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News 10/19/17

October 19, 2017 News No Comments

Top News

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Athenahealth announces “a fundamental refocusing of the entire company,” which includes a 9-percent workforce reduction that it hopes will generate $100 million to $115 million in savings by year’s end. Layoffs are expected to include sales, marketing, administrative, and end user-focused staff. The news came as part of the company’s report on Q3 earnings: $304.6 million in revenue, with a downward adjustment of annual revenue to between $1.2 billion and $1.22 billion. The spate of news isn’t that surprising, given the shakeup activist investor Elliott Management has incited, and Athena’s subsequent focus on streamlining operations in hopes of ramping up hospital implementations.


Webinars

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October 24 (Tuesday) 1:00 ET. “Improve Care and Save Clinician Time by Streamlining Specialty Drug Prescribing.” Sponsored by: ZappRx. Presenter: Jeremy Feldman, MD, director, pulmonary hypertension and advanced lung disease program and medical director of research, Arizona Pulmonary Specialists. Clinicians spend an average of 20 minutes to prescribe a single specialty drug and untold extra hours each month completing prior authorization (PA) paperwork to get patients the medications they need. This webinar will describe how Arizona Pulmonary Specialists automated the inefficient specialty drug ordering process to improve patient care while saving its clinicians time.

October 25 (Wednesday) 1:00 ET. “Delivering the Healthcare Pricing Transparency that Consumers are Demanding.” Sponsored by: Health Catalyst. Presenter: Gene Thompson, director, Health City Cayman Islands. Health systems are unlike every other major consumer category in not providing upfront pricing information. Learn how one health system has developed predictable, transparent bundled pricing for most major specialties. Attendees will gain insight into the importance of their quality measures and their use of actual daily procedure costing rather than allocated costs. They will also learn about the strategic risk of other market participants competing with single bundled pricing. The organization’s director will expand how its years-long process is enabling healthcare delivery reform.

October 26 (Thursday) 2:00 ET. “Is your EHR limiting your success in value-based care?” Sponsored by: Philips Wellcentive. Presenters: Lindsey Bates, market director of compliance, Philips Wellcentive; Greg Fulton, industry and public policy lead, Philips Wellcentive. No single technology solution will solve every problem, so ensuring you select the ones most aligned to meet your strategic goals can be the difference between thriving or merely surviving. From quality reporting to analytics to measures building, developing a comprehensive healthcare strategy that will support your journey in population health and value-base care programs is the foundation of success. Join Philips Wellcentive for our upcoming interactive webinar, where we’ll help you evolve ahead of the industry, setting the right strategic goals and getting the most out of your technology solutions.

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November 8 (Wednesday) 1:00 ET. “How Clinically Integrated Networks Can Overcome the Technical Challenges to Data-Sharing.” Sponsored by: Liaison Technologies. Presenters: Dominick Mack, MD, executive medical director, Georgia Health Information Technology Extension Center and Georgia Health Connect, director, National Center for Primary Care, and associate professor, Morehouse School of Medicine;  Gary Palgon, VP of  healthcare and life sciences solutions, Liaison Technologies. This webinar will describe how Georgia Heath Connect connects clinically integrated networks to hospitals and small and rural practices, helping providers in medically underserved communities meet MACRA requirements by providing technology, technology support, and education that accelerates regulatory compliance and improves outcomes.

Previous webinars are on our YouTube channel. Contact Lorre for information.


Announcements and Implementations

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Medical and dental compliance company PCIHIPAA offers OfficeSafe ID credit monitoring and restoration services to its employees and customers. The company plans to include it as part of its HIPAA compliance and data-breach program.

The Shawnee Mission School District in Kansas brings in Marathon Health to help it open and run an onsite clinic for 3,500 employees. The PriorityOne Health Center offers primary and urgent care, plus health coaching.

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Compass Professional Health Services updates its Health Pro Cloud app for employer-based healthcare plan members to include real-time, out-of-pocket estimates for in-network procedures. The new SpendTracker features will help users remain aware of how close they are to their deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums.


People

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Healthcare Administrative Partners promotes Maria Calamaro to executive advisor, CMS Quality Payment Program.

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Betsy Knorr (DST HealthSolutions) joins HealthCare Information Management as COO.


