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Morning Headlines 3/29/19

March 28, 2019 Headlines No Comments

Teladoc Health Launches Telemedicine Service in Canada, Expanding Portfolio of Available Healthcare Solutions

Teladoc Health will launch its services in Canada.

FDA Chief Calls For Release Of All Data Tracking Problems With Medical Devices

Departing FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, MD says the agency will make good on its promise to release thousands of patient safety reports.

Hackers attempt to access Northampton General Hospital computers 240 times a day

Officials at Northampton General Hospital in England say they are fending off 240 data-breach attempts a day, and worry that the problem will only escalate as NHS facilities become paperless.

Morning Headlines 3/28/19

March 27, 2019 Headlines No Comments

Artificial Intelligence (AI) Health Outcomes Challenge

CMS announces the AI Health Outcomes Challenge, which will award up to $1.65 million to winners who develop AI-powered technologies that can predict unplanned hospital and SNF admissions, and adverse events.

Health care leaders back Xealth with Series A funding to digitally enable patient care

Digital prescription startup Xealth raises $11 million in a funding round led by McKesson Ventures, Novartis, Philips, and ResMed.

Sutter Health, Suki Introduce Digital Voice Assistant to Support Patient Care

Sutter Health (CA) will pilot an AI-enabled digital voice assistant developed by Suki in primary care, dermatology, and orthopedics.

Centene to Buy WellCare in $17.3 Billion Health-Care Deal

Public and private payer Centene acquires WellCare Health Plans for $17 billion.

Alphabet-backed Clover Health is cutting tech jobs after realizing it needs more health-care experts

Medicare Advantage payer Clover Health lays off 140 employees as part of a restructuring that will help it focus more on healthcare rather than software expertise. 

Morning Headlines 3/27/19

March 26, 2019 Headlines No Comments

The end for Obamacare? Trump administration says it will ask a court to throw out entire health law

The Justice Department won’t dispute a federal court’s decision that the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional and should therefore be eliminated in its entirety.

Philips expands its radiology solutions offering with advanced teleradiology services

Philips acquires teleradiology practice Direct Radiology, whose 70 radiologists provide services to 300 hospitals, imaging centers, and practices.

‘Desperate’ risk delayed electronic medical record, meeting minutes show

Australia’s Queensland Health was so desperate to prove the financial viability of its Cerner-powered IEMR that it planned to go live at Princess Alexandra Hospital in mid-2015 even though the project was in “cannot meet objectives” status.

Alexander Says New HHS Rules Should Improve Electronic Health Records To Give Patients Better Outcomes, Better Experiences At A Lower Cost

HELP committee chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) says HHS’s proposed interoperability rules will provide a definition of information blocking, require insurers to give patients copies of their data, mandate that EHRs support API access, and require hospitals to send ADT notifications to a patient’s doctors.

Morning Headlines 3/26/19

March 25, 2019 Headlines No Comments

Judge dismisses final worker wage lawsuit against Epic Systems

A federal judge dismisses the last pending lawsuit brought by employees against Epic, finding that the 2016 suit of a group of quality assurance workers was too similar to that ruled on by the US Supreme Court last year.

Apple could combine its expertise in health and fintech to get into medical billing, experts say

Industry insiders speculate that Apple’s new credit card, combined with its Apple Pay service, could signal a pending foray into medical billing.

UA Physician and iTether Create App for Pregnant Women, New Moms, with Opioid Addiction

The University of Arizona College of Medicine is working with ITether Technologies to revamp its digital care management software for substance use disorder patients to better fit the needs of pregnant women and new moms.

Patient data exposed at 2 Toronto hospitals, privacy commissioner investigating

An anonymous computer programmer accidentally discovers the PHI of over 200 hospital patients in Toronto after intercepting unencrypted pager messages.

Morning Headlines 3/25/19

March 24, 2019 Headlines No Comments

FDA Chief Calls For Stricter Scrutiny Of Electronic Health Records

Departing FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb says FDA oversight of EHRs would be appropriate “when they’re doing things that could create risk for patients” in turning into a medical device.

Healthcare Analytics Leaders Clinigence and QualMetrix Merge to Accelerate Value-Based Care and Population Health Management

Population health analytics company QualMetrix becomes a subsidiary of quality reporting software vendor Clinigence.

Wolters Kluwer provides NASA astronauts in outer space access to UpToDate clinical decision support resource

Wolters Kluwer is providing International Space Station astronauts with access to its UpToDate medical information resource.

UCLA Health System Settlement

UCLA Health System (CA) will spend $5.5 million on cybersecurity defense as part of a proposed settlement stemming from a 2015 data breach that left patient data exposed for nearly a year.

Morning Headlines 3/22/19

March 21, 2019 Headlines No Comments

BESLER Completes Acquisition of Essential Consulting LLC, a Leader in Hospital Reimbursement Services and Supporting Technology

Hospital RCM company Besler acquires competitor Essential Consulting for an undisclosed amount.

