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March 6, 2012 News 16 Comments

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3-5-2012 3-44-30 PM

Physicians using computerized patient records are more likely to order new tests, leading to higher healthcare costs. Researchers, whose findings were  published in Health Affairs, found that physicians with point-of-care access to imaging were 40 to 70% more likely to order more tests, compared to doctors relying on paper records. Researchers could not determine the reason for the trend but theorize that doctors on computerized systems order more studies because of the the ease of online entry.

Reader Comments

From WallE “Re: HIMSS musings. I think the show would have been better if the floor plan and layout was simpler. After looking at New Orleans floor plan I’m thinking it will be better.They are returning to the single hall with a large “main street” walkway down the middle of the show.” I also prefer the main street, one hall layout, although the argument could be made that there was less walking required with this year’s floor plan.

From CTO “Re: Music.  It was good to ‘see’ you at the sponsor lunch at HIMSS. Since you have the helm this week, how about some insight into your taste in music?  I always like to read about  what Mr. H is interested in.” First let me say that Mr. H and I have very different tastes in music. Mine is a bit eclectic but a short list of my all-time favorite artists include Lyle Lovett, Bonnie Raitt, Aretha Franklin, and Allison Krauss. Some of the more current groups I find fun include Chiddy Bang, Flo Rida, and Bruno Mars.

From Ralphie “Re: Burger, Babes, and Vegas. I thought you might get a chuckle out of what I heard walking back from the HIMSS conference to my hotel behind what looked like two slick make vendor-types.  One turned to the other and said that he had been propositioned by two prostitutes and one of them offered her services for $35. The other one quipped, ‘Wow, that is less than the room service cheeseburger and fries I had last night.’” Love it.

From IDXwatcher “Re: More GE layoffs.  GE Healthcare layoff confirmed March 2nd.” According to an article in the local press, fewer than 30 people (about 2%) were let go last week. GE says the cuts were necessary “to increase competitiveness.”

From Aaron Brrr “Re: Madison Dolly comment on v12 of Epic. Madison Dolly said that v12 of Epic was shown at HIMSS and coming soon. Two questions: what’s in it and when did they change policies about showing that which isn’t available?” Anyone?

From Wondering aloud “Re: Epic. Epic is having a great run like SMS did with INVISION in the 90’s, but their business model is more like MEDITECH’s. Wondering if “in the know” readers think Epic will struggle the same way MEDITECH has recently with 6.0 when Epic attempts its inevitable near term re-platforming as well?”

From HIStalk Fan “Re: Allscripts. A recent analyst report discusses a Q3 restatement involving software transaction, as well as Allscripts’ disclosure of a subpoena in connection with a grand jury investigation and recent litigation involving Medical Services Associates.” Allscripts filed a 10-K last week related to a restatement of a bulk sale and delivery of licenses through a complex structure based on a decision that future performance obligations require the deferral of revenue. The net reduction to operating income was $3.1 million and a $0.01 reduction in EPS. I asked one of HIStalk reader/analysts for his take on the restatement and his opinion was the adjustments were very minor and reflected Allscripts’ conservative approach to revenue recognition. As to the litigation, MSA alleges Allscripts negligently caused the loss of medical billing data, intentionally misrepresented certain facts regarding the computer sold to them, and breached certain aspects of their contract. My take: Allscripts and vendors of their size are regularly hit with similar lawsuits and thus it’s not a cause for alarm.

From Stringer “Re: Medical software sales guy. This guy was convicted today of 1st degree murder of his wife. Very ugly situation, first trial was a hung jury. As you can see he is ALWAYS referred to in the press as a medical software salesman but have never mentioned the company. Thought it might be a good HIStalk expose.” Jason Young was convicted of brutally murdering his pregnant wife five years ago. Young contends he is innocent. I did a bit of digging and could only find one Jason Young in Linked In that could have potentially been a match. If you know the scoop, please share.

3-6-2012 7-42-08 PM

From OldTimer “Re: Allscripts send-off. Allscripts says goodbye to 24-year veteran Vada Hayes. Luminaries in attendance included John McConnell, Eric Sellers, Alan Winchester, Steve Shepherd, Bob Bothwell, and many, many others. There were four cakes: Medic, Misys, Allscripts, and the current color scheme. That’s cakes in green, purple, orange, and lime.” Would have loved to seen the cakes, but here is a shot of the retiring Hayes, along with former Medic/Misys CEO John McConnell.

