simplify challenges in an ever changing and regulated industry, making your job easier. Visit us in booth #6251 to speak with our experts and enter for a chance to win a GoPro HERO.



Booth 3128

Contact: Denise Helfand, vice president, sales and marketing
800.597.9909 or 732.507.7200

Wellsoft Corp., developer and provider of the industry-leading EDIS since 1988, offers complete solutions for freestanding emergency centers, hospitals EDs and urgent care centers. Visit Wellsoft at HIMSS16 – Booth 3218 and learn more about 1) How to realize more revenue each year with Wellsoft  2) Why Wellsoft is ranked #1   3) Why clinicians and IT love Wellsoft. Wellsoft EDIS is Best in KLAS – Wellsoft ranked #1 in the 2015/2016, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2003, and 2002 Best in KLAS Awards: Software & Services Emergency Department Market Segment.



Booth  6221 & 4200

Contact: Tanya Flores-Olney, campaign marketing manager

The West Engagement Center combines technology enabled communications with clinically managed services to activate and engage patients beyond the clinical setting. Our solutions for patient access, routine care, transition care, chronic care, and RCM help organizations maximize revenue, quality, and the patient experience. Stop by daily for a hot cup of gourmet coffee and a chance to win an Apple Watch.

Wolters Kluwer – Clinical Drug Information


Booth 5537

Contact: Matthew Bennardo, market manager

Wolters Kluwer Clinical Drug Information joined forces with some of our Medi-Span drug data clients, collaborating on two presentations for HIMSS16 — both related to how healthcare organizations used Medi-Span filter settings and standard EHR tools to better manage alerts, helping reduce noise and the fatigue that comes with unwanted alerts, while simultaneously enhancing medication safety and clinical decision support.

WHEN: Wednesday, March 2, 4-5 pm PT 
WHO: Michael Ochowski and Phillip Boll, Group Health Cooperative South Central Wisconsin  

WHEN: Friday, March 4, noon-1 pm PT 
WHO: David Kaelbar, MD, The MetroHealth System, Cleveland, Ohio  

Come visit us at HIMSS booth 5537 and tell us about your alert wish list. We can share more about how we help healthcare organizations reduce alert fatigue and better manage and optimize medication-related alerts.



Booth 8005

Contact: Kirsten LeMaster, vice president, marketing and communications, Healthcare Provider Solutions, Xerox

Xerox Healthcare helps healthcare organizations focus on improving lives through better, more affordable, and more accessible care by designing processes that work for the people delivering, enabling, and receiving care. We provide a range of technology, analytics, and business process solutions to over 2,200 hospitals, 32 states, and major health plans. Come visit us at booth #8005 and learn why so many health professionals choose us. We can help you implement EHR and ERP, optimize business processes, increase technology adoption, deliver quality and care data, support claims accuracy, communicate member benefits, drive medication adherence, provide risk assessments, and enable access for patients. Stop by our booth to speak to Regina Holliday, artist, influential patient advocate, and founder of The Walking Gallery. She will be speaking with guests and painting their stories in the Xerox booth.



Booth 262

Contact: Gus Orr, marketing manager

Stop by ZeOmega’s booth (#262) at HIMSS to learn how we can supercharge your EHR and deliver the unique tools you need for a successful transformation to value-based care. While you’re there, you can recharge your mobile device at our convenient charging station while you complete a Jiva demo!



Booth 6647

Contact: Stacy State, director of enterprise marketing

1. Stop by booth #6647 at HIMSS16 to learn how leading US hospitals and health systems uncover 1-3 percent in new net patient revenue. 
2. Visit ZirMed at booth #6647 to find out how one health system cut AR days by more than 20 percent — while implementing a new EHR and growing their physician business by more than 20 percent! 
3. Come see ZirMed at booth #6647—meet the team that just won Best in KLAS for the third year in a row, and learn about ZirMed’s solutions for population health, remit and deposit management, and AR management!

View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 20, 2016 News No Comments

Morning Headlines 2/19/16

February 18, 2016 Headlines No Comments

IBM to buy data company Truven Health Analytics for $2.6 bln

IBM acquires Truven Health Analytics from Veritas Capital for $2.6 billion. Truven will join the IBM Watson business unit.

