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News 9/29/21

September 29, 2021 News No Comments

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HRSA awards $1 billion to 1,292 health centers across the country for capital improvements and equipment purchases including telemedicine technology.


HIStalk Practice Musings

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There’s been some interesting chatter around the Walmart Health/Epic news over at HIStalk2.com. Reader Elizabeth H.H. Holmes observed: “I think Walmart is a lot more interesting as a market entrant than previous tech giants. Walmart has plenty of IT acumen, and they have a lot more experience with retail and logistics than the others. The optimist in me sees the unique potential for Walmart to help combat social determinants of health or provide better access to primary care. The skeptic in me sees the potential for Walmart to also go all-in on rent seeking behavior that drags down the medical industrial complex. Wherever they go I have a hunch that Walmart will stick around much longer than the others who have tried.”

That got me to thinking about my recent visit to my Walmart Health’s dental clinic for a $25 cleaning (without insurance). The hygienist and I got to talking about how much she likes her job. She mentioned that she enjoys having the latest technology to work with. (The dental clinic had ultra-modern X-ray machines my previous dentist did not.) She also told me that working there has made her realize that the profession has failed its patients in terms of making services too expensive. She’s found it very rewarding to take care of people who previously hadn’t been able to afford routine dental care.

I think Walmart’s foray into clinic-based and virtual care will definitely succeed in markets like my somewhat rural area where patients need affordable, easily accessible care. At the very least, Walmart and the “tech giants” are making the “medical industrial complex” wake up to the fact that there’s a different way to bring healthcare to consumers.

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I’m not sure that companies like CrowdHealth would be able to raise the $6 million it just did had non-healthcare entities like Walmart disrupted the status quo. The tech-based insurance startup offers healthcare coverage for $175 a month that includes unlimited virtual care, annual wellness visits, discounted prescriptions, and physician quality scores.


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

Austin, TX-based medical billing company EqualizeRCM acquires competitor Practice Resource Network for an undisclosed sum.

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TelaCare Health Solutions acquires the assets of ViewMyID Health, a membership-based health data management service.

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Collabrity Health launches as a member-based HIE services company.


Announcements and Implementations

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Care communication company Updox announces GA of mobile patient payment capabilities using software from PaySimple.

Professional Medical Corp., and independent physician organization based in Michigan, implements Persivia’s CareSpace virtual care and population health technology across its risk-sharing programs with multiple payers.


Other

Coos County Family Health Services in New Hampshire resumes normal IT operations after a ransomware attack on September 20 forced it to take its systems offline for several days.

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This Harvard Business Review article calls out the healthcare industry for placing too much importance on (and investment in) process-based, technology-enabled primary care to the detriment of the physician-patient relationship:

“Checklists and templates may bring value for specific services, such as ordering a mammogram or administering vaccines. But the emphasis on discrete services and processes should not come at the expense of timely access to comprehensive longitudinal care with a physician you know and trust; we must not lose sight of the long-term outcomes in the quality and cost of care that should be the priority. In fact, I often joke that consciousness is a good place to draw the line: By all means use a checklist during surgery or in the ICU, but if your patients are awake and talking, listen to them.”


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News 9/27/21

September 27, 2021 News No Comments

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Walmart will implement Epic across all of its health and wellness business lines, beginning early next year with four new Health centers in Florida.

The Walmart Health clinic in my neck of the woods had been using Athenahealth and Orchard for labs when it first opened in 2019.


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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Pearl Health raises $18 million in a Series A funding round. The company helps primary care physicians manage risk in Medicare programs with proprietary technology designed to help them access best-fit, risk-based arrangements, and clinical data and workflow support; ensure financial stability; and maintain independence. The Pearl Health team includes numerous veterans of Athenahealth and Oscar Health.


Announcements and Implementations

Washington, DC-based behavioral health provider Community Connections selects the SmartCare EHR from Streamline Healthcare Solutions.

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Medical office co-space company MedCoShare prepares to open a 21-office facility in New Jersey. Its first, in Philadelphia, filled to near capacity within a year of opening.

