Home » News » Currently Reading:

News 8/4/10

August 3, 2010 News 10 Comments

From HIStalk Junkie: “Re: Alert Medical. The company has hired and fired several chronically underfunded US ‘consultants’ / salespeople, preferring to pay straight commission. Some have said they won’t pay for even basic tools for understanding the US market. I have run into them in several countries. They hired a very smart fellow who was at HIMSS looking for a US partner to ‘invest’ in the chance to represent ALERT. Sounds to me like they want to sell their US marketing rights. They have no revenue cycle product, but a very pretty clinical product” Unverified, although I do remember that someone told me that before.

8-3-2010 8-01-56 PM

From J.G. Giant: “Re: odd but true. In keeping with the season, I thought you would appreciate this. Keep up the excellent work!!!” I wonder if these providers use EMRs?

From Hitchens: “Re: Meditech. I work for a Meditech partner and I hear they are looking at offering Allscripts for certain interfaces. Also, this may be Step 1 in a buyout of Meditech by Allscripts, as Meditech’s founders have been looking for a few years to exit and the $$ now is so high.” Unverified. Seems unlikely, but it’s a crazy industry right now.

From LISales: “Re: Epic Beaker LIS. Word on the street is that they have one SMALL site using the system within the Wisconsin area, but nothing major yet. I’ve also heard that they are beefing up the development team while including the licensing right to the module within ALL of their enterprise licensing agreements. Also heard is that the functionality is being somewhat oversold compared to actual capability with no desire to develop certain aspects of a full-scale laboratory’s needs, Blood Bank to name but one.” Unverified.

From UKnowMe: “Re: business associates. What training are consulting firms using to ensure their employees take appropriate measures with regard to PHI?”

From Kermit: “Re: NHS. Britain is proposing a shake-up. Here’s one article.” The new government changes its mind about its pre-election promise to leave healthcare alone, planning a reorganization of NHS. The goals are to move central control back to doctors, cut out administrative layers, and give patients more say-so. Here’s an interesting (condescending) quote from a research group about giving doctors control of the equivalent of a $3.4 million annual budget each to pay other providers:

It’s like getting your waiter to manage a restaurant. The government is saying that GPs know what the patient wants, just the way a waiter knows what you want to eat. But a waiter isn’t necessarily any good at ordering stock, managing the premises, talking to the chef — why would they be? They’re waiters.

From The PACS Designer: “Re: OneNote on WP7. As we learn more about Windows Phone 7 (WP7), it appears Microsoft will be pushing the use of MS Office OneNote for mobile users with its scheduling, meeting notes, and To Do List features, among others in the application.”

8-3-2010 9-07-34 PM

From Cassie: “Re: Mercer does it again! Apparently Mercer lost another piece of IT equipment in the great state of Idaho, this time for St. Al’s hospital ,therefore losing numerous employee data. Supposedly it’s been missing for months (and is still missing) and Mercer is just now telling St. Al’s staff.” Verified. Mercer lost a backup tape in March containing information on 1,000 employees of St. Alphonsus.

Watching (instead of Listening this time): Better Off Ted, a just-cancelled, brainy comedy from my streaming Netflix recommendations (rightly so — I love it). What’s not to like about a soulless, thoroughly evil and Dilbert-esque conglomerate (its motto: Money before People, and check out the amazing phony commercials) and the ever-luscious Portia de Rossi? It rounds out my personal TV triumvirate that includes Arrested Development (there’s Portia again) and 30 Rock. All are on Netflix, so I can watch whenever I have time (which is rarely).

Surescripts will announce tomorrow that Microsoft HealthVault users will be able to download their pharmacy prescription history into their PHR.

mHealth Summit books Bill Gates as a keynote speaker. I’m thinking about attending since I need to get out from behind a desk more often.

8-3-2010 7-04-14 PM

RIM announces the BlackBerry Torch 9800 and BlackBerry 6 OS, offering a slide-out keyboard, a touch screen, and a 5-megapixel camera. I think it’s safe to say that iPhone and Droid users won’t be interested, but it might keep some non-corporate BlackBerry users in the fold for awhile longer and placate the business user suffering from iPhone envy. The Torch will cost $200 with a two-year AT&T contract.

Weird News Andy packages this story with a pun: “He asked the nurse if he could use her needle and thread and thought she said ‘suture self’.” A man with a leg cut waits an hour to be seen in an ED in Sweden. He becomes impatient, notices the “needle and thread” in the room, and sews the cut up himself. Unappreciative hospital employees reported him for using hospital equipment without authorization.

Thanks to Neil Versel at FierceHealthIT for saying nice things about Inga and me in mentioning our little link exchange project. I like that he envies “the Cult of Mr. HIStalk,” which I’m pretty sure is apocryphal, but it still makes a good fantasy for my next dull hospital meeting. He does seem to harbor some doubt that I work in a hospital, but I assuredly do, full-time and mostly happily. My self-selected theme song is Rush’s Working Man.

