From Skinny Little B: “Re: Advance for Health Information Executives. It’s officially dead, even though the staff were told not to tell readers or advertisers that the May issue was the last one.” Former editor Bob Mitchell is a good guy; his last day there was a couple of weeks ago. Maybe not admitting defeat is like hanging a “remodeling” sign on an obviously closed restaurant — a Hail Mary that somebody will buy it before word gets around that it’s defunct (like among the advertisers). They may try to salvage the non-print parts of the business like they did for the HIM magazine. I can only imagine what a disaster it would have been if I’d been running it, considering that I use a $5 invoicing program, I refuse to do anything to encourage prospective sponsors except e-mail a crude information sheet if they ask, and I keep turning down all kinds of brilliant money-making ideas because I don’t really care about money all that much and I’m lazy. So I give them credit for hanging in there for what must be at least a dozen years. I used to read it and like it.
From Hans Solo: “Re: Colorado RHIO. A big win for Medicity, beating out incumbent Axolotl.” Colorado RHIO chooses Medicity’s platform for its statewide HIE. The organization plans to cover 85% of the state’s providers and hospitals within five years.
From Nancy: “Re: Jefferson Regional Medical Center. The press release on Eclipsys 5.5 says they did the upgrade in 30 days. Is that really possible?” The headline also claims that unnamed users declared it “blazing fast and fun to use,” but doesn’t provide details anywhere in the actual writeup. Maybe a reader from JRMC will chime in with details.
From Limber Lob: “Re: MUMPS and Cache’. MUMPS takes hits because it’s still around after 30 years and many of the ancient MUMPSters are coding the way they did 30 years ago. Old COBOL, RPG, and Pascal programmers have all passed on instead.” I like that analysis and will extend it: companies like Epic and Meditech hire trainloads of noobs and train them on a language they’ve surely never heard of even if they majored in computer science. Since it’s more of an apprenticeship, they can also train them to follow their own internal programming standards and utilities, which are arguably more important than the choice of programming language anyway. It may be true that only in healthcare would a robust market still exist for applications written in something that quirky and old (or “industry-specific” and “time-tested” if you’re a glass-half-full type). Bottom line: it works, the vendors can support it, and customers shouldn’t (and apparently don’t) care about the invisible underpinnings.
From Epic Cleans Up: “Re: Atlanta. Epic will own the Atlanta market, having won the business at CHOA, Grady, and Emory (soon to be announced). It’s not surprising given the superior software, services, and support of Judy and her team. However, it should be a wake-up call to local companies that failed, including Eclipsys, McKesson, and Philips.” Unverified, but I will say that being local isn’t really much of an advantage. And, that those companies you mentioned are surely wide awake and well aware of exactly what they’re up against. I’ve been a customer of all three of those local outfits (well, Philips is from the Netherlands, but I’ll allow it). One of them was excellent, one was very good, and one I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy.
Jobs from the sponsor job board, where sponsors post free just because we are really nice: Implementation Consultant, Cerner Ambulatory Consultant, Regional Solutions Consultant, Healthcare Market Research Manager. On Healthcare IT Jobs: EMR Project Manager, Ambulatory Technology Trainer, Cerner Orders Consultant, Clinical Director of Field Marketing.
The health minister of Saudi Arabia is visiting Children’s Hospital of Michigan to check out its Cerner electronic medical records system. I’m not sure why since they’re already running Cerner in Saudi Arabia, but maybe they need fresh ideas.
Dell’s Q1 numbers: revenue up 21%, EPS $0.22 vs. $0.15. The former Perot was a bright spot, while PC margins weren’t.
I decided I needed a Facebook page so I won’t have to keep using Inga’s login to add to the HIStalk page (man, that’s confusing). Anyway, if you want to friend me, just search for HIStalk and I’ll pop up in all my smoking doc glory. I’m helping that obnoxious kid who started Facebook add to his several billion dollars so he doesn’t have to lifeguard this summer.
