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August 9, 2011 News 11 Comments

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8-9-2011 9-05-53 PM

IBM and nine other vendors file protests with the VA for not being chosen to participate in its $12 billion technology program. All the protests except IBM’s have already been denied.

Reader Comments

8-9-2011 9-12-25 PM

image From Observer: “Re: Flagler Hospital, St. Augustine, FL. Replacing Meditech with Allscripts Sunrise, which beat Epic and Cerner as well. It’s a 300-bed  HealthGrades Best 50 hospital.” Unverified, although I had heard that an unidentified hospital had signed on.

image From Otoscope: “Re: hospitals that have successfully attested. Is there a list somewhere that includes which vendors they use?” I haven’t seen a list like that. If you have, let me know.

8-9-2011 7-38-07 PM

image From Unlisted: “Re: shakeup at ONC. Arien Malec, coordinator of NHIN Direct, is returning to RelayHealth. Dr. Doug Fridsma will leave his current post and take over Dr. Chuck Friedman’s former position as Chief Scientist. All of this will leave ONC-sponsored interoperability efforts lost at sea.” Arien tells me that he announced his departure from ONC on Monday – his nine-month RelayHealth leave had turned into 18 (he was not an ONC employee). He reports that it was already announced that Doug Fridsma is covering the Office of the Chief Scientist role in addition to Office of Standards and Interoperability. I wouldn’t say that any of this necessarily qualifies as a shakeup, though. 

HIStalk Announcements and Requests

8-9-2011 4-17-34 PM

image You may have read last week that I was traveling a bit, leaving Mr. H to carry an even heavier load than usual. In addition to some shoe shopping (a mere two pair), I paid a visit to eClinicalWorks and athenahealth. If you care to learn details about eCW’s nifty new headquarters, or see some pictures of Jonathan Bush’s office, you’ll find the write-ups on HIStalk Practice.

Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

8-9-2011 4-18-53 PM

Private equity firm Halyard Capital invests in RCM provider Practice Insight.

At least five law firms file class-action lawsuits against WebMD, alleging that the company misrepresented its financial position to shareholders and failed to make timely disclosures about projected drops in  advertising revenues. CEO Wayne Gattinella lowered revenue guidance for 2011 in July and the stock price fell 30%; however, company insiders sold $44.7 million in stock in the months following the issuance of WebMD’s February financial statements.

SAIC completes its acquisition of Vitalize Consulting Solutions.

Emdeon reports Q2 net income of $5.8 million, up from $4.2 million a year ago. Non-GAAP adjusted net income was $31.8 million ($0.26/share) which beat analysts’ expectations of $0.25/share. Revenues were up 16% to $282.1 million. The company announced last week that it will be taken private by a Blackstone Group fund.

Symphony Corporation, a Madison, WI-based technology provider, acquires JGI, a New Jersey human capital management consulting firm. Both companies claim a significant healthcare presence.


8-9-2011 7-29-51 PM

Stormont-Vail Healthcare (KS) selects TeleHealth to provide interactive patient education services.

8-9-2011 4-21-29 PM

Mille Lacs Health System (MN) contracts with Indigo for its Identityware SSO and access management solution.

8-9-2011 7-28-37 PM

Iowa Health System will use Medicity’s HIE technology to connect its hospitals and clinics.


8-9-2011 7-44-21 PM
LSU Health Shreveport promotes Marcus Hobgood to CIO.

8-9-2011 12-53-09 PM 8-9-2011 12-48-03 PM

SCI Solutions names Joel French managing partner and CEO and Jeff Anderson managing partner and chief sales officer. Founder John Holton will serve as managing partner and COO. French was most recently VP/GM Healthcare of Motion Computing; Anderson was managing director at Huron Consulting Group. SCI also announced that The Wicks Group of Companies and New Enterprise Associates have invested in the company to support its expansion efforts. 

8-9-2011 8-45-52 PM

RedBrick Health, a Minnesota vendor of technology-driven online wellness services, names Daniel Ryan as CEO.

