A DataBreaches.net investigation finds that up to several million records of Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center (NY) were exposed after its revenue cycle contractor, iHealth Innovations, apparently misconfigured an rsync backup
From Dr. Evil: “Re: EviCore. The specialty benefits manager is considering a sale or IPO, valuing itself at $4 billion. It pays to build a business around denying care.” The company describes its services as “comprehensive care management solutions,” although the emphasis seems to be on reducing cost via evidence-based solutions. It’s a good approach, although it fails to address out-of-control provider, drug, and device costs and instead focuses on restricting what is ordered. It’s an often-missed point that all of the political wrangling over health insurance would be much less necessary if costs were made reasonable, an even more daunting and therefore unlikely legislative accomplishment since the folks making fortunes on the backs of sick people also employ lobbyists.
Epic’s App Orchard
I received these unverified reader comments when I asked for first-person experience with Epic’s App Orchard.
- I have worked extensively with Epic Corp over the past two years with their iterations of the App Orchard. The rules of the road require that an app developer permit Epic to take whatever IP they choose, if Epic believes it makes sense to include in future releases of Epic software. Epic will reject apps that directly compete with Epic functionality, as determined by Epic’s current and future roadmap. Further, the 30 percent fee they charge is too broad in scope for the app revenue (if there is any). Most importantly, originally, only Epic clients could submit apps to the Orchard, effectively locking out the global collective genius of non-Epic entrepreneurs (I am not sure if such a restriction remains). Based on the approach to their App Orchard, Epic seems to be trying to respond to the market demand for "open" as heavily advertised by Cerner as their competitive differentiator. However, Epic also seems to want to control the Epic app environment and has absolutely no motivation to loosen their model to the wild, as Judy mentioned several times that such a move would be the end of Epic.
- We have started working with Epic to build out an API integration under the App Orchard. For us, the biggest concern are the revenue sharing terms. For a software vendor that is operating under tight margins in a competitive market, having to factor in up to a 25 percent gross revenue share is an impossible burden. From our perspective, the App Orchard is a blatant money grab from companies trying to innovate on the edges of the Epic ecosystem.
HIStalk Announcements and Requests
Welcome to new HIStalk Platinum Sponsor Softek Solutions. The Prairie Village, KS-based company’s OnTrack software and consulting services optimize revenue integrity and system performance for Cerner Millennium hospitals (and those preparing to move to Millennium). Its Charge Integrity Control provides visibility into revenue management by correlating patient orders and charges throughout the transaction process –one customer found a lab charge error that lost them $3 million in appropriate billing over four months before they found it instantly with Charge Integrity Control. Revenue Conversion Services allows correction of application, workflow, and configuration problems that otherwise would cause millions of dollars in lost revenue right after a Cerner go-live — a single hospital called Softek three months after go-live and avoided $20 million in annualized lost charges due to orders that weren’t charging, a location-specific workflow problem with ordering, and ED batch charges that weren’t actually charging. The company also provides Millennium system performance optimization software and services as well as conversion and purge maintenance assistance using proprietary diagnostics. Thanks to Softek Solutions for supporting HIStalk.
I finally pulled the trigger on replacing of my years-old, $300 laptop that I use for everything. I chose an Acer Aspire E15, which has pretty decent specs for $621: an AMD FX 9800p CPU with 2 MB L2 cache, 16 GB of DDR 4 SDRAM, a 128 GB solid state drive running Windows 10, a 1-terabyte hard drive for data, a 15.6-inch display powered by a Radeon R8 dual graphics video card with 2 GB of dedicated VRAM, and thankfully nearly zero pre-installed bloatware. I’ve had no problems so far getting it loaded up.
HIStalk readers funded the DonorsChoose grant request of Mrs. S in California, who asked for a 3Doodler child-safe 3-D printing system (it was actually inexpensive at just $113 for everything, plus our donation was matched). She reports, “I would like to thank you from 22 very excited third grade students that have really been enjoying and benefiting from your generous donation! We have been using our 3Doodler pen each Friday afternoon during our STEAM centers time and I have truly observed some fantastic skill building. Some of the benefits that are very noticeable to me are an increased attention to detail, improved direction following within a detailed task, increased patience for a task, increased observation of the steps necessary for a positive outcome, and an increased motivation to try something new! You have made a difference!”
Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock
Video visit provider Teladoc reports Q1 results: revenue up 60 percent, EPS –$0.30 vs. –$0.40, beating analyst expectations for both.
Reed Liggin (Athenahealth) joins electronic prescribing system vendor EazyScripts as CEO. He was president and CEO of the small-hospital information system vendor RazorInsights that was acquired by Athenahealth in January 2015.
Telehealth solution provider Avizia hires Joe Quinn (ComScore) as CFO.
Health Symmetric hires Bob Teague, MD (Quorum Health Resources) as chief medical officer. The company’s website uses a lot of vague gibberish in not saying exactly what it is they’re selling other than a “healthcare platform” that uses APIs.
Announcements and Implementations
Intelligent Medical Objects is awarded a patent for its concept-based terminology management system that allows rapid distribution of terminology changes to the company’s EHR vendor partners. Clinician-entered terms are matched with appropriate billing and reference codes that capture clinical intent.
Hybrid IT vendor TierPoint will expand its Hawthorne, NY data center campus for the third time, adding 38,000 square feet of raised floor to the existing facility that includes 52,000 square feet of raised floor plus a 70,000 square foot recovery and business continuity center.
PeriGen releases PeriWatch, a perinatal analytics system that integrates WatchChild fetal monitoring with PeriCALM decision support and adds a maternal dashboard.
Penn Medicine Center for Health Care Innovation (PA wins ECRI Institute’s health device award for its app development platform that extracts clinical information from the EHR and other sources.
Government and Politics
In England, the Cambridge University Hospitals trust will decide this summer whether to outsource commodity IT services that include enterprise infrastructure, service desk, and end-user computing in a tender expected to total $180 million over seven years. The trust says its increasing Epic use has created a need to expand its services.
The White House appoints Gopal Khanna (Illinois Department of Innovation and Technology) as director of AHRQ.
Innovation and Research
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is working on a virtual physician agent that can describe lab test results to patients via a patient portal, targeting older adults with conversational speaking, context-appropriate facial features, and other body cues that can help with retention.
St. Mary’s Hospital (NJ) celebrates Nursing Week by laying off seven nurses and 13 med techs.
- The local paper profiles Ability Network CEO Mark Pulido.
- Black Book identifies 10 top MACRA trends challenging providers with value-based care and quality metrics.
- Agfa Healthcare launches a new version of its Integrated Care Suite.
- Besler Consulting releases a new podcast, “Healthcare in the first 100 days of the Trump presidency.”
- Washingtonian names The Advisory Board Company CEO Robert Musslewhite as one of its biennial Tech Titans.
- Casenet announces its Connect 2017 speaker lineup, led by client executives from Cigna and Healthfirst.
- CoverMyMeds will exhibit at the American Academy of Ambulatory Care Nursing Annual Conference May 10-13 in New Orleans.
- Boston Software posts a white paper titled “Eliminate the Pain of EMR Upgrade Testing” that describes use of its Cognauto system to validate and set appropriate expectations for each department regarding
the added benefits of the EMR upgrade.
- The Hartford Business Journal interviews Diameter Health CEO Eric Rosow.
- Health Professional Radio interviews Docent Health co-founder Paul Roscoe.
- 10 Fun Facts About Nurses for National Nurses Week (Spok)
- Using Evidence-based Medicine (CareSync)
- Waiting for Godot: My first experience with virtual care (Advisory Board)
- Consultants as Mentors? (Culbert Healthcare Solutions)
- Deposits and Withdraws (Direct Consulting Associates)
- 6 resources to maximize wellness during National Nurses Week (Meditech)
- How to Access Dimensional Insight Online Help (Dimensional Insight)
- An RN moves from the bedside to the conference room (Infor)