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July 15, 2010 News 5 Comments

From Lumpy Rutherford: “Re: Kate Kervin. Moved from Siemens to NextGen as SVP of marketing and project management, started this past Monday.” Unverified. Neither her LinkedIn profile or the NextGen executive page says so, but that doesn’t mean much.

Listening: Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s, polished, sweeping indie rock (or Indy rock, since that’s where they’re from). They are amazingly good.

IBM will spend $100 million over the next three years on healthcare transformation projects: creating evidence-based protocols, simplifying healthcare delivery, and studying the shift to an outcomes-based reimbursement model. The company says it will hire new people, among them doctors and nurses working on the front lines.

Fujifilm will commercialize the iPhone-based stroke diagnosis application developed by a hospital in Japan. Physicians are using it to review CT scans remotely.

I was talking to the new crop of residents at my hospital, most of whom were unimpressed (justifiably) with our clinical systems. I asked three of them which systems they had used that were better. Two said Epic and one said Eclipsys. I didn’t disagree.

OB-GYN EMR vendor digiChart brings on former McKesson sales VP Bob Allen (sales) and former Healthgate CTO Stephen Faris (R&D).

The number of Americans who support President Obama’s healthcare reform package: 36%.

Camden-Clark Memorial Hospital (WV) signs up with Eclipsys for what sounds like all Sunrise modules plus EPSi. Camden-Clark is also connecting its 70 owned or affiliated physician practices, which run the Allscripts Professional EHR, using Eclipsys HealthXchange (which is Medicity).

Scottish charge master software vendor Craneware says its sales reached a record $54 million in the year ended June 30.

7-15-2010 6-57-38 PM

Healthcare Growth Partners releases its Q2 report covering HIT-related capital markets, mergers and acquisitions, and capital funding.

Weird News Andy delivers this story about a woman pregnant with two babies that aren’t twins. She has two uteruses (uteri?). Or as WNA says, quoting Homer Simpson, “It’s uterus, not uterme.”

Dan O’Neil let me know that he’s taking a job with consulting firm Arcadia Solutions, leaving his CIO slot open at Quincy Medical Center in Boston just in case you’re interested.

Eclipsys shareholders will vote on the company’s planned acquisition by Allscripts on August 13.

Jobs: Senior DBA and Storage Engineer, Web Application Developer, Lab Systems Project Manager, Project Manager – Meditech Conversion.

Australia’s Lingo Systems will give away $1 million worth of software licenses as a promotion for its SMS message-based hospital staff scheduling system. Nurses indicate their availability on a Web page and are texted when the hospital needs one of those shifts covered. The first nurse to text back “yes” gets the shift.

Disciplined nurses are using multi-state licensing agreements to keep delivering care after misconduct. Recordkeeping isn’t up to date, so nurses disciplined in one state sometimes have clean multi-state licenses. One Wisconsin nurse who was fired and later convicted of stealing Dilaudid said, “When I went to go for the job in North Carolina, looked at the status of my license, and it was still active. That kind of surprised me, so I figured I would take it."

7-15-2010 8-11-34 PM

HHS launches a Meaningful Use Web site that includes the final EHR incentive details and final EHR standards and certification criteria.

Hospitals in Greece were overcharged for medical equipment by Siemens, prosecutors say, with some hospitals paying more in annual maintenance than the equipment was worth.

The iSoft tailspin continues: two of its Australian executives quit and the company downgrades its expected revenue based on NPfIT delays. Market cap has shrunk from $1.5 billion to $170 million and an Australian publication says iSoft has cut 600 jobs and will eliminate another 500 by the end of the year. Private equity firms are poking and prodding, of course (who wouldn’t at that price?)

Announced this week and darned cool: Google’s App Inventor for Android lets non-programmers build apps for Android phones using predefined controls. Some of the available tools can access a GPS sensor, automatic texting, and interact with Web sites. Brilliant. Somebody build something cool for healthcare and write up your experience – I’ll run it here.

E-mail me.

HERtalk by Inga

From Ed Marx: “Re: final Meaningful Use regulations. I am pleased with the compromise reached by CMS/ONC. The program remains as designed, an incentive, not a give-me. It strikes a strong balance between a stretch goal while being realistic with industry current state.” I had asked Ed to share his initial, high-level impression of the final rules. It’s interesting to note that several months ago, Ed expressed concern over the preliminary measurement requirements, believing they represented a “high hurdle” for many organizations. 

From Really?: “Re: final regs. They lowered the bar so much that my four-year-old could achieve Meaningful Use! The government might as well hand out money to everyone.”

From Chicago Skyline: “Re: The fine print. In talking to a few folks, vendors seem to worried that they will need to include in their software the reporting tools for the meaningful use metrics. In other words, the software must have a report that shows what percentage of all meds were electronically prescribed. What do you understand?” Just when I thought I was nearly an MU expert, I have to punt. I didn’t have time to look through the fine print today, but maybe someone who has can chime in.