Announcements and Implementations

8-9-2011 6-42-19 AM

Taiwan goes live on its nationwide EMR initiative in November, allowing physicians across the country access to patients’ clinical information.

8-9-2011 7-42-06 AM

Cerner says that all 18 Major League Soccer teams have implemented its HealtheAthlete health management platform. During the 2010 season, 621 players were tracked in the system and 1,500 injuries were logged.

8-9-2011 1-10-42 PM

The Christ Hospital (OH) implements a real-time interface that captures data from hemodialysis treatments and imports it into its Epic EMR.

8-9-2011 4-22-38 PM

Stillwater Medical Center (OK) integrates its the vital signs monitors in its same-day surgery unit with its Meditech HIS using Accent on Integration’s Acceleor Connect technology.

Dell and NextGen announce plans for Dell to sell and support NextGen’s ambulatory and inpatient solutions and to provide hosting services for NextGen clients. Dell also becomes the platform of choice for NextGen solutions and for NextGen’s internal use.

LA Care Health Plan (CA) will spend $1.5 million to develop and implement an eConsult system at 47 LA County safety net sites. It will handle provider communication and referral requests. A previous pilot program was claimed to reduce face-to-face specialist visits by up to 48%, depending on the specialty.

Government and Politics

8-9-2011 2-59-50 PM

New Hampshire Governor John Lynch signs legislation that establishes the state’s Health Information Organization (NH-HIO.)

HHS issues a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking regarding the use of metadata standards to support health information exchange.

In Australia, standards work for the government’s eHealth program is stopped when the non-profit Standards Australia fails to secure a new government contract.


8-9-2011 12-33-03 PM

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment fines Heart Check America $3.2 million for a variety of violations, including performing diagnostic scans without the order of a state-licensed physician. The company was also cited for failing to monitor employee radiation exposure and not having policies and procedures to ensure safe CT scanner use. The company closed its Denver facility in May following a state inspection.

HIT jobs will grow 20% annually through 2018, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. Because of particularly strong demand for CIOs and CTOs, individuals from banking, manufacturing, and other industries are now being hired into healthcare.

8-9-2011 3-48-53 PM

image KLAS reports that Cerner’s Millennium PowerChart has the most hospitals live on CPOE, followed by Epic.  An average of 81% of orders are being entered via CPOE in Cerner hospitals and 83% at Epic sites. The third-ranked McKesson had 90 installations of Horizon CPOE at the end of 2010, with an average of 45% adoption, plus 11 Paragon sites with 25% average adoption. Overall industry adoption of CPOE was still less than 22%.

image Doom and gloom from Down Under: The Australian Medical Association warns that the federal government’s online medical records system is “doomed to failure” because not enough people will sign up for it. Patients are required to opt in to participate; the medical association wants the government to make participation mandatory unless the patient opts out.

image Strange: an health board IT technician in New Zealand is fired by the CIO for departmental theft. His loot: one blank DVD.

image Weird News Andy is nuts about this premature discharge story: a man tucks his girlfriend’s pink pistol into his waistband as the couple enters a grocery store, accidentally pulling the trigger and shooting himself in his private parts. The girlfriend calls 911 and the emergency operator tells her to apply pressure, but not to look at the wound. “I did look at it and it’s pretty bad,” she admitted. The local police department turned the unfortunate incident into a teaching moment, helpfully advising locals to use holsters rather than jamming weaponry down their pants Hollywood-style.

8-9-2011 7-19-34 PM

image WNA also turns up this story: a 26-year-old with breast cancer and no health insurance is denied coverage by a Medicaid program specifically created for that condition. The reason: he’s male. Above is CMS’s special coverage conditions, which exclude the several thousand men who are newly diagnosed each year.

An Ann Arbor, MI couple who owned hospital inventory software company Ariel Software are indicted for failing to pay taxes to the IRS over a 12-year period. They are accused of withholding $880,000 in employment taxes, but spending most of the money on the business instead of sending it to the IRS. The husband was also charged with failing to file personal tax return for several years.

