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News 7/1/20

July 1, 2020 News No Comments

Top News

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Ambulatory-focused remote patient monitoring startup Optimize.health announces a $3.5 million pre-pandemic seed round led by Bonfire Ventures.

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The Seattle-based company offers turn-key RPM programs that include software, devices, and support. It got its start several years ago as Pillsy, which offered an Internet-connected medication adherence device and accompanying software before co-founder and CEO Jeff LeBrun pivoted the product to remote patient monitoring.


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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Simply Speak raises $1.1 million in seed funding to further develop its AI-powered virtual scribe software for telemedicine encounters.


Announcements and Implementations

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Nevada Eye Physicians implements NextGen Virtual Visits.

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San Antonio Orthopaedic Specialists selects AMP Recover’s remote patient monitoring software to help post-op patients recover at home.

Premom adds telemedicine capabilities to its ovulation-tracking app.


People

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Tabatha Erck (Amplifon) joins Austin-based care company Remedy as COO.

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Care coordination, management, and remote monitoring vendor Noteworth names Jennifer Haas (Oracle) EVP of sales and marketing.


Other

The Taskforce on Telehealth Policy, recently convened by the American Telemedicine Association, Alliance for Connected Care, and National Committee for Quality Assurance, seeks public comment on topics related to cost, program integrity, and quality. Comments are due July 9, and will help the taskforce work with policymakers on the safe, effective, and efficient adoption of telehealth.


Sponsor Updates

Blog Posts


Contacts

Jenn, Mr. H, Lorre

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News 6/29/20

June 29, 2020 News No Comments

Top News

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Senior-focused primary care company ChenMed announces plans to open 15 new medical centers over the next several months. It attributes its ability to stay viable during the pandemic to its flexibility: It transitioned its proprietary EHR to the cloud in January, and nearly all of its in-person appointments to virtual visits in just one week.


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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Online health and wellness company Ro sees record revenue in the first half of 2020 as homebound patients take advantage of its telemedicine and prescription delivery services, which have seen a 130% jump since launching in March. The three year-old company offers digital health clinics for men’s health, women’s health, and smoking cessation.


People

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Provation promotes Linda Buan to CTO.


Announcements and Implementations

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United Skin Specialists (MN) selects Encoda’s ECM workflow and analytics software.

Safety Net Connect adds e-referral, e-consult, and virtual visit capabilities to its clinical and administrative Converge software.

Virtual care practice HubMD leverages telemedicine training and support from Wise Healthcare to assist over 500 PCPs in 88 affiliated clinics.

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The State of Idaho will link its PDMP with provider EHRs and pharmacy systems using Appriss Health’s PMP Gateway technology.

Telemedicine and testing company MyCOVIDMD selects compliance startup Posture to help it implement a HIPAA security and privacy program.


Research and Innovation

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New data from Phreesia customers shows that in-person visits to physician practices are still well below where they were a year ago, though they are rebounding a bit from earlier in the pandemic. The biggest declines are seen in pediatrics, pulmonology, and surgical specialties. Conversely, virtual visits are beginning to decline, though they are still well above annual averages. Smaller practices have been hit hardest, with declines being steeper and rebounds fewer in groups with one to five physicians.


Other

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Health Affairs authors posit several financial scenarios for primary care practices in light of COVID-19, estimating that they will lose over $65,000 per FTE from fee-for-service payments without any efforts to change their business models. They then point out that, “under relatively optimistic assumptions,” primary care practitioners will suffer a net loss of $15 billion.

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As a journalism major who emphasized in magazines, I am saddened but not surprised by the fact that magazines are seeing yet another blow to circulation, this time thanks to COVID-19. Bloomberg reports that medical offices and airlines are ditching print publications over fears they’ll transmit the virus to readers, despite the fact that health experts say the chance of infection in this way is highly unlikely. Still, as one South Carolina physician told the local news, “We’ve thrown out all the magazines. I mean, I wouldn’t touch one. It just seems like that’s a bad idea.”


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News 6/24/20

June 24, 2020 News No Comments

Top News

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Kidney care company Somatus raises $64 million in a Series C funding round, bringing its total raised to $105 million. The Virginia-based company offers providers and payers clinical and administrative tools, including analytics, to assist them with value-based care. 


HIStalk Practice Musings

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I’ve always been a stickler for a nicely made bed first thing in the morning, and so I’ll have to check out “Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life … and Maybe the World” by Admiral William H. McRaven – one of four books recommended in SailPoint’s latest Executive Book Club update. Chief Revenue Officer Matt Mills also recommends:

  • “When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing” by Daniel Pink.
  • “Principles: Life and Work” by Ray Dalio.
  • “21 Lessons for the 21st Century,” by Yuval Noah Harari.