8-3-2010 7-31-25 PM

A hospital in Australia says its upgraded Philips Intellivue Clinical Information Portfolio has reduced ICU costs by 20-25%. If provides clinical decision support, a patient summary, clinical guidelines called “care bundles”, order management, ICU scores, digital picture documentation, analysis and reporting, and wireless access.

Keane Optimum 3.1 earns CCHIT Preliminary IFR Stage 1 certification as an inpatient EHR.

July’s HIStalk stats for those scoring at home (you know who you are): 97,368 visits, 138,957 page views, 5,941 e-mail subscribers. As always, thanks to my readers and sponsors. Back in the old days, I wrote HIStalk without either and would do it again, but it’s a blast knowing someone’s actually reading.

VMware will co-market Imprivata’s authentication and single sign-on products with its VMware View virtual desktop.

Boston-based SV Life Sciences, which has invested in six HIT companies, plans to fund more healthcare IT startups, with a primary interest data mining solutions. Its investments include Vitalize Consulting Solutions, Phase Forward, and eMed Technologies.

GE and Intel form a 50-50 joint venture to start a technology company that will target telehealth and independent living, extending their alliance from last year. That squares them off solidly with Philips, it would seem.

Orion Health announces GA of Rhapsody 4, a new version of its integration engine. Features: secure Web services, support for lookup tables, a monitoring API, Web-based monitoring tools, and a drag-and-drop user interface for analysts.

The Singapore Ministry of Health awards Accenture a contract to implement its national electronic health record system, scheduled for initial release next year. 

8-3-2010 9-13-39 PM

A New York Times investigation finds that at least 400 patients in eight hospitals have been overdosed on radiation during CT brain perfusion scans. The FDA was unaware of the problem and doctors and hospitals missed symptoms such as hair loss in the irradiated areas. GE’s equipment wasn’t the problem, but two hospitals said technicians confused a feature that raised radiation levels and thought it lowered them, saying the feature was “counterintuitive.” Interesting: Cedars-Sinai, one of the hospitals named, overdosed a member of its board of governors, who left the board when she found out. The best comment came from a plaintiff’s lawyer: “What is amazing and seems painfully obvious is if someone walks in with a band of hair missing around the entire circumference of their head, you would ask the question: Have you had a CT scan? Not ‘What did you eat for breakfast yesterday that would cause your hair to fall out today?’”

E-mail me.

HERtalk by Inga

A bi-partisan group of legislators introduces the EHR Incentives for Multi-Campus Hospitals Act, designed to ensure that multi-campus hospitals receive their fair share of economic recovery dollars. The way the law is written, multi-campus hospitals receive the same dollars as a single hospital despite higher implementation costs.


Advocate Health Care (IL) is deploying Fusionfx physician portal from Carefx Corporation at its recently acquired Condell Medical Center facility. Condell is also in the process of migrating from McKesson Horizon to Cerner.

The 100-physician Manhattan’s Physician Group selects ITalagen to host, support, and manage its EHR.

Corner Children’s Hospital (IL) plans to integrate its EpicCare inpatient clinicals with GetWell Town, a pediatric interactive patient care solution. The connection will support the bi-directional flow of patient information so that nurses can order educational material specific to a child’s diagnosis, then document progress in the patient’s record.


The local paper highlights the transition of Doctors Hospital (TX) to Cerner EHR and its desire to automate 300 community physicians.

Fremont Area Medical Center (NE) advances its HIE plans, signing a contract to implement Lawson Enterprise Exchange.

slot machine

I don’t love Las Vegas, though I usually find a one-or two-day visit  is pretty fun. I had hoped to trek to Sin City this week to attend ACE with Mr. H, but alas, “real” life is getting in the way. In exchange for keeping the home fires burning, I’m thinking Mr. H should waste at least $20 in quarters playing the slots on my behalf. If you are one the 3,000 attending, feel free to send me some pics.

OA Centers for Orthopaedics (ME) chooses the SRS hybrid EMR for its 41-specialist practice.

Greater Baltimore Medical Center (MD) picks eClinicalWorks to provide EMR and PM to its 100 employed physicians.


Scott Bagwell takes over as SVP of sales and marketing for Passport Health Communications. Bagwell held a similar position with McKesson Pharmacy Systems and RelayHealth Pharmacy Solutions.

Q2 results for Henry Schein: earnings up 14%, though North American medical sales fell 0.4%. Total revenues of $1.85 billion exceeded analyst expectations.

Marion General Hospital (OH) implements GE Centricity Enterprise via a remote hosted delivery option.