HIStalk Announcements and Requests

ingaA few readers mentioned having difficulty getting onto the HIStalk sites today. Of course I can’t find Mr. H’s email from four years ago that explained who to contact if this ever happened. Hopefully Mr. H will check in soon and the issue will be resolved. Thanks for your patience.

ingaThanks to all the wonderful readers who sent encouraging e-mails about relief from post-HIMSS exhaustion and to remind me a vacation is in my near future.

Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

DocuTAP, a provider of EMR/PM solutions for urgent care providers,  secures a two-stage $12 million investment from Bluff Point Associates.

Healthcare software and service company iMedX completes its acquisition of the medical transcription assets from The Inner Office Ltd.


3-6-2012 7-50-30 PM

Iowa Health System contracts with MediRevv for accounts receivable conversion assistance as it transitions its core hospital system to Epic.

The VA selects HP Enterprise Services to continue as a prime contractor for its claims processing program, CAPRI.

Upper Peninsula Health Plan chooses the MedHOK platform for integrated care management, quality, and compliance.

3-6-2012 7-51-48 PM

CPU Medical Management Systems selects NDS’s Provider Edge product to automate payment processes and convert EOBs into ANSI standard 835 ERA.

The state of Louisiana contracts with CNSI for a 10-year, $185 million project to develop and deploy a new Medicaid claims processing system.


Healthcare data analytics company Qforma promotes Mark Feeney to VP of client services and Joann Flynn to senior director of business development operations and employee development.

3-6-2012 7-53-09 PM

AirStrip Technologies announces the addition of Connie McGee (KPMG) as VP of strategic accounts and the opening of a regional office in the Nashville area.

3-6-2012 7-54-14 PM

The Open Source EHR Agent (OSEHRA) names James Peake, MD (CGI Group), John Halamka, MD (Beth Israel Deaconess Medical), and Michael O’Neill (VA) to its inaugural board of directors. OSEHRA is a not-for-profit organization tasked with serving as the custodial agent of an open-source development project to upgrade the VA’s VistA EHR system.

Announcements and Implementations

3-6-2012 2-15-40 PM

ZirMed launches www.StarStopICD10.com, a site designed to gauge industry opinion and gather comments surrounding the ICD-10 implementation timeline.

3-6-2012 7-56-51 PM

The Cleveland Clinic expands its EMR to include a visual repository with diagnostic images of patient X-Rays, lab tissue samples, photographs and other images.

All 15 of the independently owned primary care clinics in the Integrity Health Network (MN) transition to EMR.

QuadraMed launches a remote hosting service for its identity management, RCM, and HIM solutions. Cabell Huntington Hospital (WV) is the first hospital to utilize the service.

McLaren-Bay Region (MI) goes live on McKesson Paragon EMR March 11th.

3-6-2012 3-36-50 PM

Intermountain Healthcare (UT) launches a 90-day pilot telehealth program, allowing patient employees to connect with providers via video chat.

Aetna announces the availability of an enhanced version of its iTriage app, which Aetna acquired in late 2011.

Government and Politics

An analysis of eight years worth of Medicare claims data reveals that Hospital Compare, Medicare’s public reporting initiative for hospitals, has had minimal impact on patient mortality. The study found the reporting of quality data led to no reductions in mortality beyond existing trends for heart attack and pneumonia and led to a modest reduction in mortality for heart failure.


3-6-2012 4-26-42 PM

RTLS provider AeroScout partners with McRoberts Security Technologies to introduce a Wi-Fi-based campus-wide infant security solution that enables hospitals to attach an RTLS tag to the infant’s umbilical cord clamp.


The Galveston County HIE (TX) and the HIE of Southeast Texas join the Great Houston Healthconnect, making it the state’s largest HIE market with 133 hospitals and over 14,000 providers.

3-6-2012 7-12-12 PM

Mayo Clinic rehab nurse Andy McMonigle and three physicians say an iPad helped saved McMonigle’s life when he suffered a heart attack. The nurse, who was exercising in a Mayo Clinic fitness center for employees, felt the onset of the attack and quickly found three doctors in the center. One of the physicians pulled out his iPad and accessed McMonigle’s online medical chart and previous EKGs. Because they had immediate access to his chart, the doctors quickly identified the issue and had  McMonigle transported to the cath lab to remove a blood clot blocking his artery.