Email me with your book club’s latest picks. I’d love to share what offices, practices, and friends are reading this summer.

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This puts my library’s curbside pick-up option to shame: A middle school librarian in Virginia sends her students books via drone to ensure they have access to literature while schools and libraries are closed.


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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Membership-based primary care company One Medical makes its Southeastern debut with the opening of an office in Atlanta. (I’d love to know what the company will offer in the way of its “own brand of authentic Atlanta hospitality,” as promised by a company rep.) It raised $245 million in its IPO at the beginning of the year. Shares are now trading around $32, up from their $14 debut.

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Bloomberg publishes a great profile of Walmart’s healthcare ambitions, focusing on the impact its full-fledged health clinics have had on its employees, customers, and bottom line. Several things stood out:

  • SVP Sean Slovenski leads the endeavor as president of health and wellness, having gained experience at Humana and a home health joint venture between Intel and GE Healthcare.
  • Slovenski says Walmart’s model lowers the cost of service delivery about 40% by reducing “all that administrative baloney.”
  • A physician at the clinic in Calhoun, Georgia, says she spends 25% less time on paperwork than she did while working at the local hospital.
  • The company operates 19 of its smaller Care Clinics in just three states. It hasn’t yet disclosed how many health clinics it plans to open.
  • Scheduling and billing software and services are handled by Zotec. (I learned during my visit to the clinic in Dallas, Georgia, last year that Athenahealth supplies their EHR.)

Announcements and Implementations

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New Brunswick Counseling Center, The Lennard Clinics, and Somerset Treatment Services implement TenEleven Group’s EHR with medication assisted treatment. The implementation was made possible through the State of New Jersey’s Promoting Interoperability Project, which helps substance use disorder providers finance and manage health IT projects.

DrChrono announces new capabilities that enable users to automatically scan patient IDs, medical documentation, and EOBs into its tablet-based EHR and practice management software using Smart Integration technology from Ricoh.

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Caremindr launches RPM Connect, an outsourcing service that assists practices with setting up and managing mobile remote patient monitoring programs.

The State of Delaware implements Appriss Health’s PMP Gateway technology, giving prescribers the ability to integrate their EHRs with the state’s prescription monitoring program.

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The Centers for Advanced Orthopaedics (MD) selects EHR, practice management, analytics, and payment technology from Modernizing Medicine.

The State of Maine will implement NIC’s RxGov PDMP this fall.

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CVS Health announces GA of Return Ready, a COVID-19 screening, testing, and analytics program that also offers digital tools for symptom monitoring and contact tracing.


Research and Innovation

A survey of 500 consumers finds that their telemedicine visits increased from 14% to 33% between March and June. Just 11% of respondents had engaged in a virtual visit before the pandemic was declared. Familiarity breeds receptiveness to telemedicine, as 26% say they’d be more likely to opt for virtual visits moving forward if they are with their regular physician. Only 11% would opt for a visit with a new provider.


Other

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It’s refreshing and a bit strange to come across news of a medical group expanding, rather than furloughing employees or shutting down altogether: Mayfield Brain & Spine seems to have weathered the COVID-19 storm, investing more than $1 million in its move to a larger office in Cincinnati.


Sponsor Updates

  • Capita Healthcare Decisions adds Healthwise’s evidence-based information to its Salus Universal patient engagement and relationship software.
  • Healthwise receives five Digital Health Awards during the Health Information Resource Center’s 2020 spring competition.

Blog Posts


Contacts

Jenn, Mr. H, Lorre

More news: HIStalk.

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News 6/22/20

June 22, 2020 News No Comments

Top News

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Virtual physiotherapy startup Kaia Health raises $26 million in a Series B funding round led by Optum Ventures, Idinvest, and Capital300. The German company will use the financing to scale its operations in the US, where it has gained a continuously stronger foothold since raising $19 million in a Series A round in early 2019.


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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Walmart will open its third and fourth health clinics this month, bringing its total in Georgia to three. The fourth, in Arkansas, will feature a smaller footprint and different layout. The retailer plans to open additional clinics in Georgia later this year.

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Hoy Health CEO Mario Anglada discusses the struggles the bilingual healthcare company has worked through to stay afloat during the pandemic. Surprised by the lack of interest from investors, especially given the COVID-19-induced surge in telemedicine utilization, the company resorted unsuccessfully to crowdfunding in an effort to offer its recently launched telemedicine service for free. “We’ve seen a very interesting movement of investors who said, ‘Listen, I would love to invest in you, but the reality is there’s a lot of really prime deals that I can tap into and deploy my capital there,’” Anglada says. “It’s a bit frustrating … where you’re the perfect fit for the solution but everybody’s trying to create artificially lowball offers.”


