I'll see your flu vaccine and COVID booster, and raise you 1 Prevnar 23 and a cortisone shot to my…
Streamline Health Solutions acquires New York-based HIM systems vendor Meta Health Technology for $15 million in a mostly cash deal. Streamline Health also announces new financing that will reduce its capital costs and a $12 million equity investment by Great Point Partners, LLC and Noro-Mosely Partners.
From Grizzled Veteran: “Re: Quality Systems proxy fighter Ahmed Hussein. He sent a letter to fellow shareholders saying that NextGen VP Jerry Shultz has resigned after 15 years as sales VP, claiming that Shultz quit because the company is splitting the sales team while the market is demanding an integrated inpatient and ambulatory solution. Hussein says he’s been warning all along that critical employees could start leaving.” Unverified. Jerry Shultz still listed as SVP on the company’s site.
From exMDRX: “Re: ACE conference in Chicago. Apparently there’s some confusion this week. What is this EMR tool, and does it take 120 or 220v?” I was hoping that John Madden would take a wrong turn from his RV and join Glen on the podium with a turkey leg and Telestrator in his hands.
From Chrissy: “Re: pMD. We are big fans of HIStalk! We are a mobile charge capture company and work with doctors to streamline their practices. We released our new website today – wanted to let you know!” I would ordinarily delete a message like this without a second thought since companies are always bugging me for free PR (with said trashing being more likely if the requester isn’t one of the 2,668 members of the HIStalk Fan Club on LinkedIn, which Chrissy isn’t), but I figured I’d take a look at the new site before pressing Delete. It’s funny and brilliantly designed. The creative agency had the cool paper-cut illustrations made in Lucca, Italy, which against all odds has now been mentioned twice in one HIStalk post (see Lucca Consulting Group, coming up in a couple of inches).
HIStalk Announcements and Requests
Happy Elvis Week, everybody! If you have been too busy celebrating to stay current on HIStalk Practice, here is what you missed. PairOfAces points out that Chicago’s McCormick Center was headquarters to both the Allscripts ACE meeting and the ACE Hardware convention this week. Medical schools may not provide students adequate training on EHR usage. Several eClinicalWorks customers discuss the perks and problems of EHRs. Aaron Berdofe maps out MU attestations and looks for meaningful correlations (there are some.) When you check out these stories, please don’t be cruel; love me tender(ly) and sign up for the e-mail updates. Thanks for reading.
Welcome to new HIStalk Platinum Sponsor Lucca Consulting Group. Listen up if your organization is implementing Epic: Lucca is 100% dedicated to providing Epic implementation & training support, and can provide certified and credentialed consultants for those hard-to-find Epic skill sets, or if you’d rather, they’ll send you an entire project team. Maybe you’re worried about a big bang Epic go-live and wondering how in the world you’re going to get enough credentialed trainers or instructional designers to get over the hump. As the “go-to firm” for Epic training, Lucca can help there, too. Cedars-Sinai says “Lucca had the most qualified trainers of the competing consulting firms”, while UMass calls them "agile and accommodating." Need to backfill legacy apps so your team can move to your Epic project? Lucca can provide skilled expertise for Siemens, McKesson, Eclipsys/Allscripts, and others, working remotely to keep expenses down or on site under your direction if you prefer. They hire the best and the brightest, offering flexible employment options for those interested in a rewarding career with a company that supports them. Don’t call up asking for someone named Lucca, though — the company couldn’t get excited about yet another generic or clever healthcare IT name, so they went with Lucca, the picturesque Italian city (in Tuscany, actually) that founder Gina Craig had recently visited prior to starting Lucca in 2008 (check out this article and you’ll see why it’s memorable, but you’ll end up hungry). Thanks to Lucca Consulting Group for supporting HIStalk.
Response from e-MDs
In agreeing to publish Wednesday’s letter from Michael Stearns, MD related to his termination from e-MDs, I had said that in the interest of fairness, I would also run the company’s response if they provided one. They did, which I’ve added both to the original article and below:
e-MDs, Inc. removed all the material and information that comprised the web posting “The Truth About Michael Q. Stearns” that had been posted in March of 2010, and this removal occurred immediately following the action taken on July 2, 2012 by e-MDs that completely terminated its affiliation with Michael Q. Stearns. Both e-MDs, Inc., and Dr. David Winn, each formally retract that entire prior posting statement and want to be very clear that statement should not be relied upon as the current position of e-MDs, Inc. or of Dr. David Winn.
Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock
Allscripts and Microsoft collaborate to create a healthcare open platform ecosystem through the Application Developer Program.
Long Island Radiology Associates (NY) and Horizon Imaging (AL) adopt Merge Healthcare subscription-based solutions.
Samaritan Health Services (OR) selects iSirona’s device connectivity solution to deliver patient data to Epic.
USC Care Medical Group (CA) chooses MediRevv’s Day One Self Pay Management services for self-pay cash collections.
Nonprofit health system Group Health, which offers health insurance and medical care in Washington and Idaho, chooses RTLS software from Intelligent InSites.
Origin Healthcare Solutions hires Steve Brewer (Merge Healthcare – above) as chief sales and marketing officer and Christine Campbell (Medical Present Value) as chief client offer.
Consulting firm North Highland names Richardo Martinez, MD (The Schumacher Group) its first chief medical officer.
Hill Meade (MEDecision, Siemens Healthcare) joins personalized medicine test maker Genomind as SVP of IT.
Announcements and Implementations
The local paper profiles the $70 million Epic implementation at Lee Memorial Health System (FL), which went live at four facilities earlier this month. Only one independent practice has contracted with the hospital to set up Epic in their office, and cost is a likely a barrier: affiliated practices pay $16,000 for licensing, $4,500 per year per provider for maintenance, and $25,000 to $80,000 for implementation.
McKesson announces the release of Cardiology 13.0.
Informatica introduces PowerCenter Integration Pack for dbMotion, which enables customers to draw clinical data from the dbMotion solution.
Saskatchewan eHealth (Canada) implements Orion Health’s Clinical Portal.
Allscripts announces plans to integrate American Well’s telehealth platform into its EHR. University of South Florida Health says it will use it to serve huge retirement community The Villages, which the press release describes as being “near Tampa, Florida,” which at 82 miles away and in the middle of nowhere other than being not too far off I-75 south of Ocala, could at least have been listed as near Orlando (58 miles).
Parkland Memorial Hospital (TX) reports that its staffing has reached “crisis mode” with almost 16% (more than 1,300) unfilled positions. Most are in clinical areas, including 400 in nursing. The hospital is investing $250,000 on an enhanced recruiting plan that includes wading through a backlog of 29,000 job applications. With that many applications to process, maybe the first new hires should be in HR.
Ten St. Louis-area women sue their plastic surgeon after finding their before-and-after breast augmentation surgery pictures by Googling their names. Even though the pictures were not labeled with the patients’ names, the names were attached to the image files. Not that I have any reason to believe I would have any before-and-after pics on the Web, but reading this story made me feel compelled to Google my image. Curiously, a search of Inga HIStalk brings up a picture of John Glaser. Draw your own conclusions.
A Wall Street Journal article on new medical devices shows an artificial foot being tested that allows the user to adjust the ankle microprocessor via smart phone.
Here’s the latest cartoon from Imprivata.
The number of University of California employees making over $1 million per year has quadrupled to 22 in the past five years, with most of them being either coaches or doctors.
Weird News Andy declares that there’s no beating around the bush on this issue. Family physician Emily Gibson MD urges a truce in the “war against pubic hair” (her term for bikini waxing), warning that shaving causes susceptibility to infection and abrasion.
Strange: nurses who have been on indefinite strike over a minimum wage against their hospital in India have their demands met after three of them climb on the roof and threaten to jump. The nurses made $36 per month, but the new minimum salary will jump (no pun intended) to $137 per month.
- Presbyterian Intercommunity Hospital (CA) connects Surgical Information System’s anesthesia information management system to its Allscripts Sunrise Surgery solution, powered by SIS.
- The Interboro RHIO (NY) and NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation join the Statewide Information Network of New York run by NY eHealth Collaborative.
- Imprivata records 45% year-over-year growth for the first half of 2012 and the addition of 105 healthcare clients.
- Galway Clinic (IR) selects Access Universal Document Portal to transfer paper documents into its Meditech scanning and archiving module.
- Centra Health (VA) participates in an Emdeon-sponsored Webinar discussing its use of Emdeon’s eligibility and enrollment services.
