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Weekender 3/15/19

March 15, 2019 Weekender No Comments


Weekly News Recap

  • Rutland Regional Medical Center (VT) experiences its second email-related breach
  • Australian imaging software vendor Mach7 fires its CEO and eliminates the CTO role as part of a restructuring and cost-cutting program that it hopes will propel its US growth
  • An investment analyst thinks Apple will expand the Watch’s medical sensors and then sell the data of wearers to their doctors for $10 per patient per month
  • Hill-Rom announces that it will acquire mobile clinical communications vendor Voalte for up to $195 million
  • An investigative report finds that medical device manufacturers have been able to hide widespread patient safety issues by using the FDA’s alternate summary reporting program

Best Reader Comments

The thing that gets me about the Theranos story was that even at the peak of their hype, everyone I spoke with in the healthcare field could see that it was fishy as heck and no one I know was surprised when it turned out to be BS. (Dr. Herzenstube)

I hadn’t thought of Amazon serving up order sets, but they’re actually doing some of the most sophisticated order sets out there. (Mike Z)

You’re right on the money. There is no magic bullet to burnout but this type of article that talks real / no frills techniques that can be done today. This is exactly what our teams should be focused on. (TX Trainer)

I’m sure there are plenty of physicians, regardless of specialty, who could speak to a patient via a telemedicine “robot” and convey empathy. So please blame any outrage on the individual purveyor of bad news and not on all physicians or all robots. (Compassionate cyborg)

It will be fascinating to monitor Cerner’s encounter-based EHR’s acceptance as well as how they will decide to address functional nuances in the VA (and DoD). Cerner’s EHR is designed for a “clinically driven revenue cycle” – a help or hindrance to the VA and DoD? (Art_Vandelay)

Watercooler Talk Tidbits

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Readers funded the DonorsChoose teacher grant request of Ms. P in Virginia, who asked for books that emphasize individuality and tolerance, lap desks, and camp tables for her first grade class. She reports, “It was wonderful to be have these read-aloud titles in the classroom. I frequently turn back to the books when I feel my students needed a reminder about how to treat others with empathy and tolerance. The books’ message also reached first graders in other classes, as I loaned the titles to other teachers on my teaching team. Thank you for allowing me to bring these resources into my classroom!”


Turkey’s government opens a 3,810-bed, $1.15 billion hospital in Ankara, with the country’s medical association expressing concerns that “central hospitals are not cost effective and they impact public health quite negatively.” The medical association notes that European cities have mostly moved away from building mega-hospitals in favor of building several smaller ones. They have mostly abandoned the public-private partnership model that is being used to open 30 new hospitals in Turkey, in which a contractor pays the construction cost, then rents the building back to the government. Armchair geographers take note – Turkey is in both Asia and Europe and Istanbul is the only city in the world that straddles two continents.

A North Carolina hospital warns employees that using legal but unregulated CBD oil could get them fired because some products contain traces of THC that will trigger a positive drug test.


A New York Times article notes that doctors “disappear without a word” when they leave a practice with a non-compete agreement in which the old employer refuses to tell their patients how to contact them. The CEO of Iowa Clinic, which is being sued by three urologists who argue that their termination makes their non-compete agreement unenforceable, says such agreements are “good for the patients because they help to provide stability within a practice and ensure continuity of care.” One of the clinic’s patients disagrees, saying that, “somehow they lost sight of patient care and were more concerned about the bottom line.”


OnMed rolls out a phone booth-like telemedicine station that allows online consultations via a a video consultation that includes remotely-controlled vital signs measurement and automated drug dispensing. In-session privacy features include automatic door locking, windows that turn opaque, and speakers that can’t be heard from outside. Patients are identified using 3D facial recognition and the doctor’s credentials are displayed on the screen. UV lighting sterilizes the booth between visits.

A University of Miami Health System fires a sex-change surgeon for posting pictures of his cases on Instagram under the account @sexsurgeon, including a Valentine’s Day post showing a removed penis shaped into a heart labeled, “There are many ways to show your LOVE.”

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Reader Comments

  • Anonymous: Thanks for sharing the article on hospital architecture! On a recent walkthrough of a brand new multimillion dollar ...
  • David Dieterich: Thank you Mr. H for reminding readers of what Memorial Day is about. - A Gold Star family member....
  • Will Weider: Wait, I thought Walgreens was going to put all of the traditional medical groups out of business?...
  • Right Said Fred: Fred's right on the money here. I vividly recall one of Epic's TLMMs (Team Lead Management Meeting - a meeting where...
  • Elizabeth H. H. Holmes: My personal opinion is that burnout is most directly influenced by the relationship you have with your direct manager, a...
  • HISJunkie: Is Epic still growing, not if you read between the lines. Last year they said they hired 400 new employees. Now they say...
  • Vaporware?: Mr. H, you can add this little propaganda gem to your file of Top 10 Euphemisms (emphasis mine). You have one of those f...
  • Fred: Epic's response to burnout is precious. Yes, everyone is happy and challenged, excluding of course the thousands who hav...
  • Brian Too: Any complex software that you spend a lot of time in, you'd better learn it well. Most people do that but if you invest...
  • AC: I don't believe they give you raw click numbers yet (only PEP/NEAT score), although I think Feb 2019 release is bringing...

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