Announcements and Implementations

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Envision Pain Management (NC) selects RCM software and services from MTBC’s CareCloud subsidiary.

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Capital Women’s Care (MD) implements virtual visit technology from NextGen.

The Spine Center in Chicago rolls out telemedicine services from Doxy.me.


Other

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A new healthcare vertical seems to be springing up, as tech companies bring return-to-work COVID-19 apps to market for employers. Kyla, for example, has launched a service that combines on-site testing with an app that offers screening, monitoring, and telemedicine.

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The local paper profiles healthcare pricing comparison and bundled service startup HealthMe Technology, launched by orthopedist Michael Havig in 2018 to give self-pay patients an easier way to compare, schedule, and pay for orthopedic procedural costs. The company now offers a pricing and payment tool that can be added to a practice’s website, as well as its flagship digital marketplace. It plans to soon offer patient payment plans, and expand to other specialties.


Contacts

Jenn, Mr. H, Lorre

More news: HIStalk.

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News 6/17/20

June 17, 2020 News No Comments

Top News

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MTBC acquires Meridian Medical Management for an undisclosed sum. Meridian offers EHR, RCM, and robotic process automation software.

MTBC CEO Stephen Snyder says the purchase is the company’s largest acquisition to date. It acquired EHR and practice management vendor CareCloud for $36 million in January.


Webinars

June 18 (Thursday) 12:30 ET. “Understanding the ONC’s Final Rule: Using FHIR HL7 for Successful EHR Integrations.” Sponsor: Newfire Global Partners. Presenters: Bob Salitsky, healthcare IT expert, Newfire Global Partners; Jaya Plmanabhan, MS, healthcare data scientist. This fast-paced, 30-minute webinar will provide an overview of the Final Rule and describe how technology vendors, payers, and providers can use FHIR HL7 to deliver true interoperability. Attendees will learn how to define the data, technology, and flows needed for their EHR integration projects; how products can retrieve health information while meeting compliance regulations; and the benefit of adopting quickly to the future of data exchange while simplifying future integration efforts.


Acquisitions, Funding, Business, and Stock

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Appointment scheduling software vendor DocASAP raises an undisclosed amount of funding in a financing round led by Optum Ventures.


People

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Bansi Nagji (McKesson) joins GoodRx as president of healthcare. The prescription-savings company, last valued at nearly $3 billion, is looking at IPO options according to a CNBC report.


Announcements and Implementations

Digital health clinic company Ro will offer its telemedicine patients access to in-person providers via provider directory software from Ribbon Health.

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RubiconMD adds a behavioral health module to its e-consult technology for primary care physicians, giving them access to screening and diagnostic tools and specialists.

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Epic Behavioral Healthcare (FL) selects the SmartCare EHR from Streamline Healthcare Solutions.

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DocClocker adds remote check-in capabilities to its patient wait-time app.

Primary care management company Vytalize Health will use Trella Health’s analytics to optimize its physician networks across eight states.

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PatientPoint makes branded content and educational messaging available during telemedicine visits and remote patient monitoring sessions.

Infinx Healthcare adds ScriptSender’s data exchange capabilities to its prior authorization and clinical decision support automation software for radiologists.

Nebraska Health Information Initiative adds social service referral software from Unite Us to its statewide HIE.


Research and Innovation

A survey of 1,800 adults gauging their post-COVID-19 interest in telemedicine finds that:

  • Eight-three percent will likely use telemedicine after the pandemic ends.
  • Over 33% are willing to use telemedicine to immediately resume regular care.
  • While just over half would see a new doctor virtually, 40% would see a new physician via telemedicine only if they were referred or had great online reviews.
  • Easy-to-use technology, access messaging, and online scheduling options are top reasons for telemed utilization.

Other

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Imagine my surprise to find that HHS Secretary Alex Azar was in my neck of the woods earlier this week. (Let the record show that my visit to the clinic predates his by about eight months. You can read about my experience here.) Azar also toured the CDC while in Atlanta.

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In Canada, several companies work together to develop the Citizen Care Pod, which uses Microsoft technology to offer COVID-19 screening, testing, and eventually vaccination.


Sponsor Updates

  • AdvancedMD releases a new e-book, “Post-COVID-19: Moving to ‘Better Than Normal’ – four essential elements in getting past merely normal.”
  • Black Book ranks Nordic as #1 in client satisfaction in the category of strategic initiatives advisory.

Blog Posts


Contacts

Jenn, Mr. H, Lorre

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