Allscripts Announces Fourth Quarter 2015 and Full-Year Results

Allscripts announces Q4 results: revenue climbed one percent to $346 million but missed analyst forecasts, EPS $0.09 vs. –$0.01.

Cerner  Q4 2015 Results – Earnings Call Transcript

In its earnings call, Cerner executives note that the company would have met its bookings guidance but two major deals failed to close by the end of Q4. The company also reports that new business is growing, with 36 percent of its Q4 bookings coming from new clients.

Somerville man accused of plotting attack against Children’s Hospital

A Massachusetts man has been arrested while trying to flee to Cuba for his role in coordinating a denial-of-service attack against Boston Children’s Hospital as part of the hacker group Anonymous.

View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 18, 2016 Headlines No Comments

News 2/19/16

February 18, 2016 News 1 Comment

Top News


IBM will buy Truven Health Analytics for $2.6 billion, with Watson Health GM Deborah DiSanzo saying the acquisition makes IBM “the world’s leading health data, analytics, and insights company.”

The Watson Health unit houses previous acquisitions Phytel, Explorys, and Merge Healthcare.

Veritas Capital acquired the healthcare business of Thomson Reuters in June 2012 for $1.25 billion, renaming it Truven Health Analytics. Reports in March 2015 suggested that Truven was preparing for an IPO that would have valued the company at $3 billion.

Reader Comments


From CareCloudian: “Re: former CEO Albert Santalo. He has been fully removed and last Friday was his farewell party. That’s the second company he’s founded and then was fired from.” Unverified. He’s still listed on the company’s executive page and I assume he’s still chairman of the board. Santalo was removed as CareCloud CEO in March 2015. Revenue cycle vendor Avisena fired him as its president and CEO in September 2008 and then sued him and CareCloud, claiming that he had violated his non-compete agreement.


From Seashore: “Re: Sandlot Solutions. I heard they’re going bankrupt.” Unverified. I didn’t hear back from Rich Helppie or anyone from the company after running the rumor that they’ve had big layoffs.

From British Bulldog: “Re: EMIS Health, the former Ascribe. Phasing out operations in Asia Pacific through the end of 2017.” Unverified. The England-based vendor renamed itself in June 2015 to unify products that include EMIS (primary care software with 53 percent of the UK GP market), Rx Systems (retail pharmacy software), Ascribe and Indigo 4 (pharmacy and e-prescribing), and Digital Healthcare (retinopathy screening). EMIS bought Ascribe for $80 million in 2013.


From Dedicated Reader: “Re: Boston Children’s hacker. Caught after trying to flee to Cuba.” The FBI arrests 31-year-old Somerville, MA resident Martin Gottesfeld after he was rescued from his small boat off the coast of Cuba by a passing cruise ship. He is charged with coordinating a week-long denial-of-service attack against the hospital in April 2014 on behalf of the hacker group Anonymous. He faces a five-year sentence for conspiracy.

HIStalk Announcements and Requests


Welcome to new HIStalk Platinum Sponsor Catalyze. The Madison, WI company offers “Healthcare’s HIPAA Compliant Cloud,” making healthcare applications and digital health data secure, trustworthy, and interoperable. Developers build their tech stack, then turn things over to Catalyze to provide a HITRUST-certified platform-as-a-service that offers monitoring, dedicated logging, encryption, high availability, and backup and disaster recovery. The company just launched Redpoint, which offers an developer API that provides interface mapping, a RESTful API, a keep-alive VPN connection, and testing. Redpoint offers pre-configured EHR integration scripts (prescribing, encounter or note creation, results alerting, etc.), EHR connectors, and integration workflows. The company offers free reports, open source projects, and an innovator video interview series on its site. HIStalk readers will probably know co-founder, CEO, and privacy officer Travis Good, MD, MBA, who wrote HIStalk Connect for years until Catalyze grew so large (35+ employees) that he ran out of time. Thanks to Catalyze for supporting HIStalk.


Here’s a nice video of Catalyze’s Travis Good talking about compliance.