- The Huntzinger Management Group joins a panel discussion on MU attestation during the IHT2 Summit in September.
Report from the Allscripts Client Experience – Day Two and Three
By Bill Rieger, CIO, Flagler Hospital
The conference has been very good. It has been a very busy couple of days. From my perspective, Allscripts has pulled off a very successful event.
One of the only issues I have experienced relates to the sessions. I went to one today where no one showed up to present. I heard others that went that way, so there is definitely room for improvement.
At Wednesday’s kickoff keynote, both the mayor of Chicago and Glen Tullman spoke (the mayor for 10 minutes, Glen for an hour or so.) Again, Glen focused on the open nature of Allscripts. His message was to both Allscripts clients and partners — we made it open so you can innovate.
Thursday morning’s keynote was Dr. Daniel Kraft. He spoke about the future of healthcare in many ways — technology, cost, genomic study, data, etc. It was an overstimulating presentation. He gave you so much in the first 15 minutes that could keep you researching for days, so much to think about that it was almost distracting for the rest of his presentation. A brilliant guy with a lot of great ideas, some of which are available today (EKG on iPhone, Eye Netra, Qualcom Tricorder etc.)
I spent most of my time in the Hub, where the booths are. Similar to HIMSS, but much smaller and more focused. I spoke to some great partners like MModal, Nuance, and SIS.
By far, the highlight of the trip for me was a discussion and demo from The Breakaway Group (a Xerox company). Many of you may have read the book Beyond Implementation written by this group. It is a great read that challenges "go-live" focus and redirects focus to adoption through proper simulation-based training.
Before I spoke with them, I had a meeting with Steve LeLand and another great partner, iMethods, an awesome organization helping us with staffing and culture development. During the meeting, Steve talked about the new Allscripts partnership with The Breakaway Group and their focus and commitment to adoption. That fit very well with our focus on culture and its impact on successful implementation.
Another awesome part of the event was a photographer who had people write on their body with a marker, mostly on arms, and took a picture. There were some very creative ideas and people had a lot of fun with it. Tonight they have reserved Navy Pier in Chicago for a blowout party. They had a killer party at HIMSS in Orlando at the Hard Rock, so I am heading into this with high expectation!
My take on this whole event is that Allscripts is positioned for success. They struggle with the same challenges that all of these HIS vendors do, getting the right people on board when HIT staffing right now is very fluid. If their leadership stays in place and they maintain focus on their direction, they will do well. This conference has increased my confidence in Allscripts as an organization and a partner for our community.
EPtalk by Dr. Jayne
Researched published in the September issue of Pediatrics looks at whether systematically developed clinical decision support provides usability benefit or whether it decreases cognitive workload. Seven pediatric surgeons (residents, fellows, and attending) used either an ad hoc order set or a systematically developed one for managing postoperative appendicitis patients. After a washout period, each was tested on the other order set. Authors concluded that well-designed order sets reduce cognitive workload and order variation, although they didn’t improve speed, reduce mouse clicks, or reduce free text entry.
One of the things that annoys me in practice is the IRS rule that Flexible Spending Account funds are “use it or lose it.” This means that patients are calling the office throughout December trying to find reimbursable ways to spend their money. Rules like this just promote a consumer culture and lead people to buy things they may not need rather than forfeit. The Treasury Department is seeking comments on whether this rule should be modified or eliminated. Comments can be submitted through Friday. I tend to think that promoting savings for unanticipated future needs is a good thing and allowing a rollover would be beneficial.
HIStalk contributor Ed Marx tweeted about the stress-inducing nature of open office floor plans. Having worked in an office environment that not only was open but had mere half-walls between the cubicles, I agree with the statements about high noise, lack of privacy, and distractions. What surprises me with many of the groups I work with, however, is the lack of office protocols targeted at creating a better workplace. I recently visited an IT cube farm where many of the employees were either using speakerphones or listening to music (or in one situation, both). A simple intervention like requiring workers to use telephone headsets or listen to music with earphones would have made a huge difference. I’m thinking about printing copies and leaving them anonymously on a few management desks.
This is the 35th anniversary of the death of Elvis Presley. He was 42. The annual Elvis Week celebration of his life and work is expected to draw 75,000 people.