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News 10/22/21

October 21, 2021 News No Comments

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Vanderbilt University Medical Center finds that immediately releasing lab results to the patient portal, as required by the Cures Act, was associated with a doubling of the number of patient-to-clinician messages that were sent immediately afterward.

The percentage of patients that saw their results before their provider had reviewed them jumped from 10% to 40%.

The report didn’t investigate whether patient questions about their results drove the increased messaging.

VUMC delayed release of results to patients based on test sensitivity and complexity until January 2021, which it met Cures Act requirements.

The authors question whether the unintended consequences of immediately sending results to patients, such as patient wellbeing and clinician workload, outweigh the benefits. 


Reader Comments

From Dolla Bill: “Re: executive compensation. Obscene and pointless – you can only spend so much.” Business ambition is another ultimately pointless diversion in the continuum of birth to death since we all know that hearses don’t pull U-Hauls. We all strive in our own ways to earn “gone, but not forgotten” status even though the legacy we create – other than our children – usually fades away after one generation no matter what we leave behind.

From Periodically Panned: “Re: new health IT publications. Seen these? New HDM and something from Modern Healthcare.” Health Data Management has been resurrected as part of a South Carolina non-profit health collaborative, while Modern Healthcare owner Crain Communications has announced a “digital media brand” that rolls up some databases it bought via an acquisition this summer. I didn’t see anything on either website that hasn’t been amply covered elsewhere and most of their content would have been irrelevant to me personally, but it’s the opinion of a potential audience rather than mine that counts.

From HLTH on Wheels: “Re: HLTH21. What have readers said about the conference compared to HIMSS?” I haven’t heard from anyone who attended, but I’m interested as well, especially with regard to sponsors and the exhibit hall since those are what make or break a conference. Most of the social media comments I saw were from folks who focused on socializing or attending celebrity panel discussions for which in-person attendance seems to add little value over virtual viewing. Perhaps academically focused attendees could research the validity of the oft-repeated conference-goer claim that the networking alone makes in-person attendance worth it (they don’t usually add “to my employer, who is paying the cost.”)

From Rx Wrangler: “Re: Walmart and Surescripts. I heard that incorrectly barcoded medications caused medication reconciliation errors this past weekend, similar to incidents from 2014 in which special characters in a drug database caused prescriptions to be listed incorrectly. Have you heard anything?” I haven’t, but reports are welcome.

From Cricket: “Re: high-cost patients. See this Twitter thread from Jay Parkinson, MD, MPH.” I like it. Jay postulates that nearly all VCs are seeking investments that address the 5% of Americans that consume 50% of healthcare costs, but the reality is that improving their situation won’t move the needle much on overall costs because those people in the 5% fall into three groups:

  • Those who are chronically sick whose situation can be improved with interventions. That might reduce overall cost 3% at best.
  • Those who have an unpredictable incident, such as an accident, who will go back to being low spenders the next year.
  • Those who are dying expensively. It’s easy to predict who they are, but there’s little ROI to intervene because the health system is geared to take advantage of heroic Western medicine by making huge profits from their final months.

Webinars

October 28 (Thursday) 1 ET. “A New Streamlined Approach to Documentation and Problem List Management in Cerner Millennium.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Deepak Pillai, MD, physician informaticist, IMO; David Arco, product manager, IMO; Nicole Douglas, senior product marketing manager, IMO. IMO and Cerner announce the launch of the IMO Core CSmart app, an in-workflow offering to improve clinical documentation and problem list management in Cerner Millennium. The presenters will review the challenges and bottlenecks of clinical documentation and problem list management, discuss how streamlined workflows within Cerner Millennium can reduce clinician HIT burden, and demonstrate how IMO Core CSmart can help clinicians document with ease and specificity, improve HCC coding, and make problem lists more relevant. Additional sessions will be offered on November 17 and December 1.

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


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

Hackensack Meridian Health becomes one of the first health systems to use Google Workspace and Chrome OS devices (3,000 Chromebooks and Chromeboxes running Citrix) across its clinical and business environment. The health system will also deploy Google Cloud’s AI/ML solutions for screening and disease detection.

AI Visualize sues Nuance and Mach7 Technologies, demanding royalties for what the company says is infringement on its image-sharing technology patents. AI Visualize has a minimal web presence and seems to employ mostly patent attorneys.

Venture funds operated by investment firm Carlyle invest $430 million to take a majority position in clinical trials management and analytics platform vendor Saama.

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Microsoft announces enhancements to Cloud for Healthcare:

  • Microsoft Forms has been integrated into Bookings so that schedulers can collecting patient information while scheduling virtual visits.
  • Microsoft Teams adds a Waiting Room so that virtual visit patients can receive messages and notifications providers can send from their queue view.
  • Providers using Cerner PowerChart can launch virtual visits from the patient portal or SMS with no patient app download required. Multi-participant virtual visits will also be supported.

Sales

  • In the UK, NHS Wales chooses Australia-based Citadel Health’s Evolution VLab software for pathology, replacing three separate systems that manage 35 million tests each year.
  • Blue Shield of California will move toward real-time provider payments using AI/ML tools from Google Cloud.
  • Pharmacy benefits management company Vivid Clear Rx chooses Banjo Health’s prior authorization management solution.

People

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Hospital medical equipment tracking system vendor Cohealo hires Tom Cady (Kareo) as SVP/COO.


Announcements and Implementations

An InterSystems-sponsored study finds that 80% of surveyed health system executives don’t trust the data they use to make decisions. Half of the respondents say that lack of data integration and interoperability is the biggest barrier to achieving their strategic data analytics priorities.

The Vaccine Credential Initiative and The Commons Project will hold a webinar next week on using SMART Health Cards as a digital vaccination certificate that includes well-known speakers such as Andy Slavitt, John Halamka, Micky Tripathi, and Aneesh Chopra, 


Government and Politics

A federal court rules that the insurer for HIMSS20 has to cover the organization’s settlement with exhibitors of the cancelled conference.

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The Department of Defense’s program to use smart watches and rings to predict COVID-19 infections ends, with its former program manager blaming DoD’s sluggish innovation processes. A team that included Philips Healthcare ported a previously developed algorithm that mined EHR data to predict illness to commercially available wearables as a “check engine light” indication that something unusual is happening. The program manager says the big problem was that DoD needs to categorize projects to determine which regulations apply (is it a weapon, a platform, or a system?) and it could not decide if the tool was a medical device.


Sponsor Updates

  • EVisit launches the Change Healthcare Podcast featuring co-founder and CEO Bret Larsen and co-founder and CTO Miles Romney.
  • The Surescripts White Coat Award recognizes a dozen healthcare leaders for improvements in e-prescription accuracy and patient safety.
  • Everbridge launches its Unlocking Resilience Podcast with an episode featuring William Shatner, “Resilience Makes the Leader.”
  • Vyne Medical publishes a podcast titled “Connecting with Today’s Consumer: A Closer Look into the State of Healthcare Consumerism.”
  • Jvion publishes a new whitepaper, “Smart Healthcare: The AI-Enabled Patient and Population Healthcare Journey.”
  • Lyniate names Shelley Wehmeyer (Cerner) director of product marketing.
  • Meditech congratulates customer Kingman Regional Medical Center (AZ) for on receiving Health Current’s 2021 Health IT Innovation Award.
  • Nuance will present at the CHIME Fall Forum October 27-30 in San Diego.

Blog Posts


Contacts

Mr. H, Lorre, Jenn, Dr. Jayne.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.

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News 10/20/21

October 19, 2021 News No Comments

Top News

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General Catalyst and Jefferson Health form an innovation partnership in which the health system will use technologies from the venture capital firm’s Health Assurance Network of companies.

GC’s Health Assurance Network portfolio includes Commure, Tendo, Transcarent, and Olive.

The announcement suggests that Jefferson will de-emphasize the “hundreds of technology solutions who are vying for a piece of the hospital system’s growing technology budget” and instead will give preference to the General Catalyst-backed vendors.

Retiring Jefferson Health CEO Stephen Klasko, MD, MBA co-wrote “Unhealthcare: A Health Assurance Manifesto” with General Catalyst managing partner and billionaire Hemant Taneja last year.


Reader Comments

From Yuma Dew: “Re: having a PCP who knows you. It seems more important that they know your data.” I agree that “knowing about me” is a lot more important and achievable than “knowing me.” One of the most important clinician functions should be contributing and consuming patient data across providers, even though patients have low expectations and payers don’t seem to care. Thoughts:

  • My direct primary care doctor “knows me” because of the nature of that kind of relationship, but I doubt that has much impact on my health. She still documents the elements she needs to remember.
  • I don’t have records from other providers to review, but if I did, I should expect (and prepare to be disappointed) that they will be available if needed.
  • The provider should review my documentation before my visit, whether in-person or virtual, so they aren’t wasting our limited time together. Taking a 10-second glance at a printout before knocking on the exam room door is not ideal.
  • EHRs aren’t always ideal at allowing providers to tag those parts of a patient’s record that they find especially important or relevant.
  • The provider should document whatever is important to both of us even if it is in narrative form. My perception of symptoms her to-do items for down the road are as important as recording conveniently numeric lab or vital signs data. For that reason, Microsoft Word with speech-to-text might be a better documentation platform than an EHR if it didn’t have to generate bills.
  • We should all choose providers who value our data, maintain it rigorously, and share it with us so we can verify its accuracy and understand their thought process. That data should paint a concise picture for another provider who receives our records via interoperability.
  • Every provider who is being paid to work on the patient’s behalf — specialist, telehealth, therapist, pharmacy, urgent care, etc. — should be held accountable for documenting their work into the patient’s “permanent record” that at this stage of interoperability is mostly a pipe dream. By definition, they are documenting what is important to them, so that same information would likely be important to other providers and thus to the patient. Why should we expect less?

Webinars

October 28 (Thursday) 1 ET. “A New Streamlined Approach to Documentation and Problem List Management in Cerner Millennium.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Deepak Pillai, MD, physician informaticist, IMO; David Arco, product manager, IMO; Nicole Douglas, senior product marketing manager, IMO. IMO and Cerner announce the launch of the IMO Core CSmart app, an in-workflow offering to improve clinical documentation and problem list management in Cerner Millennium. The presenters will review the challenges and bottlenecks of clinical documentation and problem list management, discuss how streamlined workflows within Cerner Millennium can reduce clinician HIT burden, and demonstrate how IMO Core CSmart can help clinicians document with ease and specificity, improve HCC coding, and make problem lists more relevant. Additional sessions will be offered on November 17 and December 1.

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


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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Israel-based Navina, whose AI model turns point-of-care data into a “Patient Portrait” for PCPs, raises $15 million in a Series A funding round. The co-founders worked in Israel’s military intelligence AI labs.

Privacy-enforcing data sharing platform vendor TripleBlind raises $24 million in a Series A funding round that includes the participation of Mayo Clinic.

Trinity Health (MI) invests $1 million in digital prescription referral vendor Xealth, increasing its Series B funding round to $25 million.

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Redi.Health raises $1.3 million in seed funding to develop technologies and services for chronic disease management. Offerings currently include a patient-facing app with medication management, symptom tracker, educational content, and PHR. The startup offers pharma support companies the ability to integrate their services with the app. Co-founder and CEO Luke Buchanan was previously with CoverMyMeds, as was co-founder and Head of Business Development Nate Rehm.

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Insiteflow raises $2.3 million. The company has developed integration software to enhance the interoperability between third-party apps and EHRs.

Health insurer software vendor HealthEdge will acquire Wellframe, which offers digital health management solutions for health plans.


Sales

  • UnityPoint Health (IA) will work with B.well Connected Health to offer patients access to all of its digital health tools in a single app.

People

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Fivos hires Susan Andrise (Global Payments) as CFO.

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Availity names former US Navy SEAL Jim McNary (Consortium Health Plans) COO.

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Remote patient monitoring platform vendor Veta Health hires James Sutcliffe (DayToDay Health) as CEO.


Announcements and Implementations

InnovaQor subsidiary Health Technology Solutions announces GA of virtual CIO services focused on IT infrastructure security and management.

Grand Rounds Health and Doctor on Demand rebrand as Included Health, the name of the healthcare navigation and care concierge vendor the merged companies acquired several months ago.


Other

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A CHIME survey of member CISOs finds that nearly 50% have experienced a phishing email or compromising business email at their organizations within the last year, while nearly 30% have suffered through an EHR or system outage. Fifteen percent have experienced a patient safety incident related to a cyber event, and 10% have had to divert patients as a result. Top areas of needed cybersecurity assistance include grants and federal assistance, and on-site guidance and expertise from cybersecurity experts associated with regional extension centers.


Sponsor Updates

  • Change Healthcare releases a new podcast, “Cost Transparency: Driving Better, More Informed Care Decisions.”
  • CHIME releases a new Digital Health Leaders Podcast featuring John Kravitz, chairman of the CHIME Board of Trustees and CIO of Geisinger Health, and Marc Potash, founder and CEO of Certify Global.
  • Clearwater Chief Risk Officer and SVP of Consulting Services Jon Moore will present at The Healthcare MSO Conference October 22 in
  • Dimensional Insight announces it has been named a top performer in KLAS Research’s “Data and Analytics Platforms 2021” report.
  • Tegria publishes a new case study featuring Engage, “EHR Implementation Project Transcends Multiple Natural Disasters.”
  • EZDI will exhibit at the ACDIS Conference October 25-28 in Dallas.
  • Healthcare Triangle advances to Google Cloud Premier Partner status based on its success in building, deploying, and managing Google Cloud solutions for healthcare and life sciences organizations

Blog Posts


Contacts

Mr. H, Lorre, Jenn, Dr. Jayne.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.

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Monday Morning Update 10/18/21

October 17, 2021 News No Comments

Top News

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Transcarent will offer Walmart’s pharmacy services to its self-insured employer customers.