Smartphones are the most popular technology among doctors since the stethoscope, according to this study which looks at the global growth of mobile phone technology in healthcare. The use of mobile technology healthcare has the potential to reduce the cost of elderly care 25%, reach twice as many rural patients, and reduce the cost of data collection by 24%.

Speaking of smartphones, almost half of Americans now own one, making it the most widely adopted type of cellphone device.

Sponsor Updates

  • Summit Medical Center (TN) shares how its OB/GYN physicians are using AirStrip Technologies to improve patient care during labor and delivery.
  • MEDecision hosts a March 21st webinar on best practices and technology to enhance value-based healthcare.
  • Wolters Kluwer Health and HealthStream partner to offer the Lippincott’s Professional Development Programs suite to HealthStream’s client base.
  • Billian’s HealthDATA partners with RealTime Medical Data to provide Medicare payment data and analytics through RealHealth Analytics.
  • Trustwave signs an agreement to purchase M86 Security to enhance its security product portfolios.
  • Versus customer Dr. Brett Daniel of Pacific Medical Centers discusses his organization’s use of Versus RTLS at this week’s AMGA 2012 Annual Conference.
  • Ignis Systems releases its free webinar schedule for March and April.
  • Medicity client Michigan Health Connect receives second place in the Healthcare Informatics Annual IT Innovator Awards for its use of iNexx to create electronic-referral networks throughout Michigan.
  • Memorial Healthcare System’s Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital (FL) goes live on GetWellNetworks’ IPC solution.
  • LRS offers a Webinar featuring speakers from Carilion Health System and Sisters of Mercy Health System, who discuss ways to lower costs and simplify document management in Epic print environments.
  • Shareable Ink customer Dr. Brian Woods, CMO of NorthStar Anesthesia discusses his experience automating with Shareable Ink’s technology.
  • The Huntzinger Management Group (HMG) publishes Nathan Kaufman’s HIMSS presentation entitled, “Preparing for the Inevitable Perilous Journey from Entitlement to Accountability.”
  • SRS EHR customer Pediatric Associates of Savannah (GA) chooses SRS Patient Portal for its 10 provider practice.
  • Inland Empire HIE (CA) selects Orion Health’s HIE suite for its 48 participating healthcare organizations.
  • GE Healthcare initiates a 90-day free evaluation period for its Global Safety Network, an online community for hospitals to collaborate on improving patient safety.


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

More news: HIStalk Practice, HIStalk Mobile.

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Currently there are "16 comments" on this Article:

  1. On Epic v12 (2012) at HIMSS

    Not a big divergence from the norm. Epic held open the release to try to get Meaningful Use requirements into it and has been patiently waiting on the NPRM for Stage 2 to do some programming.

    The release itself has been closed up for a while and they wanted to show off some of the new things they had completed.

    They showed a mix of their last version and the v2012 completed work where appropriate.

  2. My golly gosh. Well, you know then but, I was shocked, very shocked, contrary to what Rand, US Government, ONC, HHS, Brailer, Blumie, Kolodman, Obamas, Mostashavi and other say about $ millions of savings from EHR, that this study tells run up in expensve cost of imaging with their EHRs.

    Well then, maybe there is smoke then there is fire, how that expression goes?

    The fire I see will be then when they do similar study on patients’ deaths and other catastrophes and show EHR and CPOE increase death nd other things.

    Well then, you see, then, that these things have been surmised that EHRs save the day and dollar and are safe but no, these studies never been done. My golly gosh, when you know the deaths from after they are done, these in favor of EHRs may find too many deaths from interference with good care by EHR and CPOE.

    Just like these money surprises in this study, that Brailer does not like, there will be more surprise deaths from EHRs when someone finally knows about them after study of EHRs like this one.

  3. To Gupta,

    I read with interest your diatribe because I worked on a med-surg unit amd saw the problems of patient neglect and mistakes of medication. Readers of these bloggers will be angry with you.

    People were all mixed up and wasted their professional time on the EMR and not at the bedside.

    Test duplicates and misidentifications commonly happened.

    It was stressful to be on guard to protect the patients’ safety after the go live with a publicly traded corporate CPOE EMR and the bosses ignored the complaints, so I quit.

