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December 20, 2018 News 8 Comments

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3M will acquire MModal’s technology business – most notably AI-powered physician documentation technology — for $1 billion.

MModal’s transcription, scribing, and coding services are not part of the deal. 3M will remain an MModal partner in that business, which generates $200 million in annual revenue.

3M’s health IT offerings under 3M Health Information Systems include clinical documentation risk assessment systems.

The sale is just under the entire price paid for MModal by private equity firm One Equity Partners – JP Morgan Chase’s private equity arm — in 2012. The vendor filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2014, reporting assets of $626 million and liabilities of $852 million along with declining sales, but emerged from Chapter 11 later the same year.

The acquisition price represents 10 times annual adjusted EBITDA.

3M will bring over 750 Pittsburgh-based employees of MModal.

Reader Comments


From CMIO: “Re: Greenway Health. Our salesperson told me that development of Prime Suite is ending other than for compliance issues. He is telling customers to move to a different EHR. It apparently has something to do with the MIPS issues you reported they are having.” Not true, according to Greenway, which provided this response:

We are actively communicating with our customers regarding MIPS reporting capabilities. It is important to note that Greenway Health is not ending development for Prime Suite and is not forcing customers to move to another EHR. Customers can remain on Prime Suite and take advantage of future upgrades, as well as consider other Greenway solutions and services that drive practice success. We are continuously partnering with our customers to determine the path forward that best meets their needs.


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

Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock


Tablet-based EHR vendor DrChrono raises $10 million in funding.


GE shares rise on the news that the struggling company will continue with plans to spin off its healthcare business through an IPO that will likely take place next year.


A paywalled piece in STAT looks at the shaky ground IBM Watson is experiencing in several hospitals in China. The company announced in 2016 that 21 facilities would adopt the cognitive computing technology for oncology as part of a multi-year arrangement with Hangzhou CognitiveCare.



Collective Medical hires Steven Goldschmidt (MatrixCare) as VP of business development, post-acute care.


Mark Dunnagan (NC HealthConnex) joins Smartlink Health Solutions as VP of health informatics.


Tabula Rasa HealthCare names Kevin Boesen, PharmD (formerly CEO of $131 million Tabula Rasa acquisition SinfoníaRx) as chief sales officer. Boesen, who studied improv at Second City in Chicago, launched a popular skit-based video series with his brother about the pharmacy profession while both were professors at the University of Arizona.


Cancer informatics company Inspirata hires Greg Tennant (DrFirst) as chief strategy and marketing officer. Inspirata acquired Caradigm from GE Healthcare in June.

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ClearData appoints Michael Donohue (Axial Exchange) chief marketing officer and Dean Fredenburgh (AWS) chief revenue officer.

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Greenway Health hires Susan Kohler (Centene) as chief compliance officer and Patrice Nedelec (SCC Soft Computer) as VP of quality assurance and regulatory affairs.


  • Orlando Health will implement Epic, joining several of the largest Allscripts Sunrise customers that have done the same.
  • Ten-state Adventist Health System selects Vyne Medical’s Trace communications management software.
  • In Michigan, the Genesys Physicians Hospital Organization will implement Allscripts subsidiary 2bPrecise’s Genomic EHR Monitor.
  • Ohio’s Hospice will deploy Netsmart’s EHR at its eight facilities.

Announcements and Implementations


Kids Rock Cancer-Maryville University goes live on FormFast as part of its music therapy programs for pediatric cancer centers.


Geisinger (PA) adds ProviderMatch for Consumers from Kyruus to its website, giving patients the ability to find best-fit physicians and schedule appointments.

Carefluence announces GA of its FHIR-enabled server and tools on AWS.

Walgreens pharmacies and Verily will work together to develop solutions for patients with chronic conditions, initially focusing on medication management and a virtual solution for type 2 diabetes patients.

Government and Politics

The VA is considering terminating its $624 million Epic-Leidos patient scheduling system pilot project and buying a similar system from Cerner.

CMS issues an RFI asking for feedback on whether or not the consulting practices of hospital accreditation agencies like The Joint Commission pose a conflict of interest.



The New York Times visits Epic with these observations (and some great campus photos):

  • It calls CEO Judy Faulkner “a septuagenarian coding savant” and a “billionaire recluse.”
  • Employees are required to attend 2.5 hour monthly staff meetings that it compares to “a megachurch experience.”
  • Employees are encouraged to keep the company’s wealth local by living within 45 minutes of campus and buying from area merchants instead of Amazon.
  • All employees have private offices, every conference room is required to have windows, and stairs are mandatory for socialization even though the climbing requirement limits building height to three stories.
  • The 75-year-old Faulkner, who the reporter describes as shy and distracted, told her that she will never retire.
  • The majority shareholders – mostly Faulkner’s future heirs and Epic employees – have been instructed to always vote to keep Epic private, and when they have to choose a new CEO, to pick an Epic software developer.
  • Faulkner says she focuses on software and customer relations, adding that, “I look at our financial information maybe for a minute a month.”
  • Each employee gets a company-paid, month-long sabbatical every five years, with Epic footing the bill for two people.


