Home » News » Currently Reading:

Monday Morning Update 3/9/15

March 8, 2015 News 5 Comments

Top News



St. Mary’s Medical Center (IN) notifies 4,400 patients that their information was exposed during a January phishing attack. It’s yet another example of securing the cyber-perimeter only to have it blown wide open by unwitting employees duped by fake “click here” emails.

Reader Comments


From EpicAlready Won: “Re: DoD. Did they really just say they expect to have their EHR — the contract for which hasn’t even officially been awarded — up and running by EOY 2015? Do they have any idea what they are getting into? What does this imply in terms of the likely winner?” DoD says it hopes to have the infrastructure in place by December 31, 2015 for a Pacific Northwest test site.


From Oh Nant: “Re: NantHealth. Bob Watson lives up this his reputation by firing the entire sales team at NantHealth. All sales will be done through Allscripts.” Unverified, but the companies signed a partnership agreement last week.

HIStalk Announcements and Requests


One-third of poll respondents say provider CIOs are always more believable than vendor VPs, although some added clarifying comments suggesting that they would have voted yes had the word “never” been replaced with “most often.” Anonymouse elaborates that both provider and vendor executives put the best possible spin on their organizations, while HIS Junkie opines that “you can’t tell a CIO from a vendor without a score card.” New poll to your right or here: do you feel welcome and appreciated when you make contact with your preferred hospital by calling, emailing, or driving to their facility? Vote and add your comments because I’m sure you have some great stories that add color to your Boolean response.

I haven’t sent out HIStalkapalooza invitations yet, so there’s no need to email me to inquire (and thus no need for me to respond, which is my real motivation in saying so). I will probably get them emailed out in a week or so, plus having learned from years past that emails don’t always get through spam filters, I’ll post an encoded list — like the upgrade list at the airport with some combination of name letters — so you’ll know you’re invited.

I’m about to close down registration for our sponsor-only networking reception that will be held Sunday, April 12. Those who sign up (and show up) will mingle with their normally competitive peers, eat and drink at my expense, and enjoy a low-pressure evening in which nobody is either selling or buying anything. I suppose those who don’t have will chosen an equally invigorating alternative. Contact Lorre.

Listening: Denmark-based Volbeat, whose hard rock music lies somewhere in the continuum between Metallica and Johnny Cash but still sounds fresh.

Last Week’s Most Interesting News

  • A group of five Republican senators says HITECH hasn’t provided taxpayer return on investment, EHRs aren’t useful to physicians, and ONC’s interoperability roadmap is too vague to guide EHR vendors.
  • Five healthcare IT vendor founders make the Forbes list of billionaires.
  • The AMA says CMS should release more ICD-10 testing details and develop a contingency plan for the upcoming switchover.
  • Truven Health Analytics is rumored to be planning a $3 billion IPO.
  • A Wall Street Journal article questions the appropriateness of drug company-paid alerts and reminders sent to patients whose doctors use Practice Fusion’s free EHR.
  • Allscripts says in its earnings call that it is disappointed in 2014 revenue and it should not have allowed overly optimistic Wall Street expectations to go unchallenged.
  • A reporter’s posthumous editorial urges that every willing cancer patient’s information be loaded to a database that both patients and doctors can access as a one-person clinical trial.


March 12 (Thursday) 1:00 ET.  “Turn Your Contact Center Into A Patient-Centered Access Center.” Sponsored by West Healthcare Practice. Presenter: Brian Cooper, SVP, West Interactive. A patient-centered access center can extend population health management efforts and scale up care coordination programs with the right approach, technology, and performance metrics. Implementing a patient-centered access center is a journey and this program will provide the roadmap.

Here is the recording of Zynx Health’s recent webinar, “Care Team Coordination: How People, Process, and Technology Impact Patient Transitions

Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock


Golub Capital provides a $250 million senior credit facility to support Netsmart’s recapitalization by its owner, private equity firm Genstar Capital.


Lenovo will launch a healthcare division (for the second time in four years) on April 1, probably hoping that cybersecurity-sensitive providers will forget about its recent Superfish preinstalled spyware debacle. The company’s 2011 healthcare push tanked quickly and probably could have been easily predicted given its self-stated motivation in reviewing the healthcare market: “I know we want a piece of that, I know our partners want a piece of that, and we want to go get it with them together.” There’s not a whole lot they can do except take a few off-the-shelf products that seem interesting for healthcare users, market them separately, and train partners to sell them.