From CheerLeader: “Bravo! Hurrah! Well done, Inga! Great work on your synopsis — I actually have something to pass along to by C-levels that they will understand.” You would think that after 3-1/2 years of doing this I would no longer be surprised that people really do read what I write. If you are more interested in how the final regs affect Eligible Providers, check out the summaries posted yesterday on HIStalk Practice.


Wellsoft wins a couple of EDIS deals in Canada. Kingston General Hospital and Hotel Dieu Hospital, which share hospital information systems and IT support, will jointly implement Wellsoft.

Westbury Hospital (TX) is implementing ChartAccess EMR from Prognosis for is new 137-bed facility.

Healthcare providers are generally still confused about certification requirements for ambulatory EHRs, according to a recent CapSite survey. Two-thirds of providers consider certification to be a very important element in their EMR evaluation process and more than half think that CCHIT certification is a requirement to receive stimulus funds. Sixty-nine percent weren’t aware the feds would be accrediting other organizations beside CCHIT. If I handled marketing for CCHIT, I’d figure out some sneaky way to leverage this last data point with vendors. Nothing like a little fear to scare a physician away from an otherwise good purchase decision.


Sharp Healthcare (CA) selects Allscripts Community Record, which is provided in partnership with dbMotion. Sharp uses Allscripts EHR for its employed physicians and has deployed Allscripts’ Care Management and Referral Management applications. The Community Record will connect the Allscripts systems with third-party clinical applications to create a single community patient record.

CAP STS signs a collaboration agreement with the Barcelona-based healthcare consulting firm Gesaworld. The two organizations will provide consulting, training, and implementation services for HIT standards.


Trace Devanny won’t be unemployed more than a weekend. The former Cerner president is taking over as CEO for The Trizetto Group, effective July 19th. Trizetto founder and current CEO Jeff Margolis will remain chairman of the board. Devanny will be based in Greenwood Village, CO, which will also become Trizetto’s new headquarters.

Home health and hospice software provider HealthWyse partners with ZirMed. HealthWyse will combine ZirMed’s claims management tools into its clinical and financial information system.

IOD Incorporated, a provider of release of information services, is infused with $35 million of growth equity from LLR Partners, a PE firm.


A reader sent over a note suggesting he had some “scoop” from the AMDIS Physician-Computer Connection Symposium, which is going on right now in Ojai, CA. Unfortunately he was in a hurry (something about a blackberry martini reception) and so far all I’ve gotten was this picture. I’m not sure who the speaker is, but the crowd looks totally engaged. I await rumors and/or martinis.


E-mail Inga.

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Currently there are "5 comments" on this Article:

  1. Re: fine print & vendor reporting tools. It is true per brand new certification criterion (page 181 in ONC document):

    Final Rule Text:
    Automated measure calculation. For each meaningful use
    objective with a percentage-based measure, electronically
    record the numerator and denominator and generate a report
    including the numerator, denominator, and resulting
    percentage associated with each applicable meaningful use

  2. @Really? – You’re ignoring the fact that the majority of hospitals and private practitioners in the country don’t have EMRs that allow them to meet these requirements right now. To the extent this achievable goal inspires them to move forward towards an EMR, the incentive has actually succeeded. It was never going to be enough money to offset the cost (even after about 20 years of penalties) so making it extremely challenging was going to mean most people ignored it.

  3. Thanks for the link to the new MU site, I’ll have to check it out. I’m blown away with how many people posted “live” coverage of reading this rule: if anyone wants an example for the power of a social, semantic web, this event would be it. And of course, as we all have more time to digest it, there will be even more coverage.

  4. Thanks to Dr. Peel, my family and I are now more informed:

    “”This is a nightmare. This is a nightmare. It’s nothing we’ve ever seen before in medicine,” said patient privacy rights advocate Dr. Deborah Peel.
    Peel she said many patients and doctors don’t know the federal government quietly eliminated patients’ privacy rights for electronic records.

    “It’s a free-for-all. It’s the wild west,” said Peel.”

  5. Re: IBM will spend $100 million over the next three years on healthcare transformation projects: creating evidence-based protocols…

    IBM better be ready to throw in another $500 million., mostly for lobbyists.

    If they think Evidenced Based Medicine is a ‘rationale and scientific’ process they are very naive. Just look at what happened earlier this year. The H&HS hires a firm to review a half dozen research studies concerning mammography screening. They come back with a finding that screening women under 50 is a not only wasteful of health care resources, but can be harmful with the high level of false positives can occur. What happens? All the ‘interested’ parties scream that it is every women’s right to have a mammography. DH&HS Sec Sebillus says don’t worry I’ll make the insurance companies keep paying for mamos. Loudest were the equipment manufactures and Radiologists. How dare someone try to cut into their revenue stream!

    Then a few weeks later another study comes out and says that pap smears for women under 40 are also inefficient and subject to too many false positives. We don’t need to do them, can save alot of money. No screams, no demonstrations, all say good idea, lets do it. How’d that happen? Too small a revenue stream, no big equipment companies, no lobby groups.

    So much for EBM. I think it should be renamed EB/PM (the P stands for political or popular).

    Good luck IBM.

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