Ms. M from Colorado says, “I can’t believe someone would be this generous” in noting our funding of her DonorsChoose request for hands-on materials for her advanced placement statistics students.

image image

Also checking in was Mrs. Dickel from her Nebraska kindergarten class, explaining, “The kids are so into these new math tools that they even choose them over Legos during our regular center time! You are truly making a difference in these kids lives. THANK YOU!!!!”

This week on HIStalk Practice: Florida Accountable Care Services and UnitedHealthcare form Central Florida ACO focused on sharing technology and real-time data. Telemedicine market set to surpass the $13 billion mark by 2021. Associates in Dermatology rolls out Iagnosis telemedicine services. CMS introduces new core clinical quality measures. Brad Boyd ponders effective IT governance in the latest Consultant’s Corner. MTBC acquires Gulf Coast Billing. Genesis Medical Associates keeps acquirers at bay by staying tech savvy. Daria Bonner and Phillip Miles outline the importance of physician coder training systems in light of ICD-10.

This week on HIStalk Connect: As apparel companies race to build digital health ecosystems, Asics acquires fitness app Runkeeper for an undisclosed sum. Hackers turn to ransomware to monetize cyber attacks on provider organizations. Microsoft partners with Novartis to create a Kinect-based MS assessment tool. Researchers find little inter-rater agreement in a study designed to evaluate mobile health apps.

Listening: indie rock from Canada-based Wintersleep, whose upcoming release contains “Territory,” featuring a killer bass track by Rush’s Geddy Lee. They sound kind of like Nada Surf, which also has new album out in a couple of weeks. I’m also desk-drumming to a new release from the quirky boys of Weezer.


February 23 (Tuesday) 1:00 ET. “Completing your EMR with a Medical Image Sharing Strategy.” Sponsored by LifeImage. Presenters: Don K. Dennison, consultant; Jim Forrester, director of imaging informatics, UR Medicine. Care coordination can suffer without an effective, cost-efficient way to share images across provider networks. Consolidating image management systems into a single platform such as VNA or PACS doesn’t address the need to exchange images with external organizations. This webinar will address incorporating the right image sharing methods into your health IT strategy.

February 24 (Wednesday) 1:00 ET. “Is Big Data a Big Deal … or Not?” Sponsored by Health Catalyst. Presenter: Dale Sanders, EVP of product development, Health Catalyst. Hadoop is the most powerful and popular technology platform for data analysis in the world, but healthcare adoption has been slow. This webinar will cover why healthcare leaders should care about Hadoop, why big data is a bigger deal outside of healthcare, whether we’re missing the IT boat yet again, and how the cloud reduces adoption barriers by commoditizing the skilled labor impact.

February 25 (Thursday) 1:00 ET. “Clinical Analytics for Population Health: Straddling Two Worlds.” Sponsored by HIStalk. Presenters: Brian Murphy, lead analyst, Chilmark Research; Jody Ranck, senior analyst, Chilmark Research. The Chilmark Research clinical analytics team will be sharing some of their key findings from the recently released “2016 Clinical Analytics for Population Health Market Trends” report. This will be followed by a Q&A session to make sure everyone goes to HIMSS16 well informed.

Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock


Healthcare API vendor PokitDok receives an unstated investment from McKesson’s investment arm. The company had previously raised $46 million.


Leidos reports Q4 results: revenue up 10 percent, adjusted EPS $0.78 vs. $0.69.


Bloodbuy, which connects hospitals to blood centers, closes a $3.75 million financing round with Premier and St. Joseph Health (CA) as participants.


Allscripts announces Q4 results: revenue up 1 percent, EPS $0.09 vs. –$0.01, meeting earnings expectations but falling short on revenue.

The local paper profiles 20-physician, western Pennsylvania-based Genesis Medical Associates, which says UPMC and Allegheny Health Network are buying practices everywhere “to secure their patients, their referrals.” The practice says it has turned down “amazing” formal offers to be acquired. It describes its 2007 EHR implementation as “a challenge,” saying it will replace that system (apparently with Athenahealth) and adding that its patient portal isn’t user-friendly. However, the practice’s executive director embraces data-driven quality, seems to approve of the Meaningful Use program, and likes tracking referrals electronically.