GenieMD adds online prescription ordering and delivery capabilities from Vytal to its white-label telemedicine services.

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Primary and urgent care company Carbon Health develops technology for employers that will enable them to securely collect, store, and report employee COVID-19 vaccination and testing information. Carbon Health has rolled out several COVID-19-related testing and vaccination programs over the last 18 months, including a mass vaccination program for the City of Los Angeles, and at-home and in-clinic testing for symptomatic patients and those preparing to travel.

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Google adds new healthcare-related features to Search and Maps.


Government and Politics

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ONC releases new research on patient portal use. A few highlights:

  • About six in 10 patients were offered access to their patient portal and nearly 40 percent accessed their record at least once in 2020.
  • Nearly four in 10 portal users accessed their portal through a smartphone health app in 2020.
  • Nearly a third of portal users downloaded their medical record last year – this proportion has nearly doubled since 2017.
  • Top patient reasons for not accessing their portals have remained consistent since 2017 – a perceived lack of need, a preference for gleaning information via a face-to-face conversation with a provider, and privacy and security concerns.

Other

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No secure messaging needed: The local news covers the boisterous “You are pregnant!” announcement the staff of Coastal Fertility Medical Center (TX) make over the phone to patients whose pregnancy tests come back positive.

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Coos County Family Health Services recovers from a ransomware last week that took its phone, computer, and e-mail systems offline.


Sponsor Updates

  • Healthwise celebrates its staff in a new video, “Celebrating Healthwise Yesterday & Today.”

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News 9/22/21

September 22, 2021 News No Comments

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Care coordination and social services referral company Unite Us acquires NowPow, which offers a similar community care and services referral platform.

The acquisition comes just over a month after Unite Us announced its acquisition of analytics-focused Carrot 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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Alpha Medical, a chat-based telemedicine company focused on women’s health, raises $24 million in a Series B round. It has raised $35 million since launching four years ago. The consumer-focused startup plans to begin offering its services to payers and employers.


Government and Politics

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HHS awards $73 million to 10 academic institutions as part of its Public Health Informatics & Technology Workforce Development Program. Overseen by ONC, the program aims to bolster public health IT efforts, improve COVID-19 data collection, and increase the presence of underrepresented communities within the public health IT workforce.


Other

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Family Medical Center of Michigan pays Ukraine-based ransomware attackers $30,000 to regain control of encrypted financial files. FMC paid the ransom a week after the breach was detected, and then waited two weeks to receive the encryption key. The provider’s cybersecurity firm advised paying the ransom as part of a strategy to define the scope of the hack and what information may have been compromised.


Sponsor Updates

Blog Posts


Contacts

Jenn, Mr. H, Lorre

More news: HIStalk.

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News 9/20/21

September 20, 2021 News No Comments

Top News

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NextGen Healthcare names David Sides (Teladoc Health) 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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Digital physical therapy company Hinge Health acquires Wrnch, which has developed 3-D motion-tracking technology to capture full body movement. The San Francisco-based company, which raised $300 million in January, says it now has the largest computer vision team in digital health.

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The Portland business paper profiles Shelley Bailey and her fertility-focused telemedicine startup Famlee, which she describes as a “step therapy before IVF kicks in.” The service offers at-home labs, clinical treatment, and medication delivery through its app.


People

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Primavera Health names Nicholas Duran (Florida Association of Free and Charitable Clinics) president and CEO. Duran is also a member of the Florida House of Representatives.

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Medical records retrieval company Medchart hires Kevin Callahan (Coinbase) as VP of product design.

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98point6 co-founder and Chairman Jeff Greenstein becomes interim CEO after the unexpected departure of co-founder Robbie Cape.


Announcements and Implementations

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MyTelemedicine adds primary care to its virtual care services.

Radiology Associates in Arkansas implements Rad AI’s technology for generating customized radiology report impressions and consensus guideline recommendations.


