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Health IT data market sees a push for VNA systems adoption
It's been a few years since the HITECH Act and the Affordable Care Act were signed into law, which forced healthcare organizations to begin revitalizing, revamping and securing their health IT data systems. After such a length of time, you'd think organizations should be just about wrapping up their updates, and -- as SearchHealthIT news director Don Fluckinger puts it in this issue of Pulse -- "getting back to business as usual." But you'd be wrong, he writes. In fact, the many updates and rules to meaningful use and HIPAA have many in health IT as busy as ever.
In the cover story of this issue, news and features writer Shaun Sutner investigates how Integris Health in Oklahoma City "saved" their data through an intense, time-consuming and costly health IT initiative: converting all of their medical imaging files to a modern vendor neutral archive (VNA) system. VNAs are designed as central repositories for images from a variety of sources and vendors, while traditional picture archiving and communications systems (PACS) are proprietary systems that share little of the images they store. Fluckinger talks to cloud EHR vendors in our second feature story, a report from athenahealth’s More Disruption Please conference. Certain executives love to hate meaningful use -- athenahealth’s Kyle Armbrester, for example, compared it to the federal "cash for clunkers" automobile incentive program at the conference. On the other hand, Fluckinger writes, it's been a boon for businesses, especially cloud vendors.
Also in this issue: SearchHealthIT resident expert Trevor Strome tackles the issues of patient privacy in analytics. He argues that patient data should be totally anonymized -- with personal health information, or PHI, hidden -- unless absolutely necessary.
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Features in this issue
Healthcare providers' resources are dedicated to meeting health IT regulations, leaving them to fit in projects such as VNAs when they can.
Nuance Inc., after acquiring medical image sharing cloud Accelarad, is trying to marry the substantial customer bases of both companies.
As meaningful use pushes image sharing to more providers and patients via Web portals, vendor neutral image sharing archives are gradually displacing older PACS.
A healthcare imaging consultant offers advice to healthcare CIOs replacing or upgrading their current imaging technology.
Much-maligned meaningful use EHR incentive program and HIPAA omnibus rules are still helping vendors -- especially upstart health IT cloud companies.
Shared accountability among vendors for data breaches is one reason the HIPAA omnibus rule is helping expand cloud usage in the health IT realm.
When analyzing large quantities of patient data, patient information must be protected -- though there are some situations where physicians should be able to identify each subject.
News in this issue
CHIME uses National Health IT Week to roll out its partnership with AMDIS. CHIME will handle the policy and AMDIS the medical and technical knowhow.