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August 23, 2018 News No Comments

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More details come to light about Andy Slavitt’s Medicaid Transformation Project. First mentioned at the Avia Network Summit in May, the project will involve 17 health systems that, over a two-year period, will work to improve care for Medicaid patients in four areas — substance use disorder, behavioral health, maternal and infant health, and reducing preventable ED admissions.

Avia, a digital health firm based in Chicago with strong ties to HIMSS, will help with the technological underpinnings of the project as ideas are conceived and implemented. Slavitt joined Avia as an advisor in May 2016.

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David Smith (Leavitt Partners) and Avia Executive in Residence Molly Coye, MD, MPH will lead the project, which will be anchored by Advocate Aurora Health (IL), Baylor Scott & White Health (TX), Dignity Health (CA), Geisinger Health System (PA), and Providence St. Joseph Health (WA).


None scheduled soon. Previous webinars are on our YouTube channel. Contact Lorre for information.

Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock


RDMD will use $3 million in seed money to develop a repository of health data from a variety of digital sources that can then be used for rare disease research and treatment. The startup evolved out of a hackathon last year organized by RDMD founder Onno Faber, who encouraged attendees to dig through his health data in hopes of finding a treatment for his neurofibromatosis type 2, a rare genetic disease for which there previously was no known treatment. RDMD co-founder and CEO Nancy Yu came to the company from 23andMe. They hope to eventually make money by selling de-identified data to pharmaceutical companies.


Healthcare CRM and analytics firm Hc1.com wraps up a $10 million Series B funding round led by Health Cloud Capital.


New Enterprise Associates will invest $165 million in Paladina Health, an employer-focused primary care company acquired from DaVita in June for $100 million. The funding, which mirrors that of other primary care-focused investments into companies like One Medical and Iora Health, will be used for expansion and future acquisitions. If memory serves me correctly, Paladina Health has been an EClinicalWorks customer for a number of years.


Mediware continues its spate of acquisitions by buying Rock-Pond Solutions, an Arkansas-based provider of business intelligence and analytics for home infusion, home medical equipment, and specialty pharmacy businesses.



Kate DeBaene (WPS Health Insurance) joins Forward Health Group as VP of client delivery.


Scott McKay (ZappRx) joins GNS Healthcare as CTO.


ESolutions names Gerry McCarthy (TransUnion Healthcare) CEO. He replaces Gene Creach, who has retired.


HCI Group Global COO Mike Sinno died Saturday, August 11 of a heart attack while coaching his son’s basketball game. He was 45. He had previously served as CIO of Stony Brook University Physicians and Cooper University Hospital. Friends and co-workers are collecting donations for his wife and three children.


  • Montgomery General Hospital (WV) will launch Meditech’s cloud- and subscription-based EHR in September.
  • Santiam Hospital (OR) goes back to CPSI’s EHR after trying another vendor’s solution that fell short in its inpatient functionality (apparently Athenahealth).

Announcements and Implementations


Vibra Healthcare (PA) implements Direct messaging capabilities from Secure Exchange Solutions across its 38 facilities.

The Greater Houston Healthconnect HIE goes live on InterSystems HealthShare.


Adena Regional Medical Center (OH) deploys nurse call and RTLS technologies from Critical Alert Systems.


Imat Solutions develops a Health Data Confidence Index to help providers determine the cleanliness, comprehensiveness, and timeliness of their data.


Cerner and Duke Clinical Research Institute develop an atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease risk calculator app that estimates 10-year and lifetime risk using basic patient information that can be used during a PCP or cardiologist visit. The app extracts information from several EHRs using SMART on FHIR.


A new KLAS report on worksite health services such as primary care and welllness coaching – perfectly timed given Paladina’s impending fund raise — finds that Premise Health and Marathon Health lead the pack, with CareHere also performing well in mid-sized organizations. Cerner’s performance was middle of the road despite its technology capabilities, while KLAS observed that Paladina isn’t on many radars due to its mixed marketing message (something that its new investment can surely improve). Also mentioned were innovators OurHealth (clinics shared among multiple employers), Crossover Health (technology-enabled worksite health), and One Medical (for its consumer focus and 24/7 telemedicine services).

Government and Politics


ONC seeks feedback on the 21st Century Cures Act Electronic Health Record Reporting Program by October 17.

An American Journal of Public Health investigation finds that bot-powered Russian election meddling in 2016 included sending wildly partisan pro- and anti-vaccine tweets to erode public consensus and to sow discord. Sample tweets: “I don’t believe in #vaccines I believe in God’s will,” “Don’t get #vaccines. Illuminati are behind it,” and “You can’t fix stupidity. Let them die from measles, and I’m for #vaccination.”

Privacy and Security


Black Hat conference organizers discover a security vulnerability in attendee badges after a security researcher notifies them that he was able to access registration data using a conference badge reader and business card-sharing app.

Wired points out the privacy issues users may face once birth control apps like Natural Cycles — newly cleared by the FDA — start selling de-identified patient data to pharmaceutical companies and other third parties. While such transactions aren’t in the cards right now, according to co-founder and former CERN physicist Elina Berglund, “I can’t say we’ll never share data. There’s no guarantees in life of what will happen.”


Delaware Health Information Network will launch an identity theft protection product for consumers in Delaware and Maryland that combines its Health Check Alert system with LegalShield’s identity theft protection services.


ECRI Institute (whose name seems to be redundant since the “I” originally stood for “institute”) publishes the first in a three-part podcast series covering safe practice recommendations for test tracking and changing medication orders. This one is titled “Diagnostic Error and the Importance of Closing the Loop.”


A study of prescribing practices for surgical patients at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center (NH) finds that introducing mandatory access to a PDMP did not alter the opioid prescribing habits of physicians. Prescribing rates stayed the same, as did the number of pills prescribed. Time spent on checking the prescription drug database and obtaining informed consent took up an extra 13 minutes of the physician’s time.


A report on physician referrals and patient retention from Kyruus finds that:

  • 40 percent of physicians know whether or not their referral was appropriate for their patient
  • 72 percent tend to refer to the same physician, giving no consideration to others outside of their traditional referral circles who may have more expertise
  • 45 percent feel they don’t have the necessary information to make in-network referrals
  • Though 60 percent of physicians feel in-office appointment scheduling is necessary, 42 percent of patients leave an office without a referral appointment booked

Sponsor Updates


  • CTG staff volunteer at the Weinberg Campus retirement home for United Way of Buffalo and Erie County’s Day of Caring event.
  • Nuance expands its presence in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the Asia-Pacific, and Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.
  • Impact Advisors earns top honors in Black Book’s “2018 State of the Healthcare Technology Advisory and Consultants Industry Report.”
  • Ellkay joins the Strategic Health Information Exchange Collaborative (SHIEC) as a strategic business and technology partner.
  • Black Book names Hayes Management Consulting a top firm in RCM optimization consulting, and clinical optimization and workflow consulting.
  • HBI Solutions advisor Terry Fouts, MD joins BridgeHealth as CMO.
  • The VDI Design Guide features Goliath Technologies.
  • Healthfinch, Healthwise, InterSystems, and Intelligent Medical Objects will exhibit at Epic UGM August 27-30 in Verona, WI.
  • Imprivata will exhibit at VMworld August 26-30 in Las Vegas.

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Mr. H, Lorre, Jenn, Dr. Jayne.
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