Family’s letter to Providence St. Mary leads to new telemedicine program for critically ill children

A family’s suggestion and donation leads Providence St. Mary (WA) to pilot telemedicine capabilities that enable its providers to consult with neonatologists and pediatric intensivists in Spokane.

750,000 Medtronic defibrillators vulnerable to hacking

Homeland Security alerts consumers to vulnerabilities in 16 types of Medtronic implantable defibrillators that would allow a hacker to access or modify the device’s data, and change device settings.

Morning Headlines 3/21/19

March 20, 2019 Headlines No Comments

CMS Awards IMPAQ Contract to Support Patient Safety Measure Development and Maintenance

Impaq International signs a five-year, multimillion dollar contract with CMS for the development, implementation, and maintenance of patient safety measures used in the the Hospital Inpatient Quality Reporting program, Hospital-Acquired Condition Reduction program, and the Promoting Interoperability program.

ZOLL Reports Recent Data Security Incident

Critical care device and software company Zoll notifies customers and patients of a data breach that occurred when a third-party vendor left emails exposed during a server migration late last year.

SA Health upgrades to latest version of Allscripts EMR

SA Health in Australia upgrades its Allscripts Sunrise software after a report found numerous problems with the health system’s EHR and patient administration project.

Morning Headlines 3/20/19

March 19, 2019 Headlines No Comments

Primus Capital Provides Growth Investment in Harmony Healthcare IT

Health data archiving company Harmony Healthcare IT secures an unspecified amount of funding from Primus Capital.

Unite Us Raises $35 Million to Bridge the Gap Between Health and Social Care

Healthcare and social services coordination software vendor Unite Us raises $35 million in a Series B funding round.

Teladoc Health to Expand Global Reach with Acquisition of MédecinDirect

Teladoc acquires French telemedicine company MédecinDirect.

Morning Headlines 3/19/19

March 18, 2019 Headlines No Comments

Malfunctioning billing system leaves scars on Glens Falls Hospital

Glenn Falls Hospital (NY) reaches a confidential settlement with Cerner after a $38 million loss attributed to its faulty billing system.

Beware the hype over the Apple Watch heart app. The device could do more harm than good

STAT points out that the highly-publicized results of an Apple Heart Study on a-fib detection conducted by Stanford University should be taken with a grain of salt, given that it was an observational study without a control group of non-Apple Watch users.

The messy, cautionary tale of how Babylon disrupted the NHS

Babylon’s GP at Hand telemedicine clinic in London offers NHS patients a tech-friendly alternative to traditional clinics, but is placing an unexpectedly burdensome strain on local resources and staff.

$1 billion Sequoia-backed Health Catalyst has picked lead banks for its IPO

Sources report that Health Catalyst has selected Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan to handle its IPO.

VA’s Private Care Program Headed for Tech Trouble, Review Finds

A US Digital Service review finds that private-care eligibility software developed by AbleVets on behalf of the VA should be scrapped due to numerous flaws resulting from a rushed development timeline.

Morning Headlines 3/18/19

March 17, 2019 Headlines No Comments

Change Healthcare on deck for IPO

Change Healthcare, valued at up to $12 billion, files IPO documents for a $100 million IPO.

Signify Health acquires start-up TAV Health in multimillion-dollar deal

Mobile health evaluation company Signify Health acquires TAV Health, which offers a platform to connect community and health partners to address social determinants of health.

Doctors Create an iPad Program to Help NICU Babies Get Home Faster

Doctors at University of Virginia Children’s Hospital develop an IPad-based system that allows NICU babies to go home earlier, replacing a pen-and-paper and call-in system for parents to report their baby’s feedings and weight.

A huge trove of medical records and prescriptions found exposed

EHR vendor Meditab leaves a server unsecured for nearly a year, giving anyone the ability to read the content of medical faxes in real time.

Morning Headlines 3/15/19

March 14, 2019 Headlines No Comments

More than 72,000 possibly affected by hospital data breach

Rutland Regional Medical Center (VT) notifies 72,000 patients of a breach after discovering that the email accounts of nine employees had been hacked late last year.

Aldrich Capital Partners Invests in eHealth Technologies

Medical record retrieval and image-sharing company EHealth Technologies secures $41 million in financing.

Theranos employees struggle to put scandal behind them

As HBO’s Theranos documentary gets set to air, former Theranos employees recount the ways in which their time at the company has stigmatized them and severely curtailed their career trajectories.

Morning Headlines 3/14/19

March 13, 2019 Headlines No Comments

TriNetX Secures $40 Million in Series D Funding

Analytics-enabled global health research network TriNetX raises $40 million in a financing round led by Merck Global Health Innovation Fund.

ImagineSoftware Acquires RCM Software Company ProviderAlly

Medical billing company ImagineSoftware acquires healthcare payment automation and analytics vendor ProviderAlly.

Mental health providers, others ask for delay to electronic health record requirement

Citing high EHR costs and lack of selection, behavioral health providers in North Carolina are pushing for more time to connect to the statewide HIE ahead of the mandated June 1 deadline.

