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Health IT Pulse by ShaunSutner
Health IT Pulse is the blog for the writers and editors of SearchHealthIT.com, which covers health care technology and electronic health records infrastructure, applications, management and compliance.


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Brookings Institution scholars give meaningful use good marks, but say it needs more work

March 5, 2015 - Meaningful use has overall been a positive force for digitizing U.S. healthcare, but the EHR incentive program and its federal overseers still must overcome major problems if the promise of health IT is to be fulfilled. That’s the core message embodied in a succinct Brookings position paper published this week to accompany a health IT...... READ MORE


Brookings Institution scholars give meaningful use good marks, but say it needs more work
Posted in Health IT Pulse by ShaunSutner last updated Mar 5 2015

Meaningful use has overall been a positive force for digitizing U.S. healthcare, but the EHR incentive program and its federal overseers still must overcome major problems if the promise of health IT is to be fulfilled.

That’s the core message embodied in a succinct Brookings position paper pub…READ MORE


Common data visualizations for healthcare organizations
Posted in Community Blog by adelvecchio last updated Mar 4 2015

Guest post by Zach Watson, content manager, TechnologyAdvice

For large healthcare organizations, aggregating and analyzing data isn’t sufficient to improve business and care performance. Accountable care organizations, patient-centered medical homes, and other new models of care delivery require …READ MORE


End-to-end ICD-10 testing mostly free of coding errors
Posted in Health IT Pulse by adelvecchio last updated Mar 3 2015

Only 3% of ICD-10 claims submitted to CMS during a nine-day test were rejected. There were 661 providers, clearinghouses and billing agencies that participated and 1,400 were registered to test the soon-to-be implemented medical coding set. Here is a statistical breakdown of CMS’ ICD-10 testing, whi…READ MORE


Federal healthcare leaders: Let technology loose in precision medicine battle against cancer
Posted in Health IT Pulse by Scott Wallask last updated Feb 27 2015

In talking to researchers at pharmaceutical companies and universities, you’ll often hear them describe cancer treatment as the prototype for precision medicine because there are so many variations of the illness.

Looked at another way, cancer cases offer up a lot of medical data.

So it’s no s…READ MORE


FDA takes hands-off approach to wellness devices
Posted in Health IT Pulse by ShaunSutner last updated Feb 25 2015

If you have a pacemaker in your chest, the FDA wants to make sure the device works correctly. But if you want to wear a Fitbit, the agency will leave you alone.

In another sign that the FDA intends to assume a markedly hands-off policy when it comes to the wellness devices and programs that are p…READ MORE


FDA funding leads to medical device surveillance plan
Posted in Health IT Pulse by adelvecchio last updated Feb 24 2015

Though it has a handle on measuring the safety and effectiveness of medical devices, the FDA isn’t sure there’s enough publically-accessible information for patients and clinicians to make fully-informed decisions about medical products.

The road to a firm medical device surveillance policy began…READ MORE


With ICD-10 implementation, the medical industry can escape the past
Posted in Health IT Pulse by Scott Wallask last updated Feb 19 2015

I’m getting déjà vu from ICD-10, and not in a good way.

As the healthcare industry marches forward on the ICD-10 implementation on Oct. 1, 2015, a look at the coding system’s history shows that the federal government again got caught in a weird time warp.

This situation brings me back to the…READ MORE


Epic to open app store; meanwhile nemesis athenahealth already has one
Posted in Health IT Pulse by ShaunSutner last updated Feb 18 2015

While EHR market leader Epic Systems Corp. plans to open its own app store, modeled partly on Apple Corp.’s uber-successful App Store, one of its arch-rivals, athenahealth, Inc, already has one.

Verona, Wisc.-based Epic confirmed the plan to the Wisconsin State Journal without elaborating. But …READ MORE


Patients want more options when scheduling medical appointments
Posted in Health IT Pulse by adelvecchio last updated Feb 17 2015

There is a distinct gap between how often patients in the United States are able to use digital technology to access their health information compared to how often they wish they could. If the next generation of patients gets its way, the difference between those two values will shrink considerably….READ MORE


Group representing ACOs asks for Shared Savings Program overhaul
Posted in Health IT Pulse by adelvecchio last updated Feb 11 2015

Changes proposed by CMS to the Medicare Shared Savings Program that could also alter the future of accountable care organizations (ACOs) aren’t significant enough to satisfy a collection of healthcare provider groups.

The opposing group comprises provider healthcare improvement alliance Premier, …READ MORE


ONC’s interoperability roadmap points the way, federal health IT officials say
Posted in Health IT Pulse by ShaunSutner last updated Feb 4 2015

At 13 pages, it reads a lot longer.

Even officials of the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) of Health IT at their annual meeting in Washington, D.C., earlier this week sometimes sheepishly acknowledged that their new “10-year Vision to Achieve an Interoperable Health IT Infrastructure…READ MORE


Cerner Corp. closes purchase of Siemens Health Services
Posted in Health IT Pulse by adelvecchio last updated Feb 3 2015

Closing the books on a deal that was at least six months in the making, Cerner Corp. announced it has finalized its purchase of Siemens Health Services, an EHR and business unit of Siemens AG.

