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July 13, 2021 News 4 Comments

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ONC releases USCDI v2, which provides interoperability standards for the optional exchange of social determinants of health, sexual orientation, and gender identity.  

Reader Comments

From Shoot the Messenger RNA: “Re: post-COVID hospitalization. This is interesting work using Epic Cosmos.” A study of 8.6 million vaccinated patients using Epic’s Cosmos customer data set finds that only 0.049% tested positive afterward and just 0.018% (1,600 people) were hospitalized for COVID-19 after being fully vaccinated. Also interesting is that the study was performed  as a Dual Team Study as defined by Epic Health Research Network, where two groups are assigned the same study, work independently, and then present their work only if their conclusions are the same. Another EHRN study I noticed while looking up the first one found that most adults didn’t experience a significant weight change during the pandemic, and nearly as many patients lost weight as gained weight. These types of studies have limitations, however – they cover only patients of Epic users and researchers can see only the information that resides in Epic. The first study must have determined vaccination status as reported by patients since many or most health system patients would not have received their vaccinations from a hospital, while the second study is limited by definition to patients who had an encounter in which their weight was captured. Just about all of our inferential research data sources are imperfect due to lack of data sharing, the presence of valuable information only in freetext form, and the unreliable proxy of using billing codes to infer clinical status and activities.

From Conference Confrere: “Re: HIMSS21. Will I wish I was leaving early if attendance or energy is down?” Maybe, which is why I booked a flight out Thursday night instead of Friday morning, limiting my time in Las Vegas to three nights. I left my hotel reservation for four nights, figuring that will allow me a more leisurely departure for my red-eye flight late Thursday. But I may find that I’ve seen everything interesting in the first couple of days and end up just hanging around. Meanwhile, Las Vegas and Clark County are experiencing a mini-outbreak of COVID-19, with 1,600 new cases over the weekend, an 11% test positivity rate, and the lagging indicator of hospital admissions going up. Nevada’s vaccination rate is under 50%, visitors from everywhere are packing casinos and restaurants unmasked and undistanced, and you’ll struggle to avoid potential exposure outside the HIMSS21 protective bubble if that even works. US cases are up 94% in the past two weeks.

From Pinhead: ”Re: company pins. I’m seeing a resurgence of those lapel adorners.” Me too, even though I never understood why people would so deeply identify with the faceless company that sends them paychecks that they would be bursting to tell the uninterested world. It is fascinating to me that people who claim to be fiercely independent free thinkers pigeonhole themselves publicly by wearing garb that provides free advertising for their favorite employer, political cause, or sports team, encouraging the world to ignore everything else about them. Mrs. HIStalk reminds me that people who ask “what do you do” are really asking “what’s your job, so I can stereotype you” so they can avoid considering you to be something more than your job, so I suppose wearing a company lapel pin makes the impersonality more efficient. 

HIStalk Announcements and Requests


Welcome to new HIStalk Platinum Sponsor Mach7 Technologies. The South Burlington, VT company’s philosophy is based on a simple premise: legacy radiology solutions were not designed to carry healthcare organizations into the future. From its first line of code, its solutions were designed to meet the imaging needs of the entire healthcare enterprise. Its data management, workflow, enterprise and diagnostic viewing, teleradiology, PACS, mammography, and other solutions are focused on integration, workflow, scalability, and performance to ensure that imaging data can be made available wherever it is needed. Mach7 is focused on the future of healthcare. It gives healthcare organizations unprecedented technology independence and flexibility to deploy its solutions according to their needs, whether in their individual components or unified into a comprehensive end-to-end enterprise imaging platform. Its solutions bridge an organization’s legacy solutions to meet the full spectrum of multi-disciplinary imaging needs, and position them to grow, adapt, and innovate. The company’s unique approach to enterprise imaging empowers healthcare organizations of all sizes to increase their efficiency, achieve profound operational cost savings, leverage their existing IT investments, improve the experience for patients and medical professionals, and support healthier outcomes. Stop by booth #4243 at HIMSS21 to learn more. Thanks to Mach7 Technologies for supporting HIStalk.

