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July 25, 2020 News 3 Comments

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The Journal of Vascular Surgery apologizes for and retracts an article titled “Prevalence of unprofessional social media content among young vascular surgeons.” Some doctors complained that the article was discriminatory and should not have passed peer review.

Three male screeners created fake Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts to search postings from graduating vascular surgery residents – who had not given permission to being reviewed — that contained content they determined was unprofessional and possibly eventually career-damaging.

“Clearly unprofessional” content included posting profanity or making offensive comments about colleagues, work, or patients. Being photographed with alcoholic drinks, making controversial comments, or wearing inappropriate attire were considered “potentially unprofessional.” 


Doctors protested with social media posts of themselves wearing swimsuits and drinking margaritas tagged #MedBikini.

Reader Comments

From Twitterati: “Re: digital health startup. An author asked people on Twitter to say what that means to them. You?” The “startup” part leads me to assume that the company has attracted investors, which means they have some (likely overstated) degree of revenue, customers, and future prospects, but also suggests that it is still in need of someone else’s money to shed the “startup” label and make predictable profits, probably from a business model in which someone other than patients pays since the users themselves rarely see enough value in digital health products to want to spend their own money. That depends, of course, who is labeling a company as a startup – fanboys, founders, or excessively exuberant media? Equally soft is “digital health,” which is often in the self-serving eye of the beholder, like badly aging companies in the early 2000s that suddenly declared themselves dot-coms because they put up a website. I have zero experience working in digital health or for startups, but I would be embarrassed as a CEO to hide behind either label in trying to earn a trophy for participating.

HIStalk Announcements and Requests


Getting a haircut tops the list of COVID-risky activities that poll respondents undertook in the past month, followed by eating inside a restaurant and attending gatherings. My only transgression was a one-time lunch with a visiting relative in an admirably cautious restaurant, but it was less enjoyable than I expected beyond the nostalgia factor now that I’ve learned to enjoy eating entirely at home.

New poll to your right or here, paying homage to those #MedBikini folks — which existing online information, if any, do you fear could eventually harm your career?

A relative of mine was struggling to pay for her $1,300 per month injectable medication, so her doctor sent her prescription to a legitimate, customer-centric pharmacy in Canada that is best known for providing insulin at a fraction of US prices. They shipped the same brand-name medication for $400.


August 19 (Wednesday) 1:00 ET. “A New Approach to Normalizing Data.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Rajiv Haravu, senior product manager, IMO; Denise Stoermer, product manager, IMO. Healthcare organizations manage an ever-increasing abundance of information from multiple systems, but problems with quality, accuracy, and completeness can make analysis unreliable for quality improvement and population health initiatives. The presenters will describe how IMO Precision Normalize improves clinical, quality, and financial decision-making by standardizing inconsistent diagnosis, procedure, medication, and lab data from diverse systems into common, clinically validated terminology.

Previous webinars are on our YouTube channel. Contact Lorre to present your own.

Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock


Israel-based StuffThatWorks, which combines crowdsourcing and AI to give actionable data to people with chronic diseases, raises $9 million.

Haemonetics sells its blood banking and hospital software business Inlog Holdings France SAS to a private equity firm.



Industry long-timer Steve Pratt of S&P consulting died on July 16 at 60.

Announcements and Implementations

UPMC implements RxRevu’s SwiftRx Direct patient cost transparency technology, which will allow its doctors to review lower-cost prescription alternatives based on real-time access to the patient’s benefits through UPMC Health Plan.

PatientKeeper develops a FHIR-based, Cerner-embedded version of its physician charge capture software, working with Baystate Health’s TechSpring innovation center.

Redox adds access to 500,000 Carequality-enabled physicians to its network, allowing Carequality participants to join the network, exchange clinical summaries, use a simple API to integrate participants and providers, and onboard quickly without going through Carequality’s certification process.


FDA gives emergency use authorization to LabCorp’s home collection COVID-19 PCR test for use in symptom-free people and to be used in pooled sample testing.


An overwhelmed hospital on the US-Mexico border says that it has formed an internal committee that will decide whether a given COVID-19 patient is treated or sent home to die. It is fascinating to see how ill-prepared or unwilling our health system is to move a patient from an overwhelmed public hospital to available beds in private hospitals and even emergency COVID field hospitals. The percentage of patients who die in the same hospital that they were originally admitted to must be huge since transferring elsewhere, even when medically possible or advisable, has always been  an option that is rarely exercised by either hospital or patient.

CDC issues a strong call to reopen schools two weeks after President Trump criticized its original recommendations as “very tough and expensive.” Insiders say an HHS working group included some of CDC’s original recommendations, but put the mental health-focused Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration in charge of the guidance while excluding the participation of CDC, which was determined to be overly cautious about viral spread. Harvard’s Ashish Jha, MD, MPH says the new document contains no clear information about the risk to students and school staff and does not include a strategy for preventing infection via screening and testing.


The NFL’s only physician player, Kansas City Chiefs right guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, MD, becomes its first player to announce that he will sit out the 2020 season, explaining, “Being at the front line during this offseason has given me a different perspective on this pandemic and the stress it puts on individuals and our healthcare system. I cannot allow myself to potentially transmit the virus in our communities simply to play the sport that I love. If I am to take risks, I will do it caring for patients.” Staying on the sidelines will cost him $2.6 million in salary.



Georgia State University describes how its nursing faculty quickly moved the clinical experience component of its program online using the VSim for Nursing simulator from Wolters Kluwer, which it uses over videoconferencing to allow students and faculty to work together.

Sponsor Updates

  • Saykara’s founder and president are interviewed about the future of AI in healthcare and its use in the company’s speech-recognition powered physician charting app.
  • Premier Inc. recommends FDA and DEA reforms to prevent drug shortages.
  • Redox Product Designer Nick Hatt will present a session, “Making the Healthcare Developer Experience Awesome to Achieve Interoperability,” during the virtual API Days New York event July 28-29.
  • InterSystems introduces an exam-based certification program for HealthShare Health Connect HL7 Interface Specialist and IRIS Core Solutions Developer Specialist.
  • Relatient publishes a new case study, “University Physicians’ Association Increases Patient Payments 43% with Mobile-First Billing.”
  • Summit Healthcare hires Kyle Madden as a regional sales manager for the West Coast.
  • Waystar appoints retired Xerox CEO Ursula Burns to its board.

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Currently there are "3 comments" on this Article:

  1. Steve Pratt will be missed. I loved working with Steve and S&P when I was at Cyrano, and we partnered with Steve and Andy. Steve, his family, and S&P are in my thoughts and prayers. Shaun Priest

  2. Thank you to Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, MD, the Kansas City Chiefs right guard, for sitting out the 2020 season. You did the right thing. Money isn’t everything and I’m betting you’ll never regret your decision.

  3. If you’d like a more in-depth take on the public vs. private hospital issue with COVID-19, today’s (July 27, 2020) episode of the New York Times podcast, The Daily, is all about just that.

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  1. Yet you miss the critical end of that sentence ---- "..yet they have ALL the LEVERAGE IF there were any…

  2. The VA project involves dozens of billions of taxpayer dollars, a big industry vendor, and a lot of people who…

  3. KLAS expressed the hospital count by rounded percentage, as follows including those I didn't mention originally: Epic 35.9 Oracle Cerner…

  4. There are other vendors out there with even fewer hospitals, I think athenahealth has some. And then there are still…

  5. I want to start off by saying excellent content and to continue with that theme I feel organizations should implement…


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