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Monday Morning Update 7/15/13

July 14, 2013 News 7 Comments

7-14-2013 7-04-39 AM

From Flyswatter: “Re: Practice Fusion. Running out of money, expanding, or both?” Free, ad-supported EMR vendor (are you a vendor if your product doesn’t cost anything?) Practice Fusion is rumored to be raising another $60 million after a $34 million round held less than a year ago.

7-13-2013 6-38-03 AM

Three-quarters of respondents say healthcare organizations should continue with their plans to buy software in preparation for Affordable Care Act-related changes even though the future of the ACA is uncertain. New poll to your right: how has the DoD/VA discussion about a shared EHR changed your perception of those organizations?

7-14-2013 7-06-53 AM

I mentioned last week that it would be fun to hear from folks who have been reading HIStalk since the beginning 10 years ago. Some replies:

  • ”I know I’ve been reading your stuff since the beginning for sure. I think a friend of mine referred the site to me, but I can’t remember who and/or exactly when… all I know is that now you can’t get rid of me.”
  • “I count you as one of my celebrity acquaintances.” [this tongue-in-cheek comment came from someone who knows me]
  • “I found HIStalk while searching for a primary source of unbiased information about the healthcare IT world. I found HIStalk to be one of the few outlets at the time willing to publish all things healthcare IT (good, bad and the ugly) and provide value to sponsors and readers alike. It’s been wonderful watching HIStalk grow with the healthcare IT industry. Congratulations!”
  • “In 2003 I worked for Eclipsys, and one of our sales reps asked if I read HIStalk. He said it was the best blog about the industry he had ever read, and that if I wanted to be in the know and feel hip at the same time, I should check it out.  And so I did. And stayed. Congratulations!”

HIStalk Webinar Monday, July 29

7-14-2013 9-05-04 PM

Jonathan Teich MD, PhD of Elsevier will present “Clinical Decision Support: The Promise, Pitfalls, and Practicalities” on Monday, July 29 from 2:00 to 2:45 p.m. Eastern. He will provide practical insights into the key success factors for selection, design, management and rollout of CDS interventions and will describe 10 types of CDS and how to apply them. My CIO reviewers who provided feedback on the rehearsal gave this Webinar rave reviews, with one of them saying he was so engrossed by the CDS examples that he wished it had lasted 30-45 minutes longer (when’s the last time you heard that about a Webinar?) I thought it was really well done myself. You can register here.

Also upcoming: “Five Steps to an Enterprise Imaging Strategy,” presented by Merge Healthcare, on Wednesday, July 24 from 3:00 to 3:45 p.m. Eastern.

These Webinars meet HIStalk’s standards for quality, clarity, and attendee value. They have been critiqued by experts and are moderated by folks who work with me.

7-14-2013 8-17-14 AM

Six people lose their jobs for inappropriately viewing electronic patient records at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, possibly those of Kim Kardashian. Four employees of community physician practices were found to have been using the login credentials of their physician employer and were dismissed, along with a medical assistant and an unpaid student research assistant. The journalistically rigorous TMZ decided that a phony quote and Photoshopped picture were the perfect way to illustrate its uncredited rumor, which was repeated by traditionally privacy-indifferent press anxious to jump on the celebrity gossip bandwagon without appearing to be pandering to intellectual lightweights.

7-13-2013 8-55-36 PM

Another nurse union uses an EMR implementation to publicly criticize a health system. The California Nurses Association cites 100 reports from RNs claiming Sutter Health’s $1 billion implementation endangers patients of Alta Bates Summit Medical Center. The nurses say the system requires too much nursing time, delays care, and isn’t clinician friendly. The union wasn’t nearly as concerned about patient safety eight weeks ago when it ordered its nurses to walk off the job for seven days in those same Sutter East Bay facilities to protest a reduction in their health benefits.

Intermountain Healthcare says it has developed an EHR module that allows state death certificates to be completed automatically.

7-14-2013 8-49-45 AM

A Silicon Valley business newspaper profiles former professional quarterback Steve Young, now a private equity deal-maker for HGGC (formerly Huntsman Gay Global Capitalist). The article says he was involved in that private equity firm’s investment in Sunquest, which it later sold to Roper Industries.  

A dozen employees from the Raleigh, NC offices of Allscripts volunteered to help clean up tornado damage in Moore, OK and presented the local hospital with a check for $50,000. Allscripts covered all of their expenses and paid their full salaries.

7-14-2013 8-55-20 PM

Ivo Nelson’s Next Wave Health advisory and investment firm will announce Monday that former Steward Health Care CIO Drexel DeFord has joined the company as a principal advisor.

