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News 7/2/08

July 1, 2008 News 3 Comments

From DelawareDoc : "Re: DHIN. The Delaware Health Information Network (DHIN) had its state funding cut from $2.5 million to $1.5 million. Also, Delaware State Legislature has authorized House Resolution #76 to create a task force to review DHIN."

From The PACS Designer: "Re: it’s getting cloudy. Some HIStalk readers are skeptical of this whole cloud computing thing that TPD has been posting about over the past few months. In spite of this skepticism, the software giants are moving forward with their cloud solutions. Just last week, InformationWeek featured an article titled ‘Guide To Cloud Computing’ and how the major software vendors are approaching this new business opportunity by focusing on the small- and medium-sized businesses. TPD recommends that everyone read this well-detailed article about vendor intentions for this area of computing." Link. TPD also noticed that Firefox 3 sometimes has problems with my Rumor Report form, so if you’re a Firefoxer like me, you might want to painfully and growlingly fire up the obnoxious IE long enough to send me goodies (or do like I do and download Opera as a backup).

From Someone: "Re: Epic-WMC. Possibly personal – see link. Basically, someone speaking for the WMC condescendingly referred to Judy as such and the organization refused to retract the comment. There also are no women on the board of the WMC despite several women in key positions within WI. That judge election happened months ago, this personal attack was last week. They may not be completely unrelated, but I think the timing is a bit more than coincidence. Politics and business aside, I am with Judy in standing up for herself." Link. The original story and several reader comments following it are here. As I mentioned, I’m mostly in Judy’s corner, not that she needs me there.

Palomar Pomerado Health (CA) will deploy agent-based software from Novo Innovations to exchange information with its physician practices.

The New York City Health and Hospitals corporation fires six employees after security video footage showed a patient falling out of her chair onto the psych unit floor and slowly dying as nobody paid the slightest attention, including three security guards who were shown looking but not reacting. An employee summoned by a visitor finally nudged her with a foot an hour later.

Electronic Health Records, 2nd Edition, by Jerome Carter, MD, FACP of NTM Informatics (Neck, Time, & Money – funny!) is now available.

Dann tells me the HIStalk fan club he started on LinkedIn has 150 members. That’s pretty cool! It’s fun to see who reads. If you want to shamelessly pad your connections, feel free to put Inga and me down – we approve all requests in our desperate search for validation.

Catholic Healthcare West signs up for Craneware’s Chargemaster Toolkit and Pharmacy ChargeLink.

RXHub and SureScripts will merge their e-prescribing networks as an 50-50 equity partnership. Guess what the new name will be? SureScripts-RxHub. Man, that sizzles! Looks to me like the eRX pieces are falling into place quickly, especially if the DEA follows through on allowing controlled drug e-prescribing.

Cerner’s Trace Devanny says the company is "transforming ourselves from an IT company to a healthcare company," with 635 employees now involved in medical device connectivity, benefit coordination, and life sciences data mining.

Mount Sinai Medical Center (NY) gets a newspaper writeup for its smart cards. Theirs hold 33 pages, although there’s always the challenge of updating them (I think most hospitals just make new ones on request). Sounds mildly interesting, although I’ve always called smart cards "a solution in search of a problem." They don’t hold much data, but they work OK when paired up with membership-type selective marketing programs, i.e. when used as a loyalty card (which usually means they’re given only to those with good insurance or cash since financially questionable loyalty is disdainfully referred to as being a "frequent flyer").

The final candidates for dean of a proposed medical school at Oakland University (MI) have informatics ties (not the kind that go around your neck, if there is such a thing). Charles Shanley is a surgeon and chair of the Michigan Electronic Medical Record Initiative. Robert Folberg is an ophthalmic pathologist who has developed electronic teaching systems and CD-based training programs.

HIMSS will work with a Spanish group to offer education there.

Adventist Health System contracts with TKG Healthcare Technologies (both of Orlando) for a registration system add-on for its 33 hospitals.

Not everybody in India is happy about getting US offshoring business, mostly because the folks there adopt  our bad health and lifestyle habits. "Working against the law of nature is bound to hit back, MNCs lure Indian mass with money, make them work like robotic machines and burden them with only stress. What they eat is Junk, and they live like a zombie." Yep, that’s today’s version of the American dream, only getting sweeter as the dollar goes down the toilet and we all live longer, meaning our zombie employment years will extend, too. The salad days, as it were.

A member of parliament in Australia wants a telecommunications company punished after it disabled a rival’s radio link to a local hospital for two days will installing its own 3G cell tower. The company says it thought the tower wasn’t being used.

Recent flooding forced Washington County Hospital and Clinics (IA) to forget PACS and go back to film. The hospital also lost Internet access, forcing inconsolable employees to actually work instead of reading Perez Hilton, ESPN, and eBAY.

The new Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, built from the ground up to meet earthquake requirements, opens: 520 private rooms, one million square feet in a 10-story building, and built from three million pounds of Italian travertine marble (a gift from a grateful patient – nice).