Research and Innovation

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Ahead of open enrollment, physician rating and review site Vitals releases physician rankings based on patient feedback across major metropolitan areas. Forty percent of PCPs received five-star ratings, while 23 percent received one-star ratings. Boston, San Francisco, and Minneapolis had the highest percentages of five-star PCPs, while San Francisco, Denver, and Oakland, CA had similar figures for pediatricians. Over a third of all providers on the Vitals site were found to have low ratings of one or two stars.


Telemedicine

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24/7 Kid Doc relocates its headquarters to Savannah, GA to focus on its school-based clients in Georgia. I assume the company decided to moved from North Carolina, given its decision to stop marketing its services to schools there after state lawmakers failed to enact telemedicine-friendly billing laws.


Other

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Iliuliuk Family and Health Services in Alaska launches an investigation into an August ransomware attack that temporarily blocked employee access to computers. Patient information doesn’t seem to have been compromised, though a pending final report will uncover the extent of the breach.

Thankfully, I can’t yet fully relate to this scenario.


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From the PRM Pro 10/19/17

October 19, 2017 From the PRM Pro No Comments

Trusting Tech: Integrating Technology While Managing Patient Relationships
By Jim Higgins

It’s the peak of the fall 2017 convention/conference season. Healthcare professionals have spread out across the country, educating themselves and checking out all kinds of health IT vendors and solutions. One thing that always comes up, regardless of specialty, is, “How can I integrate technology in a way that doesn’t make life harder for my staff, threaten compliance, or damage the personal relationships we have developed with our patients?”

Integrating technology with regular practice procedures is often met with concern and skepticism from healthcare practices. Fears about compliance issues and the challenges of implementing technology keep many practices from making the shift. Experts agree that the healthcare field is notoriously slow when it comes to the integration of new technology.

Yet patients are increasingly demanding the integration of technology into their healthcare experiences. According to a recent study by Accenture, 65 percent of health citizens globally believe that the benefits of being able to access medical information electronically outweigh the risk of privacy invasion. Of course, no one wants their privacy breached. But, citing security concerns probably won’t appease patients who don’t have much patience when it comes to getting what they want.

With such a large percentage of patients both desiring and trusting a shift to technological integration in healthcare services, practices now must adapt. Luckily, there are options today to ensure that everyone can get what they need. Practices don’t have to give up being compliant to accommodate changing patient expectations.

Embracing Changing Patient Expectations

Patient relationships are becoming increasingly complex. A generation ago, practices simply interacted with their patients in the office and then were done. Today’s patient relationships rely on more than just face-to-face communication — they also have a significant technological component. Just as patients communicate with friends and family via technology, they want to reach out to their healthcare offices through technology as well.

In addition to this shift to technology, patients are also developing more of a retail-oriented mindset. For example, according to the Patient-Provider Relationship study, one in three patients say they will switch practices in the next couple of years. A concerning (and growing) percentage of these patients are switching for service issues. Never has it been more imperative to meet the shifting demands of your patients—including technology integration.

The most prevalent reasons practices are afraid to integrate technology into their patient relationships can be summarized as follows:

  1. Fear of change.
  2. Concerns about technology and compliance.
  3. Inability to build personal relationships through a screen.

Let’s discuss each of these challenges in detail and explore the solutions to these very legitimate concerns.

Challenge #1: Fear of Change

Practices often become so comfortable with “how things have always been done” that they can actually stand in their own way. This is particularly true when it comes to emerging technologies.

Solution: Ensure that each member of the staff is mentally prepared for the improvements that are coming. Using the word “improvement” is a better way to look at it than just “change;” it’s change in a positive direction. Although it is inevitable that some of your staff will be more open to new ideas than others, the commitment to improve can help motivate people. The most effective way to make any new technology a success is to involve everyone throughout the implementation process. When people are involved, it becomes “their” change and they are motivated to make the implementation a success.

Challenge #2: Technology and Compliance

HIPAA, TCPA, Can-SPAM, MACRA, OSHA. The list alone is daunting. Along with the fear of change, the fear of not being compliant with the myriad of required rules and regulations is one of the biggest deterrents to adopting new technologies.

Solution: Ask the right questions when investigating new technology. It is possible to be compliant when integrating technology into your patient relationships. Modern technology allows you to communicate with patients via email and text message while remaining compliant. You simply must address these issues when looking at the change.

