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January 17, 2021 News 1 Comment

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Cerner announces that Chief Client and Services Officer John Peterzalek and Chief Legal Officer Randy Sims will leave the company. They will be replaced by Cerner Government Services President Travis Dalton and SVP of Cloud Strategy / Chief IP Officer Dan Devers, respectively.

Cerner Chairman and CEO Brent Shafer said in the internal announcement that the company’s annual client survey results require a greater sense of urgency in strengthening relationships, delivering on promises, innovating faster, and executing on strategies.

HIStalk Announcements and Requests


Most poll respondents don’t have a significant chunk of their net worth invested in health IT company ownership.

New poll to your right or here: For those who have worked for a company or healthcare organization that was acquired, how was your job afterward? I’ve mostly worked for big health systems that were the acquirer, which worked out well for me. My job also didn’t change much during my stint with a bottom-feeder vendor whose series of owners couldn’t wait to pawn it off on someone else like a gas station Christmas fruitcake, but only because (a) it wasn’t that great of a job to begin with; (b) I was somewhat safe as a clinical-technical subject matter expert who was happy to keep my head down while the mahogany row battles were being fought above me (literally and figuratively). My sense is that having your company acquired for unfavorable terms brands you with the collective stench of your previous employer’s failure, while those who actually captained the ship into the iceberg elbow women and children aside in fleeing for the corporate lifeboats.

The suddenly overused word that I’m sick of hearing: all forms of “lean,” including lean in, forward-leaning, left- or right-leaning, and leaning into. Unless you’re talking about someone who is unsteady on their feet, a carburetor, quality improvement, the director of “The Bridge on the River Kwai,” or that tower in Pisa, better word choices are available.


January 28 (Thursday) 12:30 ET: “In Conversation: Advancing Women Leaders in Health IT.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Tabitha Lieberman, SVP of clinical and revenue cycle applications, Providence St. Joseph Health; Ann Barnes, CEO, IMO; Deanna Towne, MBA, CIO, CORHIO; Amanda Heidemann, MD, CMIO, CMIO Services, LLC. IMO CEO Ann Barnes brings together a panel of female health executives for a results-oriented discussion on how managers and C-suite executives can address diversity and inclusion in their organizations. From STEM education to mentoring and networking, the “COVID effect” on women in the workplace, to matters of equity, there’s no better time to talk openly about these issues to help generate meaningful change in healthcare.

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



Former Acting CMS Administrator Andy Slavitt, who was previously CEO of OptumInsight and more recently founder of non-profit United States of Care, will take a temporary role as advisor the President-elect’s COVID team. That’s him accepting his “Healthcare IT Industry Figure of the Year” award at the final HIStalkapalooza in New Orleans in 2017, which was right after I interviewed him.

Announcements and Implementations

Healthcare development platform vendor Commure joins the Postman API Network, making its FHIR and authentication APIs available to healthcare developers. Clinical scenarios covered include telehealth, care team management, inpatient medical workflows, and capturing data with forms. Commure’s co-founder and executive chairman is investor Hemant Taneja, who started and sold Livongo, while its CEO is Brent Dover, who was president of Medicity and Health Catalyst. The company has raised $42 million in funding.


Saturday saw 126,139 people hospitalized with COVID-19 in the US, with 3,695 deaths. The death total will pass 400,000 early this week.

CDC says the more contagious B117 coronavirus variant will become the dominant strain in the US by March, which some experts predict will happen even sooner based on UK experience. In addition, the B1351 variant is probably already active in the US and may be resistant to at least one antibody therapy. Former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, MD says that new COVID-19 cases have likely peaked, but deaths and hospitalizations will continue to grow over the next few weeks as a lagging indicator. 

CDC reports that as of Friday, 12.3 million people have received COVID-19 vaccine first doses versus 31.2 million doses distributed, with less than 40% of available doses actually given.

Operation Warp Speed held CDC’s vaccine distribution plan for two months last summer, leaving state and local officials little time to implement mass vaccination programs. 

HHS imposes term limits on its top few dozen scientists at FDA and CDC, who would face reassignment every five years, in a rule that the new administration is likely to cancel.

Sponsor Updates

  • OptimizeRx promotes Kennedy Whitney to marketing coordinator.
  • D CEO and Dallas Innovates recognizes Phynd Technologies CEO Tom White as a finalist for their Start-Up Innovator of the Year award.
  • KLAS Research recognizes Relatient as the highest rated patient engagement platform with 10 validated capabilities.
  • Everest Group names Nordic a “Leader” in its “Healthcare IT Services Specialists PEAK Matrix Assessment 2021.”
  • Spirion introduces its Customer Marketplace, an online hub for third-party data privacy and security integrations, applications, best practices, and training information.
  • TriNetX will present during the Friends of the National Library of Medicine’s virtual workshop January 27 on real-world data and EHRs in clinical research.
  • Well Health joins the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles’ KidsX digital accelerator as part of its initial cohort.

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Currently there is "1 comment" on this Article:

  1. Cerner Chairman and CEO Brent Shafer may wish to check out his own uCern “ideas” space to get a sense of how his peeps are doing on “strengthening relationships, delivering on promises, innovating faster, and executing on strategies.”

    There are loads of ideas that are no-brainers and/or have had significant support for many (5+) years, yet are not yet implemented or have been rejected as “not on the road map.” Other “ideas” point out serious safety risks but are said to be “working as designed” (WAD), although they would be better termed WAHD (working as horribly designed).

    These problems with Cerner’s responsiveness aren’t new — they’ve been ongoing for over 15 years based on my personal experience. But perhaps some of the “kool-aid” has worn off, leading to more honesty in those who contributed to the survey results. Also, as more people have switched jobs after experience with the competition, I’m hearing more and more people say “But I could do this with [my prior EHR software]. Why can’t I do it with Cerner?”

    The only saving grace for Brent Shafer is that many of my colleagues think his software is called Serna…..

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