Interesting fact that I’m assuming is true: 17 vendors represent 87% of providers live on EHRs. Keep in mind that so far 487 products have earned ONC-ATCB certification. This statistic comes from Thomas Tsang MD, ONC’s medical director of meaningful use and quality, who made the remark while speaking at last week’s RI Quality Institute Health IT Expo. He also noted that 68,780 primary care providers are now enrolled in the Medicare EHR Incentive Program.
AMA reports profits of $23.9 million for 2010, a 45% increase over the previous year. Membership fell about 5% to approximately 216,000.
PwC’s Health Research Institute predicts medical costs will increase 8% in 2011 and 8.5% in 2012. The report also notes that provider consolidation will continue and more costs will shift to Medicare and Medicaid.
e-MDs reports that its client Dr. Ben Brull is the first physician in Kansas to receive Meaningful Use funds from Medicare. Meanwhile, Greenway Medical says their client Childs Medical Clinic (AL) also picked up a big check.
Kent Rowe, a former GE Healthcare VP/GM and IDX sales VP, joins Culbert Healthcare Solutions as VP of information technology services. He will lead the team that serves the GE and Allscripts client base and will expand the company’s overall service line.
In fashion news, the New York Senate proposes a ban on physicians wearing long sleeves, ties, and watches in an attempt to reduce hospital-acquired infections. Critics of the legislation claim studies have failed to establish a link between contamination of clothing and patient infection.
Florida Pulmonary Consultants picks Benchmark Systems’ EMR/PM solution.
A big welcome to Gateway EDI, our newest HIStalk Practice sponsor. The St. Louis, MO-based EDI provider serves over 21,000 offices in all 50 states and more than 85,000 providers. Gateway submits to over 3,000 payers and also offers such services as electronic eligibility, remittance, patient statements, and credit card processing. Gateway’s customer support stats are impressive: 98% of calls are answered by a real person and 92% of customer questions are answered on the first call. In addition, clients using Gateway’s claim processing tools typically lower their average error rate below seven percent. Gateway is also sponsoring HIStalk, so a double thank you for the support.
The Minneapolis paper profiles 3M’s Mobile Physician Solution, which allows providers to track patient clinical data, dictate, and capture charges. It was introduced in October and is licensed for $2,000 a year per user.
athenahealth is named a 2011 Best Place to Work in Massachusetts by The Boston Business Journal. Results were based on employee-satisfaction surveys.
Most curious: a Illinois man is arrested for impersonating a doctor and running a medical office without a license. George Fleming ran an advertisement for his “services” in a Bulgarian newspaper. A “patient” visited the office and claims Fleming inserted what appeared to be toothpicks into his chest. He then gave him a bottle of "Prosperous Farmer Dietary Supplements," whose label had a 2002 expiration date. Fleming then asked the patient for $150 cash. The patient called the police.