Reader Comments

From Slattery: “Re: digital health. Are prescription delivery services really digital health companies or technology disruptors?” Startup folks have been motivated by investors to declare that just about any healthcare business that has a website and app is “digital,” hoping to be anointed as the next high-valuation Facebook or Salesforce. Examples: mail order pharmacies, Medicare Advantage insurers, vanity prescription drug companies, weight loss companies, primary care chains that have developed a basic app, online counseling services, and fitness tracker manufacturers. Health IT websites and publications gush over their latest funding rounds and acquisitions without asking questions such as, (a) are they really doing anything new? (b) can they can improve outcomes or cost? (c) does their incidental use of technology really make them a tech company that can scale with low overhead? and, (d) do they offer a sustainable competitive advantage with a high barrier to entry over the companies that are already serving their potential customers? I also look hard at who is paying for their services and whether those buyers are likely to continue doing so given that companies live or die by recurring revenue that must be predictably extracted from fickle markets. There’s also the telehealth-highlighted tension between giving consumers what they want versus what the science says is best for them in a a transactional environment where they won’t likely see the patient again anyway. Healthcare is different because it’s horrendously expensive, notoriously consumer-indifferent, and loaded with bureaucratic paper-pushers, but odds are slim that a couple of kids and their slick app will take money away from the incumbents. Maybe worst of all is that companies will profit by catering to the most financially capable users while not only failing to make the underlying health system better, but quite possibly making it even worse than it already is for those without those means.

From Tubeless Tired: “Re: blood collection tubes. Our hospital has been told that we can get just half our normal supply of blue top, pink top, and light green top tubes over the next several months. We are asking providers to evaluate the clinical need for tests, evaluate and reduce when possible the frequency of standing orders such as PT/INR, and only draw a tube when actual testing has been ordered instead of as part of any hold request.” This is probably a useful heads-up for informatics teams that will probably need to make system changes to preserve blood tube supplies.


HIStalk Announcements and Requests

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It’s not EHR vendors that are making doctors unhappy, poll respondents say. Good comments: HITPM says doctors are trained and paid to treat acute illness reactively, so the high-earning specialists who swoop in and out of a patient’s life aren’t the ones complaining – it’s the lesser-compensated physicians who help keep people away from those specialists who aren’t happy. IANAL ponders whether doctors who envy their overseas counterparts do so selectively in forgetting that along with the absence of administrative overhead and price-gouging in those countries comes lifetime earnings that could be half or three-quarters less. IANAL also adds that doctors themselves spawned the role of insurers and their overhead by pushing to keep physician compensation private.

New poll to your right or here: In your most recent physician or hospital encounter, did your provider review your records from a different organization?


Webinars

October 28 (Thursday) 1 ET. “A New Streamlined Approach to Documentation and Problem List Management in Cerner Millennium.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Deepak Pillai, MD, physician informaticist, IMO; David Arco, product manager, IMO; Nicole Douglas, senior product marketing manager, IMO. IMO and Cerner announce the launch of the IMO Core CSmart app, an in-workflow offering to improve clinical documentation and problem list management in Cerner Millennium. The presenters will review the challenges and bottlenecks of clinical documentation and problem list management, discuss how streamlined workflows within Cerner Millennium can reduce clinician HIT burden, and demonstrate how IMO Core CSmart can help clinicians document with ease and specificity, improve HCC coding, and make problem lists more relevant. Additional sessions will be offered on November 17 and December 1.

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


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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MSD Partners will make a strategic investment in digital consulting firm West Monroe.


Sales

  • Stillwater Medical Center (OK) will implement system integration from Summit Healthcare and patient identity modernization from NextGate to provide a simplified and interconnected health record.
  • Physicians Ambulance Service (OH) chooses Spok Go for communication between ambulance staff and hospitals during critical patient transports.
  • In Switzerland, University Hospital Basel will implement Sectra’s radiology module.

Announcements and Implementations

A Well Health survey of frontline clinical support staff finds that most are burned out by communicating with patients on the telephone, which has worsened during the pandemic as those employees try to coordinate complicated vaccination appointments and to support virtual care. 

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The NBA will allow its players to self-test for COVID-19 via Cue Health, which provides a smartphone-connected nasal swab reader to provide results in 20 minutes. Only unvaccinated players – about one player per team – will be required to take the test on practice, meeting, and travel days, while all players will still need to pass a PCR test right before a game.

In Abu Dhabi, all 59 public and private hospitals, 1,100 clinics, and 380 pharmacies have connected to the Malaffi HIE as mandated by the emirate’s Department of Health.

A Waystar survey of health system executives finds that 64% of organizations plan to implement robotic process automation and/or AI in their revenue cycle in the next three years, most often to improve financial performance.


Other

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A pharma article describes the benefits of using real-world data (such as from EHRs and claims) to develop drugs for rare diseases: (a) patients are dispersed geographically and can’t be easily found and studied otherwise; (b) FDA hasn’t developed study endpoints for conditions that have no approved treatments; and (c) small numbers of patients and doctors mean that symptoms, diagnosis, and progression are hard to understand. The author mentions AllStripes, which uses EHR data (including unstructured physician and encounter notes), imaging data, and genetic testing results. The company recruits individual patients to participate.

Virtual-first health insurance plans cost less and are convenient, but online visits aren’t ideal for first encounters or for detecting new problems. The KHN article also observer that telemedicine doctors are often work-from-home contractors who are paid based on patient volumes and who often don’t have access to medical records from other providers.

Fascinating testimony from the trial of Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes: the company’s second lab director had zero lab experience or credentials – he was the dermatologist of COO Sunny Balwani. Sunil Dhawan, MD, who replaced the previous (and qualified) director who quit over the company’s questionable technology, testified that he was paid $5,000 per month to sign whatever Balwani sent him, having never met any company employee, patient, or clinician and without knowing anything about its technology.


Sponsor Updates

  • OneMedNet will provide imaging platform vendor Arterys with real-world data to aid in the development, validation, and regulatory approval of its solutions.
  • NetSmart will exhibit at the Fall Conference October 19-21 in Memphis, TN.
  • Pure Storage announces it has been positioned by Gartner as a Leader in the Magic Quadrant for Primary Storage.
  • The Philadelphia Business Journal names Quil Health CEO Carina Edwards a 2021 Woman of Distinction.
  • Redox adds former MuleSoft executive Simon Parmett to its Board of Directors.
  • Goldman Sachs recognizes Talkdesk founder and CEO Tiago Paiva as one of the 100 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs of 2021 at its Builders + Innovators Summit.
  • Tegria partners with the Seattle Kraken’s One Roof Foundation to support South Park community health initiatives.
  • Vocera publishes a new case study, “MercyOne Elkader Medical Center – Unifying Staff Through COVID-19.”

Blog Posts


Contacts

Mr. H, Lorre, Jenn, Dr. Jayne.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.

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News 10/15/21

October 14, 2021 News No Comments

Top News

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Imaging management platform vendor Intelerad acquires competitor Ambra Health, whose clients include Johns Hopkins Medicine, Memorial Hermann, and New York Presbyterian.

The reported price was $250 million, valuing the combined companies at nearly $2 billion.


HIStalk Announcements and Requests

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Welcome to new HIStalk Platinum Sponsor EVisit. The Mesa, AZ-based company simplifies healthcare delivery with its market-leading virtual care platform, which works seamlessly across enterprise service lines and departments to improve outcomes, reduce costs, and boost revenue by enabling healthcare organizations to deliver faster, more accessible virtual care using their own network of providers across any specialty. With its distinct and leading position in the telehealth marketplace as a business-to-business company supported by a team of expert virtual care consultants, the flexible, end-to-end technology platform can match and virtualize any clinical workflow. Its system does not come with a competing provider network. EVisit is helping HCOs, including the largest systems in the US, innovate and succeed in today’s changing healthcare market. The company is the leader in the “Forrester Wave: Virtual Care Platforms in Digital Health, Q1 2021” and is a representative vendor in the “Gartner 2020 Market Guide for Virtual Care Solutions.” See them at HLTH21 next week. Thanks to EVisit for supporting HIStalk.

I found a brand new EVisit overview video on YouTube.


Webinars

October 28 (Thursday) 1 ET. “A New Streamlined Approach to Documentation and Problem List Management in Cerner Millennium.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Deepak Pillai, MD, physician informaticist, IMO; David Arco, product manager, IMO; Nicole Douglas, senior product marketing manager, IMO. IMO and Cerner announce the launch of the IMO Core CSmart app, an in-workflow offering to improve clinical documentation and problem list management in Cerner Millennium. The presenters will review the challenges and bottlenecks of clinical documentation and problem list management, discuss how streamlined workflows within Cerner Millennium can reduce clinician HIT burden, and demonstrate how IMO Core CSmart can help clinicians document with ease and specificity, improve HCC coding, and make problem lists more relevant. Additional sessions will be offered on November 17 and December 1.

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


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

Shares in healthcare cloud and data technology vendor Healthcare Triangle closed down 10% on their first day of trading Wednesday. They shed another 2.5% at Thursday’s market close, valuing the company at $118 million.

Medsphere acquires Plano, TX-based Systeem Medical, which offers managed IT services to medical practices.

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Walgreens invests another $5.2 billion in value-based primary care center operator VillageMD, increasing its stake to 63% and supporting the opening of 1,000 in-store practices by 2027.

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GetWellNetwork renames itself to Get Well.


Sales

  • Atlantic Health System will implement Syft’s enterprise-wide supply chain management system.
  • In Netherlands, Amsterdam UMC chooses Infor CloudSuite Healthcare with the support of system integrator Avaap.
  • Virginia Cardiovascular Specialists selects HealthSnap’s remote patient monitoring platform for chronic condition management.

People

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Industry long-timer Matthew Tuck, MBA (IRIS) joins NextGen Healthcare as VP of account management.

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Medical equipment tracking software vendor Cohealo hires Tom Cady (Kareo) as COO.


Announcements and Implementations

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Several big-name health systems form the Advanced Care at Home Coalition advocacy group, which will seek to extend COVID-driven payment coverage for at-home care permanently.

Nordic opens a security operations center at its Madison, WI headquarters.

Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital (VA) goes live on enterprise imaging from Mach7 Technologies. Twelve Sentara hospitals have migrated 22.5 million studies from multiple PACS into Mach7’s vendor-neutral archive.

Bluestream Health announces Care Navigator, which offers patients a personalizable page and link from which they can initiate a app-free visit in which a dropped connection will reconnect automatically.

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CHIME names Daniel Barchi, MEM, CIO of New York-Presbyterian Hospital, as its CIO of the Year.

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GE Healthcare and Apprise Health Insights launch an HHS-funded real-time hospital occupancy solution in Oregon that will be implemented statewide next year. The system will be expanded beyond beds and ventilators to include specialty bed, PPE ED, and ECMO capacity as extracted from hospital EHRs.

A small study of the Epic Signal event log activity finds that ambulatory care network physicians who spent less time working in the EHR, especially in managing their inbox, were more likely to quit. The authors speculate that the counterintuitive findings may have been caused by physicians who were planning to leave and thus were winding down their patient activities or that EHR-proficient doctors may have been more marketable for new jobs. They also think that EHR workload or burnout is perhaps less directly related to turnover than other studies have suggested.

A Kyruus survey finds that consumers are increasingly using and preferring digital access channels to research providers, services, and care sites. Health plan websites have a strong role that is growing. Consumers place high value on understanding insurance acceptance, clinical expertise, reputation, and appointment availability and 40% of them prefer booking appointments online. 

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KLAS looks at health systems that manage downside risk contracts, which make up just 10% of the average system’s revenue. Successful organizations say that contract management is crucial and that interoperability with systems and payers needs to improve to apply advanced analytics. Vendors that primarily serve ambulatory providers – such as Azara Healthcare, HealthEC, and Cedar Gate Technologies – earner higher functionality ratings, while Innovaccer scores well for integration in larger organizations. Allscripts customers report frustration with interface management.


COVID-19

A highly anticipated study finds that it’s OK to mix and match initial vaccine doses and boosters, and in fact those people who initially received Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine initially mounted a stronger immune response when given a Moderna or Pfizer booster instead of another round of J&J.

FDA’s vaccine advisory committee unanimously recommends approving a half-dose booster for Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine for the same high-risk groups for which Pfizer’s vaccine was cleared.

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Time magazine describes how a cobbled-together chain of acquired pharmacies took advantage of loosened telehealth rules, millions in PPP loans, and demand for unproven COVID-19 treatments to make millions selling ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine at exorbitant prices via telemedicine visits, sometimes failing to deliver the expected medication to the desperate families of unvaccinated patients. Ravkoo, a “digital pharmacy” whose predecessor organization had several executives charged with running various opioid and kickback schemes, has not drawn scrutiny from the federal government even though customers – most of them referred by partner America’s Frontline Doctors — complain of price-gouging, lack of responsiveness, and threats about negative reviews.


Other

A security researcher finds that FHIR APIs are vulnerable to hacking, noting that a single log-in provided access to 4 million patient and clinician records. Every FHIR app tested gave access to the information of other people. EHR security was strong, but third-party data aggregators and mobile apps were full of security holes. The report calls for use of API security shielding solutions such as that offered by study sponsor Approov.

An EpicShare report describes how Seattle Children’s involves its patient family advisory councils in technology decisions. Parents provided input on its initial Epic and MyChart configuration for scheduling complex appointments, requesting prescription refills, and providing access to multiple caregivers. The council also tested its virtual visit access instructions for patients early in the pandemic. 


Sponsor Updates

  • Everbridge announces that its CareConverge telemedicine solution has won a 2021 Stratus Award from the Business Intelligence Group.
  • Black Book Research recognizes Fortified Health Security as a top outsourcing vendor for cybersecurity.
  • Jvion CMO John Frownfelter, MD will present a Tech Talk on AI and health equity at HLTH October 18 in Boston.
  • Kyruus publishes its fifth annual “Patient Access Journey Report.”
  • University of Michigan Health-West expands its adoption of Nuance’s Dragon Ambient EXperience across its entire primary care group.