Cerner made the acquisition for $1.3 billion, and now projects its revenues to sit somewhere in the rang…READ MORE


Responding to industry pressure, CMS plans to shorten meaningful use reporting to 90 days
Posted in Health IT Pulse by Scott Wallask last updated Jan 29 2015

Relief is coming for thousands of providers who worried about gathering and reporting EHR data for 365 days as part of stage 2 of the government’s meaningful use program.

CMS announced on its blog this morning that it intends to relax its meaningful use reporting period to 90 days fo…READ MORE


HL7 International starts user group for payers
Posted in Health IT Pulse by ShaunSutner last updated Jan 28 2015

Unlike in European countries with single-payer or similar health insurance systems, the U.S. healthcare market is fragmented among a large number of individual private payer companies and groups.

That setup brings technological problems when it comes to exchanging information between payers and p…READ MORE


In Massachusetts, medical marijuana alerts get a second look
Posted in Health IT Pulse by Scott Wallask last updated Jan 27 2015

Imagine checking a personal email at work or at the public library and seeing this subject line show up in the alert box: “Confirmation of Patient Certification in the Medical Use of Marijuana Online System.”

That’s what happened to more than 6,800 patients in Massachusetts who have been approved…READ MORE


State Innovation Models Initiative to fund telehealth, EHRs
Posted in Health IT Pulse by adelvecchio last updated Jan 27 2015

A portion of an investment approaching $1 billion, made by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, will go toward stimulating the practice of telehealth and increasing patient access to EHRs.

An Accenture report analyzes how states that created State Health Innovation Plans as part of CMS…READ MORE


CHIME and AHA launch Most Wired 2015 survey
Posted in Health IT Pulse by ShaunSutner last updated Jan 21 2015

CMS may be the source of the definitive numbers about which hospitals, healthcare systems and physicians are attesting to meaningful use, but the College of Health Information Management Executives (CHIME) knows which providers are “most wired.”

CHIME, in conjunction with the American Hospita…READ MORE


Health Information Trust Alliance creates health IT security group
Posted in Health IT Pulse by adelvecchio last updated Jan 20 2015

The success of health IT rests on users and beneficiaries learning to trust healthcare technology. A move made by The Health Information Trust Alliance put more stock in that statement. The alliance announced the formation of another group — the Health Information Technology and Medical Device Inte…READ MORE


Patient care metrics available from CMS
Posted in Health IT Pulse by ShaunSutner last updated Jan 15 2015

Patients looking for more help in choosing providers that best fit their needs can now turn to new data on healthcare quality from CMS.

The care quality data provided by physician group practices, hospitals and accountable care organizations (ACOs) is available on the Medicare Web sites Physicia…READ MORE


A majority of patients would share their data for healthcare research
Posted in Health IT Pulse by adelvecchio last updated Jan 13 2015

Healthcare organizations searching for ways to improve the business aspect of their daily operations would be wise to keep an eye on future studies from healthcare researchers. Slightly more than half (53%) of patients said they would be willing to anonymously share their health data with researcher…READ MORE


With the new year in mind, a look back at hot health IT trends 20 years ago
Posted in Health IT Pulse by Scott Wallask last updated Jan 9 2015

As we jump into 2015, health IT professionals are familiar with the road ahead: Meaningful use debates, HIPAA audits, and EHR advances will all make headlines this year. And new technologies like wearable devices will push the boundaries of patient-centered care.

With that in mind, I thought it w…READ MORE


Jonathan Bush of athenahealth in media spotlight
Posted in Health IT Pulse by ShaunSutner last updated Jan 7 2015

Jonathan Bush, CEO of athenahealth, Inc., is the pre-eminent personality in the EHR vendor universe.

A new Fortune profile of the mercurial businessman, cousin to a former president and nephew to another, paints his company’s recent More Disruption Please startup conference in Maine as a frathh…READ MORE


Six states profiled in State HIE Program study
Posted in Health IT Pulse by adelvecchio last updated Jan 6 2015

Participants in the State HIE Program believe its existence has increased awareness of HIE and that the value of the program will grow as it solidifies ties with supporting programs, such as accountable care organizations (ACOs).

The ONC created the State HIE Program in 2009, when it offered $564…READ MORE


Cerner-Siemens merger big 2015 story to watch
Posted in Health IT Pulse by ShaunSutner last updated Dec 31 2014

Cerner Corp.’s $1.3 billion acquisition of Siemens AG’s EHR unit was one of the big health IT stories of 2014.

Now, how the merged entity will fare in the turbulent EHR marketplace is one of the great anticipatory stories of 2015.

In the meantime, some prognosticators from KLAS Enterprises LLC…READ MORE


ICD-10 testing week numbers muddled by negative testing
Posted in Health IT Pulse by adelvecchio last updated Dec 30 2014

Though they were part of a self-selected group that’s likely ahead of the game in transitioning to ICD-10, the results of trial claims submitted by healthcare providers to CMS may brighten the industry’s outlook on the viability of the coding update.

CMS accepted more than three-quarters (76%) of…READ MORE


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