CVS Health partners with HHS to offer the myhealthfinder tool at MinuteClinic.com and www.cvs.com/myhealthfinder. The tool offers recommendations from government-recognized clinical experts for the personalized preventive services patients should receive based on their age and gender, many of which are conveniently offered at MinuteClinic. CVS is the first national partner to work with HHS on a technology project of this nature. In announcing the partnership, National Coordinator Karen DeSalvo, MD noted that, “This tool supports physicians and the care team, and is an easy way to help people understand the recommended preventive services that are often available to them at no out of pocket cost thanks to the Affordable Care Act.”
June 9 (Tuesday) 11:30 ET. “Successful HIEs DO Exist: Best Practices for Care Coordination.” Sponsored by Medicity. Presenters: Dan Paoletti, CEO, Ohio Health Information Partnership; Brian Ahier, director of standards and government affairs, Medicity. Not all HIEs are dead – some, like Ohio’s CliniSync HIE, are evolving and forging a new path to successful care coordination. Brian Ahier will explain how HIEs can help providers move to value-based care models, emphasizing Meaningful Use Stage 3 and FHIR. Dan Paoletti will provide best practices in describing CliniSync’s journey to success in serving 6,000 primary care physicians, 141 hospitals, and and 290 long-term and post-acute care facilities. Attendees will learn how to use a phased approach, establish client champions, help providers meet MU Stage 2, create a provider email directory, deliver care coordination tools, and drive continued ROI.
Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock
HCA adds over 800 physicians to its network in the area of San Jose, CA through its acquisition of PM company Pacific Partners Management Services. Included in the acquisition is the Santa Clara County Independent Practice Association, which PPMSI manages. Both groups will be rolled into HCA’s Physician Services Group.
Announcements and Implementations
Hughston Clinic (GA) implements the TrainerRx software platform throughout its network of orthopaedic and trauma facilities. The consumer-facing app provides physicians treating musculoskeletal injuries with diagnosis-specific and individualized step-by-step rehabilitation and recovery treatment plans using audio, video and text-driven computer algorithms.
Practice Fusion incorporates the TrialCard copay savings and free trial offers solution into its EHR, enabling users to transmit savings offers to pharmacies along with prescriptions.
Fred Mindermann (FlexLife) joins Solekai Systems as vice president and general manager of its Connected Health practice.
Government and Politics
ONC releases a nine-page data brief on patient perceptions of the privacy and security of medical records. Among the findings:
- Less than 1 in 10 individuals would withhold information from their providers because of privacy and security concerns.
- Privacy and security concerns are no different between individuals whose providers have paper medical records and those whose providers have an EHR.
- Patient concerns regarding sending medical records between health care providers do not differ by whether they are sent electronically or by fax.
- Patient support for EHRs and HIE is high despite potential privacy or security concerns.
Members of the House Ways and Means health subcommittee write to CMS recommending ways to smoothly transition to ICD-10, including expanding end-to-end testing beyond the current 2,500 providers, developing a back-up plan for how CMS will process claims if it can’t handle the new codes, and clarifying whether or not less granular codes will be accepted after October 1. “With the Healthcare.gov debacle a vivid reminder of how technologically complex projects can go wrong despite assurances,” wrote the committee members, “we urge the agency to make information available to providers and the broader public that helps to address concerns.”
Research and Innovation
Researchers with the National Bureau of Economic Research find that EHR adoption is not associated with EHR-driven upcoding, a conclusion at odds with industry assumptions that physicians will go with the most profitable code for a given procedure if given the chance by their EHR.
The inaugural Healthcare Consumerism Index from Alegeus Technologies finds that nearly 80 percent of the 5,000 consumers surveyed were more “engaged and thoughtful” about buying a TV than they were about making healthcare decisions. The results lend some credibility to ONC’s decision to potentially scale back patient engagement thresholds as part of Meaningful Use, but also highlight the work all industry stakeholders will need to do in order to educate consumers about their increasing healthcare responsibilities.
An Israeli business website reports that American Well has received tens of millions of investment dollars from Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, marking the Israel-based company’s first official foray into digital health. American Well was founded by Israeli brothers Ido and Roy Schoenberg, MDs, and a connection was made to Teva when the sons of Ido and a Teva executive traveled to the U.S. as part of a university delegation. It was either serendipity or pure coincidence that led the delegation to tour American Well’s offices. (You can read my recent interview with American Well CEO Roy Schoenberg, MD here.)
Maven, a digital health clinic for women, completes its Surescripts certification through DoseSpots, a Massachusetts-based company that offers white-label e-prescribing solutions.
Net Medical Xpress Solutions proudly announces that one of its physicians performed several telemedicine consults while on vacation in the Himalayan foothills of northern India. The phrase “remote consultation” has finally been validated.
This article highlights the difference telepsychiatry is making in Idaho, which has one of the highest suicide rates in the nation. The state passed legislation this year requiring its medical licensing boards to develop rules for providing telemedicine. Close to 7,000 physicians are licensed to practice telemedicine in Idaho, but only about a 100 psychiatrists are located within the its borders.
A study in the British Journal of Sports Medicine finds that employees who tap away at their keyboards all day should stand and/or stroll at least two hours during the workday, ideally working up to four hours each day. The effects of too much sedentary living even have researchers advocating for standing desks, mandated breaks, and discussion about it between physicians and their patients. Perhaps we’ll see it pop up as a box to click in future EHRs.