Blog Posts


Contacts

Mr. H, Lorre, Jenn, Dr. Jayne.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.

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News 10/13/21

October 12, 2021 News 3 Comments

Top News

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Best Buy will acquire home monitoring platform vendor Current Health, which raised a $43 million Series B round earlier this year.

Co-founder and CEO Christopher McCann will remain with the company. He completed a master’s in computer engineering and left medical school in Scotland to start the company in 2015 with his co-founder and CTO, who had just completed a PhD in computing science.


Webinars

None scheduled soon. Previous webinars are on our YouTube channel. Contact Lorre to present your own.


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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Cerner President and CEO David Feinberg, MD. MBA kicks off the virtual Cerner Health Conference with a call to “eliminate the noise in healthcare” by getting the right information to the right people at the right time. He mentioned the essential clinical dataset, defined by 12 Cerner clients in 2016 as the EHR data elements that are essential for providing quality care.


Sales

  • CDC will use HealthVerity’s privacy-protected data exchange to develop a real-world dataset for projects related to COVID-19, viral hepatitis, and HIV.

People

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Andrea Marks (UnitedHealth) joins Walmart as VP of clinical performance, overseeing the clinical data and analytics team.


Announcements and Implementations

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MSU Health Care (MI) leverages remote Care Everyday patient monitoring technology from Higi as part of its RPM program for patients with chronic conditions.


Government and Politics

Rumors of an enterprise Epic implementation across the NHS in England begin swirling after NHS England Director of Transformation Ian O’Neil attended “high-level meetings” with Epic CEO Judy Faulkner. Adding flame to the fire of speculation is the fact that Tim Ferriss, NHS England’s new head of digital transformation, comes from Massachusetts General Hospital, which rolled Epic out in 2016.

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In Canada, Newfoundland and Labrador’s COVID-19 vaccine passport system crashes just a few hours after launching due to overwhelming traffic. At one point, 600 QR codes were being downloaded every minute to the province’s NLVaxPass app.


Sponsor Updates

  • Netsmart VP and GM AJ Peterson and customers present at the American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living 2021 Convention and Expo through October 13 in Washington, DC.
  • Istishari Hospital in Jordan selects Wolters Kluwer Health’s UpToDate and Medi-Span Clinical clinical-decision support tools.
  • CareSignal publishes a new case study featuring The Andrews Center, “High-Touch Care: Remote Patient Monitoring for Mental Health Identifies Potential Crises Ahead of Time.”
  • CHIME awards 10 healthcare organizations the highest level of its Digital Health Most Wired Survey.
  • CloudWave’s OpSus Healthcare Cloud attains SSAE18 standards certification renewal plus HITRUST.

The following HIStalk sponsors will exhibit at HLTH 2021 October 17-20 in Boston:

  • InterSystems
  • NTT Data
  • CoverMyMeds
  • Olive
  • Cerner
  • Ellkay
  • Infor
  • Jvion
  • Quil
  • RxRevu
  • Talkdesk
  • Well Health
  • CloudWave
  • Dina
  • Gyant
  • Health Catalyst
  • Lumeon
  • Pure Storage
  • Relatient
  • Upfront Healthcare

Blog Posts


Contacts

Mr. H, Lorre, Jenn, Dr. Jayne.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.

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Monday Morning Update 10/11/21

October 10, 2021 News 9 Comments

Top News

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The VA hires an independent body to review its Cerner implementation and to provide an estimate of the project’s full cost. It expects to see the results in 12 months.

The VA hopes that the review will finally capture all of its project-related expenses, including infrastructure upgrades that were omitted from previous estimates due to inconsistent cost tracking methods across its organizations.

Conducting the review is Institute for Defense Analyses, a non-profit that administers three federally funded research and development centers.

The most recent cost estimate was $16 billion versus its initial $10 billion price tag. 


Reader Comments

From Critical Mass: “Re: Optum-Change Healthcare merger. Survey your readers whether it should be allowed and why or why not.” I don’t know that many or most readers have an opinion either way and I question whether a yes-no poll would be enlightening, but feel free to click the Comments link and add your thoughts.


HIStalk Announcements and Requests

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About one-fourth of poll respondents have faxed something in the past six months, most commonly to a physician’s office and rarely to a hospital. My own experience matches that of poll comments – don’t even bother trying to enlighten the front desk person why it doesn’t make sense that the practice will accept only faxes while refusing emailed scans that they could print. I think it’s probably as much laziness as anything else since it’s easier to make the sender jump through hoops in trying to set up a free online faxing service while the recipient just occasionally wanders by the fax machine to see what’s new. Office Depot still sells exactly one model of fax machine (a pretty slick Brother for $200) but you would need a plain old telephone line that is increasingly uncommon.

New poll to your right or here:  Who is most responsible for physician dissatisfaction? Remind me to run the same poll for nurses next week.

It’s nearly that time of year when I should be registering for HIMSS22 and booking somewhere to stay, but I have to say that the lackluster HIMSS21 makes me at least consider bailing for the first time in many years.


Webinars

None scheduled soon. Previous webinars are on our YouTube channel. Contact Lorre to present your own.


Sales

  • In Portugal, Unilabs chooses Sectra’s enterprise imaging solution.
  • Colombia’s Clínica Imbanaco joins the TriNetX global health research network.
  • SSM Health will outsource technology-focused inpatient care management, digital transformation, and revenue cycle management to Optum, rebadging a reported 2,000 SSM Health employees.

People

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Heather Nelson, MHA (University of Chicago Medicine) joins Boston Children’s Hospital as SVP / CIO.

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Memorial Healthcare System (FL) promotes Jeffrey Sturman, MHA from CIO to SVP /chief digital officer.

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GE Healthcare promotes Catherine Estrampes, MBA to president and CEO of US and Canada.


Announcements and Implementations

China’s largest retailer, JD.com, extends its telehealth services from humans to pets. JD Pet Hospital has signed up 3,000 veterinarians who provide 24×7 online consultations and connect users to in-person providers. The company says it will attempt to solve problems such lack of industry standards, price transparency, and availability of timely services.


Other

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I took a look at productivity software Notion after reading that the company’s valuation has reached $10 billion, bolstered by viral TikTok videos by users – many of them of Generation Z – who are happy to have a minimalistic team workspace tool for remote work. I don’t know how it stacks up against its many competitors, but it looks interesting. The personal version is free and a team edition is $8 per user per month.


Sponsor Updates

  • Diameter Health names former Anthem BCBS executive Jill Hummel to its board as an independent director.
  • CHIME announces incoming board members and 2022/2023 board officers.
  • OptimizeRx joins the S&P 600 Small Cap Index.
  • PatientBond surpasses company growth and patient engagement results milestones.
  • Spok publishes a new infographic, “The state of healthcare communications.”
  • Vocera receives high ratings for demonstrating positive outcomes in the latest KLAS report, “Clinical Communication Platforms 2021.”
  • Zen Healthcare IT publishes “The Zen Guide to Mirth Connect for Vendors.”

Blog Posts


Contacts

Mr. H, Lorre, Jenn, Dr. Jayne.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.

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News 10/8/21

October 7, 2021 News 1 Comment

Top News

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Member engagement and wellness app vendor Virgin Pulse will acquire Welltok, which offers analytics-powered multi-channel healthcare communications.

Virgin Pulse, which has made several acquisitions, is owned by Morgan Equity Partners, which was reportedly shopping for a buyer for the company in early 2020 at $2 billion. It acquired the company from Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Group in mid-2018 and merged it with digital coaching company RedBrick Health.

Welltok has raised $262 million in funding, most recently a Series E round in July 2020.


Reader Comments

From TAA-Da!: “Re: Ascension IT. Another WARN notice, now approaching 1,000 employees since August. Why does it seem like all this outsourcing is invisible to most people?” Most people pay only casual attention to layoffs and/or outsourcing unless they have direct connections to those affected or the companies involved, especially since cheap-seats opinions are unlikely to reverse the course anyway. There’s also limited benefit to recognizing a possible trend unless you, as an employee who might be affected down the road, have options for mitigating your risk. Lastly, the outsourcing pendulum often eventually swings back for at least some jobs because cost savings and quality were overpromised.

From Nordic Viking: “Re: Cerner. Seems like they are losing ground in the Nordics since the City of Jyväskylä just announced that they withdrew from the Central Finland Cerner program. It will for sure have a negative impact on the already troubled and delayed projects in the South of Sweden.”


HIStalk Announcements and Requests

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Welcome to new HIStalk Platinum Sponsor OneMedNet. The Eden Prairie, MN-based company provides innovative solutions that unlock the significant value that is contained within the clinical image archives of healthcare providers. Its OneMedNet iRWD offering securely de-identifies, searches, and curates a data archive locally, bringing a wealth of internal and third-party research opportunities to providers. By leveraging this extensive federated provider network, together with industry leading technology and in-house clinical expertise, OneMedNet successfully meets the most rigorous RWD Life Science requirements. Thanks to OneMedNet for supporting HIStalk.


Webinars

None scheduled soon. Previous webinars are on our YouTube channel. Contact Lorre to present your own.


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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Carbon Health, which offers telehealth and in-office primary and urgent care from five locations in New York City and Columbus, acquires remote patient monitoring tools vendor Alertive Healthcare.

The private equity owner of advance care planning technology vendor Vital Decisions sells the company to Evolent Health.

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Revenue cycle management vendor Aspirion Health Resources acquires Advicare, which resolves clinical denials.

Virtual medical documentation contractor Augmedix launches a $40 million IPO offering.


Sales

  • Global imaging platform vendor Arterys chooses OneMedNet to provide de-identified real-world provider data for the development, validation, and regulatory approval of its solutions.

People

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Hackensack Meridian Healt hires Kash Patel, MSEE (Penn Medicine) as EVP / chief information and digital engagement officer.

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Helia Care, which offers a platform that connects hospitals and medical device companies for ordering, hires Gregg Smith (Sharecare Provider Solutions) as chief commercial officer.

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Isabelle Stapf, MS (AppFolio) joins Well Health as SVP of product.


Announcements and Implementations

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Cerner launches RevElate as its single go-forward patient accounting system following years of high-profile struggles with Cerner Patient Accounting. The company says it will begin phasing in the product to replace existing Millennium and Soarian systems in 2023. A hospital CIO sent along these notes they took during the announcement:

  • RevElate is based on the Soarian Financials platform.
  • Former Soarian customers were electing to keep Soarian Financials while migrating to Millennium clinicals.
  • Cerner Patient Accounting support will be phased out over the next 5-6 years. New sales will stop immediately.
  • Patient access, charge capture, and the charge master will remain in Millennium, while patient accounting, including contract management, will be in RevElate.
  • HealtheEDW is the go-forward strategy for reporting and analytics.
  • Key development partners BayCare and Charleston Area Medical Center will initially deploy the system .
  • Cerner clients that are upgrading to RevElate will undergo a six-month project.
  • The product will be available to the full customer base in Q1 2023.
  • Demos will be offered during the CHC virtual conference next week.

Data from Premier’s PINC AI predictive modeling shows that hospital clinical labor costs have increased 8% per patient day since the pandemic began, with overtime and agency use adding $17 million in annual costs for the average 500-bed facility.

Health IoT cybesecurity vendor Cynerio launches a small-hospital subscription program to protect against malware, ransomware, and other device security threats.

Abbott’s president and CEO will keynote the CES 2022 technology show in early January, the first time that a healthcare company will take its main stage.

HLTH announces COVID-19 safety precautions for its upcoming in-person meeting in Boston – mandatory proof of vaccination via Clear, PCR testing either within 72 hours before the conference or taken free onsite, and mandatory wearing of masks.


Other

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CHIME publishes its list of Digital Health Most Wired for 2021.

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In Spain,  the local health service apologizes for a gynecologist who documented “homosexual” as the current illness of a 19-year-old woman. The health service says it was an honest mistake caused by documenting her sexual orientation in the wrong part of the EHR, but the woman says that a hospital employee told her that several of the doctor’s patients had lodged similar complaints.


Sponsor Updates

  • Wolters Kluwer Health launches Best Care Everywhere, a mission-driven movement to build and strengthen global health equity.
  • Spok will highlight the importance of healthcare communication at its Connect 21 Virtual Conference October 11-12.
  • The Nurse Keith Show Podcast features Glytec Clinical Project Lead Lori Weiss, RN “The Promising Future of Cutting-Edge Diabetes Care.”
  • KLAS recognizes Halo Health in its latest report, “Clinical Communication Platforms – Improved Efficiency Leading to Concrete Outcomes.”
  • PatientBond achieves 15 million touchpoints in August, sending automated email, text messages, and phone calls to 2.5 million unique patients.
  • OncoSpark adds interoperability to it oncology prior authorization platform in partnering with Ellkay.
  • The HCI Group’s DGTL Voices with Ed Marx Podcast releases a new episode, “CIO and CMO – the Importance of this Relationship,” featuring Cleveland Clinic CMO Paul Matsen and CIO Matt Kull.
  • Health Catalyst will exhibit at HLTH 2021 October 17-20.
  • KLAS recognizes Impact Advisors for its advisory and implementation services in its latest report, “2021 Healthcare Consulting & Services.”
  • CareSignal publishes a white paper titled “Transform Your Population Health Strategy with Scalable Deviceless Remote Patient Monitoring.”
  • Imprivata and VMware partner to give clinicians password-free access to any app for smoother, more secure mobile workflows.
  • Interbit Data CEO Arthur Young discusses hospital systems downtimes at the HIMSS conference.
  • NextGate achieves ISO 27001 Certification for information security management systems.
  • NTT Data launches a back-to-work app to support government and business COVID-19 requirements.

