Telemedicine software vendor VisuWell fires CEO Sam Johnson in response to a widely circulated video that appears to show him publicly harassing an 18-year-old boy who had worn a dress to their prom.
Johnson says the video was edited to misrepresent a situation in which he asked a group of loud teens in a Tennessee restaurant to tone it down in the presence of families and children.
VisuWell says Johnson was terminated immediately, removed from the company’s board, and will not serve in any advisory role. It has appointed President and COO Gerry Andrady to lead the company.
Johnson was previously founder and CEO of Relatient and held sales executive positions with Misys and Greenway Health.
From @anotherdrgregg: “Re: prescriptions that are a waste of my time. Nearly all of them. Ask me to write a prescription for three reasons: (a) payment, in which you can buy your own wheeled walker but you need me to prescribe it if you want Medicare to pay for it; (b) liability, where the mechanism used to impose accountability (liability) is the prescription; and (c) stewardship, which mostly involves only society-influencing medications such as antibiotics and opiates.” It’s fascinating that the prescription process, at least for cash-paying patients, is that they, their doctor, or both decide on what meds to take and the doctor then writes a sticky note (oversimplifying the prescription process) that gives someone else permission to sell them the product. The prescription is the presumed evidence of clinical decision-making that may or may not have added any value, especially in the many cases where patients demand what they want and the doctor dutifully complies knowing that harm is unlikely and that their patient satisfaction or retention numbers will suffer otherwise. Drug companies also have an incentive to keep their wares as prescription-only so that insurance will pay for them, the price can remain high in the absence of store shelf competition, and they can track who is using their product for marketing purposes. I also wonder how much value is added by state pharmacy laws or insurance requirements that make doctors issue new prescriptions every 6-12 months when the patient has been taking that chronic med for years with no problems or dose changes. Incentives would be aligned if doctors simply recommended products, then patients would either then buy or not with their own money. In other words, if healthcare worked like every other industry.
From Pee-on Analyst: “Re: Ascension. Conducting meetings to announced a country-wide outsourcing of at least all acute and outpatient EHR support to India and Tech Mahindra. Cerner, Epic, Athena, everything. Positions eliminated as of August 8.” Unverified, but reported by two readers.
HIStalk Announcements and Requests
Welcome to new HIStalk Platinum Sponsor Protenus. The Baltimore-based company’s artificial intelligence platform reduces risk and saves resources for the nation’s leading health systems by detecting and preventing compliance violations, such as breaches to patient privacy and incidents of clinical drug diversion. Compliance analytics provide healthcare leaders full insight into how health data is being used and issues alerts of inappropriate activity to privacy, pharmacy, and compliance teams. Protenus, KLAS’s category leader in patient privacy monitoring for 2020, helps its partner hospitals make decisions about how to better protect their data, their patients, and their institutions. The company’s “2021 Breach Barometer” report has been widely featured by national news organizations. Thanks to Protenus for supporting HIStalk.
Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock
Insulin management software vendor Glytec raises $21 million through debt financing and investment.
Remote cardiac monitoring company Vector raises $12.5 million in a Series A funding round. Its technology enables cardiologists to receive, manage, and analyze data from a patient’s cardiac device and integrate with their EHRs.
Healthcare interoperability company Lyniate acquires Datica’s health data integration assets. Lyniate has incorporated Datica’s API capabilities into its newest product, Envoy, which enables customers to develop, maintain, and monitor data-exchange connections across organizations. Datica’s website suggests that the company will continue to offer its Next Gen Compliance Platform.
Sweden-based telehealth services and health center operator Kry raises $312 million in a Series D funding round that increases its total to $568 million.
- Region 1 Disaster Health Response System will offer Bluestream Health’s telehealth services to hospitals during disasters or public health emergencies.
- Lehigh Valley Health Network (PA) selects LexisNexis MarketView, business intelligence software incorporating de-identified medical claims data.
Crossings Healthcare Solutions promotes Marlon Ali, MD to CMIO.
Cindy Gaines, RN (Philips) joins Lumeon in the newly created position of clinical transformation executive.
ConnectiveRx promotes Jim Corrigan to CEO. He succeeds Harry Totonis, who will become chairman of the board.