7-14-2013 8-50-48 AM

Shares of athenahealth jumped 20 percent on Friday after the company filed SEC documents disclosing a June 30 deal with Ascension Health Network’s physician segment, which will deploy the company’s system to its 4,000 providers and affiliates. Athenahealth’s market cap is now $4 billion, with Jonathan Bush holding shares worth $33 million. A $10,000 investment in ATHN shares on this day three years ago would be worth $48,000 today.

Also earning a spot on the Nasdaq’s top percentage gainers for Friday were WebMD (up 25 percent on its sales outlook) and Quality Systems (up 12 percent on an analyst’s upgrade).

7-14-2013 7-08-48 AM

Showing his HIStalk colors at the top of Mt. Bachelor in Oregon is Dean Sitting, PhD, professor of biomedical informatics at UT Health Science Center in Houston.

Maybe it’s just me: every time I get an e-mail survey from HIMSS, I dutifully start completing it, but then bail out in annoyance just a few questions in. Every HIMSS survey is way too long, has endless answer choices but often not the one I need, and uses a stiff and authoritarian tone that makes me feel like I’m dealing with IRS instead of an organization to which I voluntarily pay dues out of my own pocket.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina is called out for sending out live patient data to software developer DST Systems for testing its systems. Cigna went on record saying it would never do that, while Aetna said it shares data in similar situations.

Brown University researchers create software that can analyze the cries of an infant, hoping that the 80 auditory parameters can detect developmental problems.

An interesting New York Times opinion piece questions whether clinical drug trials work, wondering if disease and response is so individualized that mass testing creates more frustration than usable knowledge. It says drug companies are just playing the lottery in testing drugs they don’t expect to be effective, hoping for a statistical miracle. It also says that nearly every study is biased from the outset because drug companies pay for them, turning them into a “straw-man comparator” of drug vs. placebo instead of a real quest for finding the best treatments. The healthcare IT connection: genomics, which could effectively match patients with drugs likely to benefit them.

Vince starts his history of Siemens in this week’s HIS-tory. He is trying to find the lost history of the IBM SHAS (Shared Hospital Accounting System), so if you know more than what’s on Vince’s slides, he would enjoy hearing from you. Vince loves this stuff and his enthusiasm and fun memories come through loud and clear in his HIS-tories.

Sponsor Updates

  • Intelligent InSites will host a July 25 Webinar, “The Hospitality Environment” – Improving the Patient Experience with Innovative Technology.”
  • O’Reilly’s Strata Rx Conference, “Data Makes a Difference,” offers HIStalk readers a 20 percent discount on registration through August 15. It will be in Boston September 25-27 and feature speakers from athenahealth, Valence Health, HHS, and Humedica.


Mr. H, Inga, Dr. Jayne, Dr. Gregg, Lt. Dan, Dr. Travis.

More news: HIStalk Practice, HIStalk Connect.


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Currently there are "7 comments" on this Article:

  1. If you’re not making money as an EHR vendor right now and dependent on more and more VC money coming in the door, there is likely a problem.

    You shouldn’t be borrowing 100,000,000.00 over the last two years – you should have been making it!

    That money needs to be paid back – and they usually expect a multiple back.

    Where is it going to come from?

  2. CA unions give unions a bad name. having grown up in a union family, I’m usually pretty sympathetic to the cause, but having seen several strikes (from various industries) in CA, it’s not hard to see why people hate unions. It’s like simply living in CA makes them think they’re entitled to public support. They’re so ridiculously stubborn and presumptuous, it makes it hard to sympathize.

  3. It seems to me there’s a relevant Internet Proverb: if the service is free, YOU are the product. Physicians and practices are committing their businesses and should have an idea of how their key software vendor plans to remain viable and continue to provide service over the long haul. Absent that, you are really due for a visit to the Internet Bubble 1.0 Memorial: http://wp.me/a3pPh7-3Y

  4. Noticed that 4 people lost their jobs for looking at Kim Kardashian’s records. I guess it goes without saying that there were zero consequences for the doctor who gave those people his or her login credentials?

  5. Re: Practice Fusion

    Back to the Future. Does anyone remember Physician Computer Network (PCN)?

    Practice Fusion’s model of selling advertising has always reminded me of PCN’s model where they sold advertising.
    Although PCN at least received 30% of their revenue from the physicians. Practice Fusion needs revenue from their Patient Fusion or another source, and fast.

  6. Yes, I remember PCN well. Does that make me old?Porter Research did Win Loss analysis for years for PCN. The advertising was never really mentioned as a factor in those days of why they won or loss a deal in the SWOT Analysis.

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Reader Comments

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  • Tom Cornwell: Great stuff from Dr. Jayne as usual. One small typo, last sentence of second-to-last paragraph: should be 'who's' not 'w...
  • HIT Observer: What I find most interesting here, is people defending their common practices rather than truly taking this as invaluabl...
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  • Woodstock Generation: Bravo to HIStalk's Weekender recaps and other news/opinions. I read it first thing on Monday mornings..................
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