Blog Posts


Contacts

Mr. H, Lorre, Jenn, Dr. Jayne.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.

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News 10/6/21

October 5, 2021 News 8 Comments

Top News

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Quality measurement and clinical intelligence platform vendor Apervita shuts down.

Chief Informatics and Innovation Officer Blackford Middleton, MD, MPH, MSc said in a LinkedIn post that the company was unable to complete a second funding round. It had raised $60 million since December 2012 through a Series A.

Apervita sold its value optimization business to Clarify Health in August 2021.


Reader Comments

From Executive Channel: “Re: females as VPs of HR, legal, and marketing. We would likely see the same phenomenon in IT if technology jobs  weren’t dominated by men.” Health system support departments such as IT don’t contribute directly to profit and loss except as a cost center, which is why executives of those areas aren’t usually seen as prime candidates for broader roles in areas that have dozens or hundreds of insiders who are ready to move up the ladder. Most of the big bumps in CIO compensation and job responsibility over the years came from consolidation into ever-larger health systems and horizontal expansion of CIO responsibility in taking over other support departments such as biomedical engineering, telecommunications, informatics, analytics, and quality reporting (headcount and budget responsibility drive pay in health systems). The few former CIOs who are now COOs or CEOs of large health systems gained experience in other positions, which I would anecdotally observe usually involved only a short stay in IT as part of being moved around for executive grooming — a long stint as a CIO in a single health system likely means you’ve topped out there. It’s not quite the same in vendorland, where CTOs of tech-heavy startups are often co-founders in companies where technology is a core competency rather than a supporting function.


HIStalk Announcements and Requests

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Welcome to new HIStalk Platinum Sponsor Interbit Data. The Natick, MA-based company’s software automation solutions ensure that clinicians and hospital staff have easy, secure, and reliable access to patient and financial information so they can get back to quality patient care and stay in touch. Its products integrate with any HCIS platform to distribute reports that help care teams stay informed. It is the pioneer and best-practice leader in downtime business continuity, providing reliable access to patient information at the point-of-care during downtimes, as well as during more challenging cyber crises. Using its software automation solutions, hospitals can be more efficient, streamline workflows, and improve overall patient care and safety. It provides secure, reliable, and cost-effective solutions that help 800 healthcare facility customers worldwide remain connected. Thanks to Interbit Data for supporting HIStalk.

I found this explainer video for Interbit Data’s NetDelivery on YouTube.


Webinars

October 6 (Wednesday) 2 ET. “Solving Patient Experience Challenges Through a Strong Digital Front Door.” Sponsor: Avtex. Presenters: Mike Pietig, VP of healthcare experience, Avtex; Jamey Shiels, MBA, VP of consumer experience, Advocate Aurora Health; Chad Thorpe, care ambassador, DispatchHealth. Patients expect healthcare providers to offer them the same digital experience they get when banking, shopping, and traveling. This webinar will describe how two leading healthcare providers created digital front doors that exceed patient expectations, improve patient outcomes, drive loyalty and acquisition, and future-proof their growth strategies in competitive markets.

October 6 (Wednesday) 1 ET. “A New, Streamlined Approach to Documentation and Problem List Management in Cerner Millennium.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Deepak Pillai, MD, physician informaticist, IMO; David Arco, product manager, IMO; Nicole Douglas, senior product marketing manager, IMO. The IMO Core CSmart app, which is available for Cerner Millennium in the Cerner code App Gallery, helps providers document with specificity, make problem lists more meaningful, and improve HCC coding. This webinar will review the challenges and bottlenecks of clinical documentation and problem list management and discuss how streamlined workflows within Cerner Millennium can help reduce clinician HIT burden.

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


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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ManpowerGroup finalizes its acquisition of IT staffing and services provider Ettain Group, which acquired Leidos Health in 2019. Ettain will merge with ManpowerGroup’s Experis IT talent and solutions business and will operate under the Experis name.


Sales

  • Cancer Treatment Centers of America will implement Lyniate’s Corepoint interoperability platform.
  • Rochester RHIO selects Direct Secure Messaging capabilities from Secure Exchange Solutions.

People

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Commure promotes Ashwini Zenooz, MD to CEO. She replaces industry long-timer Brent Dover, who will remain as an advisor.

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Michael Wagner, MSA (MPRO) joins Honor Community Health as CIO.

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QS Systems hires Kendall Stanley (Inovalon) as VP of sales and marketing.

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Radiology Partners promotes Jennifer Beaumont to SVP of regional support services and clinical practice integration (she was SVP of IT) and hires Mark Logan (IBM Watson Health) as SVP of IT clinical technologies.

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Patient and employee experience platform vendor Qualtrics hires Adrienne Boissy, MD (Cleveland Clinic) as its first chief medical officer.


Announcements and Implementations

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Central Logic renames itself to About as it integrates recent acquisitions Ensocare (inpatient referral to post-acute care) and Acuity Link (transportation communications and logistics management).

Privia Health implements Kyruus ProviderMatch to enable patients to find and book appointments with physicians.

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Sparrow Health (MI) adds a proof of COVID-19 vaccination feature developed by Epic to its MySparrow patient app. It enables users to display a QR code, download a PDF, or export verification to a health wallet.

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Intermountain Healthcare, Presbyterian Healthcare Services, and SSM Health form Graphite Health, a nonprofit that will help member organizations vet, access, and implement digital health solutions.

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Microsoft releases Windows 11 as a free upgrade for eligible Windows 10 PCs and on new PCs that have it pre-installed. My two-year-old laptop passed Microsoft’s Windows 11 readiness test, so I’ll give it a few weeks and then upgrade.

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New Cerner President and CEO David Feinberg, MD, MBA will kick off the two-day virtual Cerner Health Conference 2021 next week.

Mackinac Straits Health System will affiliate with MidMichigan Health to address its IT needs and to implement Epic.

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A new KLAS report on point-of-care references for clinical decision support finds that market share leader Wolters Kluwer is loved by physicians who learned to rely on UpToDate in medical school, but health systems say it’s the most expensive of available solutions and they sometimes switch to a cheaper alternative. Users of IBM Watson Health, especially pharmacists, like its NLP search feature even though the company scores poorly in customer support. Elsevier and IBM Watson Health both suffer from content delivery that can run months behind, users report. Ebsco earns the highest overall score with deep content at a fraction of the price of competitors.


Privacy and Security

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In Indiana, Johnson Memorial Health and Schneck Medical Center recover from apparently unrelated cyberattacks that forced the organizations to take their IT systems offline.


Other

Business Insider looks at problems in Apple’s healthcare organization, most of which have been described previously:

  • Employees say people were disciplined for disagreeing with their bosses over the way health data is being used to develop products and the questionable quality of that data.
  • The company expected the Apple Watch to spawn a subscription-based health program in which consumer data would be shared with their physicians, but the engineers who developed Watch designed its features for consumers rather than patients who are seeking medical care. The Watch can identify conditions, but isn’t as strong at measuring them.
  • Apple uses its AC Wellness employee clinic as a healthcare workshop, but the company is questioning its cost compared to similar programs such as that of Crossover Health.
  • Apple has talked to health plans about selling its HealthHabit app that allows its employees to track fitness goals and blood pressure, but poor user engagement has caused Apple cut back on the project roadmap and to reassign its employees.

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Steve Jobs died 10 years ago at 56, having kicked a dent in the universe that outlives him.  


Sponsor Updates

  • Availity integrates TruthMD’s MedFax healthcare data solutions with its initiatives for provider data management.
  • Olive will hire an additional 300 employees by the end of this year, increasing its employee base by 30%.
  • Wolters Kluwer Health CEO Stacey Caywood earns a Bronze Stevie Award in the category of Female Executive of the Year – Business Products.
  • EClinicalWorks publishes a new customer success story, “Using Prisma to Help Staff and Close Care Gaps at Centerpoint Health.”
  • CareSignal has partnered with Innovaccer to offer deviceless remote-patient monitoring to organizations and payers participating in value-based care on the Innovaccer Health Cloud.
  • Change Healthcare will host its 2021 Virtual Innovation Summit October 12-13.
  • CHIME releases a new Digital Health Leaders Podcast, “A Conversation with Sarah Richardson, FCHIME, CHCIO, SVP and CIO, Tivity Health.”
  • Clearwater expands its customer training content and security awareness capabilities through a new partnership with cybersecurity education company Infosec.
  • CloudWave publishes a new whitepaper, “Enterprise Imaging in the Cloud.”
  • CoverMyMeds will present at Epic’s App Orchard Conference October 6.
  • A new KLAS report, “Clinical Communication Platforms 2021,” recognizes Vocera as a top-rated vendor in health systems with enterprise-wide deployments.
  • Diameter Health Chief Architect Sam Schifman will present at the John Snow Labs NLP Summit October 6.
  • Engage publishes a new case study, “From Chaos to Control: How Exeter Hospital Addressed Their Disaster Recovery Challenges.”
  • EClinicalWorks will host its national conference virtually October 7-8.
  • EZDI wins at the HIC2 in India for the use case “Digital Clinical Assistant for Integrating with Legacy EHR.”

HIStalk sponsors named top-ranking outsourcing vendors in 2021, according to Black Book Research’s latest survey, include:

  • Credentialing & Privileging – Symplr/TractManager
  • Cybersecurity – Fortified Health Security
  • Database Support & Analytics – Health Catalyst
  • ERP Support – Pivot Point Consulting
  • IT Tech Support – Cerner
  • Medical Imaging Systems – Agfa HealthCare

Blog Posts


Contacts

Mr. H, Lorre, Jenn, Dr. Jayne.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.

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Monday Morning Update 10/4/21

October 3, 2021 News 6 Comments

Top News

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David Feinberg, MD, MBA takes the helm as president and CEO of Cerner.

Predecessor Brent Shafer ends his three years and eight months with CERN shares down 6% versus the Nasdaq’s 101% gain.


Reader Comments

From Hmmm…: “Re: HR, legal, and marketing. Do readers think they aren’t important because women are in those roles? They are major players in our organization and are heard and respected.” It’s not a lack of respect for the person or the position, but those jobs have limited headcount and budget and aren’t usually where CEOs are groomed as compared to sales, product development, and finance. I occasionally look at the executive team composition of big health IT companies, so here’s a few that I randomly chose today. Only two companies didn’t have a female VP of marketing, HR, or legal — one because its sole female executive works in another area, the other because it has no female executives. How does your company stack up?

  • Allscripts – 10 men, five women (including female VPs in HR, legal, and marketing)
  • Athenahealth – nine men, three women (including female VPs in HR and legal)
  • Cerner – nine men, five women (including a female VP of HR)
  • Change Healthcare – 10 men, three women (including female VPs of legal, HR, and compliance)
  • Definitive Healthcare – nine men, one woman
  • Cognizant – 10 men, two women (including a female VP of HR)
  • Greenway Health – seven men, six women (including female VPs of legal, HR, marketing, and compliance)
  • HCI Group – seven men, zero women
  • Health Catalyst – 17 men, 12 women (including female VPs of marketing, HR, diversity, and learning)
  • Infor – 12 men, three women (including a female VP of marketing)
  • McKesson – three men, three women (including female VPs of HR and legal)
  • Nuance – eight men, three women (including female VPs of legal and HR)
  • Olive – eight men, three women (including a female VP of marketing)
  • Premier – eight men, one woman (including a female VP of HR)
  • Teladoc Health – 10 men, four women (including a female VP of marketing)
  • Transcarent – seven men, six women (including female VPs of legal and HR)

HIStalk Announcements and Requests

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A big majority of poll respondents see no value in state-by-state clinician licensing.

New poll to your right or here: Have you faxed something in the past six months, and if so, what was the most recent example?

Thanks to the following companies that recently supported HIStalk. Click a logo for more information.

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It bugs me that Googling my name turns up all kinds of sketchy “people finder” data broker sites that list my age, current and previous addresses, family members, and sometimes email address, phone numbers, and voter registration information. I read about Optery and gave it a try and it has automatically found and removed most of the entries (more than 100 of them). It’s free for finding the sites, for which you then request removal manually without paying anything, or $10 per month to have Optery automatically submit removal requests for the top 80 sites (or up to $25 per month for 150 sites). The privacy benefit is obvious, but scammers also use the information displayed by these data brokers for stealing identities and placing fraudulent orders.


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Welcome to new HIStalk Platinum Sponsor Availity. The Jacksonville, FL-based company is where healthcare finds the answers needed to shift focus back to patient care. It works to solve communication challenges in healthcare by creating a richer, more transparent exchange of information among health plans, providers, and technology partners. As one of the nation’s largest health information networks, Availity facilitates billions of clinical, administrative, and financial transactions annually. Its suite of dynamic products, built on a powerful, intelligent platform, enables real-time collaboration for success in a competitive, value-based care environment. Thanks to Availity for supporting HIStalk.


Webinars

October 6 (Wednesday) 2 ET. “Solving Patient Experience Challenges Through a Strong Digital Front Door.” Sponsor: Avtex. Presenters: Mike Pietig, VP of healthcare experience, Avtex; Jamey Shiels, MBA, VP of consumer experience, Advocate Aurora Health; Chad Thorpe, care ambassador, DispatchHealth. Patients expect healthcare providers to offer them the same digital experience they get when banking, shopping, and traveling. This webinar will describe how two leading healthcare providers created digital front doors that exceed patient expectations, improve patient outcomes, drive loyalty and acquisition, and future-proof their growth strategies in competitive markets.

October 6 (Wednesday) 1 ET. “A New, Streamlined Approach to Documentation and Problem List Management in Cerner Millennium.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Deepak Pillai, MD, physician informaticist, IMO; David Arco, product manager, IMO; Nicole Douglas, senior product marketing manager, IMO. The IMO Core CSmart app, which is available for Cerner Millennium in the Cerner code App Gallery, helps providers document with specificity, make problem lists more meaningful, and improve HCC coding. This webinar will review the challenges and bottlenecks of clinical documentation and problem list management and discuss how streamlined workflows within Cerner Millennium can help reduce clinician HIT burden.