  4. I betting physicians that have EMR’s are also more likely to own the lab, too. When I went to my ortho he was more then happy to run 3 MRI’s and show them off on the EMR. An EMR makes a more sense when you own the lab.

  5. Jason Young worked for me in 2005, just before leaving to join another software company. At the time I would have said he was the LAST person I could have imagined murdering his wife; he. Had worked as a sales rep for Nike and a Pharma company prior to my hiring him. He was so nice and gracious to everyone that it was hard to imagine the Jason that unfolded on TV. He had only been on board with his new company for 3 mos prior to the murder so I think it would be unfair to mention the company name since they were completely unaware and it would only tarnish their name when they had no part in his outrageous behavior.

  6. I’m fairly certain any extensive passage that includes the phrase “my golly gosh” twice cannot be described as a diatribe. You can look it up.

  7. With all due respect to the IPAD and MAYO exercisers, the symptoms that suggest a heart attack do not need evalustion with a prior electrocardiogram, they require an immediate EKG. To my knowledge, IPADs do not perform 12 lead electrocardiograms. The victim’s prior medical records are kind of useless in the acute setting such as what existed. So why all of the hype?

    Then, you are hyping smart phones and the $$$$$$$$$ they “have the potential” to save. Come on now. Merely look at your lead story to determine the exageration and myth in such statements.

  8. Wait…an EMR kills people? When did an EMR keep a clinician from being a clinician? I always thought it was a tool to help clinicians see and share information on a patients episode of care as well as ease of look-back on trends of previous studies.

    Where are these studies that show an EMR kills patients, but rather the EMR brought to bear the cause of death instead of it just being a mystery like it was in the blackhole of the paper world? In the end, the clinician no matter what, is treating the patient. I have never seen an EMR where the clinician doesn’t have the right to override it for medication, labs, radiology, etc. orders & treatment plans.

    In the end, an EMR doesn’t diagnose…

  9. Just what we need, OB docs looking at EFM strips from their offices on a smart phone and ordering the knives to be sharpened for the inevitable c/section rather than actually letting the patient labor. Goodness they’ll never have to look at the face of their patient even, since it will be behind the sterile field as her belly is cut open. Did anyone ask the woman laying flat on her back wrapped in wires how she felt about the value of this?

  10. I sleep better at night knowing that the commenters on this blog are defending us against the evils of technology in healthcare. After all, licensed healthcare professionals are incapable of patient neglect or medication errors without EMR intervention and unlike certain vendor types, they don’t even care about how much money they make.

    And kudos to Pradba Gupta – that character you do was so funny when Peter Sellers was doing it in the 60’s! “My golly gosh” – that is hi-larious and not racial steriotyping at all.

  11. @not tired of suzy…
    Really? Did you even read the linked article? The point here was access to information permitted more timely and appropriate emergency treatment. The fact that the previous EKG’s were available allowed the physicians to make a decision that saved him from additional cardiac damage. EMR’s with mobile access can be useful tools.

    Do you apply technology, or would you rather return to the days of bloodletting?

  12. Great going iMedX, great going Venkat, Bhaskar and Sarang. What a pleasant surprise to read about you on this blog.
    Gosh seems such a long time ago that you were here, all ready to start off.

    -Congrats and may you touch more glorious heights..

  13. JW-

    Nice article which I seemed to have missed. It’s a keeper. A couple of things that I noticed when I read it:

    1) “No significant difference was found between the pre- and post-EHR periods regarding number of hospitalizations, patient days per month, length of stay, readmission within 30 days, or case mix index (table 1). Likewise, risk-adjusted mortality was similar between study periods.”

    So in essence, the hospital spent multiple millions of dollars and physicians needed to toil with the quirkiness of CPOE and having to type in everything slowing them down tremendously to end up with similar outcomes.
    2) “Savings in the year post-EHR totaled $667 896. [for transcription]” And some minor savings in paper, xray order savings and lab order savings. Let’s round these to $1 Million per year. The cost of an EHR for a tertiary hospital like Gundersen Lutheran Medical Center would be at least $50 MILLION, which thus take 50 years to make up.

    When the HITECH rewards dry up, made up temporarily by penalties I betcha that eventually administrators will realize that paper is the most cost-effective way to go. I wonder who will impose penalties when Medicare goes belly up in 2017?

    So your study wasn’t that great either and serves as yet another reason why hospital EHRs aren’t ready for prime time yet.


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