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News 8/18/23

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Patient intake software vendor Phreesia acquires Access EForms, which specializes in electronic forms management and automation.


August 24 (Thursday) 2 ET. “RCM analytics in action: How to use your data to drive decisions + revenue.” Sponsor: Waystar. Presenter: Laura Tungate, solution strategist team lead, Waystar. This webinar will describe how to use RCM analytics to take control of your data even if you use outdated or multiple tools. Attendees will learn how to target improvements, describe the KPIs that are key to revenue cycle leaders, prioritize dashboards that spotlight organizational goals and build alignment, and how and when to apply RCM analytics to go from analysis to action faster.

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

Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

Smart virtual assistant and workflow automation vendor Orbita acquires the assets of Wellbe, which offers patient journey automation software.

Babylon files Chapter 7 liquidation bankruptcy in the US, with the COO noting in filings that the company has no money available to pay unsecured creditors. The company, whose market cap peaked at $8 billion shortly after going public via a SPAC merger in 2021, lost $221 million on revenue of $1.1 billion in 2022.


Musculoskeletal health measurement technology vendor Figur8 raises $25 million in a Series A funding round. The company began as a sports medicine technology project of MIT, Mass General, and the Boston Red Sox.

Oregon Health & Science University announces its intention to acquire Legacy Health, creating a 10-hospital, 32,000-employee system in the Pacific Northwest.  

Blue Shield of California will replace its pharmacy provider CVS Health with Amazon, Mark Cuban Cost Plus Drugs, and other companies, sending shares of pharmacy benefit manager owners CVS, Cigna, and UnitedHealth Group down.



Colleen Watson (FinThrive) joins Divurgent as VP of sales management and operations.

Announcements and Implementations


Vanderbilt University Medical Center pilots a virtual nurse program in which dedicated virtual nurses will initially focus on created admitting and discharge documentation.

Abridge, whose app turns doctor-patient conversations into transcripts and visit summaries, becomes the first member of Epic’s Partners and Pals integration program.

Ellkay announces LKOasis, an enterprise-wide data management platform that expands its LKArchive data archive.

Government and Politics

A new Florida law requires Medicaid-accepting hospitals to add an admission form item asking patients if they are a US citizen or lawful visitor and to submit their aggregated information to the state quarterly. Florida is the only state with that requirement.


The Department of Defense and the VA work together to solve IT integration problems at Chicago’s Captain James A. Lovell Federal Health Care Center, the only facility that serves both DoD and VA patients. Health center employees have struggled with file sharing, printing, and collaborating using Microsoft Teams, problems that the organizations hope to resolve by the end of the year.



Bondholders of Mercy Iowa City ask a judge to investigate the hospital’s bankruptcy, its acceptance of what critics call a lowball University of Iowa offer to buy it for $20 million, and rumors that UI wants the hospital only to convert it to a behavioral health facility. The bondholders also want an examiner to review the hospital’s EHR migration to Allscripts Sunrise in 2021, which they call an “inferior platform” that caused the hospital to lose millions of dollars.

The American Medical Association examines the myth that all electronic prescriptions require two-factor authentication. It notes that the DEA requires two-factor authentication only when prescribing controlled substances and that Ohio has eliminated previous requirements for non-controlled outpatient orders. AMA recommends checking with the state medical society or board of pharmacy, noting that Cleveland Clinic alone saves 12,000 physician hours per year after AMA worked with Epic to notify Ohio CMIOs.


Non-profit CommonSpirit Health paid its CEO $35 million in its tax year ending in June 2022, as called out by Stat. The company’s federal filings indicate that the organization, which was formed with the 2019 merger of Catholic Health Initiatives and Dignity Health, paid 36 executives more than $1 million that year, including $3 million to its chief information and digital officer. Among its top paid contractors are Conifer Health Solutions ($574 million) and HCL Technologies ($26 million). Two of its executives are lobbyists, one of whom was paid $2.4 million.


The future of Amazon’s Alexa devices is questioned as its top executive leaves the company amidst poor consumer adoption, a shift of interest to ChatGPT, and reported losses by the unit of $5 billion per year with little progress toward the intended goal of boosting Amazon’s overall sales. Bloomberg’s commentary:

For most, Alexa became little more than an overly-sophisticated kitchen timer, or a decent-enough smart speaker for those who were not audiophiles. Amazon’s attempts to remind consumers of different “skills” Alexa had became intrusive and irritating. Developers, initially intrigued by the possibilities of a voice-first platform, came and went when they realized engagement was low. Ambitions of Alexa within cars made way for the more full-featured offerings from Apple’s Car Play and Google’s Android Auto. And then ChatGPT arrived. In the space of a few weeks — maybe even days — ChatGPT wowed more consumers with its intelligence than Alexa has managed in its entire lifetime.

Sponsor Updates

  • Findhelp publishes a new case study, “Enhancing Social Care Coordination: How findhelp Partners with 211 & United Way.”
  • Healthcare Triangle publishes a new whitepaper, “The Future of Healthcare Infrastructure: An In-Depth Look at the Infrastructure as a Code (IaaC) Landscape.”
  • Black Book Market Research behavioral health survey-takers recognize Netsmart for its top-performing technology solutions and services.
  • Lucem Health releases a new This Week in Health Podcast.
  • Nordic posts a new episode of DocTalk titled “The future of health through widespread precision medicine.”

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