Apple will live stream the announcement of its Apple Watch today (Monday) at 1:00 p.m. Eastern, although Apple says the video will work only on specific Apple hardware and software combinations. Several Internet wags remarked that they lost an hour Sunday morning due to the DST time change and then will lose another three staring at Tim Cook and company on their screens.


Baltimore-based Emocha Mobile Health signs a one-year, $65,000 contract with Harris County, TX to monitor medication adherence in TB patients by having them record themselves taking their prescriptions and sending the smartphone video to their doctors via the company’s app (maybe nobody ever looks at it, but the fact they might could make patients more diligent, I guess). The seven-employee company, which licenses technology from Johns Hopkins, is trying to raise $1.8 million in seed funding. None of the folks involved have any apparent healthcare experience.

Depression solutions vendor SunSprite chooses Validic to collect information from its bright light exposure tools.

Announcements and Implementations

SRS will offer its users SurgiMate surgery scheduling software.

340B pharmacy platform vendor Sentry Data Systems partners with Avella Specialty Pharmacy.

Agfa Healthcare launches a patient and physician portal to display images from its system, which should be wonderful news to those patients and physicians who love logging on to separate portals for each system a hospital uses.

Government and Politics


The Illinois HIE, having blown through $19 million in HITECH money in four years and still running at a loss, doesn’t have funds allocated in the proposed state budget that will take effect July 1.

The Washington Post profiles telemedicine and other technology services offered to veterans through charity groups and the VA itself.



The New York Times profiles 32-year-old Jeffrey Hammerbacher, a Mount Sinai medical school data analyst and assistant professor who previously made fortunes working as an equities analyst, creating Facebook’s data team, and founding multi-billion dollar company Cloudera. He’s married to Rock Health co-founder Halle Tecco. His Mount Sinai team is applying data science to chronic disease for the development of personalized medicine. When at Facebook, he famously said not long before he quit knowing he was leaving IPO money on the table, “The best minds of my generation are thinking about how to make people click ads. That sucks.”



LA County’s Department of Health Services is using clinical decision support software developed by Chief Research and Innovation Officer Jeffrey Guterman, MD that applies clinical rules to encounter data to manage chronic diseases. He’s modest about his work: “It’s pretty sophisticated for healthcare, but it’s pedestrian for any other industry … As a large governmental bureaucratic organization. I think people are happy to say, ‘The providers look happier, the patients look happier, no one is complaining, this is a great change.’”

Ed Marx is writing a book called “Voices of Innovation” and invites readers to contact him about being part of it.


Medical school dean Art Kellermann, MD tweeted out this graphic created by Daniella Meeker, PhD of Rand Corporation.


Struggling Southern Regional Medical Center (GA) lays off a bunch of employees after realizing from benchmarking software reports that it was overstaffed. I always have the same question after reading stories like this: was management too stupid to notice lack of productivity until they found out that similar hospitals have fewer employees? We might as well have just one national hospital since none of them can take any action without seeing what the others are doing, with that lack of competence and/or confidence fueling an entire industry of conferences, software, and consulting services.


Unrelated, but bizarre enough to worth mentioning since it made me laugh out loud even if I did feel guilty afterward. A judge dismisses a lawsuit against Applebee’s in which a patron claimed the restaurant’s waitress should have warned him that his platter of sizzling fajitas was hot. The waitress sat the fajitas down, at which time Hiram Jimenez decided to take his brother’s hand and bow to say grace, causing his face to get splattered with hot grease. It just got worse: the man claims he pushed the platter away as a reaction but instead it ended up in his lap, which caused him to injure his arm. His attorney, Dick Weiner, is unhappy that the judge ruled that it shouldn’t have been necessary for the waitress to warn anybody that a furiously sputtering skillet full of meat might be hot. The man was fine, with no scarring, permanent injury, or financial windfall.