The Clear Health Pass app – required for attending HIMSS21 – is still showing “pending verification” of my COVID-19 vaccination card, which I had to submit as a photo since by provider wasn’t listed for a direct connection. Beats me whether it will get me into the conference.

I’m watching the slow but perhaps inevitable morphing of LinkedIn into Facebook (perhaps intentionally) as I’m getting force-fed more posts about politics, lame philosophical manifestos, sports, and personal and family bragging. I can always unfollow or mute someone, but I’m wondering if the folks who “like” one of those non-business posts or add a comment to them realize that the feeds of their connections are then polluted with unwanted junk?


July 28 (Wednesday) 1 ET. “Stop running from your problem (list): Strategies for streamlining the EHR’s front page.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Amanda Heidemann, MD, CMIO, CMIO Services LLC; James Thompson, MD, physician informaticist, IMO. How can clinicians mitigate the longstanding EHR problem list challenges of outdated or duplicative entries, rigid displays, and limited native EHR capabilities? The presenters will describe how to analyze current problems, create a problem list governance strategy, and measure improvement progress.

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

Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock


Recently formed Truveta, whose health system members sell their de-identified patient data to drug companies and providers, raises $95 million in a Series A funding round. The company announced new members Baylor Scott & White Health, MedStar Health, and Texas Health Resources.


Israel-based medical imaging AI vendor Aidoc raises $66 million in a Series C funding round.


Health IT services firm HCTec acquires managed IT solutions company Talon Healthy IT Services, which offers healthcare help desk services.


Healthcare analytics vendor VisiQuate raises a $50 million equity investment.

Harris acquires long-term and post-acute care software vendor ADL Data Systems, which it will combine with its Collain Healthcare LTPAC EHR business.  

CrossBridge, which offers technologies that address the cost and outcomes of treating patients who have chronic inflammatory diseases, acquires the PACER rheumatology disease management software from its developer Geisinger.


  • UNC Health will deploy the radiology module of Sectra’s enterprise imaging solution, integrated with Epic and replacing several legacy vendors.
  • Stamford Health will implement the Route solution of Appriss Health-owned PatientPing for sending ADT event notifications.



Olive promotes Rohan D’Souza to chief product officer.


Meditech officially confirms the months-ago promotion of President and COO Michelle O’Connor to president and CEO. She replaces Howard Messing, who remains on the company’s board.


Cerner SVP of Client Relationships Ben Hilmes, MHA joins Adventist Health as SVP / chief integration officer.


David Butler, MD (Calyx Partners) joins The Chartis Group as principal, informatics and technology.


Sonifi Health hires Mark Dyer (DaytoDay Health) as SVP of sales.


Leidos promotes James Perea, MBA to VP of VA health solutions.


Glytec promotes Jordan Messler, MD to chief medical officer.


Glenn Keet (Clinithink) joins Ciitizen as VP of HIE strategy.


Tegria promotes Justin Jozwik of its Bluetree Network business to managing director, international.


Riverside Healthcare (IL) hires Kirk Larson, MHSA, MBA (Rochester Regional Health) as VP/CIO.

Announcements and Implementations

Holy Name Medical Center’s ED goes live on Holy Name’s self-developed EHR, which is powered by Medicomp’s Quippe Clinical Data Engine. They will demonstrate the system at HIMSS21.

HealthShare Exchange and Audacious Inquiry extend the ENShare encounter notification service outside the HSX network in the Philadelphia area.

Patient transport software vendor Cheyenne Mountain Software renames itself to Motient.


