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Monday Morning Update 10/9/23

October 8, 2023 News 3 Comments

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The VA and 13 health systems pledge to share data to improve veteran healthcare via three objectives:

  • Accurately identify veterans when they seek care from community providers.
  • Connect veterans with resources that promote health and healthcare, especially with those VA services that lower their out-of-pocket expenses.
  • Coordinate care and exchange information about care requested and provided, regardless whether they are enrolled in VA health benefits.

Reader Comments

From Supplicant: “Re: health system announcement forthcoming. Don’t run this until you hear it from another source because it might out me.” Sorry to be vague in avoiding exposing the reader’s identity. If you’re privy to details of an upcoming health system’s product switch that I haven’t mentioned, which includes some interesting hosting choices, email me. I’ll keep everyone anonymous while making sure it’s not just easily identified insiders who know.

HIStalk Announcements and Requests


Poll respondents attribute different factors to the success of Epic. Some offered other choices:

  • A demonstrated, take-charge implementation process.
  • Software architecture that allows Epic to enhance and develop faster.
  • Trying to do the right thing, even in the absence of financial reward.
  • Connectivity among Epic sites.
  • Being led by a founder instead of flipping owners or going public.
  • Hiring smart people and motivating them to work hard for customers.
  • Being the safe choice for health system C-level executives.
  • Marketing in the “invite your friends” sort of way, like an exclusive club where clients want to connect to each other.

New poll to your right or here, featuring a question I ask every few years: Which annual conference would you attend if limited to one and paying your own way?

Topping my current list of annoying business terms: “unlock,” when vendors offer to sell the “key” to snatching some elusive business benefit if you just sign on the line which is dotted. Honorable mention goes to replacing the single-syllable and perfectly descriptive “use” with the bloviatory “utilize” or “leverage.” I’ll also nominate “currently” for superfluity – “I am currently working” adds nothing except three syllables to “I am working,” although maybe it’s an improvement over “at this point in time.”


October 25 (Wednesday) 2 ET. “AMA: The Power of Data Completeness.” Sponsor: Particle Health. Presenters: Jason Prestinario, MSME, CEO, Particle Health; Carolyn Ward, MD, director of clinical strategy, Particle Health. Is your healthcare organization looking to drive profitability and scale quickly? Our experts will explore how comprehensive clinical data can revolutionize the health tech landscape. This engaging discussion will cover trending topics such as leveraging AI and data innovation to enhance patient care and outcomes, real-world examples of organizations leading the charge in data-driven healthcare, overcoming challenges in data completeness and interoperability, and visionary perspectives on the future of care delivery.

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

Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock


Canada-based health IT solutions provider LGI Healthcare Solutions acquires healthcare automation solutions vendor Boston Software Systems. 

Virtual rheumatology provider Remission Medical will offer services through KeyCare and coordinating patient care with Epic-using health systems.

Investment firm SAIGroup funds and launches RhythmX AI, which analyzes longitudinal data to make recommendations to doctors.

Announcements and Implementations

Black Book announces the top-performing vendors among HIM users surveyed in the areas of computer-assisted coding, clinical documentation improvement, speech recognition, transcription, and outsourced coding services.

Government and Politics

Cigna will pay $172 million to settle False Claims Act charges that it assigned diagnosis coders review patient medical records to find additional billable codes after its Medicare Advantage plan had already been paid. The Department of Justice says Cigna hired third-party vendors to send nurse practitioners into member homes to find additional billing opportunities, but did not allow them to perform diagnostic tests to support their conclusions or to treat the conditions they supposedly found. DoJ says Cigna inappropriately assigned diagnosis codes for morbid obesity, congestive heart failure, chronic kidney disease, and other chronic conditions without supporting documentation and failed to refund taxpayer money when it was caught.

Doctors push back on CMS’s Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) as quality standards toughen as was originally designed, pushing more doctors into penalties rather than rewards.

Privacy and Security

Hackers claim to have acquired user data from the 23andMe genetic service and are selling it online. This data was accessed through the website’s feature that allows users to share information with potential DNA-matched relatives. The hacker alleges that CEO Anne Wojcicki was aware of the breach two months prior and chose not to disclose it, claiming that her family members were shorting company shares in anticipation of a stock price slide.



KFF Health News looks at Dollar General’s test of offering mobile healthcare services from the parking lots of its small-town stores. The company is partnering with New York-based DocGo, which is is being investigated by the New York attorney general after complaints about its treatment of asylum-seekers under a $432 million no-bid contract under which it providers housing and busing. DocGo CEO Anthony Capone resigned last month after a New York newspaper found that he lied about earning a graduate a degree in computational learning theory in pursuing a multi-billion dollar contract with US Customers and Border Protection. Publicly traded DocGo’s market cap is $623 million after shares dropped 44% in the past 12 months. I’m wondering if the van has a restroom for the nurse (and potentially patients) and how safe it is for a nurse to be sitting in the parking lot of stores whose headlines often involve OSHA fines and customer violence. I would not be comfortable welcoming some parking lot rando into the van for an exam.

Central Maine Medical Center settles a malpractice lawsuit that was brought by a patient who claimed that doctors ignored his elevated PSA results, allowing his prostate cancer to spread untreated. The lawsuit says that a computer system upgrade failed to import some lab results into the dashboard of the new system.

Stanford’s medical school dean says that AI will be medicine’s most important development since antibiotics, predicting that it will break down access barriers, improve quality and consistency, increase the efficiency and speed of clinical trials, and reduce rote memorization in medical education. He predicts that responsible AI deployment will create societal benefits and earn patient acceptance in 10 years.


California regulators find that Adventist Health Simi Valley’s administration of two doses of the blood thinner Lovenox within two hours probably caused the brain bleed death of an 81-year-old patient 18 hours later. The original Lovenox order was discontinued after one dose, causing it to disappear from the active profile and to be missed by a second doctor who ordered another dose. The orders were approved by separate pharmacies that didn’t communicate with each other, an Adventist corporate pharmacy and another that is local to the hospital.

The VA finds that a four-hour VistA downtime at the Kansas City VA was caused by a network technician’s keyboard-surfing cat, whose keystrokes deleted a server cluster configuration.

Sponsor Updates

  • Black Book’s survey of VC and tech investors reveals the top 50 rising stars in healthcare IT’s ecosystem of startups.
  • MRO will present and exhibit at AHIMA 2023 October 8-10 in Nashville.
  • Nordic releases a new Designing for Health Podcast, “Interview with Evan Heigert.”
  • Wolters Kluwer will add generative AI capabilities to UpToDate.

Blog Posts


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Currently there are "3 comments" on this Article:

  1. What, you don’t like it when companies focus on their core competencies, driving value to the bottom line, in their relentless drive to be world-class, with a customer-focused mission and a Best In Class attitude that will laser-focus on Mark to Market!

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  1. Honestly, I autocorrected "62 Ventures" as "62 Vultures", and I considered posting snark about same! Is that on me? Is…

  2. $20 million to improve behavioral HIT? That's like 1/7th of a typical Epic install in one hospital. Seems like symbolic…

  3. Regarding the Particle Health - Epic Carequality Drama - it's important to note that most existing national networks separate out…

  4. Re: Tullman/62 Ventures Given his track record for acquiring companies, bungling day-to-day operations and then somehow selling to an unwitting…

  5. Was not the struggle of Teladoc foreseeable with the acquisition of Livongo?

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