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News 5/9/08

May 8, 2008 News 3 Comments

From Beantown Johnny: "Re: Nuance. Any truth to the rumor that there’s been a sales shake-up?" Not that I’ve heard, but I’m not well connected there. I always figure it’s safe to speculate on a sales shake-up since just about every vendor tinkers with that function now and then. That’s part of being in business and of being in sales. Life goes on.

From The PACS Designer: "Re: Oracle’s new offering. Oracle has released a large number of SOA solutions recently and now just announced another called Oracle Data Integration Suite. It offers a open, standards-based integration platform that connects heterogeneous data sources and applications." Link. TPD sure likes that Oracle stuff even though he’s an open source guy.

From Dr. CIO: "Re: advance degree. I don’t know why you are so hung up about advanced degrees. Personally, I would rather hire based upon experience and emotional intelligence rather than sheepskin. Example of no degree (undergrad) superstars: Gates, Ellison, Dell, Jobs … I rest my case." Well, that case you rested wasn’t made too well — nobody hired any of the folks you listed. We’d all agree that it makes little difference for entrepreneurs who start a company, but we might disagree on mid-level executives. Wanna bet that Microsoft, Oracle, etc. require advanced degrees for some jobs, rightly or wrongly, even though those founders don’t have them? And if your boss has one and you want to move up someday — think about it. I’m the poster child for educated but unmotivated, by the way, so I hear you. It shouldn’t matter, but then again, neither should good looks or connections.

From Brian Boyfanno: "Re: HIMSS. Can I sign up for your 2009 event now?" Jeez, didn’t we just have that? Nothing’s decided yet since it takes a sponsor, location, and all kinds of stuff. If there is an event, I’ll move you to the head of the line. I’m happy it’s already on your mind, though.

Johns Hopkins CIO Stephanie Reel is named as one of Maryland’s Top 100 women. I’m sure that’s a trivial honor compared to winning her HISsies CIO of the Year award a few years back. I expect she’ll e-mail her appreciation for that nearly any day now.

Listening: Awesome Color, Stooges-type (Iggy, not Three) psychedelic rock.

Did I maybe just forget that HIMSS has a CIO? Says it does here. I don’t know a lot of their folks.

Speaking of HIMSS, when did they get into the hard-selling, vendor-specific Webinar business? This one’s about PC FTP software, which seems like an odd thing for HIMSS to shill. Personally, I use FileZilla, which is free and works fine (my shillin’ is free).

I wasn’t interested enough to type the long organization names, but some group names a McKesson guy and a Wal-Mart guy as co-chairs of another big-named group. The press release is like a densely constructed stone wall that defies ocular penetration, but it’s got something to do with HIEs.

If you’re a LinkedIn user desperate for contacts, Inga and I approve all requests because we’re desperate for approval, too. Search on HIStalk and up we’ll come.

If you aren’t getting e-mail updates when I write something new, just plop your name and e-mail address in the Subscribe to Updates box to your right. You’ll impress your colleagues with your mastery of current HIT events.

Memorial Hermann will use OB waveform monitoring software AirStrip OB.

McKesson donates PracticePartner to Father Joe’s Villages, a non-profit supporting the homeless.

I’m really excited that just about all the healthcare IT vendors are turning in good numbers. It’s a tough market and apt to get tougher, but they’re looking good for now.

Former QuadraMed HR VP Donna Klein takes the same role at biologics company BioReliance.

Jobs: Technical Support Analyst (CA), Clinical Informatics and Physician Liaison (OK), Project Manager – Healthcare (GA). Weekly job alert signup.

IBM and Siemens will help hospitals reduce energy consumption, but only if they use MedSeries4, which should narrow the list down quite a bit.

I know it’s nerd heresy, but Microsoft and Yahoo don’t interest me much, individually or collectively. I’ve never used the search engine of either one, haven’t bought anything from either company in years (except for my $20 upgraded Yahoo e-mail account), and I could name a ton of much more interesting companies than those two wrinkling dowagers and their desperate, fumbling attempts to mate. At least that never-ending story is an alternative to the daily "gas hits a new high" headline.

Donal Quinn is named head of the diagnostics division of Siemens.

A UC Berkeley engineer moves most of the technology of medical imaging into a central server, allowing creation of a cheap, portable scanner that plugs into a cell phone. The scanner will be $1,000 and the whole setup around $70,000, making it viable in poor countries and rural areas.

The secret to running a health information exchange, according to two executive directors, is hitting up the state for money. The one from Maine says they’ll never be self-sustaining.