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


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

Shares in the Global X Telemedicine and Digital Health exchange-traded fund dropped 6% in the past month versus the S&P 500’s 4% loss.

Redox announces that its network grew by 291 new integrations in Q3, with 78 digital health companies going live at 208 provider organizations. It was the first live integration for 22% of those companies.


Sales

  • Novant Health chooses Visage Imaging to replace multiple legacy PACS in a $30 million contract.
  • HNI Healthcare will integrate the RCxRules Revenue Cycle Engine into its VitalsMD mobile charge capture platform.
  • L’Institut de Cancérologie de l’Ouest, a leading provincial cancer center in France, joins the TriNetX global health research network.

People

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Well Health hires Robin Hackney, MBA (FairWarning) as SVP of marketing.

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Ed Stelmakh, MBA (Otsuka Pharmaceutical Companies) joins OptimizeRx as CFO/COO.


COVID-19

Reported US COVID-19 deaths have hit 700,000, as one in 125 Americans aged 65 and older have died of it.

Cerner announces — on new CEO David Feinberg’s first day of work — that it will require all US employees to be vaccinated by December 8, 2021. The company also extended its return-to-office date to January 10, 2022. Cerner had said on August 1 that it would leave vaccination decisions up to individual employees. Meanwhile, Epic reports that less than 0.5% of its headcount – which translates to under 50 employees – left the company instead of being vaccinated by its October 1 deadline.

University of Ottawa Heart Institute researchers withdraw their pre-print article that incorrectly concluded that one in each 1,000 COVID-19 vaccine recipients develops myocarditis. The authors admit that a miscalculation, which was pointed out by readers, overstated the risk by 25-fold. The article was shared widely by anti-vaccine people and groups who, not surprisingly, did not share its retraction.

Merck says its investigational oral antiviral molnupiravir has reduced COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths by half, to the point that the company and FDA agree to suspend the trial and apply for emergency use authorization. Some worry that availability of a $700, five-day oral treatment will convince people to avoid vaccination or to take the medication unnecessarily, some experts note that similar antivirals haven’t proven to be all the useful for COVID-19 when administered to large numbers of patients, and others note that the 50% improvement reflects the study’s less-dramatic drop in hospitalization and death from 14% to 7% among high-risk people with mild to moderate infection.

Scientists in England conclude that people who are vaccinated against COVID-19 are less likely to spread it even if they are infected.

FDA’s vaccine advisory committee will meet several times this month on significant topics – October 14 (Moderna boosters), October 15 (J&J boosters), October 15 (mixing and matching boosters), and October 26 (Pfizer vaccine for children 5-11).


Sponsor Updates

  • OptimizeRx publishes a new report, “Addressing Unmet Patient and Provider Needs in Diabetes: New Opportunities Through Pharma through Technology.”
  • Netsmart releases a new CareThreads Podcast, “Hospice: It’s Time to Go Back to the Future.”
  • Olive will hire an additional 300 employees by the end of 2021, expanding its workforce by 30%.
  • The “HIT Like a Girl Podcast” features PatientKeeper VP of Strategy & Innovation Sally Buta.
  • Greater Houston Healthconnect uses InterSystems HealthShare to create the largest known COVID-19 outcomes study.
  • Symplr releases a new case study, “Mount Nittany Health Embraces Symplr’s Controls & Checks for Peace of Mind.”
  • Sectra will be recognized with a Spine Technology Award for its implant movement analysis service at the annual meeting of the North American Spine Society in Boston.
  • EClinicalWorks releases a new customer success story, “How Healow Retooled the Front Office During COVID-19.”

Blog Posts


Contacts

Mr. H, Lorre, Jenn, Dr. Jayne.
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News 10/1/21

September 30, 2021 News 10 Comments

Top News

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Microsoft makes an unspecified investment in Truveta, the data-selling company that is owned by 17 big health systems. Truveta said in the same announcement that it has chosen Microsoft Azure as its cloud platform.

Microsoft says it won’t have access to Truveta’s de-identified data, but will integrate its platform into Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare.  

Truveta’s member health systems have invested $100 million in the company, which launched in October 2020.

Truveta CEO Terry Myerson is a former Microsoft development EVP.


Reader Comments

From LinkedOut: “Re: LinkedIn user articles. Your gripes with LinkedIn should include providing a platform for people whose expertise and abilities don’t deserve one.” The Internet has made it possible for anybody to post an article, publish a book, or create a video or podcast, some of whom do so in the area of health IT. While some creative voices have rightfully emerged as a result, there’s a lot of junk out there that the publishing gatekeepers of old would have turned down immediately for good reason. Some of it finds an audience through persistence, omnipresent familiarity, or self-promoting gimmicks. I will let the market do its job in picking winners.


HIStalk Announcements and Requests

I looked at the leadership pages of three unrelated health IT vendor websites today while getting news information. Vendor A’s executive team had 12 older white guys and one young female VP of human resources. Vendor B’s page showed 10 less-wrinkly but equally white guys (it was a newer company), two female VPs (HR and marketing), and one female operational exec. Vendor C’s team was nine men and three female VPs (legal, HR, and an operational exec). Toss out legal, HR, and marketing VPs –diversity’s lonely outposts in many companies — and these three random companies had just two female operational executives of 34. I draw no conclusions except it struck me since I wasn’t looking for that information and these aren’t companies I actively follow.


Webinars

October 6 (Wednesday) 2 ET. “Solving Patient Experience Challenges Through a Strong Digital Front Door.” Sponsor: Avtex. Presenters: Mike Pietig, VP of healthcare experience, Avtex; Jamey Shiels, MBA, VP of consumer experience, Advocate Aurora Health; Chad Thorpe, care ambassador, DispatchHealth. Patients expect healthcare providers to offer them the same digital experience they get when banking, shopping, and traveling. This webinar will describe how two leading healthcare providers created digital front doors that exceed patient expectations, improve patient outcomes, drive loyalty and acquisition, and future-proof their growth strategies in competitive markets.

October 6 (Wednesday) 1 ET. “A New, Streamlined Approach to Documentation and Problem List Management in Cerner Millennium.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Deepak Pillai, MD, physician informaticist, IMO; David Arco, product manager, IMO; Nicole Douglas, senior product marketing manager, IMO. The IMO Core CSmart app, which is available for Cerner Millennium in the Cerner code App Gallery, helps providers document with specificity, make problem lists more meaningful, and improve HCC coding. This webinar will review the challenges and bottlenecks of clinical documentation and problem list management and discuss how streamlined workflows within Cerner Millennium can help reduce clinician HIT burden.

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


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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Bloomberg News reports that Walgreens is considering the acquisition of care management technology vendor Evolent Health. EVH shares, which are up 133% in the past 12 months in valuing the company at $2.5 billion, rose on the rumor.

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Weight loss app and telehealth vendor Found – which boasts that it allows bypassing doctor visits even though “obesity is a disease, not a decision” – raises $32 million in funding. The company offers prescription diet medications as well. I took its online questionnaire and it recommended the “Found Wellness,” no-meds plan at $49, which includes SMS-based coaching, weekly goal reminders, and community participation, adding up to one of the least-compelling offers I’ve seen. A business model that relies on overweight consumers who have failed in other weight loss programs to keep paying monthly fees for motivational text messages might warrant investor caution.

Intermountain Healthcare launches Tellica Imaging, whose standalone outpatient imaging centers will offer MRI and CT at flat-rate prices that are lower than hospital charges.

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Cerner CEO-in-waiting David Feinberg, MD, MBA says he decided to leave Google Health because he wants to disrupt healthcare, improve lives, and affect healthcare quality and accessibility. He didn’t mention the $35 million compensation package that he gets for leaving the dismantled Google Health.  

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ED patient flow and status communications platform vendor Vital raises $15 million in a Series A funding round.


Sales

  • UnityPoint Health’s home health services subsidiary chooses WellSky’s care coordination platform and personal care agency network as part of its SNF-at-home program.
  • Powell Recover Center (MD) will implement Netsmart’s CareFabric platform, Netsmart network, and MyAvatar integrated EHR.

People

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Fresenius Medical Care North America hires Shelly Nash, DO (AdventHealth) as SVP/CMIO.

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I missed this last week: The Joint Commission names Jonathan Perlin, MD, PhD, MSHA (HCA Healthcare) as its next president and CEO. He has a strong background in informatics at the VA, HHS, and Vanderbilt University.

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Release of information platform vendor Moxe hires Adam Dial (Providence) as SVP of partnerships.

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Divurgent promotes Steve Weichhand, MBA to EVP of client service.


Announcements and Implementations

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Lyniate launches Rapid, a healthcare API gateway and manager for developing and safeguarding APIs, including FHIR-based ones.

Augmedix will integrate Google Cloud Speech-to-Tex into its Notebuilder NLP-powered clinical note platform.

Nurx launches a birth control and sexual health knowledge skill for Alexa, which can provide pill reminders and answer questions.

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A new KLAS report on clinical communications platforms finds that 100% of respondents reported improved communication efficiency, especially with regard to clinician collaboration. Top satisfaction in workflows went to Halo Health (which is being acquired by Symplr) and PerfectServe Telmediq; Hillrom (which is being acquired by Baxter) and Vocera lead in broad adoption; and satisfaction with delivery of new technology is highest with Halo Health and PerfectServe Telmediq. Customers of PerfectServe Telmediq and TigerConnect also note that the companies offer patient communication, while Vocera Edge is the only third-party solution that can support nurse documentation through bi-directional EHR integration.


COVID-19

CDC urges pregnant women to get vaccinated as COVID-related deaths during pregnancy reached 22 in August, the highest monthly total of the pandemic. Only 31% of pregnant women have been vaccinated.

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A man who went to a freestanding ED in Texas for a COVID-19 test and is billed $56,000 in out-of-network fees, which his insurer eventually negotiated down to $17,000 and paid in full. Medicare would have paid just $100. The man’s wife was tested with him, but the ED company billed her just $2,000 and her insurance paid less than $1,000. Federal laws require insurers to cover the full cost without co-pays or other patient cost sharing.

COVID-19 is killing rural Americans at twice the rate of those who live in urban areas, with lower vaccination rates also causing already-limited healthcare services to be cut back as urban hospitals are unable to accept their transfers for higher-level care. Rural providers are also being hit by resignations of employees who refuse to be vaccinated despite mandates and their inability to afford the high hourly rates of nurse staffing companies. The head of the National Rural Health Association says nobody is addressing the issues and that “we’ve turned many rural communities into kill boxes.”

The New York Times reviews the use of at-home COVID-19 rapid tests, concluding that they will detect infections 85% of the time (with higher sensitivity when people are most infectious), optimal test timing is 3-5 days after known exposure or immediately if symptoms are present, and the tests give more accurate results if repeated a day or two after the first one. Challenges include a national shortage of the tests, the cost of $10-40 per test, and the inability of public health officials to track case counts unless someone who tests positive at home reports that fact to their local health authorities. 

Documents obtained by The Intercept show that conservative-focused groups are spreading disinformation about COVID-19, then making millions selling their followers telehealth-powered prescriptions for ineffective treatments such as ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine. A hacked database from telehealth platform vendor Cadence Health shows that 281,000 patients – 90% of them referred from America’s Frontline Doctors and its telehealth partner SpeakWithAnMD.com – paid $6.7 million in just two months for consultations alone. The database of digital pharmacy operator Ravkoo was also hacked and showed that the company filled 340,000 prescriptions in 10 months for $8.5 million, with 76% of the prescriptions specifying hydroxychloroquine, ivermectin, zinc, or azithromycin. Both Cadence Health and Ravkoo have stopped doing business with the groups. At least one prescriber included a disclaimer in their consultation notes forcing patients to acknowledge that government agencies categorize the drugs as “highly not recommended” and that they will not be held personally responsible for adverse reactions and are not subject to criminal charges, malpractice lawsuits, or state medical board disciplinary actions. The hackers said that the websites of the recently created companies were “hilariously easy” to breach and may have violated HIPAA.


Sponsor Updates

  • Frost & Sullivan recognizes Change Healthcare with its 2021 North American Customer Value Leadership Award for clinical decision support.
  • Spok publishes its “2021 Report: The State of Healthcare Communications.”
  • Gyant is among the 10 startups selected to participate in the inaugural AWS Healthcare Accelerator.
  • Medicomp Systems releases a new Tell Me Where it Hurts Podcast with Iram Fatima, MBBS, COO of CareCloud.
  • CareSignal publishes a white paper titled “Transform Your Population Health Strategy with Scalable Deviceless Remote Patient Monitoring.”

Blog Posts


Contacts

Mr. H, Lorre, Jenn, Dr. Jayne.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.

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News 9/29/21

September 28, 2021 News 6 Comments

Top News

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A Government Accountability Office investigation into the activities of President Trump’s trio of Mar-a-Lago associates finds they were involved in decision-making for no fewer than five VA programs, including its contract with Cerner, despite having no official ties to the agency.

A review of 223 email exchanges between the three men and VA officials found they also weighed in on personnel decisions, budgeting, and ideas around monetizing VA patient data.

One of the three, Bruce Moskowitz, MD, shopped the data-selling idea to Johnson & Johnson, Apple, and CVS after a consultant he employed said that “it can be leveraged into hundreds of millions in revenue.” No personal gain was implied in the proposal. Documents suggest that VA Secretary David Shulkin, MD liked the idea.

Another member of the group, former Marvel Entertainment chairman and CEO Ike Perlmutter, scolded Haley Van Dyck, then deputy administrator and co-founder of the White House’s US Digital Service, for communicating with Apple while excluding “our broader team of subject matter experts.” He accused her of exhibiting “clear disrespect for everyone involved” and “hijacking of this effort,” adding, “I will not allow this to happen while I am involved.”