From the Cerner earnings call:

  • The company says two big deals that didn’t close in Q4 would have allowed it to meet bookings guidance, avoiding the company’s first bookings miss since 2008, but says those deals are still on the table.
  • The former Siemens Health Services contributed $930 million in revenue for the full year. Cerner says the acquisition is meeting or exceeding financial expectations. However, Cerner says fuzzy revenue projections on the Siemens side impacted Cerner’s revenue expectations.
  • 2015 was Cerner’s best year ever for new footprint business, with 36 percent of Q4 bookings coming from outside.
  • President Zane Burke says the marketplace is becoming more aware of Epic’s high cost of ownership, lack of system openness, and lack of cloud-based systems to support population health, saying Cerner expects more success in new sales and selling population health software to Epic users. It says Epic-using Geisinger’s selection of Cerner’s HealtheIntent  validated “the shortcomings of our primary competitor.”
  • Forty Siemens customers signed to migrate to Millennium during the year.
  • Cerner says the EHR market is changing to what it envisioned in working with Intermountain, explaining, “We believe that EHR will evolve from a transactional system to an intelligent activity-based system that will enable faster adoption of best practices, reduce variance, personalize care, improve outcomes, and the ability to identify unit costs, which will be critical as reimbursement shifts to outcomes-based and bundled payments.”
  • EVP Jeff Townsend reports that Neal Patterson’s cancer treatments have gone well and he is progressing as expected.


Barnabas Health (NJ), East Texas Medical Center (TX), and Stanford Children’s Health (CA) choose Orion Health’s Rhapsody integration engine.

Partners in Care (NJ) chooses Wellcentive’s population health management solution.

AssistRx, Cerner, DrFirst, NextGen, and Practice Fusion subscribe to the ePrescribing State Law Review from Point-of-Care Partners to proactively identify system modifications that may be needed to address ongoing state and federal regulatory changes.


Phelps Memorial Health Center (NE) chooses Interbit Data’s NetRelay secure texting platform.


South Georgia Medical Center (GA) chooses Epic in a $50 million project to replace McKesson Horizon.



Divurgent will announce next week that it has hired Steve Eckert (MD Revolution, Encore) to the newly created position of president and COO.


Quality Systems hires Jamie Arnold, Jr. (Kofax) as CFO.

Announcements and Implementations


Nuance announces Dragon Medical One, a cloud-based, voice-driven physician documentation system.

Patientco announces Patientco Payments Hub, which allows RCM vendors to offer patient payment functions to their solutions with processing of all payment types and automated reconciliation. 

Government and Politics


Apple goes public with its refusal to comply with the FBI’s request that it add a security back door to a new iOS release that would allow the FBI to examine the phones used in the San Bernardino terrorist attacks in December. Apple says a security bypass could fall into the wrong hands and would then jeopardize the data of every iPhone user, adding that “the government is asking Apple to hack our own users” and taking the unprecedented step of trying to force an American company to weaken its security.

Privacy and Security


Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center (CA) pays a $17,000 Bitcoin ransom to an unknown hacker to regain control of its computer systems that had been down for 10 days. The CEO says it was “the quickest and most efficient way to restore our systems,” as registrations had reverted to paper, medical records were unavailable, and the hospital was diverting patients to other facilities. The 434-bed for-profit hospital, which is owned by a Korean fertility specialist, was back up and running Monday. I assume they use a McKesson product since their portal is from RelayHealth. I collected some ransomware prevention tips:

  • Keep Windows, browser, browser plug-ins, and antivirus files updated.
  • Set the email servicer to block executable attachments such as .exe, .vbs, or .scr.
  • Disable Volume Shadow Copy Service (vssaexe), which ransomware sometimes uses to delete volume snapshots that could have otherwise been used to restore compromised files.
  • Disable Windows Script Host, Windows PowerShell, remote services such as RDP, and file sharing.
  • Store backups off site.
  • Don’t plug in USB storage or map network drives unless needed since ransomware often attacks there first. Use read-only folders wherever possible.
  • Define Software Restriction Policies to prevent executable files from launching from questionable folders such as /Temp and /AppData.
  • Make sure Office macros and ActiveX aren’t set to run automatically.
  • Enable “show file extensions” in Windows.
  • Install a browser pop-up blocker.
  • Deactivate AutoPlay.
  • Don’t stay logged on as an administrator unless necessary.
  • Install Office viewers so you can see what Word or Excel files look like before opening them.