Bizarre lawsuit: a nurse brought in to fix Howard University Hospital’s ED after a reporter’s death there led to charges of mismanagement is suing the hospital for $4 million, claiming sexual harassment. She says the new doctor in charge of the ED referred to himself as "a pimp" and used unspecified derogatory terms for the ED nurses (that doesn’t take much imagination to figure out). She says he sent her flowers for a job well done, but signed the card BD, short for "Big Daddy," the name he insisted on being called by nurses.

And another: a patient hospitalized after her fourth suicide attempt is suing Medical Mercy Center-Clinton (IA) for worsening her depression. A nurse helping her to the bathroom allegedly told her, "You need to use a more lethal method. I’m sorry, I just hate it when people are a drain on society." The nurse apologized by letter, throwing water on the theory that doing so stops lawsuits.

E-mail me.

Inga’s Update

From Sparky: "Re: ASU WOW-mobile. It was wonderful to see my alma mater mentioned on HIStalk! I’ll take the opportunity to plug the ASU School of Computing and Informatics, which matriculated its first class of graduate students in biomedical informatics this past fall. The new program has recruited world-class faculty and is affiliated with the recently-opened Phoenix campus of the University of Arizona College of Medicine, the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen), and the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale. Look for great research and great people coming out of this program in the near future.”

CSC opens First Consulting Group Viet Nam.

Sage Software’s profits beat analysts’ forecasts, up 9%, which matches its revenue increase. The company points out that the healthcare division that didn’t perform too well: revenues were down 11%, gross profit down 8%, and EBITA down 46%. Management says the numbers disguise a lot of the behind-the-scenes actions to turn things around. They have lots of physician users because of acquisitions, so it’s a big footprint.

Stratus Technologies names JJWild  its Partner of the Year for the Americas sales region. JJWild has quadrupled their sales of Stratus’ ftServers to Meditech clients over the last year.

I voted for Mr. H as one of the “100 Most Powerful” in healthcare and hope you take a second to do so as well. He works hard and all he asks in return is that you read his blog. It would amuse him to potentially upset Modern Healthcare’s apple cart with a nomination.

HHS hands out an additional $600,000 to six new participants in the trial NHIN implementations. The new folks all represent good-size communities and include the Cleveland Clinic, Kaiser, HealthLink, Health RHIO, and Health LINC, and Community Health Information Collaborative

Picis announces the European launch of its Total Perioperative Automation solutions The Institut Mutualiste Montsouris has been working with Picis to customize the software for the French market.

I’m guessing that all those passionate Mac users out there will be happy to hear this news. EMR vendor Spring Medical Systems announces a new HL7 compliant interface with MacPractice MD PM’s system.

After reading about all the swanky new amenities at Henry Ford’s new West Bloomfield hospital, I am trying to narrow down what body-enhancing procedure I might have so that I can score a couple of nights’ stay. New rooms will have flat screen TVs, refrigerators, laptop computer tables, security safes, and a feng shui design to make patients feel connected to nature. Oh, and high-quality dining options, including 24-hour room service! Beats the Hampton Inn, for sure!

Eclipsys beat Wall Street’s expectation despite a Q1 net income that fell from a year ago. Due to some extraordinary costs, income was only $.01 a share versus $.04 last year. However, revenue was up 10%, and non-GAAP net income grew 25%.

There is a survey on the right asking if it is important that a hospital CIO have a Master’s degree in some field of study. I think we should have also asked if the responder had a Master’s – it would be interesting to see how that affected votes. I don’t know about CIOs in particular, but generally I believe having an advanced degree can’t hurt you. I think it can open doors (rightly or wrongly) and can be an indication of tenacity and ambition. It’s not a guarantee that a person is smarter or works harder than the next person, but if all other things are equal it, can’t hurt you. (And yes, I have an advanced degree and the greatest job ever… so there you go!)

E-mail Inga.

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Currently there are "3 comments" on this Article:

  1. RE: Healthcare Sexual Harassment (HSH). Is it epidemic or pandemic? “And the Band Plays On.”

  2. Funny you mention the hard sell tactics of HIMSS Analytics. Listened to a webcast myself from them last week – Geez it was bad. Clearly, they do not understand the line between being an industry analyst firm and being just highly paid prostitute for the vendors. I was so taken aback, actually wrote a brief post: http://chilmarkresearch.com/2008/04/29/himss-webcast-today-can-it-get-any-worse/

    The crazy thing was that the vendor they were shilling seemed like a reputable firm that clearly new what they were talking about. HIMSS’s strong sell tactics actually ended up discounting the vendor’s capabilities, at least IMHO.

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