Reader Comments

From Academic Doc: “Re: Teladoc. I found your commentary about its stock performance interesting. Our hospital started using Microsoft Teams for telehealth early in the pandemic. There were a number of glitches and problems with people downloading the app, but in general it has been pretty usable. We piloted Teladoc and it was horrible in performance and features, although a newer version helped. The main advantages seem to be that you don’t need an extra app installed and Teladoc has their own support to help patients (although we don’t yet know how responsive they really are). It allows patients to complete rating scales, consents, and other forms, which was a weakness with Teams and our patient portal, but it apparently won’t integrate with the EHR except as a PDF. It also doesn’t seem to accessibility features such as closed captioning and doesn’t support group sessions. It integrates with the EHR’s patient schedules but not Outlook, so you have to switch back and forth to see scheduled patients versus other meetings.”


HIStalk Announcements and Requests

I analyzed the first 100 items in my LinkedIn feed this morning, excluding promoted items, which yielded just 13 possibly relevant and interesting items (13%) as LinkedIn becomes more like Facebook every day:

  • Annoyingly flowery inspirational story written or liked: 20
  • Company or product pitch: 14
  • Interesting article link: 11
  • Personal article (deaths, new puppy, new school): 8
  • Congratulations to a company or person: 8
  • Recruiter or job available pitch: 8
  • Unrelated local event or link to unrelated article: 6
  • Social issue, company complaint, or COVID arguing: 6
  • Proud of employer or team: 6
  • Preachy how-to business instruction: 3
  • Excitement at attending a conference: 3
  • Self-promotion: 3
  • Need a job: 2
  • Mildly interesting company update: 2
  • Job update: 2
  • Relevant poll: 1
  • Irrelevant poll (what is the best chain chicken sandwich?): 1

Webinars

October 6 (Wednesday) 2 ET. “Solving Patient Experience Challenges Through a Strong Digital Front Door.” Sponsor: Avtex. Presenters: Mike Pietig, VP of healthcare experience, Avtex; Jamey Shiels, MBA, VP of consumer experience, Advocate Aurora Health; Chad Thorpe, care ambassador, DispatchHealth. Patients expect healthcare providers to offer them the same digital experience they get when banking, shopping, and traveling. This webinar will describe how two leading healthcare providers created digital front doors that exceed patient expectations, improve patient outcomes, drive loyalty and acquisition, and future-proof their growth strategies in competitive markets.

October 6 (Wednesday) 1 ET. “A New, Streamlined Approach to Documentation and Problem List Management in Cerner Millennium.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Deepak Pillai, MD, physician informaticist, IMO; David Arco, product manager, IMO; Nicole Douglas, senior product marketing manager, IMO. The IMO Core CSmart app, which is available for Cerner Millennium in the Cerner code App Gallery, helps providers document with specificity, make problem lists more meaningful, and improve HCC coding. This webinar will review the challenges and bottlenecks of clinical documentation and problem list management and discuss how streamlined workflows within Cerner Millennium can help reduce clinician HIT burden.

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


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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Healthcare Triangle will likely go public later this week in an anticipated $40 million IPO. The cloud, security, advisory, and implementation services company was formed in June 2020 through the merger of health IT firm Cornerstone Advisors and software company 8K Miles, now known as SecureKloud.

Former HHS Deputy Secretary Eric Hargan launches a healthcare consulting firm offering advisory services, investor guidance, and legislative and policy expertise.


Sales

  • Walmart will implement Epic across all of its health and wellness business lines, beginning early next year with four new Health Centers in Florida. Some, if not all, of its clinics were using Athenahealth when they opened in 2019.
  • IHealthHome will add VitalTech’s remote patient monitoring technology to its senior-focused care management software.
  • The Marion County Health Department will implement Epic through a software sharing agreement with West Virginia University Medicine.
  • Unity Health (AR) will implement Meditech Expanse across its three hospitals and long-term acute care facility.

People

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MedeAnalytics names Steve Grieco (ConnectYourCare) CEO.

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Chris Powell (Aspenti Health) joins clinical assessment and triage software vendor ThinkMD as CEO.

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Lumeon hires Breht Feigh, MSc (Press Ganey) as CFO.


Announcements and Implementations

Southwestern Health Resources (TX) implements analytics and predictive modeling from ClosedLoop.

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Carolina Pines Regional Medical Center (SC) rolls out Vocera’s Ease app, enabling care teams to securely send messages to a patient’s family members.

Mile Bluff Medical Center (WI) will convert from NextGen to Meditech Expanse on October 1.

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A new KLAS segment insights report looks at how 27 health systems define the term “digital front door.” Click the graphic above to enlarge. Epic customers turn to Epic first for digital front door tools, while Cerner customers more likely look elsewhere to companies like Amwell, Kyruus, R1, and Well Health. Companies that have successfully carved out niches include Kyruus (provider search and match and self-scheduling), Krames (patient education delivered via existing platforms), and Zoom (video visits). Those health systems reported that a wide variety of their C-level executives oversee their digital front door programs, ranging from CEO, CIO, CMIO, chief digital officer, and chief experience officer. Only one-third of respondents sought outside help to create their program.


Sponsor Updates

  • Imprivata has celebrated the achievements of customers from the UK and Ireland at its annual HealthCon user group meeting.
  • Arcadia announces that its MSSP ACO customers generated $386 million in shared savings in 2020, averaging $10.7 million each.
  • Azara Healthcare completes the NCQA HEDIS Health Plan Measure Certification Program for 35 measure year 2021 HEDIS measures.
  • Central Logic congratulates Clinical Operations Regional Lead & Solutions Architect Charles Larson on being elected to the American Organization for Nursing Leadership Board of Directors.
  • CHIME releases a new Digital Health Leaders Podcast, “A Conversation with Aaron Miri, CHCIO, FCHIME, SVP, CDIO, Baptist Health.”
  • Dina will exhibit at the NAACOS Fall Conference September 29-October 1 in Washington, DC.

Blog Posts


Contacts

Mr. H, Lorre, Jenn, Dr. Jayne.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.

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Monday Morning Update 9/27/21

September 26, 2021 News 1 Comment

Top News

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Clinical research network vendor Elligo Health Research raises $135 million in a Series E funding round.

The company recently acquired research practice management organization ClinEdge.

Existing investor Cerner, which returned for this round, also acquired life sciences analytics vendor Kantar Health for $375 million early this year and created the Cerner Learning Health Network EHR-powered clinical trials service for participating health systems in 2019.


HIStalk Announcements and Requests

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Poll respondents expect remote patient monitoring and telehealth to affect healthcare more than any other technologies.

New poll to your right or here: Should physicians and other healthcare providers be licensed nationally rather than state by state?


Webinars

October 6 (Wednesday) 2 ET. “Solving Patient Experience Challenges Through a Strong Digital Front Door.” Sponsor: Avtex. Presenters: Mike Pietig, VP of healthcare experience, Avtex; Jamey Shiels, MBA, VP of consumer experience, Advocate Aurora Health; Chad Thorpe, care ambassador, DispatchHealth. Patients expect healthcare providers to offer them the same digital experience they get when banking, shopping, and traveling. This webinar will describe how two leading healthcare providers created digital front doors that exceed patient expectations, improve patient outcomes, drive loyalty and acquisition, and future-proof their growth strategies in competitive markets.

October 6 (Wednesday) 1 ET. “A New, Streamlined Approach to Documentation and Problem List Management in Cerner Millennium.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Deepak Pillai, MD, physician informaticist, IMO; David Arco, product manager, IMO; Nicole Douglas, senior product marketing manager, IMO. The IMO Core CSmart app, which is available for Cerner Millennium in the Cerner code App Gallery, helps providers document with specificity, make problem lists more meaningful, and improve HCC coding. This webinar will review the challenges and bottlenecks of clinical documentation and problem list management and discuss how streamlined workflows within Cerner Millennium can help reduce clinician HIT burden.

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


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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I was curious about the performance of Teladoc Health stock since announced its acquisition of Livongo for $18.5 billion in August 2020. Shares are down 30% versus the Dow’s 27% increase, with the company’s market capitalization now being barely more than the acquisition price of what was touted to be a $37 billion merger (the company is now worth $21 billion). TDOC shares are 56% off their 52-week high. The company lost $134 million in Q2.

Definitive Healthcare’s IPO performance and its resulting multi-billion dollar valuation has piqued curiosity about what the company does. Check out an analysis of its IPO filings by Redpoint Ventures principal Jacob Effron, MBA, who describes how the company has succeeded in offering prospect analytics to support healthcare sales for life sciences and healthcare IT companies as well as provider analytics for health systems.


People

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Insurer technology vendor HealthEdge hires Anshul Pande, MS (Stanford Children’s Health) as SVP of R&D and Angelo Devita, MPH (Avalon Healthcare Solutions) as VP of enterprise account management.

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Dennis Sutterfield, MS (Temple Health) joins SUNY Downstate Medical Center as VP/CIO.

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RCM services vendor Savista (formerly NThrive’s Services Division)  hires Jan Grimm (Butterfly Network) as CEO and board member. He replaces Brenda Cline, who has retired and joined the company’s board.


COVID-19

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US COVID-19 numbers continue to improve, with cases, test positivity rate, and hospitalizations all down significantly in the past week, although deaths remain at nearly 2,000 per day.

CDC recommends boosters for some people who have received the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine – those over 65, people who live in institutional settings, those with underlying medical conditions, and frontline workers. CDC did not follow its vaccine advisory’s recommendation to exclude at-risk workers. The advisory panel has not yet been tasked with reviewing the need for boosters for the Moderna and J&J vaccines, but some panel members urged a mix-and-match strategy in which those recipients could receive a Pfizer-BioNTech booster.

Anti-vaccine Facebook groups are urging people to remove their relatives with COVID-19 out of hospital ICUs, which they say are blocking the use of “miracle cures” such as ivermectin. Groups whose members have realized that ivermectin is not effective are now touting a “protocol” that includes gargling with iodine and inhaling hydrogen peroxide. A Harvard professor calls it “vigilante medicine” that is “being practiced by laypeople who are reading groups created by other laypeople in echo chambers and silos that, likely, someone in the anti-vax movement is profiting from.” Meanwhile, horse owners can’t get ivermectin paste for de-worming because it is being bought up from feed stores for human use.

A startup launched in October 2020 that runs a dozen COVID-19 testing sites is charging $380 for the same at-home rapid test that drugstores sell over the counter for $20 and for which Medicare pays $41. Omaha-based GS Labs, which has performed 500,000 of the tests, is using a CARES Act requirement that insurers pay a provider’s cash price. The company says it prices are high because it offers premium service, such as fast appointments and a nursing hotline. It is owned by a real estate and investment firm. UPMC Health Plan noticed that 91% of patient claims that included both an antigen and an antibody test came from GS Labs, insurance payment for which is also guaranteed by CARES Act.


Other

I don’t usually post job openings, but this one sounds good. CVS Health is recruiting for a physician to serve as senior medical director of health informatics.


Sponsor Updates

  • Nuance announces that it has again ranked highest in customer satisfaction by Black Book Research for AI-powered CDI, speech recognition, and clinical intelligence solutions.
  • The HCI Group releases a new DGTL Voices Podcast, “Future of Music in this DGTL Age.”
  • The Stevie Awards names Quil Health CEO Carina Edwards a Gold Winner for Most Innovative Woman of the Year in Healthcare.
  • RCxRules partners with Athenahealth’s Marketplace Program.
  • Spirion marks its 15th anniversary with a Great Place to Work Certification.
  • The Patient Safety & Quality Healthcare Podcast features Talkdesk VP of Strategy Greg Miller, “The Digital Front Door of Healthcare.”
  • Vyne Medical releases a new podcast, “Connecting with Today’s Consumer: A Closer Look into the State of Healthcare Consumerism.”

Blog Posts


Contacts

Mr. H, Lorre, Jenn, Dr. Jayne.
Get HIStalk updates.
Send news or rumors.
Contact us.

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News 9/24/21

September 23, 2021 News No Comments

Top News

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Bloomberg reports that Veritas Capital and Elliott Management are considering a sale or IPO of Athenahealth at a $20 billion valuation.

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Veritas and Evergreen Coast Capital – a subsidiary of hedge fund operator Elliott — acquired the company for $5.7 billion in cash in late 2018, Veritas had previously acquired GE Healthcare’s value-based care solutions group for $1 billion and named it Virence Health, which was then merged with newly acquired Athenahealth, retiring the Virence Health name.  

Former Athenahealth CEO Jonathan Bush is among several CEOs who have lost their jobs following campaigns by activist investor Elliott. He reportedly received $142 million when the company was acquired five months after his departure.


