Home » News » Currently Reading:

Monday Morning Update 5/24/10

May 22, 2010 News 12 Comments

From Healthcare Idiot Savant: “Re: Allscripts. They are supposedly near to announcing their acquisition of the Centricity software, the old IDX suite, from GE. Timing?” I’ll guess June 1.

From Lady of Spain: “Re: editorial. Tell me what you think about this editorial. Incredibly uninformed, right?” Too many wordsmiths claim to be HIT pundits just because they’ve churned out a few articles or interviewed people from the sidelines instead of actually working in healthcare or IT. All in all, this one isn’t the worst I’ve seen, though, just not very insightful.

I’m running an old (legal) copy of Office XP at home since I don’t use it much, but I figured it was time to upgrade. I’ve been running the Office 2010 beta and I like it just fine, so I’ve been watching for deals on the licensed version, due out this summer. Here’s one that I just bought this morning: Amazon has Office Home and Student 2007 for $99.99, free shipping, and a free upgrade to Office 2010 when it comes out. Plus, that package includes three licenses that can be used by members of the same immediate family, so you’re down to as little as $33 per user. If you don’t need Access or Outlook, this is a great way to get the 2010 versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and the underappreciated OneNote cheap. It’s a strong clue as to why Microsoft is struggling — remember when Office cost something like $400?

Speaking of Microsoft, who can resist watching an overweight, red-faced Steve Ballmer nearly stroking out on stage as he hysterically professes his undying love for everything Microsoft? I feel cheated that he didn’t freak out equally at HIMSS a couple of years ago.


According to my last poll, around 58% of HIStalk readers think a single-vendor strategy is a good idea for hospitals, primarily because integration and support are theoretically better. Those who like a best-of-breed strategy instead most often cite weaknesses in individual applications as a good reason not to give one vendor all the business. New poll to your right: if you were diagnosed with a psychiatric illness and your doctor or hospital shared your electronic information with other providers, would you be comfortable that it would remain private or would you worry about that?

Dell spent $760K lobbying the federal government in Q1, with an unnamed but apparently significant part of that amount going toward influencing decisions about HITECH money. Microsoft spent $1.72 million during the same period, also hitting HITECH.  

Flush with taxpayer cash, ONCHIT is hiring.

A retired Cincinnati cardiologist will get $23.5 million for his role as whistleblower in a DOJ lawsuit against the Health Alliance of Greater Cincinnati and Christ Hospital, accused of preferentially scheduling cardiologists based on the number of referrals they generated.


Doctors at a Minnesota hospital are beta testing technology from American Well that allows them to communicate with patients via videoconferencing, IM, and VoIP. I think I’d love that, either as a patient or a doctor. The problem has always been that few people using desktop PCs had webcams or microphones, but now that most PC sales involve laptops, those are usually standard. That’s a significant yet seldom observed development when it comes to online collaboration.

I ran a reader’s question about whether Jefferson Regional Medical Center of Pine Bluff, AR could really have upgraded Eclipsys Sunrise to 5.5 in 30 days. JRMC CIO Patrick Neece was nice to provide this summary:

JRMC and Eclipsys finalized the implementation plans at the end of March 2010. The upgrade steps began the first of April 2010 and took approximately 30 days. The implementation encompassed all of the Sunrise Clinical Manager components we have implemented in the hospital including house-wide clinical documentation and core functionality for med/surg and sub-acute areas, critical care, 12 ambulatory clinics, emergency department, labor and delivery, Sunrise Pharmacy, Knowledge-Based Medication Administration, Device Integration and other related components. It also included installation of additional hardware, Microsoft software upgrades, configuration changes, report changes, testing, and training for the technical staff and end users. As with any upgrade, there were problems that had to be worked through, but we were highly confident in the JRMC and Eclipsys team who preformed the upgrade and that we would have a successful implementation.


Former HIMSS Analytics CEO Dave Garets, now with The Advisory Board Company, joins the board of Health Care Data Works, a Ohio State spinoff led by former OSUMC CIO Herb Smaltz that sells a data warehouse solution. The company offers a pre-built Meaningful Use dashboard (above). 

A Hawaii clinic’s inconsistent and time-consuming EMR data reporting process is improved after a local technology company’s change. The article doesn’t name the EMR vendor or describe the change that was made, but it says one report that took 55 hours to run now takes less than a minute. It sounds to me like they added database indexes.

Listening: brand new (actually not even released yet) Stone Temple Pilots. Billboard has the entire album up for free streaming. Sounds pretty good. Also, The Rural Alberta Advantage, Canadian indie-electrofolk.

Some Indiana hospitals divulge what their electronic medical records projects will cost: Community Health of Munster, $40 million for three hospitals and doctors. Porter Health System, $11 million for upgrades. Methodist Hospitals, $30 million for Epic. Sisters of St. Francis Health Services, $125 million.


The University of Florida Health Science Center and Shands HealthCare announce a $580 million, five-year collaboration that includes implementing Epic across the system.

Now that I’ve got a Facebook page, I see that I should wish my new FB friend John Halamka a happy birthday this Sunday, with John Glaser’s coming up on June 2. Thanks to all who have friended me and who have clicked “like” on the HIStalk widget to your right. Social networking is exactly like high school, including the competitive aspects, so public displays of even virtual-only camaraderie are important to one’s standing.

E-mail me.