Despite being a public hospital that falls under the Sunshine Law, Erlanger Medical Center (TN) refuses to release salary figures for its executives, saying that information would "unnecessarily invade the privacy of our employees." Still, the hospital released a list with positions and salaries only, which the newspaper helpfully paired up with names. I expected big bucks, but compared to a lot of Taj Mahospitals, money was modest: $550K for the CEO, $200 K and down for the veeps.

NHS fires a hospital manager for leaving an unencrypted laptop containing patient information in his car while on vacation. Someone broke a window and took the laptop, which at least had a password set.

UPMC will implement a policy of centralized drug sample management, requiring doctors to request samples via the Intranet using an application from MedManage Systems. of Bothell, WA.

E-mail me.

Inga’s Update

From Glad to be a FORMER Cernerite: "Re: Computerworld Top 100. As a huge fan of yours (I also have a love for HIT AND shoes!), I just wanted to set the record straight. You wrote about Computerworld’s 100 Best Places to Work in IT and how Cerner was ranked #92. E-mails went out to cherry-picked Cerner associates in very specific roles asking them to fill out the online survey. NO consultants were sent the e-mail. It was sent within weeks of a particularly nasty reorganization in January and no one affected received it.” Well, given that we see plenty of ballot box-stuffing with the HISsies, what should make this survey much different? Except, of course, Neal fared better in this Computerworld contest.

Glen Tullman is the Midwest regional winner of Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year award in the technology category. He’s now eligible for the national title.

Allscripts also announces Jefferson General Hospital (LA) is its latest EHR client, deploying software for 138 employed and affiliated physicians.

The Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium contracts for Mediware’s WORx pharmacy solution for its eight facilities. The non-profit tribal consortium is also in the process of replacing systems for nine core functions, including admissions, billing, lab, radiology, and financials.

I understand that The AC Group has released its annual EHR/PM functionality rankings. I didn’t ask Mr. H to shell out the $50 for the summary report this year, although I’d love to hear about the results from readers. Any surprises? I did hear that McKesson’s Practice Partner received “top rankings,” but find that statement slightly vague (it isn’t exactly like saying “we are #1,” is it?)

The five public hospitals in Brussels, Belgium will use dbMotion’s platform to share integrated patient information across their 11 sites.

I’ve never heard of Avisena and probably wouldn’t have noticed its announcement about 61% year-on-year growth if they hadn’t specifically mentioned athenahealth as a peer. Like athenahealth, they offer an Internet-based revenue cycle management solution. They also note the software is “free,” which I assume means they collect a portion of collected money instead. Impressive: 21 consecutive quarters of growth over seven years.

The FDA discovers that many medical equipment malfunctions are not a result of poor design or manufacturing, but rather flaws in software coding.

At the same time the JAMA article warns that RFID may interfere with medical equipment, 3M and the Fort Hood army hospital  announce the completion of the RFID Smart Shelf System to track and manage 150,000 medical files. The $3.76 million project was a pilot for future military projects. Bummer.

NextGen signs one of its biggest deals ever. Current customer Banner Health, which has 20 hospitals in western states, is providing the EMR/EPM software for its ambulatory physicians.

I am heading out for a little R&R. Actually, it may end of being one of those vacations that requires another vacation in order to recover, but perhaps I’ll refrain from overeating/drinking/site-seeing (sounds boring). In any case, I hope to send a note or two along the way. Be assured my Friday night will include time for appreciating my independence and wowing over the fireworks display.

E-mail Inga.

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Currently there are "3 comments" on this Article:

  1. Re: Epic & WMC

    I doubt people really care very much about this anyway, but I don’t think that someone calling Judy a name had anything to do with the WMC story. It does tie closely to one event though. Last month the WMC’s golden girl Annette Ziegler was almost unanimously reprimanded for ethics violations by the WI Supreme Court. About a week after that is when the Cullen resignation happened. People around here have been very sour about what’s going on with WMC. I’m guessing Epic made it’s decision following that and the WMC ran to the press crying about how Epic was trying to ruin them.

    The WMC is to the WI political process is what the swift boat ads were to the Kerry election campaign. Looking back they were trash, but they tricked enough people at the time. This frankly shouldn’t even be a story and around here it’s not one unless you’re part of the conservative right.

  2. RE: The TPD Cloud.

    Get ready on July 11, 2008 to keystroke into the “cloud” with your new G3 iPhone. Not a big deal? Well, for a paltry $200, you can purchase a cloud catcher from Apple and soar into the mobile me cloud using your smart phone with enterprise developed clinical and business applications directly to your cell phone.

    Cloud computing is big now and has been for the last few years but like everything progressive and anti-TTWWADI pronounced twa-dee ( That’s The Way We Always Did It), we healthcare providers will be lucky to get our EMR / EHR / PHR come 2020; H-m-m-m-m-m 2020, sounds like a pun, you know hindsight.

  3. Thanks, for the information. People around here have been very sour about what’s going on with WMC. I’m guessing Epic made it’s decision following that and the WMC ran to the press crying about how Epic was trying to ruin them.

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