Challenge #3: Building Personal Relationships Through Technology

Personal relationships almost feel like the antithesis of technology. We tend to think of technology as cold and unfeeling, and it is true — technology can be a deterrent to warm relationships. But if patients prefer to communicate via high-tech means, it is important to learn how to build relationships virtually. People are comfortable having conversations via text. It’s all about the interactions.

Solution: Select the most popular technologies and then personalize wherever possible. Texting is the most used form of communication in the world. Seventy-six percent of patients prefer texting to phone calls. Texting your patients just makes sense, but simply texting is not enough. Personalize the types of messages, the tone of the messages, and their frequency to better develop your relationships. Personalization is not only critical to success, but very possible with today’s technologies.

It’s time to stop holding on to old ways of doing things and move into the future. Technology holds the key to improving patient relationships. Trust tech to do the job it was designed to do; you may be pleasantly surprised with the results.

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Jim Higgins is the CEO and founder of Solutionreach in Lehi, UT.


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News 10/18/17

October 18, 2017 News No Comments

Top News

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Medsphere will merge with Stockell Healthcare Systems later this month, with Stockell becoming a division of Medsphere. The companies have partnered on implementations in the past, offering customers Medsphere’s OpenVista EHR in combination with Stockell’s RCM technology and services. Medsphere’s ties to physician practices include its acquisition of ambulatory-focused health IT company ChartLogic last year.


Webinars

October 19 (Thursday) noon ET. “Understanding Enterprise Health Clouds with Forrester:  What can they do for you, and how do you choose the right one?” Sponsored by: Salesforce. Presenters: Joshua Newman, MD, chief medical officer, Salesforce; Kate McCarthy, senior analyst, Forrester. McCarthy will demystify industry solutions while offering insights from her recent Forrester report on enterprise health clouds. Newman and customers from leading healthcare organizations will share insights on how they drive efficiencies, manage patient and member journeys, and connect the entire healthcare ecosystem on the Salesforce platform.

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October 24 (Tuesday) 1:00 ET. “Improve Care and Save Clinician Time by Streamlining Specialty Drug Prescribing.” Sponsored by: ZappRx. Presenter: Jeremy Feldman, MD, director, pulmonary hypertension and advanced lung disease program and medical director of research, Arizona Pulmonary Specialists. Clinicians spend an average of 20 minutes to prescribe a single specialty drug and untold extra hours each month completing prior authorization (PA) paperwork to get patients the medications they need. This webinar will describe how Arizona Pulmonary Specialists automated the inefficient specialty drug ordering process to improve patient care while saving its clinicians time.

October 25 (Wednesday) 1:00 ET. “Delivering the Healthcare Pricing Transparency that Consumers are Demanding.” Sponsored by: Health Catalyst. Presenter: Gene Thompson, director, Health City Cayman Islands. Health systems are unlike every other major consumer category in not providing upfront pricing information. Learn how one health system has developed predictable, transparent bundled pricing for most major specialties. Attendees will gain insight into the importance of their quality measures and their use of actual daily procedure costing rather than allocated costs. They will also learn about the strategic risk of other market participants competing with single bundled pricing. The organization’s director will expand how its years-long process is enabling healthcare delivery reform.

October 26 (Thursday) 2:00 ET. “Is your EHR limiting your success in value-based care?” Sponsored by: Philips Wellcentive. Presenters: Lindsey Bates, market director of compliance, Philips Wellcentive; Greg Fulton, industry and public policy lead, Philips Wellcentive. No single technology solution will solve every problem, so ensuring you select the ones most aligned to meet your strategic goals can be the difference between thriving or merely surviving. From quality reporting to analytics to measures building, developing a comprehensive healthcare strategy that will support your journey in population health and value-base care programs is the foundation of success. Join Philips Wellcentive for our upcoming interactive webinar, where we’ll help you evolve ahead of the industry, setting the right strategic goals and getting the most out of your technology solutions.