Sponsor Updates

  • The SSI Group will exhibit at the VA/DC 2015 Spring Education Conference March 11-13 in Richmond, VA.
  • TeleTracking offers insight into how RTLS is enabling high-visibility health.
  • T-System’s blog focuses on “Nurse Debate: Communication Silos.”
  • Verisk Health will exhibit at the 15th annual Employee Healthcare Conference – East March 12-13 in New York City.
  • Truven Health Analytics releases its annual study identifying the 100 top U.S. hospitals based on their overall organizational performance.
  • Vital Images will exhibit at the ACC 15 Annual Scientific Session & Expo March 14-16 in San Diego.
  • Voalte discusses the challenges healthcare facilities face when moving to a new facility.
  • The Chicago Sun-Times features Huron Consulting Group’s Arshia Wajid and her work as founder and president of the nonprofit American Muslim Health Professionals group.
  • ZeOmega offers the second part in its blog series on defining population health management.
  • The latest ZirMed blog offers “Fresh Insight into Predictive Analytics … and Renewed Focus on ICD-10 Contingency Planning.”
  • The Daily Practice blog from Navicure asks, “The Times They Are a Changin’ … So How Do You Get Ready for Value-Based Modifier Payment Models?”
  • NTT Data offers a blog on “The Counter Effect of Mobile and How to Avoid It.”
  • Patientco posts “Beat Patient Debt, One Payment at a Time.”
  • The latest MedData blog advises, “Don’t limp towards the ICD-10 finish line. Finish strong.”
  • ScImage releases updated echo reporting based on new ASE 2015 quantification standards.
  • PatientSafe Solutions discusses the case of the frustrated phlebotomist in the second part of its quality care and mobility blog series.
  • The PMD “Charge Capture” blog discusses “Increasing Team Productivity with Paired Programming.”
  • Orion Health offers insight on “Integrating Device Data with EMR for Better, Safer Care – A Case Study.”
  • Perceptive Software lists “Four Reasons You Need an Enterprise Capture Strategy.”
  • Nordic launches a video on its successful affiliate extension project with ThedaCare.
  • Passport Health will exhibit at AAHAM South Florida March 11-13 in Cocoa Beach.
  • The latest nVoq blog covers speech-recognition solutions for mobile physicians.


Mr. H, Lorre, Jennifer, Dr. Jayne, Dr. Gregg, Lt. Dan.

More news: HIStalk Practice, HIStalk Connect.

Get HIStalk updates.
Contact us online.


View/Print Text Only View/Print Text Only

HIStalk Featured Sponsors


Currently there are "5 comments" on this Article:

  1. Re: the Applebees lawsuit:
    Frivolous lawsuits will continue to tie up our courts until lawyers are required to pay 1/3 of the costs of the nutty cases they lose.

  2. HISTalk enriches my cultural life as much as it does my professional career. Don’t know how you do it but you do-another kick a** band under the radar is delivered to my starving ears. Volbeat rocks.

  3. Re:” A group of five Republican senators says HITECH hasn’t provided taxpayer return on investment, EHRs aren’t useful to physicians, and ONC’s interoperability roadmap is too vague to guide EHR vendors.”

    Unbelievable that anyone in Congress; the least accountable organization in the US government, is calling out the Bush-era stimulus program for “Taxpayer return on investment”. While I work with healthcare IT, The best visibility I have to HITECH is as a patient and Epic Mychart use. I have much more access about what the health care system is doing for/to me than I did before the HITECH act.

    As a voter, I would love to have at least that level of transparency from ANY person in congress.

  4. Ok, it is early for April Fools, but the Applebees lawsuit Plaintiff’s attorney is really named Dick Weiner ?

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

  • Veteran: #fakenews...
  • Vaporware?: Secretary Shulkin: "the American healthcare system hasn’t yet figured out interoperability, but the VA can lead the wa...
  • Justa CIO: The reported go live date for McLaren Oakland is wrong. There are no dates set for activations for any locations. Post...
  • Brian Too: I admit I am partial to the quoted ICD-10-CM of "S07.9XXA Crushing injury of head, part unspecified, initial encounter....
  • Cosmos: As others in the comments section have pointed out before, GE's EMR for athletes is ironically a health record for the h...
  • HIT MD: I appreciate the thoughtful postings on this topic, particularly those by Ross Martin and LMNOP. I've never participate...
  • My Two Cents: Re: I wish we could all just get along and put the patient at the center of what we do. Yep, I get more and more disc...
  • bbc: Did you take the Hippocratic Oath in Med school? does the slightest thought of helping your patients concern you at all...
  • My Two Cents: I have a few concerns about the article Mr. Crane wrote on Drug Pricing Transparency and respectfully disagree and quest...
  • Brian Too: Aha! That makes more sense now. Thank you for clarifying....

Sponsor Quick Links