A former VA data warehouse manager is sentenced to 11 years in prison for extracting patient information from the VA’s system and using it to file 800 fraudulent tax returns through his home tax preparation business.

Doctors in Estonia complain about the HP-developed EMR used there, saying that entering data for a single patient requires 50 mouse clicks and opening dozens to hundreds of documents one at a time.

8-9-2011 7-54-27 PM

8-9-2011 8-05-19 PM

image General Cannabis announces that its WeedMaps marijuana dispensary finder took in $1.1 million in July. Its patient management system will complete beta testing shortly and offers patient self-scheduling, electronic medical records, and an appointment reminder system. According to the CEO, “Our technology is applicable beyond cannabis and we are already in development on our next medical niche.”

8-9-2011 8-29-56 PM

image Members of a Florida ministry’s medical bill-sharing program join together to pay each other’s “responsible” medical bills, eliminating the administrative expense of for-profit insurance companies. The program, which the ministry insists is not insurance, pools expenses for members to share as they wish. It also offers healthy living rewards and helps its parishioners adopt healthy lifestyles. Its interactive tools include a 24×7 Twitter-like Prayer Stream for prayer requests and offers of encouragement.

The parent company of a West Virginia nursing home will appeal a jury’s $91.5 million medical negligence verdict that claimed its understaffing caused the death of an 87-year-old resident.

Sponsor Updates

  • The College of American Pathologists, the CDC, the AHA, and Surescripts will present The Lab Interoperability Cooperative: Engaging and Empowering Hospital Laboratories and Public Health Agencies in Electronic Laboratory Reporting for Meaningful Use at CDC’s Public Health Informatics 2011 Conference, August 21-24.
  • Besler Consulting publishes a paper on Healthcare Reform – Do You Have The Clinical Outcomes to Achieve the Financial Rewards?
  • API Healthcare is exhibiting at Healthcare WFM 2011 August 19.
  • Bulletin Healthcare announces an opening for Senior Medical Writer.
  • EDIMS is attending the iHT2 Health IT Summit next week.
  • Voalte will hire 50 employees over the next three years as it expands its Sarasota, FL offices.
  • Employees of Sage Healthcare are doing volunteer work at community health centers this week as part of the company’s support of National Health Center Week.
  • DIVURGENT publishes a paper entitled Meaningful Use Requirement for HIPAA Security Risk Assessment.
  • MediServe is offering a Webinar, CMS 2012 Final Rule – How Will the New Rule Impact Your Facility?
  • St. Joseph’s Hospital Health Center selects CareWorks CMS from CareTech Solutions for its Web sites.
  • dbMotion receives ONC-ATCB 2011/2012 certification for three use cases.
  • GE Healthcare releases Centricity Advance – Mobile as an iPad application, while also announcing U.S. launch of Optima CT660.
  • MEDecision Inc. announces that its 2011 URAC accredited Alineo Clinical Programs are available.
  • Access announces that 10 of its customers have been named to HHN’s Most Wired Hospitals list for 2011.
  • AdvancedMD receives recognition as the top EMR for OB/GYN.
  • GetWellNetwork releases a new white paper, Meaningful Use of Health Information Technology: Requirements and Solutions in Patient and Family Engagement.
  • A National eHealth Collaborative HIE report recognizes two Orion customers, HealthInfoNet and SMRTNET for their mature HIEs.
  • The Advisory Board Company expands it Austin,TX software center following a 10-year, $372,590 incentive deal with the city. The company will create 239 jobs and invest $8.1 million in improvements to its leased space by 2017.
  • Greenway Medical reports that its customers have secured more than $1 million in combined Medicaid and Medicare Meaningful Use incentive funds.


Mr. H, Inga, Dr. Jayne, Dr. Gregg.

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Currently there are "11 comments" on this Article:

  1. Congrats Allscripts on the win at Flagler! Clinical systems are not my business, but its good to see some non-Epic wins. Good for the industry and, from what I hear, good for physicians and patient care.

