News & Updates

Fidelity Investments launched a new Health & Insurance mobile application. The company’s 1.2 million health and welfare clients can now navigate health benefits on the go. The company recently debuted its NetBenefits participant portal which offers improved trading and research capabilities and mobile check deposit for IRA and brokerage customers.

A new study in the American Journal of Managed Care found that found that SMS reminders helped diabetes patients engage in their own self care. Researchers from Denver Health and Hospital Authority found that 79% of the participants responded to the majority of SMS prompts providing requested information such as glucose readings.

A new program for patient monitoring from iMPAK Health in collaboration with hospital system Meridian Health uses a card with buttons that have an embedded chip in them. Patients press buttons to answer pre-selected questions about how they feel, medication adherence, pain levels and other indicators. Information from the cards is first transmitted wirelessly to a cell phone or home monitoring station and subsequently to personal health records vendor NoMoreClipboard.

American Diabetes Association of Washington State has partnered with Numera Social to create a Facebook community and Mobile application designed to promote healthy nutrition and exercise to slow the progression of diabetes.

Partners HealthCare launched a new program called Step It Up in which it will provide wireless pedometers to 350 elementary school students. The chips measure the number of steps and count the minutes of activity of each student. The data on the sneaker chips is automatically uploaded to a designated computer hub in the school when students walk near it.

The National Institute of Health debuted a new Genetic Testing Registry. The online tool was developed as a public database to assist health-care professionals to better understand patients’ diseases and help patients understand their genetic information. The registry would allow users to search for genetic tests by test name, provider, or specific condition detected by the test.

A study in the Journal of Pediatrics found that electronic health records with embedded clinical flags improved the identification, diagnosis, and early counseling of overweight and obese children. The study assessed the effect of the Kaiser Permanente Southern California Pediatric Weight Management Initiative and found a nearly 50% increase in height and weight measurements with exercise and nutrition counseling increasing from 1% to 50% amoung children diagnosis with unhealthy weights.

According to a new report by researchers from the Doctors Company, Oregon is the state with the highest level of physician EHR adoption with 41% of physicians using EHRs. Following Oregon are Georgia, Florida, Washington and Virginia.

Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong’s NantWorks, LLC acquired wireless telemonitoring hardware and software company Boston Life Labs. NantWorks is building an integrated evidence-based, genomically-informed, personalized approach to the delivery of care and the development of next generation diagnostics and therapeutics.

A study presented at the recent International Society for Optical Engineering conference found that the iPad and similar touch-screen tablets are just as good as standard LCD monitors for viewing medical images. However, both tablets and consumer-grade LCD screens are not as sensitive as high-resolution radiology monitors and should not be used for primary clinical diagnosis.

Ochsner Medical Center in Louisiana announced its 1000th telestroke consult. The program, called the Acute Stroke System for Emergent Regional Telestroke (ASSERT), was launched in 2009 and uses video conference to connect vascular neurologists with patients in rural and understaffed hospitals to guide use of high-risk, but potentially life-saving thrombolytic therapy.

Cleveland Clinic is adding X-rays, laboratory tissue samples, photographs and any other image related to a patient’s care to its electronic medical records. Other healthcare organizations and vendors that have recently been working on the problem of storing and accessing digital image files on EMRs include Siemens Healthcare and Dell as well as Peake Healthcare Innovations (a collaborative venture between Johns Hopkins University and Harris Corp.), VMware, and Intel.

In a recent hearing by the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s subcommittee on commerce, manufacturing and trade, experts called for Interoperable State prescription drug tracking systems aimed at reducing prescription drug misuse. As an alternative to a nationwide system, Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway (D) called for Congress to create a state-based grant program to help individual states create ePrescription monitoring system, and provide software upgrades so statewide systems could communicate with each other.

Shareable Ink has partnered with Pentaho to incorporate its Business Analytics tool into the Shareable Ink Analytics Platform which extracts clinical and operational data that originates from natural input tools such as iPads and digital pens, and visualizes it into dashboards and drill-down analyses and reports.

iPatientCare debuted its R12 application suite. New features designed to meet Meaningful Use Stage 2 requirements include support of ICD-10, implementation of leading IHE profiles for connecting to various disease specific (e.g. cancer) registries, supporting the Direct protocol for secure clinical messaging, and generating clinical quality measures as identified by PQRI, PCMH, and NCQA.

Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center has founded a new company called QI Healthcare to commercialize technology developed at hospital. Funded by a $400,000 investment from Cincinnati Children’s and nonprofit, state-supported economic development group CincyTech, QI Healthcare’s first product is a Surgical Outcomes Collection System that aggregates data from various hospital systems, including electronic medical records, to identify opportunities to improve patient care.

A new study in Health Affairs concludes that public reporting of hospital quality through the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ Hospital Compare website has had little or no effect on mortality rates.

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