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November 8 (Wednesday) 1:00 ET. “How Clinically Integrated Networks Can Overcome the Technical Challenges to Data-Sharing.” Sponsored by: Liaison Technologies. Presenters: Dominick Mack, MD, executive medical director, Georgia Health Information Technology Extension Center and Georgia Health Connect, director, National Center for Primary Care, and associate professor, Morehouse School of Medicine;  Gary Palgon, VP of  healthcare and life sciences solutions, Liaison Technologies. This webinar will describe how Georgia Heath Connect connects clinically integrated networks to hospitals and small and rural practices, helping providers in medically underserved communities meet MACRA requirements by providing technology, technology support, and education that accelerates regulatory compliance and improves outcomes.

Previous webinars are on our YouTube channel. Contact Lorre for information.


Announcements and Implementations

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Hudson Valley Fertility (NY) selects email encryption and HIPAA compliance tools from Identillect Technologies.

In an effort to offer its customers cloud-based security and HIPAA compliance, Eccovia Solutions moves its ClientTrack care coordination technology to the Microsoft Azure government cloud.


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stocks

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The Texas Medical Association distributes $350,000 of its $1 million Disaster Relief Fund to 28 practices affected by Hurricane Harvey. “My office was totally destroyed when the roof went and flooded everything,” says one recipient. “Ruined five computers, one server, patient charts, all furniture. Have to start over after 28 years here.” A TMA member survey conducted last month found that 65 percent had to temporarily close their practices, while 35 percent had to revert to reduced hours and/or services.


Government and Politics

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The State of Ohio launches the Ohio Opioid Technology Challenge to help lawmakers and public health officials identify and potentially develop innovations to combat the opioid epidemic. The competition will award $8 million as it progresses through three stages, the first of which kicks off today.

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Mona Khanna, MD quits her role as a Disaster Medical Assistance Team medical officer in Puerto Rico after witnessing a nurse sneak in two manicurists, a massage therapist, and a hair stylist to Centro Medico Hospital in San Juan to give DMAT members a “spa day” while on the clock. “I have served our nation with honor and privilege as a DMAT member for almost 20 years,” she wrote in a letter announcing her resignation. “I find this gross misuse of taxpayer funds and abuse of our privileged positions personally abhorrent. I can no longer serve with honor on a team, with the enabling of the team leader/commander, that abuses the privilege of stewardship of taxpayer funds … I do firmly believe that taxpayers have a right to know how their monies are being used/abused. After all, I am one.”

Caravan Health CEO Lynn Barr believes that exempting two-thirds of providers from the MIPS program, as put forth in the program’s proposed rule, will ultimately have negative consequences that will far outweigh their initial relief at sidestepping burdensome reporting requirements. “There will no longer be financial incentives for clinicians to purchase, upgrade, or maintain their EHRs,” she writes. Providers who are excluded from MIPS will not be required to use EHRs or be eligible for EHR incentives. Additionally, if clinicians are excluded from MIPS, their payment is essentially frozen at 2015 levels, with annual increases between zero and .75 percent — not enough to keep up with inflation. By 2026, a clinician’s purchasing power will decline by at least 18 percent if they are excluded from MIPS, assuming a two percent inflation rate.”


Telemedicine

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Vision-focused telemedicine company Opternative sues online prescription glasses retailer Warby Parker for allegedly using its online eye exam technology to develop its own Prescription Check software. The two companies have had close ties since 2013, when their talks of a potential partnership resulted in Warby Parker signing several non-disclosure agreements related Opternative’s software.


Other

New York City-based payer Amida Care finds itself in hot HIPAA water after it mails out HIV-related information to 6,000 members in envelopes with transparent windows.


Sponsor Updates

  • Aprima will exhibit at the Academy of Integrative Pain Management Annual Meeting October 19-21 in San Diego.

Blog Posts


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News 10/17/17

October 17, 2017 News No Comments

Top News

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The HHS Office of the Inspector General releases its analysis of 428 MSSP ACOs over the first three years of the program. The 43-page report proclaims right off the bat that such ACOs have shown potential for reducing spending  and improving quality. Extremely high-level takeaways include:

  • Reduction in spending compared to benchmarks.
  • Net spending reduction of $1 billion.
  • The propensity of more established ACOs to achieve greater cuts in spending.
  • Performance improvement on 82 percent of the program’s 33 quality measures.
  • Greater performance on 81 percent of measures compared to fee-for-service providers.  

Physician-only ACOs decreased over time, though the organizations made more PCPs and specialists available to their beneficiaries as the three-year period wore on – a fact that, in my mind, points to a correlation between access to quality primary care and spending reductions.