Claus Jensen (Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center) joins Teladoc Health as chief innovation officer.
Announcements and Implementations
Northern Maine Medical Center goes live on Cerner.
Black Book Research names Cerner as its top-rated inpatient EHR vendor as well as earning the highest client experience scores in academic medical centers.
Leidos Partnership for Defense Health brings 10,000 clinicians live on MHS Genesis / Cerner in a wave deployment that covered locations in 12 states.
Life sciences communication solutions vendor OptimizeRx announces new partnerships that will expand its EHR reach within Epic, Cerner, and Athenahealth.
CloudWave and Ettain Health will partner to offer their combined IT infrastructure and consulting solutions, respectively.
Patient ID Now, whose coalition includes AHIMA, CHIME, and HIMSS, publishes a framework for a national strategy on patient identity.
Former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, MD says in a Wall Street Journal article that CDC needs to loosen its mask recommendations and gathering size limits now that US infection levels are dropping, the number of people who have either been vaccinated or recovered from COVID-19 is significant (in the 60% range), and warm weather has moved people outdoors where it’s safe. CDC announced new guidance immediately after the article ran in which fully vaccinated people don’t need to wear masks at small outdoor gatherings or when eating outside, although CDC still recommends wearing masks in crowded outdoor settings, such as concerts.
CDC reports that 54% of American adults have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose and 37% are fully vaccinated. However, the daily number of doses administered has dropped significantly since their April 1 peak of more than 4 million.
At least 40 health systems in the US have been impacted by last week’s cybersecurity breach at Swedish radiation software vendor Elekta.
A real estate journal says that HIMSS got a fantastic deal on new Chicago headquarters space because of pandemic-driven discounts and concessions, with its sublease from Gartner Research of 30,000 square feet that has never been occupied being one of the largest downtown.
A great YouTube music video randomly popped up my way as employees from LexisNexis Risk Solutions Group cover “Times Like These” in support of Hope and Homes for Children. It’s not a cheesy, poorly produced corporate gimmick — in my mind, this version is musically and visually better than the Foo Fighters original from nearly 20 years ago or the chart-topping, all-star version that supported COVID-19 charities from April 2020. The video appropriately ends with the message, “In loving memory of those we have lost from COVID-19. May their love, laughter, memories, and music play on in our hearts forever.”
- Cerner releases a new podcast, “Cerner Health Forum ’21 preview – A healthier bottom line.”
- Diameter Health co-founder and CEO Eric Rosow wins a 2021 Connecticut Entrepreneur Award in the Entrepreneur (Scaling Company) category.
- Consulting Magazine recognizes Divurgent Chief Strategy Officer and EVP of Consulting and Innovation Sam Hanna as a global leader of consulting in the excellence in innovation category.
- Securance Consulting recognizes Engage as a Meditech hosting “Best Practice” consulting firm, and awards it an overall five-star rating for the sixth consecutive year.
- Wolters Kluwer Health adds Picmonic’s visual mnemonic lessons to its Lippincott® CoursePoint+ digital course solution for nursing education.
- CloudWave and Ettain Health partner to offer hospital customers bundled cloud solutions and consulting services.
- OptimizeRx announces new partnerships within Athenahealth, Cerner, and Epic networks, plus increased exposure to oncologists across the country.
- Baylor College of Medicine (TX) adds Sectra’s digital pathology module to its Sectra enterprise imaging system.
- How new legislation and policies impact SNF infection prevention and control (Ability Network)
- Even the Best Technologies Fail: The Value of Professional Services (Access)
- Flipping the script – Peer Learning in Enterprise Imaging (Agfa HealthCare)
- How COVID-19 shed light on the mobile technology needed in senior living (Ascom)
- Five Ways Independent Physicians Can Capture and Keep More Revenue (Ingenious Med)
- Streamlined Referrals and Better Patient Care with Technologies for Home Health (CarePort)
- Tom Kurtz’ CIO Perspective on The Future of Telehealth & Importance of Team Agility (CereCore)
- The Power of Adaptability (ConnectiveRx)
- One Year In: COVID-19 Impact on Prescriptions, Pharmacists & Providers (CoverMyMeds)