KLAS’s first report on healthcare’s use of public cloud providers covers Amazon Web Services, with 11 responding organizations saying that AWS has saved them time and/or money. Respondents say that AWS offers strong product quality and development, but less-effective service and support, mostly waiting for customers to proactively engage rather than reaching out to them. Click the graphic above to see KLAS’s nicely done framework for healthcare cloud solutions. Future reports will address Google Cloud Platform and Microsoft Azure.  


Stat covers the sharp drop in telehealth visits as state emergency declarations expire and insurers phase out coverage. The article notes that as doctors are once again being prohibited from conducting virtual visits for patients who are located in states where they aren’t licensed, some of the doctors are asking their patients participate in a virtual visit by driving across the state line to the first available retail store parking lot. Providers favor a telemedicine-only national license that would allow doctors to care for established patients regardless of that patient’s location.


Hospitals sue the manufacturer of the Da Vinci surgical robot for forcing them to purchase maintenance services and replacement parts at inflated prices that generate the bulk of Intuitive Surgical’s $4 billion in annual revenue. Company engineers have threatened hospitals that they will turn their expensive machines into “paperweights” if they buy parts or services from competitors, while one hospital says the company remotely shut down a machine in the middle of a surgery upon hearing that the hospital was talking to a third party about a service contract. Intuitive Surgical’s market cap is $113 billion despite a lack of evidence that machine-assisted surgeries deliver better outcomes. Axios reporter Bob Herman notes that the lawsuit is “one monopoly fighting another.”

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Currently there are "4 comments" on this Article:

  1. Regarding the Epic vaccine study – vaccines that have been reported to state vaccination registries would be able to be Care Everywhere’d into the chart and likely would have been at the start of the patient’s next contact with that health system. My own MyChart shows vaccines that I did not receive at that health system, and I was never asked specifically about those dates.

    Is the clinic to state registry to health system chain infallible? No, but it’s probably quite a bit more reliable than relying on patient self reporting.

  2. Re. LinkedIn becoming Facebook

    I don’t mind posts about major life milestones; births, deaths, even marriages, but I don’t need or want to know every time your grade-school kid is doing a fundraiser, or that you love your partner, or that you’ve been sick. (I have one connection who posts every time they’re ill and says “Thank god for doctors!”, which, yes, but, sort of a given. I don’t need to see a sniffley face.)

    I use LI to see where people are working today, where they worked previously, and where they went to school (maybe using the years to deduce how old they may be). That’s about it. I used to enjoy the recommendations but those seem to have fallen out of favor in the past few years. I’ll throw a few likes out to the top 3-4 posts while I’m scrolling through the feed once or twice a month but that’s about it. Despite companies encouraging their employees to repost blogs and articles on their personal LinkedIns it always seems to be akin to shouting into a void.

  3. RE: “Mrs. HIStalk reminds me that people who ask “what do you do” are really asking “what’s your job, so I can stereotype you” so they can avoid considering you to be something more than your job”
    Pretty cynical. I struggle to make small talk with strangers and routinely ask about work just so I can find something to talk about to propel the conversation forward. If someone asks what you do, you can always answer briefly/vaguely, then pivot the conversation to something you find more interesting. Poor conversationalists like me would welcome that.

  4. Re: “…wearing garb that provides free advertising for their favorite employer, political cause, or sports team, encouraging the world to ignore everything else about them.”

    Missing the point, IMO.

    I frequently wear pins nowadays. I’ll wear old festival pins, pins from unions I used to belong to (or not), town pins, conference pins, you name it! I’ve even got a pin that’s from the old Soviet (now Ukrainian) aircraft maker Antonov, commemorating a specific aircraft they made. All that matters is that the subject matter is interesting and/or that the styling is appealing. The latter is what keeps me wearing them years later.

    Pins are an adornment that a man can wear. They never attract the wrong type of attention, and mostly go un-commented on.

    You’d have to be awfully shallow to think a pin meant more than a short-term cause or a small part of a person’s life. Know what you can place more symbolic importance on? Any religious symbolism, that a person always wears.

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