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A Health Affairs editorial points out that the ACO “savings” achievement comes with context, and should be further broken down into utilization, payer, and society savings to determine the true value. Plus, they somewhat pale in comparison to the achievements of their commercial counterparts. Despite this last caveat, the authors believe further testing of the ACO model should continue because:

  • Providers can benefit financially because ACOs generate efficiencies.
  • ACOs do generate some savings, with those likely to grow over time.
  • Beneficiaries enjoy lower premiums and improved quality.

Webinars

October 19 (Thursday) noon ET. “Understanding Enterprise Health Clouds with Forrester:  What can they do for you, and how do you choose the right one?” Sponsored by: Salesforce. Presenters: Joshua Newman, MD, chief medical officer, Salesforce; Kate McCarthy, senior analyst, Forrester. McCarthy will demystify industry solutions while offering insights from her recent Forrester report on enterprise health clouds. Newman and customers from leading healthcare organizations will share insights on how they drive efficiencies, manage patient and member journeys, and connect the entire healthcare ecosystem on the Salesforce platform.

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October 24 (Tuesday) 1:00 ET. “Improve Care and Save Clinician Time by Streamlining Specialty Drug Prescribing.” Sponsored by: ZappRx. Presenter: Jeremy Feldman, MD, director, pulmonary hypertension and advanced lung disease program and medical director of research, Arizona Pulmonary Specialists. Clinicians spend an average of 20 minutes to prescribe a single specialty drug and untold extra hours each month completing prior authorization (PA) paperwork to get patients the medications they need. This webinar will describe how Arizona Pulmonary Specialists automated the inefficient specialty drug ordering process to improve patient care while saving its clinicians time.

October 25 (Wednesday) 1:00 ET. “Delivering the Healthcare Pricing Transparency that Consumers are Demanding.” Sponsored by: Health Catalyst. Presenter: Gene Thompson, director, Health City Cayman Islands. Health systems are unlike every other major consumer category in not providing upfront pricing information. Learn how one health system has developed predictable, transparent bundled pricing for most major specialties. Attendees will gain insight into the importance of their quality measures and their use of actual daily procedure costing rather than allocated costs. They will also learn about the strategic risk of other market participants competing with single bundled pricing. The organization’s director will expand how its years-long process is enabling healthcare delivery reform.

October 26 (Thursday) 2:00 ET. “Is your EHR limiting your success in value-based care?” Sponsored by: Philips Wellcentive. Presenters: Lindsey Bates, market director of compliance, Philips Wellcentive; Greg Fulton, industry and public policy lead, Philips Wellcentive. No single technology solution will solve every problem, so ensuring you select the ones most aligned to meet your strategic goals can be the difference between thriving or merely surviving. From quality reporting to analytics to measures building, developing a comprehensive healthcare strategy that will support your journey in population health and value-base care programs is the foundation of success. Join Philips Wellcentive for our upcoming interactive webinar, where we’ll help you evolve ahead of the industry, setting the right strategic goals and getting the most out of your technology solutions.

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November 8 (Wednesday) 1:00 ET. “How Clinically Integrated Networks Can Overcome the Technical Challenges to Data-Sharing.” Sponsored by: Liaison Technologies. Presenters: Dominick Mack, MD, executive medical director, Georgia Health Information Technology Extension Center and Georgia Health Connect, director, National Center for Primary Care, and associate professor, Morehouse School of Medicine;  Gary Palgon, VP of  healthcare and life sciences solutions, Liaison Technologies. This webinar will describe how Georgia Heath Connect connects clinically integrated networks to hospitals and small and rural practices, helping providers in medically underserved communities meet MACRA requirements by providing technology, technology support, and education that accelerates regulatory compliance and improves outcomes.

Previous webinars are on our YouTube channel. Contact Lorre for information.


Announcements and Implementations

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After a two-year evaluation period, Pine Rest Christian Mental Health Services selects Epic. A full roll out is expected across its eight locations in Iowa and Michigan by June 2018.

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Pediatric-focused software vendor CubHub Systems develops an app and Web-based tools to help home-based nurses and therapists better coordinate care and track outcomes.

ZocDoc integrates its consumer-facing online scheduling capabilities with Allscripts scheduling software.