A new eHealth Initiative survey on HIEs finds that the number of exchanges is growing, with at least 73 of 234 total HIEs now operational and transmitting stakeholder data. This is up from 57 last year. Sustainability continues to be a challenge, although 107 report they aren’t dependent on federal funds. Another challenge: addressing government policy. Participants also say the HIEs are helping reduce staff time and redundant testing.

Speaking of HIEs, the Electronic Healthcare Network Accreditation Commission (EHNAC) names the Utah HIE the first entity accredited through the HIE Accreditation Program.

mills penisula

From another local paper: the soon-to-open Mills Peninsula Medical Center (CA) will have no paper records. The new Sutter Health facility is replacing Peninsula Medical Center, which runs Epic.

Finally, Nielsen Co. says Americans spend 23% of their online time checking out Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites. Which reminds me: Mr. H and I would love to suck more time out of your day, so feel free to friend us on Facebook and become a HIStalk fan.


E-mail Inga.

View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only

HIStalk Featured Sponsors


Currently there are "10 comments" on this Article:

  1. Regarding the comment made by Hitchens: It’s very doubtful that MEDITECH would be looking for a buyout. Call Howard Messing to confirm, and I’m sure he would. They have said from day one that they are not looking for one. Howard has just been promoted, and he’s still a relatively young guy. No reason to be bought out now. Still a very successful company.

  2. UKnowMe: For that matter… What training are HOSPITALS using to ensure their employees take appropriate measures with regard to PHI? I see incredible gaps in that knowledge where I am. Don’t know how common that is at other hospitals, but it always amazes me when I see it.

  3. Re: UDontKnowMe – There are tons of vendors advertising privacy training but I don’t know how to tell if they’re legit. The HHS website has training materials dating back to 2003. I want to make sure we do our due dilligence but there’s no clear path!

  4. RE: UKnowMe: Its safe to say that what you are perceiving with respect to Business Associate training around HIPAA privacy and security is spot on. Business Associates now have a mandate to provide appropriate training for their employees, but this does not necessarily translate into action. What can you do? Prescriptively you can convey training requirements through a Security Agreement as part of your contract with them or as an add on to your Business Associate Agreement. You should also request proof of training during selection processes or on boarding/project kickoffs. Tactically if you run across someone who does not seem to be up to speed, talk to your Business Associate and have them address it. Once you identify a risk you need to address it.

  5. If the doctors are like “waiters” in the UK, are the nurses dishwashers as the consultants describe: “It’s like getting your waiter to manage a restaurant.”

    And what exactly are the programmers, CMIOs, and other HIT specialists who fail to assure safety and efficacy of their software as reported here:


    Are they the hostesses? Since when have restaurants become surrogates for hospitals?

    Mr HIStalk, were these the hospitals which “Holy Smoke” was referring to a few weeks ago in your lead stories?

  6. Arrested Development is the greatest show of all time. I only caught a few episodes during its brief run, but rented them all a couple of years ago and laughed for days. Jason Bateman is a seriously underrated comedic actor.

    Oh…and to keep this healthcare related…I saw a demonstration of eClinicalWorks P2P product yesterday. Think Facebook or LinkedIn for physicians. I won’t go into detail, but it seems very powerful and a very innovative alternative to “traditional HIE.”

  7. We missed you today, hope everything is OK. On the lighter side…

    “Better off Ted” is a hoot!. Thanks for that I’d also highly recommend for something less dark, but silly in the British sense: “The IT Crowd”.

    “Have you tried turning it off and on again?”


Subscribe to Updates



Text Ads

Report News and Rumors

No title

Anonymous online form
Rumor line: 801.HIT.NEWS



Founding Sponsors


Platinum Sponsors






























































Gold Sponsors
















Reader Comments

  • MA/MBA Grad: I have both an MBA and an MBA in Hospital & Health Administration. These were done together through a dual-dual prog...
  • richie: I don't think it's legal to whip a horse these days without mentioning blockchain. And I'd add "innovative", "interopera...
  • Publius: Your Bingo board is missing "Machine Learning"...
  • Ex-Epic: Re: MHA v. MBA I think if you are 100% down the health systems path, you could probably consider MHA or MBA (but woul...
  • The trip: I agree with you. I have an MHA but think an MBA with a concentration in healthcare is the way to go. My RN IT boss in t...
  • David Butler: I absolutely love this article! I'm fairly new to following HIStalk and Dr. Jayne (and the various portions of the site...
  • MiroslavB: Great insights - Thanks Ed !...
  • SteveS: I’d like to hear more from Ed about his perspective on the current state of “Professional Organizations” – in te...
  • Brian Too: Nice to hear from a small hospital for a change. We hear lots from the large players and consolidation has meant that b...
  • Sam Lawrence: Except in this case, coding = medical billing, not development. Though the same warning may be true...

Sponsor Quick Links