Morning Headlines 3/13/19

March 12, 2019 Headlines No Comments

Mach7 Announces Restructuring to Accelerate Sales and Achieve Cash-flow Break Even

Australian imaging software vendor Mach7 fires its CEO and eliminates the CTO role as part of a restructuring and cost-cutting program that it hopes will propel its US growth.

NIH cancer chief to serve as acting FDA commissioner

National Cancer Institute Director Ned Sharpless, MD will take over as acting FDA commissioner once Scott Gottlieb, MD departs next month.

Apple’s Likely Healthcare Roadmap

An investment analyst thinks Apple will expand the Watch’s medical sensors and then sell the data of wearers to their doctors for $10 per patient per month.

2019 Top 10 Patient Safety Concerns

Warnings against relying solely on EHR information for diagnostic stewardship and test result management, managing patient expectations around antibiotics, and physician burnout awareness and review top ECRI Institute’s annual list of patient safety recommendations.

Morning Headlines 3/12/19

March 11, 2019 Headlines No Comments

Hill-Rom to acquire Voalte, Inc.

Hill-Rom will acquire Voalte for $180 million and integrate it into its care communications business.

House Veterans Affairs is Having Trouble Hiring Tech Experts

House Veterans Affairs Committee Chairman Mark Takano (D-CA) tells SXSW attendees that the VA is having trouble finding and retaining technology talent for its EHR modernization effort, citing the difficulty of finding candidates with the right mix of health IT experience and policy know-how with salary expectations that fit the VA’s budget.

Aetna Heads A $25 Million Investment Round Into MAP Health Management

Addiction recovery tech company Map Health Management raises $25 million in a Series A round led by Aetna.

Morning Headlines 3/11/19

March 10, 2019 Headlines No Comments

Hidden FDA Reports Detail Harm Caused By Scores Of Medical Devices

FDA has given surgical stapler manufacturers an exemption from publicly reporting problems to its MAUDE database of medical device failures, allowing them to hide widespread problems.

Spokane’s Columbia Surgical Specialists paid nearly $15,000 in a ransomware attack that compromised patient data

Columbia Surgical Specialists (WA) pays $15,000 to regain access to its data following a ransomware attack.

Doctor tells patient he doesn’t have long to live through hospital robot’s video screen

Kaiser Permanente apologizes for one of its doctors telling a 79-year-old inpatient that he was dying via a telemedicine robot.

VA and DOD set to pick health data decider

DoD and VA officials expect to have a lead for their joint EHR efforts named within the next two weeks.

Morning Headlines 3/8/19

March 7, 2019 Headlines No Comments

Digital-Health Startup Livongo Eyes 2019 IPO

Chronic disease management-focused digital health company Livongo hires underwriters to prepare a Q3 IPO that’s expected to bring in $1 billion.

Carestream Health To Sell its Healthcare IT Business To Philips

Philips acquires Carestream Health’s imaging IT business for an unspecified amount.

Audit: Bad billing system costs Glens Falls Hospital $38 million in revenue

Auditors blame a 2017 implementation of Cerner’s billing system for the $38 million revenue loss of Glen Falls Hospital in New York.

Dozens Of Northwestern Hospital Workers May Have Been Fired For Improperly Reviewing Jussie Smollett’s Records

Northwestern Memorial Hospital fires dozens of employees for looking at the EHR records of actor Jussie Smollett, who was treated in its ED following his claim of being attacked in a racially motivated incident.

Morning Headlines 3/7/19

March 6, 2019 Headlines No Comments

Health records giant Epic temporarily halts additions to its app store because of privacy concerns

Epic confirms it stopped accepting new apps into its App Orchard last December while it reviewed the security and privacy policies of some third-party developers. We reported and confirmed this with Epic on February 18.

VA to Pilot Health Records System in March 2020

The VA will begin piloting its new Cerner EHR next year at three facilities in the Pacific Northwest.

Amazon-JPMorgan-Berkshire Health-Care Venture to Be Called Haven

Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JPMorgan announce via a new website that their year-old healthcare venture will be called Haven.

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Reader Comments

  • Ok Boomer: 👆...
  • meltoots: If Cerner received top marks for IT hospital support, then I cannot imagine how bad it really is out there. Cerner IT su...
  • TH: Everything you said in that comment is true... And it's still a voluntary choice people make. It may be the case th...
  • Fellow Ex-Epic: Echoing this sentiment. Epic threw away the goodwill they accrued from the years I helped them improve healthcare, and f...
  • Why not?: It's not about not wanting them to eventually end up at a customer. The understanding is that it's there to deter poachi...
  • Ex-Epic Chiming In: In the case of Epic, you're now limited not only by your own non-compete, but the separate agreements that Epic has made...
  • HISJunkie: Forgive me I have too say it...but: "I told you so", right here on HISTalk when they first went public...
  • Frank Poggio: Non-compete, Why would a vendor NOT want an employee to go to work for a customer/client?? Decades ago when I worked fo...
  • Collin: great interview! for anyone who's interested in seeing more about the "clever dog trick syndrome" mentioned here, I foun...
  • Associate CIO: Regarding your statement "I echo the sentiment that these are agreements which people voluntarily enter into and agreein...

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