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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Newbridge Spine & Pain Center (VA and MD) becomes part of the Privia Medical Group network, enabling it to take advantage of Privia’s reimbursement programs, and its patient portal, EHR, and billing software.

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New York-based HIE HealtheConnections relocates to larger office space in Syracuse to accommodate future expansion plans. Founded in 2010, the company has grown to 40 employees.

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Walgreens will bring 300 technology jobs at its office in Chicago as part of its plan to develop a technology center of excellence. The new center will house the company’s digital, mobile, e-commerce, and retail pharmacy technology teams. Walgreens employs over 3,500 people in Chicago, where it got its start as a drugstore in 1901.

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Allscripts signs a lease renewal and expansion at its One Burlington Woods office in Burlington, MA.


People

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Jerriene Cordova (Ideal Life) joins MobileHelp Healthcare as director of telehealth solutions.

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Cybersecurity company ISign International appoints Al Holloway (The Independent Physicians Association of America) to its advisory board.


Other

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Bassett Family Practice (VA), an FQHC in Martinsville, VA, informs patients of a data breach stemming from the August theft of an unencrypted laptop from an employee’s car. The practice had apparently shuffled PHI on to several laptops while it transitioned to a new IT system.

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Zookeepers call on Kimberly Harmon, MD the head physician of the University of Washington’s football team, to help diagnose a leg ailment in Jumoke, a 275-pound female gorilla who’d gotten into a scuffle with a younger gorilla. “Who better to call than the head physician of one of the nation’s top-ranked football programs?” quips Darin Collins, the zoo’s director of animal health. “We were very fortunate she used her expertise for Jumoke’s welfare.”


Contacts

Jenn, Mr. H, Lorre

More news: HIStalk, HIStalk Connect.

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Become a sponsor.

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News 10/16/17

October 16, 2017 News No Comments

Top News

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EHR-related medical malpractice claims continue to rise, according to the latest analysis from The Doctors Company. The malpractice insurer’s study of 66 such claims between July 2014 and December 2016 found that end-user factors like copying and pasting notes were found in 58 percent of the claims, while system factors such as those above were found in 50 percent. Drug or clinical decision support alert failure seems to be the only type of system factor that has decreased over the last 10 years. The silver lining for physicians is that fewer EHR-related claims were filed pertaining to practices and ambulatory surgery centers.


Webinars

October 19 (Thursday) noon ET. “Understanding Enterprise Health Clouds with Forrester:  What can they do for you, and how do you choose the right one?” Sponsored by: Salesforce. Presenters: Joshua Newman, MD, chief medical officer, Salesforce; Kate McCarthy, senior analyst, Forrester. McCarthy will demystify industry solutions while offering insights from her recent Forrester report on enterprise health clouds. Newman and customers from leading healthcare organizations will share insights on how they drive efficiencies, manage patient and member journeys, and connect the entire healthcare ecosystem on the Salesforce platform.

image

October 24 (Tuesday) 1:00 ET. “Improve Care and Save Clinician Time by Streamlining Specialty Drug Prescribing.” Sponsored by: ZappRx. Presenter: Jeremy Feldman, MD, director, pulmonary hypertension and advanced lung disease program and medical director of research, Arizona Pulmonary Specialists. Clinicians spend an average of 20 minutes to prescribe a single specialty drug and untold extra hours each month completing prior authorization (PA) paperwork to get patients the medications they need. This webinar will describe how Arizona Pulmonary Specialists automated the inefficient specialty drug ordering process to improve patient care while saving its clinicians time.

October 25 (Wednesday) 1:00 ET. “Delivering the Healthcare Pricing Transparency that Consumers are Demanding.” Sponsored by: Health Catalyst. Presenter: Gene Thompson, director, Health City Cayman Islands. Health systems are unlike every other major consumer category in not providing upfront pricing information. Learn how one health system has developed predictable, transparent bundled pricing for most major specialties. Attendees will gain insight into the importance of their quality measures and their use of actual daily procedure costing rather than allocated costs. They will also learn about the strategic risk of other market participants competing with single bundled pricing. The organization’s director will expand how its years-long process is enabling healthcare delivery reform.