Reader Comments

From Adjudicator: “Re: conference poll. Was it a surprise that HIMSS was the preferred conference of readers over HLTH by a two-to-one margin?” Not really. My thoughts:

  • Limited sample size (353 respondents) and a self-selected HIStalk poll audience probably favors the longstanding HIMSS conference, particularly among HIMSS exhibitors who have not attended HLTH.
  • HLTH is the venture-funded new kid on the block, but it has convened only a few conferences (I think it has offered just two in-person events). It made a shockingly ill-advised mistake in convening its first conference right after HIMSS18 in the same city (Las Vegas), then skipped to the fall of 2019 in hopes of avoiding the competition. It draws big-name presenters outside the usual HIMSS focus on health systems.
  • The direct competitor to HIMSS will be the VIVE conference, which is being co-developed by HLTH and CHIME. Its first conference will be in March 2022. Its model is a bit different, however, in offering a “Hosted Buyer Program” that corrals suppliers and prospects together in a matchmaking program in which buyers attend free if they agree to attend at least eight assigned vendor meetings. HIMSS is an unabashedly commercial boat show, but VIVE takes it to the next level in a way that I’ve seen work fairly well in other healthcare-focused conferences. The question there is scalability – how many health IT decision-makers will attend and buy product to draw exhibitor dollars? Does it really need to be a national, big-attendee blowout to support that format? CIOs switching their allegiance from HIMSS to VIVE and the CHIME Fall Forum would be tough on the HIMSS conference.
  • Nobody knows how the forced trend of virtual conferences will affect in-person attendance. Will those formerly large in-person audiences seek to reconnect in person, or will they reconsider the value of spending time and money to attend an in-person conference to sit in front of speakers who un-ironically extol the virtues of virtual healthcare?
  • We also don’t know how the cancellation of HIMSS20 and the underwhelming HIMSS21 will affect future HIMSS conferences. I can’t say I have a lot of enthusiasm for doing it all over again in March, I get zero value from being a HIMSS member, and their high executive salaries and purely revenue-seeking actions seem a bit tone deaf (although to be fair, I feel the same way about most healthcare systems). I wouldn’t attend if I weren’t covering it for HIStalk.
  • It’s not hard to see the appeal or value of user group meetings. All they are missing is the opportunity for broader networking with users of other systems.

HIStalk Announcements and Requests

The HIMSS22 exhibit hall floor plan shows just over 500 vendors signed up so far, with the big-booth exhibitors being Optum, Epic, and Cerner. I’ll probably ask companies about their HIMSS22 plans in the next few weeks since the conference kicks off in 171 days.


Webinars

October 6 (Wednesday) 2 ET. “Solving Patient Experience Challenges Through a Strong Digital Front Door.” Sponsor: Avtex. Presenters: Mike Pietig, VP of healthcare experience, Avtex; Jamey Shiels, MBA, VP of consumer experience, Advocate Aurora Health; Chad Thorpe, care ambassador, DispatchHealth. Patients expect healthcare providers to offer them the same digital experience they get when banking, shopping, and traveling. This webinar will describe how two leading healthcare providers created digital front doors that exceed patient expectations, improve patient outcomes, drive loyalty and acquisition, and future-proof their growth strategies in competitive markets.

October 6 (Wednesday) 1 ET. “A New, Streamlined Approach to Documentation and Problem List Management in Cerner Millennium.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Deepak Pillai, MD, physician informaticist, IMO; David Arco, product manager, IMO; Nicole Douglas, senior product marketing manager, IMO. The IMO Core CSmart app, which is available for Cerner Millennium in the Cerner code App Gallery, helps providers document with specificity, make problem lists more meaningful, and improve HCC coding. This webinar will review the challenges and bottlenecks of clinical documentation and problem list management and discuss how streamlined workflows within Cerner Millennium can help reduce clinician HIT burden.

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


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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Analytics platform vendor Clearsense acquires Compellon, which offers a plug-and-play AI predictive modeling solution.

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Users of Apple mobile devices can download and store their COVID-19 immunization and test results in Wallet with the just-released IOS 15.1 update.

Verily, the life sciences unit of Alphabet, is reportedly planning to separate from Google’s technology in preparation for an eventual IPO.

Ascension Technologies will outsource the jobs of 330 remote tech support employees in the areas of application and platforms, collaboration and end-user engineering, network and telecom, and field services.


Sales

  • TransformativeMed and partner Red One Medical will provide the VA Puget Sound Health System – Seattle Division with the CORES Work Manager suite of clinical decision support tools and the CORES Diabetes Module.
  • Cancer Treatment Centers of America connects to the MedAllies HISP platform to develop technology to meet CMS requirements to send patient event notifications to primary and post-acute care providers.
  • UC San Diego Health chooses the Unifier platform of Dicom Systems for imaging interoperability.

People

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St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital hires Shannon Dean, MD (UW Health) as CMIO.

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Medical imaging AI vendor Mirada names Mark Crockett, MD (Verge Health) as chief medical officer.


Announcements and Implementations

Renown Health announces that it has answered 57,000 questions and completed 700 COVID-19 risk assessments via its rollout of Loyal’s AI healthcare chatbot and live chat solution on its website.

Researchers at MIT and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center develop MedKnowts, a problem-oriented EHR side panel that displays a patient information card and offers a note-taking editor with auto-complete for clinical terms.

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Salesforce launches Health Cloud 2.0, which includes a COVID-19 management platform for in-person events, contact tracing, vaccine management, and virtual visits. The product is not specific to healthcare organizations and will be available to all businesses. I’m confused by the product name since Salesforce Health Cloud offers solutions for providers and other healthcare organizations. The announcement’s link to Health Cloud 2.0 refers to a Health Cloud page that doesn’t mention anything new. UPDATE: I reached out to the company, which explained that Health Cloud hasn’t changed, while Health Cloud 2.0 is a bundle that includes Health Cloud plus the new COVID-related functionality. My confusion remains.

Intrado adds SMS-based referral management, along with integration with Cerner and Meditech, to its HouseCalls Pro digital patient engagement platform.

Children’s Health of Orange County joins Cerner’s Learning Health Network research consortium.

Meditech will hold its Physician and CIO Forum September 29-30 as both an in-person and virtual event.

Canada-based Well Health Technologies will acquire specialty EHR vendor Aware MD for up to $8 million.

Bizmatics enhances its PrognoCIS EHR to support the correct scheduling of virtual visits based on the individual time zones of patient and provider.

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Prescription discounter GoodRx rolls out GoodRx Health, which will answer the most commonly Googled questions about health. The company says the new site is a cross between NerdWallet and Wirecutter for healthcare.

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A new KLAS report on data and analytics platforms finds that Cerner, Epic, and Health Catalyst have the deepest adoption among established analytics solutions, while Innovaccer has high adoption as a newcomer. Dimensional Insight customers report high satisfaction and see the company as a partner, while Cerner has a 40% overall dissatisfaction rate mostly due to overpromising. Click the graphic above to see KLAS’s data and analytics platform framework and the underlying components.


Government and Politics

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A GAO review of the DoD’s Cerner implementation finds that the system is live in six of 24 planned waves, system performance has improved, and early issues have been addressed. However, testing and resolution of the issues it raises remain unresolved, users say the training system doesn’t match production, and system change information isn’t being disseminated well.


COVID-19

FDA approves booster shots of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for those 65 and over who received their second dose at least six months earlier and for high-risk people. CDC’s advisory committee is meeting this week to determine those high-risk criteria and to discuss how the new recommendation affects people who received the Moderna or J&J vaccines.


Other

University of Toledo Medical Center will use its $4 million fiscal year surplus to create a $21 million capital reserve that will help pay for its Epic implementation, among other projects.


Sponsor Updates

  • Wolters Kluwer Health will combine its Medi-Span Clinical drug-screening solution with Ecaresoft’s Cirrus EHR to offer a fully integrated NPHIES-compliant solution to providers in the Middle East.
  • The HCI Group will sponsor the CHIME Innovation Summit September 23-24 in Chicago.
  • Everbridge CEO David Meredith wins the 2021 Globee CEO World Award in the visionary category.
  • Health Catalyst CFO Bryan Hunt and SVP of Investor Relations Adam Brown will present during the Cantor Global Healthcare Conference September 30.
  • Healthwise celebrates its staff in a new video, “Celebrating Healthwise Yesterday & Today.”
  • Intrado offers new capabilities within its HouseCalls Pro digital patient engagement platform, including automated referral management.
  • Kyruus opens registration for its Annual Thought Leadership on Access Symposium November 9-10.
  • National Coordinator Micky Tripathi will keynote Meditech’s 2021 Physician and CIO Forum September 29-30.

Blog Posts


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News 9/22/21

September 21, 2021 News 2 Comments

Top News

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Former Teladoc executive David Sides joins NextGen Healthcare as president and CEO. Sides spent 17 years as SVP of worldwide consulting at Cerner, and had a shorter, more recent stint as president and CEO of Streamline Health.


Webinars

October 6 (Wednesday) 2 ET. “Solving Patient Experience Challenges Through a Strong Digital Front Door.” Sponsor: Avtex. Presenters: Mike Pietig, VP of healthcare experience, Avtex; Jamey Shiels, MBA, VP of consumer experience, Advocate Aurora Health; Chad Thorpe, care ambassador, DispatchHealth. Patients expect healthcare providers to offer them the same digital experience they get when banking, shopping, and traveling. This webinar will describe how two leading healthcare providers created digital front doors that exceed patient expectations, improve patient outcomes, drive loyalty and acquisition, and future-proof their growth strategies in competitive markets.

October 6 (Wednesday) 1 ET.  “A New, Streamlined Approach to Documentation and Problem List Management in Cerner Millennium.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Deepak Pillai, MD, physician informaticist, IMO; David Arco, product manager, IMO; Nicole Douglas, senior product marketing manager, IMO. The IMO Core CSmart app, which is available for Cerner Millennium in the Cerner code App Gallery, helps providers document with specificity, make problem lists more meaningful, and improve HCC coding. This webinar will review the challenges and bottlenecks of clinical documentation and problem list management and discuss how streamlined workflows within Cerner Millennium can help reduce clinician HIT burden.

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


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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RCM vendor AGS Health acquires EZDI, a clinical documentation improvement, computer-assisted coding, and auditing business based in Louisville, KY.

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Xealth raises $24 million in a Series B funding round led by Advocate Aurora Enterprises, bringing its total raised to $53 million. The Providence Health & Services spin-off has developed software to help providers find and prescribe digital health apps and programs.

Clearlake Capital Group launches the Vive Collective, a program to help foster and potentially invest in digital health companies. Clearlake’s portfolio includes Bamboo Health (the newly merged and rebranded PatientPing/Appriss Health), NThrive, and Symplr.

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Pager secures $70 million in financing. The company has developed virtual care navigation and collaboration software that it markets to providers, payers, and employers.

Surgical data analytics vendor Caresyntax adds $30 million to its $100 million Series C investment round, bringing the company’s total funding to $208 million.

Flywheel, a medical research data management company, raises $22 million in a Series C funding round led by 8VC. It has also acquired Radiologics, an imaging research data management and analytics business based in St. Louis.

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Enterprise virtual care vendor EVisit raises $45 million in a Series B funding round. The Arizona-based company plans to nearly double its workforce in the coming months.


People

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Jeff Gartland (Anthem) joins Relatient as CEO. He takes over from Michele Perry, who will become vice chairwoman.


Sales

  • The VA Puget Sound Health System’s Seattle Division will implement TransformativeMed’s Core Work Manager clinical decision support tools and diabetes module.
  • Dignity Health’s Yavapai Regional Medical Center (AZ) selects digital front door technology from Phunware.
  • Nicklaus Children’s Health System (FL) will deploy wayfinding technology from Gozio Health.

Announcements and Implementations

InterSystems announces GA of its Iris FHIR Accelerator Service for storing and retrieving FHIR data.

Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare (TN) develops a remote patient monitoring program for COVID-19 patients using MD Revolution’s clinical experts and RevUp technology.

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SCL Health implements Nuance Dragon Ambient Experience automated clinical documentation software for its telehealth and in-person exams for cardiology, orthopedics, and primary care across its facilities in Colorado and Montana.


COVID-19

Ellkay resolves a software programming glitch that mistakenly inflated the state of Vermont’s COVID-19 case count by 109 and delayed the reporting of positive test results to 237 patients. Ellkay’s analysis also determined that the slow-down may have impacted reporting in several other states.

COVID-19 has overtaken the 1918 Spanish flu as the deadliest disease event in US history, with 675,400 Americans succumbing to the disease.

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Pfizer reports favorable results in its trial of a COVID-19 vaccine for 5 to 11 year-old children.


Other

Apple’s latest operating system gives Health app users the ability to share health data with their providers through EHRs. Six vendors are participating in the initial launch of the feature, first announced this summer, including Cerner and Allscripts. Pilots with several provider groups have shown the data-sharing feature to be well received by patients monitoring their blood pressure from home. 


Sponsor Updates

  • Arcadia CMO Rich Park, MD and VP of Enterprise Partnerships Anna Basevich will present at the NAACOS Fall 2021 Conference October 1.
  • CereCore has been recognized by Securance Consulting as a Best Practice Meditech Infrastructure as a Service provider for more than five years running.
  • Cerner releases a new podcast, “Moving from data connectivity to real provider usability.”
  • CHIME releases a new Digital Health Leaders Podcast, “A Conversation with William Hudson, SVP and CIO, John Muir Health.”
  • Bluetree, Cerner, Clearwater, Divurgent, Optimum Healthcare IT, Imprivata, Clearsense, and the HCI Group will sponsor CHIME Fall Forum October 27-30 in San Diego.
  • CloudWave Director of Sales Engineering Mike Donahue will present at the Meditech Users Network Conference September 23.
  • CEO Magazine features Meditech International CEO Charlotte Jackson.
  • Chris O’Brien Lifehouse has become the first hospital in Australia to upgrade to Meditech Expanse.
  • CarePort parent company WellSky announces that former CMS administrator Seema Verma has joined its Board of Directors.

Blog Posts


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Morning Headlines 9/21/21

September 20, 2021 Headlines, News No Comments

NextGen Healthcare Appoints David Sides President and Chief Executive Officer

NextGen Healthcare names David Sides (Teladoc Health) president and CEO.

Oncology Analytics Announces Rebrand to OncoHealth

Oncology analytics and benefits management vendor Oncology Analytics changes its name to OncoHealth.

iOS 15 will give doctors a window into Apple Health app data

Apple’s latest operating system gives Iphone users the ability to share health data with their providers via EHRs.

Monday Morning Update 9/20/21

September 18, 2021 News 3 Comments

Top News

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Definitive Healthcare shares end the week at $48.99, up 81% from their IPO price Wednesday. The company’s valuation is $7 billion.