Other

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The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services notifies the public of a cyberattack that occurred in May. Several DHHS systems were taken offline for several months as a result of the attack, including the state’s Electronic Vital Records System.

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In the UK, Emma Richardson takes up wing walking to raise money for her local GP’s office and church. Richardson, who lives with several debilitating health conditions that have contributed to her near blindness, was inspired by Sir Captain Tom Moore’s fundraising walk around his garden last year as he approached his 100th birthday.


Sponsor Updates

  • EClinicalWorks releases a new podcast, “Caring is Sharing (Data) at Innova Primary Care.”

Blog Posts


Contacts

Jenn, Mr. H, Lorre

More news: HIStalk.

Get HIStalk Practice updates.
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News 9/15/21

September 15, 2021 News No Comments

Top News

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Women’s healthcare provider Tia raises $100 million in a Series B funding round led by Lone Pine Capital. It has raised $132 million since launching in 2017.

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The New York City-based company will use the new funding to expand its membership-based virtual and in-person services, and enter new markets like San Francisco.

Tia reports that more than 60% of its care is delivered virtually.


Webinars

September 16 (Thursday) 1 ET. “Patient Acquisition and Retention: The Future of Omnichannel Virtual Assistants.” Sponsor: Orbita. Presenters: Harris Hunt, SVP growth product, Cancer Treatment Centers of America; Patty Riskind, MBA, CEO, Orbita; Nathan Treloar, MSc, co-founder and COO, Orbita. Consumers want the same digital healthcare experience from healthcare that they get in online shopping, banking, and booking reservations, and the pandemic has ramped up the patient and provider need for frictionless access to healthcare resources and services. Health systems can improve patient acquisition and retention with the help of omnichannel virtual assistants that engage and delight. Discover how to open and enhance healthcare’s digital front door to offer care that goes beyond expectations.

September 16 (Thursday) 1 ET. “ICD-10-CM 2022 Updates and Regulatory Readiness.” Sponsor: Intelligent Medical Objects. Presenters: June Bronnert, MSHI, RHIA, VP global clinical services, IMO; Theresa Rihanek, MHA, RHIA, mapping manager, IMO; Julie Glasgow, MD, clinical terminologist, IMO. IMO’s top coding professionals and thought leaders will discuss the coding changes in the yearly update to allow your organization to prepare for a smooth transition and avoid negative impacts to the bottom line. The presenters will review new, revised, and deleted codes; highlight revisions to ICD-10-CM index and tabular; discuss changes within Official Coding Guidelines, and review modifier changes.

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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DuPage Medical Group, Chicago’s largest independent physician group, will change its name to Duly Health and Care, reflecting its expansion beyond DuPage County. The group, which experienced a nearly week-long network outage in July, has raised $1.7 billion.


Announcements and Implementations

Northwest Treatment in Oregon implements EnSoftek’s DrCloudEHR.


Other

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Practicing what they preach: Mental healthcare startup Rose Health shuts down for a week so that its employees can rest and recharge (while still being paid) before the company embarks on raising a $5 million Series A funding round. Rose Health, which currently serves 30 physician groups, is also preparing to pilot its platform with several ACOs, coordinated care providers, and health systems. Founder and CEO Kavi Misri stresses that “As a mental health company, we want to practice what we preach and even though we are losing a week of operations, we will gain benefit for recharged, refreshed Rose team members who will be ready to take on Q4 as we onboard these large practices as well as focus on raising a $5 million Series A.”

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Patients express frustration and disbelief when they find out that Gastroenterology Consultants in Houston waited nearly seven months to notify them of a January data breach, and that the practice didn’t receive any proof that patient data had been deleted after a resolution had been negotiated. As one patient put it, “

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While this tweet is no doubt reflective of physicians working within UCSF Health, I wonder if physicians working in smaller clinical environments have experienced the same thing. I’d love to hear from readers who have or who are currently dealing with how to make this work from a clinical and business standpoint.


Sponsor Updates

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Jenn, Mr. H, Lorre

More news: HIStalk.

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