A Fast Company article warns that while federal law prohibits medical insurers from denying coverage due to genetic testing results, companies that sell other forms of insurance (life, long-term care, and disability) are allowed to deny coverage to applicants with unfavorable genetic test results on file. Life insurance companies haven’t so far mandated that applicants be tested, but may decline to issue a policy if the applicant refuses to answer questions about past testing. The Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act originally covered all types of insurance, but the legislative sausage-making stripped out everything except medical insurance. Researchers are concerned that more people will drop out of clinical studies for fear that their entire family could be denied life insurance forever.


A New York Times op-ed piece titled “America’s Stacked Deck” points out the influence of money on elected officials, observing that drug companies spent $272,000 per member of Congress to lobby against allowing Medicare to negotiate Medicare drug prices, which it calls “a $50 billion annual gift to pharmaceutical companies.”


Florida deputies charge Malachi Love-Robinson with practicing medicine without a license upon finding that the 18-year-old is running a West Palm Beach holistic medical practice called New Birth New Life Medical Center & Urgent Care. The self-proclaimed doctor examined an undercover officer and provided medical advice, leading to his exit from his practice in handcuffs. He was also charged with stealing checks from an 86-year-old patient during a house call in which he wore a lab coat and a stethoscope, diagnosed her with arthritis, and charged her $3,500 for vitamins, later emptying her bank account by forging checks. Love-Robinson expressed indignation at his arrest, saying he feels “deeply saddened and a little disrespected.”

Sponsor Updates

  • Nordic publishes a new white paper, “Finding Your Balance: Applying Supply and Demand to Health IT for Growth and Efficiency.”
  • Computerworld profiles Nuance’s speech-to-text offerings.
  • Boston Software Systems offers white papers “Eliminate the Chaos: 5 Myths to Avoid in Your EHR Migration” and “Checking Medicare Claims Status: A Vendor Perspective.”
  • PatientPay announces the $10,000 Healthcare Billing Challenge.
  • Nordic releases a new HIT Breakdown podcast, “Chronic care management from three perspectives.”
  • Intelligent Medical Objects will exhibit at HackIllinois February 19-21 in Champaign-Urbana.
  • Oneview Healthcare publishes “5 Minutes with Niall O’Neill, COO.”
  • Verisk Health announces that its HEDIS solution is ready for the 2015 reporting system with HEDIS Certified Measures.
  • The Advisory Board Company announces two case studies in which health systems saved $7 million using its Crimson physician performance analytics software to identify improvement opportunities.
  • MModal announces that its Computer-Assisted Physician Documentation is being used at 150 sites.
  • Streamline Health will exhibit at the 2016 HFMA WA-AK Annual Conference February 24-26 in Seattle.
  • Sunquest Information Systems posts a client testimonial video from Tucson Medical Center (AZ).

Blog Posts


Mr. H, Lorre, Jennifer, Dr. Jayne, Lt. Dan.
More news: HIStalk Practice, HIStalk Connect.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.


View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 18, 2016 News 1 Comment

EPtalk by Dr. Jayne 2/18/16

February 18, 2016 Dr. Jayne 1 Comment


Although health IT news is a bit slow in the run-up to HIMSS, I’m pleased to see that things are starting to pick up. I’m back on Twitter after a long hiatus and enjoying some of the conversations around HIMSS shoes. In looking for comfortable yet fun alternatives, I realized there is an entire market dedicated to alternative prom footwear of the sneaker variety. Although I’ve been to a wedding where the bride wore vintage Chuck Taylors, she was a PE teacher and it was part of a running joke. I’m going to have to completely rethink my plans for HIStalkapalooza.