HIStalk Featured Sponsors


Currently there are "12 comments" on this Article:

  1. Dear Eclypsis and JRMC: Educate us about the problems in order to keep us from making the same mistakes. “As with any upgrade, there were problems that had to be worked through, but we were highly confident in the JRMC and Eclipsys team who preformed the upgrade and that we would have a successful implementation.”

    Were patients suffering from adverse events? Were the doctors silenced?

  2. …too little too late to save the Centricity Business customer base, the flood gates are open and they all are jumpin’ ship. Allscripts may be trying to save some of their installations with this strategy, and better target mid-size physician practices.

  3. Can someone help me understand the Allscripts rumor a little bit more? GE purchased “IDX” lock stock and barrel, that’s Carecast, Imagecast, Groupcast and Flowcast. Prior to this buyout, Allscripts bought into IDX as a way to shore up their EMR offering with Flowcast being the PM piece.

    Is Allscripts looking to simply buy back the bit of ownership they used to have with Flowcast, or are they looking to buy the whole shebang and put Carecast to bed permanently?

  4. I’ll second the above question: what editorial was so poorly written? Usually when links aren’t provided I can search my way to it, but there aren’t too many clues with this one.

    The survey results are quite interesting: thanks for providing such in-depth choices (I hate online surveys that just offer two options, I always feel pigeonholed into a wrong answer).

  5. Wonder if the Allscripts acquisition includes the EMR formerly known as MedicaLogic which is also under the Centricity umbrella?

  6. RE: GE Centricity. Centricity product name includes not only IDX, but also the Millbrook PM product for mid and small sized practice and MedicaLogic as the EMR product, so is it just the one product ? That doesn’t make sense to me. If Allscripts is really only buying the old IDX clientele is this a good deal ?

  7. I would not think GE would part with the Centricity Practice EMR (formerly MedicaLogic and Millbrook). That product has done well with the small physician segment. However the GE EMR has not fared well at all with the large physician group practices. So my guess is GE would let go Centricity Business (IDX Flowcast) which is losing customers to EPIC left and right. Allscripts wants to retain the Centricity Business customers that are using Allscripts, as they are currently all at risk to going EPIC. If Allscripts can acquire CB from GE, then they go approach their customers with a one vendor message and work toward better integration of the products.

  8. RE: Allscripts acquisition of GE Centricity
    Due to horrible sales, lack of integration, and billion dollar debacle at Intermountain, GE has been looking for a way, any way, to unload the Centricity Enterprise & Business products. What is strange is that IDX (prior owner of Centricity Enterprise – aka Carecast, and Centricity Business – aka Flowcast) was the original developer of what is now Allscripts’ EMR. Way back when, IDX invested approx. $30M and couldn’t get that EMR product off the ground. Now, why would high-flying Allscripts buy the pig-in-the-poke products from GE? Doesn’t add up. Acquisition of what was Medicalogic EMR & Millbrook makes sense.

  9. “Richard Blumenthal, the Connecticut Democrat seeking to succeed Christopher Dodd in the U.S. Senate, did a lot more fighting over Vietnam Tuesday than he ever did in-country.”

    Read more: http://swampland.blogs.time.com/2010/05/18/war-on-the-home-front/#ixzz0osAg7iMj

    Richard Blumenthal, brother of David Blumenthal, MD, ONC Coordinator, LIED about his service IN Vietnam. Now he is saying he “misspoke” about serving IN Vietnam. “But I will not allow anyone to take a few misplaced words and impunge my record of service to our country.” What record of service does he have in Vietnam?

    Has anyone thought to ask David Blumenthal, MD about his brother’s service IN Vietnam? David ought to know. David and Richard are two peas in a pod. Both are trying to gain political advantage by over reaching with their positions. Richard Blumenthal was caught red handed. Now Congress needs to investigate David Blumenthal. Don’t be surprised to see the words “misspoke” uttered by Dr. Blumenthal in the future, when the EHR industry implodes.

    As a person who has served IN Vietnam, and who witnessed friends killed in the line of duty, seeing their comrades suffer the aftermath of Agent Orange exposure, PTSD and a range of other dibilitating scars, and who carry them into the world on a daily basis, Blumenthal is not one of these people, he is a disgrace. I am totally disgusted by Richard Blumenthal’s outright lie. He is a slime bag politician, who will lie, cheat and steal to get anything he wants.

    Anyone who claims to have served in a combat zone when they have not, should be fined and jailed.

    Vietnam Vet, the real deal

    Kwame Kilpatrick’s Job is Now Open

    “To date, about $140,000 has been paid toward restitution since his 2009 release from jail, with $3,000 each month coming from his $120,000 annual salesman salary at Covisint in Dallas.

    But on Monday, Covisint’s Detroit-based parent company, Compuware Corp., said it was firing him and that he’d be off the payroll by the end of the month. The company said it “didn’t have any” choice but to fire Kilpatrick.

Text Ads


  1. Unfortunately, I can't disagree with anything you wrote. It is important that they get this right for so many reasons,…

  2. Going out on a limb here. Wouldn't Oracle's (apparent) interoperability strategy, have a better chance of success, than the VA's?…

  3. Dr Jayne is noticing one of the more egregious but trivial instance of bad behavior by allegedly non-profit organizations. I…

  4. To expand on this a bit. The Vista data are unique to Vista, there are 16(?) different VISN (grouped systems)…

Founding Sponsors


Platinum Sponsors











































Gold Sponsors