  2. We are very excited to be partnering with Allscripts. Epic looked good but for too much requirement from a resource perspective. Arguably their staff requirements were more accurate than what we first got from Cerner and Allscripts, but to keep 80% of the implementation team is not financially possible ongoing. Cerner was very close but at the end, the physicians had too many friends with negative Cerner experience (maybe they need different friends!) Allscripts came in and showed a great product that our clincians responded to. IS was not a huge fan of the disperate systems within Allscripts, but the open architecture helped balance the IS team. We let our cliniciians decide which system to move forward with, after all, they will be the ones using it IS simply provided information and scheduled meetings.

  3. I think the auto-reminders in the General Cannabis system is a brilliant idea for obvious reasons. Also, where is that map again?

  4. Re: CPOE usage. Interesting stats. I would be anxious to see a comparison amongst most of the players, especially in the smaller hospital space, as you mention Paragon, whose CPOE I think has only been out for about 2 years. I would like to see what Meditech, CPSI, HMS, Healthland, Prognosis, etc. report. It would be interesting because they have products that have been on the market for quite awhile.

  5. What an astute idea, Flagler Dude: “We let our cliniciians decide which system to move forward with, after all, they will be the ones using it IS simply provided information and scheduled meetings.”!

    This approach nearly eliminates the financial incentives (?kickbacks?) that hospitals get for selecting a system and then forcing doctors to use it, no matter how meaningfully unusable it it.

    Too many friends with a negative Cerner experience? OMG, I do not understand how that could be, until I read the MAUDE FDA database on Cerner Millenium and hear stories from the UK and Australia.

  6. Re: ONC Shake up: so where does this leave the leadership for the NHIN and related programs? what is the offical word from ONC on the replacements and decisons related to the next steps of the program?

  7. The vendors included and compared in the KLAS CPOE study are: Allscripts (Eclipsys), Cerner, CPSI, Epic, Healthland, HMS, McKesson, MEDITECH, QuadraMed, Siemens.

    Doesn’t look at Prognosis, but most of the ones you mentioned.

  8. Whoa – Flagler should be very careful about thinking through the support levels required. Sure, Epic tells you to have a large support team but their estimates are pretty accurate. You always have variability with the quality of the management, the quality and capabilities of the individual resources, the amount of time dedicated to design and documentation and the role of the user, informatics and IT Teams. Stagnation of the system is a real risk as you may not have the resources to work support tickets, day-to-day improvements, maintaining best of breed apps/interfaces and work through upgrades effectively. As scope is “managed” in the implementation – in other words – we’ll do that later because we are running out of time, those activities rarely are able to be revisited without a strong and adequately staffed support structure. Gearing-up with consultants every time you need to do an upgrade is very costly. Lastly, reporting, business intelligence, analytics – whatever you want to call it, suffers.

    I do applaud the open-minded thinking. I hope the support risks were properly vetted.

  9. Flagler might have bitten off more than it can chew here. Surprised Allscripts even sold Sunrise to a hospital that small. Well maybe not. The resources required to build and maintain Sunrise are huge compared to other similar systems. No way this project ends up on time and under budget. Sorry Flagler, you let your clinicians make a decision that isn’t in the best interests of the hospital.

  10. Re:: hospitals that have successfully attested. Is there a list somewhere that includes which vendors they use?”

    When a provider attests they do not have to state which vendor system(s) they use. In fact they could use 44 different systems to meet the 44 criteria! Crazy, but true.
    As an example even if they are a McKesson EMR shop, they could cover say 5 criteria with other certified EMR Modules where they have not installed a McK product.

    It would be a bear to put that list together.

  11. Fred not sure you have your facts straight on Allscritps they have several hospitals in the 300-400 bed range that run SCM. All EMR systems require the right number of skilled IS resources to get them up and running, so I disagree with your comparision that SCM requires more then similar systems. Success depends on the quality of the resources you have, plus and I do mean a major plus, you must have great project management and a great vendor-hospital relationship. The later, is more what I am concerned about.

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