I’m putting together my list of vendors to visit as well as my list of spectacles to try to photograph. As usual, several booths are planning a Las Vegas theme with blackjack or games of chance. Others such as FormFast are bringing exotic supercars or other “cool factor” displays. I always enjoyed the Indiana Jones-style guy they had in their booth that would throw hats to the audience. At least they’re tying in the car with their name and their business line through their “Fast Matters” campaign.

I’m also seeing an uptick in pre-HIMSS webinars as well as a couple of vendor campaigns encouraging practices to seek out replacement systems. I don’t know if it’s tied to HIMSS or not, but it was noticeable. My favorite communication from an EHR vendor this week was from Kareo, who asked me to take a survey about my practice’s success with their system. They should know that I haven’t logged on to their system in more than six months, which should be telling enough.


Edifecs has launched the #WhatIRun campaign supporting women in technology. They are donating a dollar to for every share or tweet of the #WhatIRun hashtag. Visit them at booth #8107 and they will also donate $5 to Miracle Flights for Kids.


NCQA has proposed an “ambitious redesign” of their Patient-Centered Medical Home recognition program. They’ll be hosting a Google Hangout on February 24 where practices can get an update on the redesign progress and hear from practices that participated in a redesign pilot program. I’m interested to hear about the changes, which will not only impact practices but also EHR vendors who support clients in achieving recognition. The Patient-Centered Medical Home movement is turning nine this month and the American Academy of Family Physicians put together a nice blog post summarizing a recent review of studies around the impact of PCMH on cost and quality.


Telemedicine is a hot topic and I was intrigued to hear about Nurx, which allows women in California and New York to receive prescription and delivery of FDA-approved contraceptives within 48 hours of accessing the app. They have plans to expand to HIV PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) as well. Some are referring to Nurx as “the Uber of birth control” and I’ll be interested to see how it goes. I recently had the opportunity to speak at my local school board about proposed changes to their human sexuality curriculum, so I can imagine feelings about such a service will run the spectrum. Nurx waives its consultation fee for uninsured patients and in some markets patients can receive their medications the same day. Plans for expansion into markets in Illinois, Washington, and the District of Columbia are in progress.

For those of you who have been following my ongoing saga about Maintenance of Certification requirements for the Clinical Informatics subspecialty, I have some good news to report. Several Institute for Health Improvement Open School courses have been approved for ABPM LLSA credit. If you’re a member of an ABMS specialty board, you are eligible for a 10 percent discount by entering the code MOCABMS at check-out. Approved courses cover quality improvement, graduate medical education, and patient safety.


Packing for HIMSS is always a challenge and a reader shared a link to Heelusions as a way to make things easier. Invented by the reader’s wife and her mother, it allows you to accessorize a single pair of shoes for multiple looks. I’m all about supporting small businesses, so I’m happy to share. It’s a cool idea, but sadly my stiletto days are numbered.

Seeing patients this week has been a bit bumpy, with our cloud-based EHR being down intermittently for the last few days. Luckily our downtime procedures went more smoothly than the last time we had an outage, but it’s never fun when you don’t have all the regular tools at your disposal. I’m back in the office tomorrow so cross your fingers for me.

What’s the most annoying thing about the EHR being down? Email me.

Email Dr. Jayne.

View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only
February 18, 2016 Dr. Jayne 1 Comment

Subscribe to Updates



Text Ads

Report News and Rumors

No title

Anonymous online form
Rumor line: 801.HIT.NEWS



Founding Sponsors


Platinum Sponsors






































































Gold Sponsors

























Reader Comments

  • Juxta: @ meltoots, If you look up Andy Slavitt's background, you will notice that he was the top exec at United HealthCare - an...
  • Keith McItkin, PhD.: I like the simplicity of the CMS payment gigs. And how Slavitt and DeSalvo hang on to the potential of EHRs. How many ye...
  • mrsoul: Delta in MS was Meditech Magic before moving to the Cerner hosted system. Doesn't surprise me they would go back to Med...
  • AC: "The secure texting platform must have"... Erm, at that point it's not called texting, it's just messaging. We have l...
  • Fishy: Did the Leidos/Coast Guard timing have anything to do with the DoD procurement?...

Sponsor Quick Links