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Weekender 9/14/18

September 14, 2018 Weekender 5 Comments


Weekly News Recap

  • Cigna invests $250 million in a new corporate venture fund that will target companies working in the areas of care delivery and management, digital health and retail, and insights and analytics.
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (NY) CMO José Baselga, MD comes under fire (ultimately resigning) after media outlets report he failed to disclose his financial ties to research journals in which he was published.
  • Cerner President Zane Burke announces he will leave the company November 2. John Peterzalek, EVP of worldwide client relationships, will assume Burke’s responsibilities and the title of chief client officer.
  • Former VA Secretary David Shulkin, MD joins Sanford Health (SD) as chief innovation officer.
  • Apple introduces the fourth iteration of the Apple Watch, featuring fall detection and heart monitoring features that include the ability to record ECGs.
  • General Atlantic invests $200 million in new cancer care company OneOncology, which aims to bring the latest in oncology care to patients in community settings using technology from Flatiron Health.

Best Reader Comments

Re: 340b comments. Sounds awfully familiar. Regulatory bodies ask for public comment, then that process is abused via copy/paste comments and identity theft to support corporate positions. At what point do we start prosecuting people for this? (340b)

With Zane out the door as a scapegoat for the first three years of DoD vaporware delivery, who does Cerner send up next to stammer empty assurances to Congress? John Peterzalek? Or does the world finally get to meet Brent Shafer? (Vaporware)

Mediware /Wellsky…marketing runs rampant again! Their PR states: “We stand at the forefront of innovation that will eliminate the fragmentation that exists in health and community care… By integrating its offerings under one brand, WellSky is better positioned to partner with providers and organizations to create and sustain communities that thrive.

Please explain how re-branding under one new name really accomplices product integration for customers when their 30 diverse products hardly talk to one another?? They probably spent big bucks to come up with this new name. Would be better spent on developing code that really integrates their 30 disparate product lines. Whatever you brand it doesn’t matter, Wellsky is still a tornado of flotsam. (HISjunkie)

Watercooler Talk Tidbits


Researchers uncover a 2016  Amazon patent for a transport system in which a human worker would sit in a metal cage atop a robotic trolley, an engineering design they call “an extraordinary illustration of worker alienation, a stark moment in the relationship between humans and machines.” Amazon reps contend the company has never and will never develop such a system, adding that sometimes even bad ideas get submitted for patents. Given the company’s intensified focus on lowering employee healthcare costs, I can’t help but wonder what sort of ICD-10 codes might be warranted at its future employee clinics by injuries sustained within the hypothetical people-movers.

image image

Perhaps Amazon should consider installing these on its warehouse floors: EIR Healthcare in Philadelphia starts a “tiny hospital” movement with the development of a prefabricated modular hospital room that comes pre-wired with fall-detecting sensors and a smart TV. CEO Grant Geiger boasts that “it should be the only option worth considering when building new hospital construction from this point forward.”


The Washington Post looks at the increase in electric scooter-related trips to the ER, interviewing emergency docs in seven cities – all of whom have seen a spike in injuries since shared scooter services became available in their areas. Start-ups like Bird, Lime, and Skip are riding on the coattails of ride-hailing and bike-sharing companies thanks to investments from Uber, Alphabet, and Sequoia Capital. Yet their business practices are being called into question by riders who end up in the ER with severe injuries due to mechanical malfunctions. “Injuries are coming in fast and furious,” says  Scripps Mercy Hospital (CA) Chief of Medical Staff Michael Sise. “It’s just a matter of time before someone is killed. I’m absolutely certain of it.”

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Currently there are "5 comments" on this Article:

  1. I know it’s no fault of HIStalk’s, but I was sad to scroll through almost 10 days of content and see over 15 photos of men who are taking on leadership positions in HIT and one solo photo of a woman. Are the sponsors/vendors/health systems not sharing all their news, or is the gap still that big?

    • I noticed the same thing…lots of white men photos but hardly any women. I went through several pages of back issues going back to May 2018 and found about 120 photos of men compared to 39 photos of women. I was looking at the head shots shown in the PEOPLE, READERS WRITE and INTERVIEWS sections. Even more disconcerting was representation by minority groups (African American, Asian, Hispanic). Is our industry really that lopsided that women and POC represent such a significant minority position especially in positions of senior management and thought leadership?

  2. Catherine,
    The answer is Yes. Women are woefully underrepresented proportionally in healthcare (and HIT) leadership roles. Histalk is a reflection of the industry.

    Why haven’t RNs – largest HCP group by far, ~90% female – leveraged size and critical role to achieve power and influence in setting healthcare policy and practices at national or local levels (some exceptions)? Unionization, parenting pause, and gender bias are contributing factors.

    Per Rock Health, change not happening. Women surveyed pessimistic it will soon or ever. https://rockhealth.com/reports/women-in-healthcare-2017-how-does-our-industry-stack-up/

    Source: Rock Health 2017 Research
    “We’ve been mining data on gender parity in healthcare leadership since our first report on the topic in early 2012, and the story has remained largely unchanged: Women are a key stakeholder in healthcare, yet are underrepresented in leadership positions across the industry.

    Unfortunately, this lethargic pace of change has caused women to be pessimistic about the future. In our 2017 survey of over 300 women in healthcare, nearly half (45.4%) of respondents believe it will take 25 or more years until we achieve gender parity in the workplace. Only 7.5% say it will happen in the next five years. And a whopping 16.1% say we will never achieve gender parity.”

    • Yes, it’s true. And things are actually pretty good in healthcare, compared to other fields (try physics). But what keeps me up at night is that I really believe the problem is not solely a problem of biased hiring decisions. I think a lot of women exclude themselves from some pursuits early on in life (computers, science, leadership roles, etc.). Therefore they don’t develop those aptitudes, and therefore there just aren’t a lot of qualified women out there to be hired into those roles. (And therefore, when there *is* a qualified woman, they can be subjected to more skepticism and scrutiny than others.)

      Some say the solution is to hire by quota. But if there is an insufficient number of qualified female applicants, then that just results in hiring unqualified ones into roles that others may be better qualified for. Which is (a) not fair, and (b) also creates a credibility problem for the hapless woman. And it renders awards / promotions to women in these roles essentially meaningless, even if they were given based on merit (because people will assume they were quota-driven). Not an easy problem.

      • Some start the day telling themselves: I deserve a C-level position. A subset of that group decides to do everything possible to achieve that, including unethical behavior.
        Others start the day telling themselves: I hope I get to do enjoyable, impactful, and meaningful work. A subset of that group are actively looking to support subordinates and peers also and not prioritizing themselves.

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