Weird News Andy and I agree: this story is sad. An admittedly inebriated woman in England falls in a bathroom, embedding a six-inch toilet brush handle in her pelvis. She tells doctors what happened, she shows them the bleeding wound, they take an x-ray, and they still can’t find the problem, so they send her home on pain meds. After two years of constant pain, she finally convinces them, but dies of massive blood loss in a 10-hour surgery to remove it, the hospital’s third attempt. Her husband summarizes, “I think it was probably down to the hospitals trying to save money and doing things as cheaply as possible … I’m sure she would have got better treatment in foreign countries.”
Miss Russia 1998, who was a physician back in the Motherland, is charged in New York with forging a Vicodin prescription using a prescription pad stolen from her psychiatrist’s office. She was already on trial for a nearly identical case. I will make a flimsy argument about illustrating the benefits of e-prescribing in order to justify running her picture.
Listening: reader-recommended Jonathan Tyler and the Northern Lights, bluesy straight-ahead rock. From the look and sound, I thought I’d traveled back in time to see Grand Funk Railroad, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
Inga and I appreciate our new HIStalk Platinum Sponsor, Navicure of Duluth, GA. They’re a medical claims clearinghouse, meaning they help their 20,000 physician customers get paid (eligibility, claims, remittance, recovery, productivity). The company is on several “fastest growing” lists and – get this – they GUARANTEE that every call is picked up in three rings or fewer, which as they say, is because their client services area is “purposefully overstaffed.” They also have a 90%-plus “would recommend” rating from clients (video testimonials are here). Check out their blog, The Daily Practice. You may also remember that CEO Jim Denny wrote a Readers Write piece in October the value of clearinghouses. Thanks much to the folks at Navicure for supporting HIStalk.
Nurses in Australia picket a local hospital over incorrect pay caused by a new payroll system, a problem still unresolved after five pay cycles.
The CEO of Bend Medical Clinic (OR) writes a good blog post that explains to patients what an electronic medical record is and why they use them.
A group of Florida hospitals is using a BCBS grant to track employee reports related to infections and and surgical outcomes, rather than the usual billing data. They hope to convince CMS that billing data is worthless in trying to monitor clinical results.
Greenway’s PrimeSuite EHR for the iPhone and iPad.
Baptist Health cranks up Philips VISICU eICU in its five San Antonio hospitals, where a critical care team monitors their 134 ICU beds from an office building.
Yet another sobering malpractice verdict: a six months pregnant woman is turned away by the local trauma center, whose NICU doc says his facility can’t handle a preemie that small. They call an ambulance to take her to another hospital an hour away. She delivers in the ambulance, but the baby suffers brain damage and cerebral palsy. The malpractice jury returns a $10 million verdict against the county’s non-profit ambulance service. The hospitals had already settled for $1.4 million.
North Adams Regional Hospital (MA) fights with its nursing union, with ergonomics being a key union bargaining issue. Said a union rep, “We’ve had two instances where a computer station on wheels has fallen on a nurse.”
HERtalk by Inga
maxIT Healthcare and Ingenuity Solutions Group enter into an agreement to combine as maxIT Healthcare. The merger expands maxIT’s expertise with Lawson ERP solutions. Ingenuity President and CEO Phil Summer will now be maxIT’s National Practice Director.
PatientKeeper announces the availability of Mobile Clinical Results on the iPad.
Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian selects Patient Care Technology Systems’ Amelior EDTracker solution for its new emergency department opening in Irving, CA later this year.
DigitalPersona, the provider of U.are.U fingerprint biometrics, will integrate its product into ScriptRX’s products. ScriptRX provides touchscreen EMR and discharge systems for ERs and urgent care centers.
For all our readers who are 7th grade boys (or 7th grade boys at heart), here’s an opportunity to come up with all sorts of tasteless jokes. HP Labs calculates that a hypothetical farm of 10,000 dairy cows could produce enough energy to power 1,000 servers.
Greenville Hospital Systems (SC) selects MedAssets for revenue cycle software and services.
RCM provider Accretive Health offers 10 million shares in an IPO that raised $120 million. The $12 per share price was well below the proposed $14 to $16/share.