October 26 (Thursday) 2:00 ET. “Is your EHR limiting your success in value-based care?” Sponsored by: Philips Wellcentive. Presenters: Lindsey Bates, market director of compliance, Philips Wellcentive; Greg Fulton, industry and public policy lead, Philips Wellcentive. No single technology solution will solve every problem, so ensuring you select the ones most aligned to meet your strategic goals can be the difference between thriving or merely surviving. From quality reporting to analytics to measures building, developing a comprehensive healthcare strategy that will support your journey in population health and value-base care programs is the foundation of success. Join Philips Wellcentive for our upcoming interactive webinar, where we’ll help you evolve ahead of the industry, setting the right strategic goals and getting the most out of your technology solutions.

image image

November 8 (Wednesday) 1:00 ET. “How Clinically Integrated Networks Can Overcome the Technical Challenges to Data-Sharing.” Sponsored by: Liaison Technologies. Presenters: Dominick Mack, MD, executive medical director, Georgia Health Information Technology Extension Center and Georgia Health Connect, director, National Center for Primary Care, and associate professor, Morehouse School of Medicine;  Gary Palgon, VP of  healthcare and life sciences solutions, Liaison Technologies. This webinar will describe how Georgia Heath Connect connects clinically integrated networks to hospitals and small and rural practices, helping providers in medically underserved communities meet MACRA requirements by providing technology, technology support, and education that accelerates regulatory compliance and improves outcomes.

Previous webinars are on our YouTube channel. Contact Lorre for information.


Announcements and Implementations

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CKM Healthcare adds a hand hygiene app to its line of infection prevention and control software. Part of its new IPaC Cloud platform, the app gives providers the ability to track and manage protocols for staff, and act on real-time feedback and analytics. 

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AMA launches the Integrated Health Model Initiative in an effort to help healthcare stakeholders develop a common data model they can use to organize and share information, address interoperability challenges, and eventually develop new patient care models. Initial efforts will focus on diabetes prevention, hypertension management, asthma status and patient goals, and defining wellness.

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PatientPop incorporates Google Posts into its practice marketing software, giving physicians the ability to share custom content – including appointment booking capabilities – in Google search results and maps.

CVS Health will add population health and analytics tools from Epic in an effort to work with physicians, payers, and patients on improving medication adherence. CVS, which already uses Epic in its MinuteClinics and Specialty care management programs, will leverage the new technology to offer real-time electronic prior authorization, prescription savings, and pharmacist access to care plans.


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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Charlotte, NC-based Eye Care Leaders purchases eye care-focused healthcare technology company IMedicWare for an undisclosed amount. IMedicWare founder and CEO Arun Kapur will head up ECL’s line of EHR, PM, and software for ophthalmic and optometric practices and ambulatory surgery centers.

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MTBC secures a $5 million line of credit from Silicon Valley Bank. The Somerset, NJ-based company, fresh off the nearly nationwide rollout of its new TalkEHR, plans to use the financing for general corporate development.

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Dermatologist Erum Ilyas, MD launches a line of women’s wear that incorporates UPF 50 in every made-in-the-USA garment. “For me, creating this clothing line is blending an aesthetic [with] functionality. This is in many ways the essence of what I do as a dermatologist — merging art and science in a practical way,” Ilyas says. She is working on funneling a portion of the proceeds from each sale to nonprofit Dress for Success, which helps women in need with resources and job placement.


People

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The American Board of Family Medicine appoints Warren Newton, MD (North Carolina Area Health Education Center and UNC) president and CEO. Newton will succeed James Puffer, MD when he retires next year.

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Laureen Segall (ZirMed) joins Hiteks as director of products and compliance.


Telemedicine

Medtronic Care Management Services will incorporate American Well’s telemedicine services into its remote patient monitoring software for home-based care.


Research and Innovation

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Unintended disclosure incidents top the list of healthcare data breaches for the first nine months of 2017 – more than double that of hacks or malware. Unintended disclosures and insider incidents were the only two categories to see an increase since 2015. Human error (including willful maliciousness) had a hand in 70 percent of all causes, proving that more often than not, employees can be their own worst enemies.


Other

Man’s best friend may just help him lead a longer life: Researchers with the Human Animal Bond Research Institute find that bringing pets into primary care conversations can help physicians build rapport with their patients. An analysis of 225 pet conversations revealed that PCPs gained a better understanding of their patients, including home life and other determinants of health, and helped them incorporate pets into care plans. 


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