HIStalk Announcements and Requests

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Poll respondents value their vendor’s user group meeting more than any other conference, while HIMSS has twice the interest as HLTH. A couple of folks mentioned that they would have chosen CHIME Fall Forum if I had included it as a choice.

New poll to your right or here: Which technology will have the most impact on healthcare in the next five years? My list isn’t exhaustive, but it would have been a long poll otherwise.


Webinars

October 6 (Wednesday) 2 ET. “Solving Patient Experience Challenges Through a Strong Digital Front Door.” Sponsor: Avtex. Presenters: Mike Pietig, VP of healthcare experience, Avtex; Jamey Shiels, MBA, VP of consumer experience, Advocate Aurora Health; Chad Thorpe, care ambassador, DispatchHealth. Patients expect healthcare providers to offer them the same digital experience they get when banking, shopping, and traveling. This webinar will describe how two leading healthcare providers created digital front doors that exceed patient expectations, improve patient outcomes, drive loyalty and acquisition, and future-proof their growth strategies in competitive markets.

October 6 (Wednesday) 1 ET.  “A New, Streamlined Approach to Documentation and Problem List Management in Cerner Millennium.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Deepak Pillai, MD, physician informaticist, IMO; David Arco, product manager, IMO; Nicole Douglas, senior product marketing manager, IMO. The IMO Core CSmart app, which is available for Cerner Millennium in the Cerner code App Gallery, helps providers document with specificity, make problem lists more meaningful, and improve HCC coding. This webinar will review the challenges and bottlenecks of clinical documentation and problem list management and discuss how streamlined workflows within Cerner Millennium can help reduce clinician HIT burden.

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


Sales

  • US Dermatology Partners chooses the RCxRules Revenue Cycle Engine to automate charge import and review.

People

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Aaron Miri, MD (Dell Medical School, UT Health Austin) joins Baptist Health (FL) as SVP / chief digital officer / CIO.

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Wellbe hires Darcey Nett (DotCom Therapy) as chief growth officer.

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David Finn, MA (CynergisTek) joins CHIME as VP of affiliated professional groups.

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Christopher Logan (VMware) joins Censinet as SVP / chief security officer.

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Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare hires Patrick Woodard, MD, MHA (Renown Health) as VP/ chief digital officer.


Announcements and Implementations

In England, Royal Stoke University Hospital goes live with Vocera Badge in its ED.


Government and Politics

The Department of Justice files criminal charges against 138 defendants, 42 of them licensed medical professionals, for their alleged participation in healthcare fraud schemes that generated $1.4 billion. Telemedicine fraud contributed $1.1 billion of the total.


COVID-19

FDA’s vaccine advisory panel rejects the broad rollout of Pfizer vaccine booster shots, recommending their use only in patients who are over 65 or at high risk for infection. The panel said that despite White House plans to encourage booster shots for most people and Pfizer’s recommendation that they be approved, evidence shows that two shots protect people from hospitalization and death and that the goal should instead be to get more people vaccinated. FDA is not required to follow the committee’s recommendation and will announce its decision this week. The issue has raised opposing public viewpoints among FDA scientists who reviewed contradictory data from CDC, Pfizer, the government of Israel, and independent experts on whether a booster dose is needed.

St. Luke’s Health System (ID) won’t enforce its employee vaccination mandate because the state is under crisis standards of care and the health system can’t afford to lose employees.

The New York Times reports that the “nervous affluent” who can afford concierge medical services are having their COVID-19 antibody levels tested regularly even though experts warn that the number is mostly meaningless and the tests don’t measure the important T cell response. FDA doesn’t recommend such testing because the results may encourage some people to take fewer precautions. The article notes that concierge medicine providers are paid to do whatever the customer wants, even in the absence of medical evidence, while poor people have the opposite incentive in avoiding testing for fear that undesirable results could get them fired.


Other

Guardians accessed more than half the patient portal accounts of patients aged 13-18 years in an study of three children’s hospitals. Natural language processing was used to determine how many outboard portal messages were sent by guardians, as evidenced by referring to the child in the third person or containing phrases such as “my daughter.” The authors note that federal and state regulations require that a mechanism be provided to share information with adolescents without the knowledge of their guardians, but effectiveness is limited by these challenges: (a) institutions may not always configure the portal account correctly; (b) adolescents and their parents may not understand the portal’s design; (c) adolescents may voluntarily share their log-in with guardians; and (d) guardians may coerce the adolescent to provide portal access or may use their credentials without permission. They also note that limitations of NLP analysis, as well as inability to detect access in which guardians didn’t send messages, means that actual numbers are probably higher. They suggest that the perspectives of adolescents and guardians be studied to determine how they impact confidentiality.

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A UCSF review of national Epic data finds that patient-to-physician messages jumped as the pandemic began and remained at high levels through the January 2021 review period. Twitter comments pondered whether forced use of MyChart to participate in virtual visits drove the increase or whether virtual visits themselves result in more patient messages. It seems that quite a few interesting studies could be performed – the number of messages that were sent just before virtual visits, the number sent immediately after (suggesting that some need was unmet by the virtual visit), the number sent by first-time portal users, message count compared to the number of active portal users, the number of messages sent by patients of varying acuity or chronic condition levels, and message time of day that might indicate access problems.


Sponsor Updates

  • ChartSpan publishes a new white paper, “Follow the Money: Medicare’s New Gold Mine is Chronic Care Management.”
  • Nuance launches its AI-powered, cloud-based PowerScribe One radiology reporting platform and MPower Clinical Analytics in Australia and New Zealand.
  • OptimizeRx names Andy D’Silva SVP of corporate finance.
  • Netsmart has been inducted into the Kansas City Business Journal’s Hall of Champions after being recognized as a Champion of Business for three consecutive years.
  • EClinicalWorks releases a new podcast, “Caring is Sharing (Data) at Innova Primary Care.”
  • CHIME applauds the FTC’s actions to secure consumer health data.
  • Pure Storage appoints Operator Collective founder Mallun Yen to its Board of Directors.
  • RxRevu founder Carm Huntress will present “Staying True to Your Values During Massive Growth” on October 6 as part of Den Startup Week.
  • SOC Telemed announces that David Fletcher will become interim CFO upon the departure of Chris Knibb at the end of the year.
  • Spok Holdings postpones its Investor Day Program due to an ongoing strategic alternatives review process.
  • Summit Healthcare publishes a new client success story, “Doctors Community Hospital Continues Partnership with Summit Healthcare Post-Epic Migration.”
  • University of Alabama at Birmingham researchers feature their use of the TriNetX Research Network in “Advancing clinical research and population health with real-world data.”
  • West Monroe will invest $250 million in the expansion of its digital consulting services.
  • Zynx Health celebrates its 25th anniversary.

Blog Posts


Contacts

Mr. H, Lorre, Jenn, Dr. Jayne.
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News 9/17/21

September 16, 2021 News 2 Comments

Top News

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Shares of healthcare commercial data and analytics vendor Definitive Healthcare open at 38% above its IPO price on Wednesday and close for the day up 59%, valuing the company at $4 billion. DH shares rose another 9% Thursday.


Webinars

October 6 (Wednesday) 2 ET. “Solving Patient Experience Challenges Through a Strong Digital Front Door.” Sponsor: Avtex. Presenters: Mike Pietig, VP of healthcare experience, Avtex; Jamey Shiels, MBA, VP of consumer experience, Advocate Aurora Health; Chad Thorpe, care ambassador, DispatchHealth. Patients expect healthcare providers to offer them the same digital experience they get when banking, shopping, and traveling. This webinar will describe how two leading healthcare providers created digital front doors that exceed patient expectations, improve patient outcomes, drive loyalty and acquisition, and future-proof their growth strategies in competitive markets.

October 6 (Wednesday) 1 ET.  “A New, Streamlined Approach to Documentation and Problem List Management in Cerner Millennium.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: Deepak Pillai, MD, physician informaticist, IMO; David Arco, product manager, IMO; Nicole Douglas, senior product marketing manager, IMO. The IMO Core CSmart app, which is available for Cerner Millennium in the Cerner code App Gallery, helps providers document with specificity, make problem lists more meaningful, and improve HCC coding. This webinar will review the challenges and bottlenecks of clinical documentation and problem list management and discuss how streamlined workflows within Cerner Millennium can help reduce clinician HIT burden.

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


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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Health system digital marketing and CRM vendor Cured raises $10 million in a Series A funding round. The company’s founding team members all spent time at Epic.

Biopharma solutions vendor Syneos Health acquires StudyKIK, which offers tech-enabled clinical trials recruitment and operation tools.

Healthcare data exchange technology vendor Commure has reportedly raised $500 million in funding through a Series D round, valuing the company at $3.5 billion. 


Sales

  • Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust selects Hyland Healthcare’s OnBase content services platform.

People

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Healthcare benefits navigation and care coordination platform vendor Quantum Health hires Zane Burke (Livongo) as CEO and board member.

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Peter Embí, MD, MS (Regenstrief Institute) joins Vanderbilt University Medical Center as chair of its biomedical informatics department. He will also hold the title of senior VP for research and innovation.

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AdaptX hires Lisa Counsell, RN (Imprivata) as chief commercial officer.


Announcements and Implementations

Intermountain Healthcare and SCL Health sign a letter of intent to merge into a 33-hospital, $14 billion system.

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Penn Presbyterian Medical Center goes live on the PCare Ambulatory digital health and patient engagement system that was jointly developed by PCare and Quil. The system suggests next best action with personalized videos, articles, check-ins, and reminders for therapy, also supporting the participation of family and friends.

The first hospital goes live on a service from Ob Hospitalist Group  and SOC Telemed in which patients receive 24/7 onsite care from OBHG’s physicians and have access to SOC Telemed’s maternal-fetal medicine physicians.

The ProMedica health system launches its Healthcare Redefined Initiative, which includes social determinants of health, senior care, programs specific to its individual markets, and an innovation program.


Government and Politics

The Federal Trade Commission issues a notification that health app vendors must notify consumers if their health information is exposed. FTC, clarifying its Breach Notification Rule, says companies that aren’t covered entities under HIPAA are still accountable when sensitive health information is exposed. It also notes that sharing covered information without the individual’s permission constitutes a breach. FTC says the apps that are mostly likely to be affected by the update are those that track diseases, diagnoses, treatment, medications, fitness, fertility, sleep, mental health, and diet.

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The Department of Justice files a fraud complaint against a New York health insurance plan and its analytics company for overcharging Medicare Advantage. The now-closed data mining company DxID, owned by Independent Health Association of Buffalo, analyzed electronic medical records to find missed diagnoses to boost the insurer’s risk score. Another health plan that hired DxID to increase revenue billed $30 million new claims, many of which were not valid or supported by the medical record, such as depression and renal failure. The company pitched its services by requiring no upfront payments and instead taking 20% of paid claims worth tens of millions of dollars, which the whistleblower’s lawsuit described as “trolling patient medical records to gin up, in many cases, new diagnoses exclusively from information derived from impermissible sources.” Independent Health closed the company in June 2021.

A 55-year old Louisiana doctor who has claimed to have been a hired assassin and Medellin Cartel leader at 16 is charged with writing opioid prescriptions totaling 1 million doses for cash, resulting in $5 million in fraudulent insurance billings. Adrian Talbot, MD, JD operated a clinic but didn’t work there because he had a full-time VA job, so he left pre-filled, pre-signed prescriptions for employees to sell without examining the recipient. He self-published a bizarre book a few months back in which he says he’s working on a cure for Alzheimer’s.

FDA reorganizes its IT functions into the Office of Digital Transformation, with newly promoted Vid Desai serving as CEO with a budget of $750 million and staff of 2,500.


COVID-19

FDA meets this week to decide whether to approve the use of COVID-19 booster doses even as two of its top vaccine officials join a group of global scientists who say in a Lancet article that boosters aren’t needed. FDA is also facing pressure to approve doses for children.

The US hits a grim milestone as one of every 500 residents has died of COVID-19.

A KHN review finds that 26 states have permanently curtailed public health authority since the pandemic began. The most common actions were to prohibit mandate masks or quarantines and to ban COVID-19 vaccine mandates or proof of vaccination.

The New York Times finds that India’s government forced its scientists to downplay the possibility of a COVID-19 outbreak that eventually killed hundreds of thousands of people, suppressing and even falsifying data to support the re-election of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. A scientist who was reprimanded for his less-rosy predictions says, “Science is being used as a political weapon to forward the government narrative rather than help people.” A recent study estimates India’s COVID-deaths at 3 million, 10 times the official government number.

Idaho, which has one of the lowest rates for COVID-19 vaccination, implements Crisis Standards of Care statewide as hospitals are overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients.


Other

Financial Times reports that Houston Methodist hospitals are using Alexa-type voice assistant commands from Amazon Web Services in a prototype OR of the future. The system announces steps that need to be completed and records the results in the EHR. It also records audio of the procedure, with the patient’s permission, that it analyzes to present treatment options.

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Vanderbilt Clinical Informatics Center and its director Adam Wright, PhD publish an annual report covering its first year. A key project was its burnout reduction project Clickbusters, which evaluates Epic Best Practice Advisories to remove those that clinicians find unhelpful.


Sponsor Updates

  • LexisNexis human resources employees volunteer with Trees Atlanta.
  • First Databank publishes research led by two of their pharmacists that further refutes the concept of iodine allergies.
  • Gyant publishes a new case study, “Christus Health Launched Virtual Assistant Supporting Vaccinations Across Four States.”
  • Health Data Movers names Marissa Lewis (Invo HealthCare) and Peter Squire (Centauri Health Solutions) account managers.
  • Healthcare Growth Partners advises Symplr in its acquisition of Halo Health.
  • InterSystems will exhibit at the Hack MIT event September 18-19 in Cambridge, MA.
  • Jvion drives adoption of prescriptive intelligence and clinical intelligence with peer-reviewed results, platform integrations, and SDOH solutions.

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