A Forbes expose on London-based videoconferencing app vendor Babylon Health finds that despite having raised $85 million and convinced NHS to eventually use its chatbot-powered consumer diagnostic app, the latter software wasn’t tested anywhere else and didn’t work. The article notes:

  • Doctors who audited the system found that the chatbot gave the wrong diagnosis 10-15 percent of time.
  • The company ran afoul of advertising regulators who found that the “independent study” that validated its triage feature was actually internal testing involving professional actors posting as patients by following company-provided scripts.
  • Babylona claimed that its chatbot scored higher on medical exams than human doctors, but didn’t mention that the software was required to answer only 15 of 50 questions and was allowed to submit three answers to each question.
  • The company claims to be unaware of analyses suggesting that its users seek ED care at a higher rate than those who call England’s 111 advice line.
  • Babylon’s focus on “building fast” and “reaching escape velocity” caused it to downplay the concerns of its employee doctors while treating its data scientists like rock stars.
  • The company will need to apply its technology to more patient records and to measure its outcomes to be successful.

Chipotle started requiring employees to sign arbitration agreements as a condition of employment in 2014, a practice affirmed as legal by a Supreme Court case involving Epic. Now Chipotle is being overwhelmed by the number of pay-related arbitration cases that have been brought against it by former employees – each involving a cost of $30,000 to $50,000 – and has tried to convince a judge to stop accepting the filings. He said no. Chipotle hasn’t been paying its share of the arbitration filing fee and is fretting that each case must be heard in the individual county in which the employee worked (and Chipotle has 2,400 locations all over the country).

Sponsor Updates

  • EPSi releases v18.3 with several functional and performance improvements.
  • PatientKeeper reports that it has deployed its EHR optimization software at 24 sites over the last year, representing 1,900 end users.
  • Loyale Healthcare extends wishes for peace on Earth, goodwill to patients, and prosperity for providers in 2019.
  • Imprivata develops EPCS Ready, an online resource for providers preparing to meet federal Electronic Prescribing for Controlled Substances requirements.
  • The Chartis Group publishes a new report, “Managing Medicare to Break Even: Better Patient Outcomes at Lower Costs.”
  • PMD expands access to its free, HIPAA-compliant, text messaging service for care teams.
  • Intelligent Medical Objects congratulates winners of the AMIA PitchIT! competition.
  • PM360 magazine selects ConnectiveRx’s BrandHub portal as one of the most innovative services of 2018.
  • A study in the World Journal of Diabetes validates the TriNetX platform’s ability to use real-world data to generate real-world evidence to replicate results from randomized clinical trials.

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Currently there are "8 comments" on this Article:

  1. re: “Each employee gets a company-paid, month-long sabbatical every five years, with Epic footing the bill for two people.” Something got lost at the end there.

    Per the article, it should read something like, “…with Epic footing the bill for round-trip airfare for two to travel somewhere they’ve never been for a month, plus a per diem for meals and lodging.”

    • Wow. That is really impressive. I’d like to apply for the position of “Judy’s Biggest Fangirl”. Merry Christmas, Judy, if you end up seeing this.

  2. Re: Walgreens and Google/Verily: Hoping that Walgreens is using a little more diligence than they did with their Theranos partnership. They haven’t gotten nearly the public blame or shame that they deserve for that.

  3. Note that the VA already purchases Cerner scheduling as part of their Cerner contract. There is no new purchase that has to occur for scheduling.

    • This has got to make classic Best o Breed vendors laugh and cheer. Epic sells a best of breed solution to VA, VA signs a total system contract w Cerner who throws in scheduling, probably at little of no added cost. Then BoB solution gets bounced, even though it is a better scheduling product. SMS, McAuto, McKess, IBM, etc, played this trick on BoB vendors for decades. All in the name of ‘a single vendor solution is better’.

      Two full EMR solutions doing this to each other is beautifully ironic. I doubt Judy will want to sell another BoB package again. And if she’s lucky, down the road at another site she can do it to Cerner (or maybe already has?).

  4. Genesys PHO selects Allscripts 2bPrecise. curious to hear more about this .

    What they intend to do with this product?
    Does the product currently do what they need it do
    what were the financials of the deal?

    The Allscripts 2bprecise product was built on NantHealhs Geonomics product which they obtained after investing 200 million dollars into Nanthealth, only to lose nearly all of the 200 million dollar investment when the Geonomic division of Nanthealth failed and was the focal point of possible legal issues. The founder of Nanthealth then went on to purchase a news paper. Any word on how many sites implement and use this 2bprecise product/service

  5. Hi, I want to clarify information related to the comment above. 2bPrecise is not connected to NantHealth. The 2bPrecise platform was built organically from the ground up by a dedicated team of developers.

    • NantHealth, Allscripts Collaborate on Precision Medicine Solutions
      Mar 02, 2015

      Same time frame Allscripts formed 2bPrecise to enable providers to leverage the value of genomic data at the point of care.

      From March 02 announcement.

      NantHealth and Allscripts today said they will collaborate to develop precision medicine solutions to enable physicians to make informed decisions from genomic and proteomic analyses.
      NantHealth said that the collaboration will leverage its eviti solution, which helps select protocols for patients, as well as its DeviceConX and Hbox data integration solution.
      “Combined with critical clinical data from the physician’s [electronic medical records] and community data collected across the continuum of care.

      June 2015 Allscripts invests 200 million into Nanthealth. Allscripts gets 10% ownership of NantHeath and would jointly integrate their software.

      , Vice President, Sales for 2bPrecise, Erin Scales, held previous roles with in NantHealth,

      2bprecise/dbmotion used as API.

      Considering the outcome of NantHealth genomic product line, hearing Allscripts scrapped and had to rebuild from ground up raises an eyebrow as their expertise and experience was only in “data capture” PM and EHR products and integrating 3rd party utilities and products with marginal success.

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