Judith Weader is a customer experience strategist at Blue Cross Blue Shield! At the HxR Conference she’ll be talking about the changes that made a difference for Blue Cross Blue Shield’s customers.
What is your burning mission in health and why?
JW: I want people to have access to affordable, quality health care so they can live their lives to the fullest. Health insurance is a big part of that equation, and I want to inspire and empower my co-workers so that we can be a positive, supportive partner for our customers.
What is your patient story?
JW: One of the most intense patient experiences I ever had was when I was in the hospital to deliver my first child – my daughter. No matter how much you’ve read or learned about beforehand, nothing fully prepares you for having a child. When I was being prepped for my c-section, and the anesthesiologist pushed the spinal anesthetic, my blood sugar dropped like a stone and I started to feel incredibly sick and dizzy. I explained the situation to the anesthesiologist and he immediately gave me a sugar drip – which brought me back to normalcy. It was a perfect example of a healthcare provider listening to and trusting a patient, and that made the rest of the delivery a snap for me. Even better, with that knowledge under my belt, I was able to educate the anesthesiologist helping with my second c-section 3 years later, and he pushed sugar right after the spinal, so I never even had a moment’s difficulty. It was through those two deliveries that I learned that as much as I wanted to have a great obstetrician, it’s also incredibly important to have a great anesthesiologist, too! When doctors listen to and work with their patients, the experience is better for everyone.
What new health-related website, app, or technology do you think will improve health?
JW: I think integration on the mobile device will be of critical importance in the future. People don’t like fumbling with multiple passwords and systems, so integrated systems that combine weight-management tools with pedometers/speedometers and wellness incentive programs will encourage and educate patients without adding additional complexity. The more we make it easy for people to do things that are healthy – like tracking what they eat, how much they move, etc. – the more likely they are to do it.
Why should people come to your session?
JW: I’m here to show that you can improve the customer-centricity of an organization, even with limited resources. If a company operating in a traditionally paternalistic industry like health insurance can think more like a retailer, anyone can make customer-focused changes that improve their customers’ health and the company’s bottom line!
Anticipating many innovative entries, the New York Digital Health Accelerator program has extended the application deadline to April 18, 2014. The Accelerator, formed by a partnership between the New York eHealth Collaborative (NYeC) and the Partnership Fund for New York City, supports early and growth stage companies developing innovative technology products for healthcare providers and patients in the areas of care coordination, patient engagement, predictive analytics and workflow management. After the success of the 2013 program, expectations are high for the incoming class. “As New York’s Tech Sector continues to thrive, we expect the second class of the Digital Health Accelerator to quickly enable some of the best companies out there to develop the newest health information technology tools,” said NYeC Executive Director, David Whitlinger.
The initial 2013 class of eight companies that wrapped up in May raised over $12 million post-graduation, which allowed them to significantly grow their businesses. The companies created over 120 high tech jobs in New York and launched 17 pilots with the participating healthcare organizations. In addition, two of the companies were acquired within six months after graduation.
About the Program
The five-month Accelerator program focuses on technological developments in the areas of care coordination, patient engagement, predictive analytics and workflow management. In addition to obtaining feedback from leading New York health organizations, participants will receive $100,000 in up-front funding. Participating healthcare institutions range from hospitals and long-term providers to community health centers and primary care physicians. The selected companies will have access to an entrepreneurial leadership program and to the wealth of health data accessible via the Statewide Health Information Network of New York (SHIN-NY).
Who Should Apply?
The program is designated for early- and growth-stage companies where access to clinical and technical feedback from provider organizations could have a meaningful impact on the company’s development prospects. At a minimum, the company should have a beta version of its technology.
The application is open to any company, although the company must have a New York presence, at least for the duration of the program. Pharmaceutical, biotech, surgical medical device, and diagnostic companies do not qualify for the program.
Products and technologies focused on these 4 focus areas are invited to apply: Care Coordination, Patient Engagement, Predictive Analytics and Workflow Management.
Just one week left to apply, application deadline is Friday, April 18. Apply here!
Dignity Health, Box, and The Social+Capital Partnership selected WelVU as the winner of their developer challenge, which invited developers to build applications on the Box platform to help patients consume and interact with educational content related to their diagnosis, disease, or surgical procedures. An honorable mention for most innovative patient education use case was also awarded to CirrusHealth.
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center launched a pilot project in which it will share clinician notes with psychiatric patients.
Quest Diagnostics launched the MyQuest by Care 360 portal to provide patients direct access to their lab test reports. The release coincides with a federal rule going into effect that allows patients to view test results without physician approval.
Digital diabetes prevention program Omada Health raised $23 million in a Series B round led by Andreessen Horowitz with participation from Kaiser Permanente Ventures and previous investors U.S. Venture Partners and The Vertical Group.
Nine health systems and medical groups will join the OpenNotes movement in making clinician notes available to their patients Washington and Oregon, including Kaiser Permanente Northwest. This marks the first time that OpenNotes has been embraced simultaneously throughout an entire region.
StartUp Health announced the addition of 16 new companies to its StartUp Health Academy, a long term entrepreneurship program designed to help scale early stage digital health companies. The program’s portfolio has raised $130 million till date, and a total of 63 companies have been a part of this program.
The FDA, the ONC, and the FCC, released the FDASIA Health IT Report. It contains a proposed strategy and recommendations on a risk-based regulatory framework pertaining to health information technology, including mobile medical applications, that promotes innovation, protects patient safety, and avoids regulatory duplication.
Practice Fusion was named the best Primary Care EHR vendor by 2014 Black Book Satisfaction Survey. Other top scoring primary care centric vendors include Greenway Medical, Care360 Quest, Kareo, Praxis, AmazingCharts, CareCloud, CureMD, Allscripts, athenahealth, and eClinicalWorks.
Rite Aid Corporation acquired Boston-based Health Dialog, a provider of health coaching, shared decision making and health care analytics. Health Dialog will operate as a wholly owned subsidiary of Rite Aid. Details of the transaction were not disclosed.
The NYS Health Innovation Challenge is an exciting opportunity for developers to change the way people view their health care options! There is, of course, prize money for the best tech solution aimed at increasing the accessibility of health care information in New York. The solutions must allow community members to easily find and interpret information on healthcare options, including data on quality, cost, and efficiency. This should include examples and guidance so the information is easy to understand.
We live in this incredible new era where we have access to massive amounts of data. Data is clearly the future of healthcare, but it is also an undeniable challenge to navigate in its undigested form. The big question is how best to make all this data less of a maze and more of a presentation of healthcare options and related information so consumers can make informed decisions. Employers will also benefit from better being able to understand the health care options that are available to their employees.
NYS is offering prizes totaling $20,000 for the best web/mobile/desktop solutions. Participants should use the data made available to them on Health Data NY, OPEN NY and other open data sites (such as Health Data.gov, Data.Medicare.gov, NYC OpenData).
Submissions are due at the end of July 24th. More information is available at NYS Health Innovation Challenge.
“When two ideas have sex, innovation happens” – at least the first part is highly attributed to Matt Ridley in his fascinating talk on TED . If I rewind back to June of 2008, when I started the NYC Healthcare Technology Group (quickly rebranded to Health 2.0 NYC when I met Matthew Holt), the idea behind it was to bring together people, share ideas, knowledge and connect, create and ultimately cure together.
With a great team in Amsterdam, which includes Katarzyna (Kasia) Rabczuk, Olivier Blanson Henkemans, and Paul Pelsmaeker, we are replicating and adjusting the model, and growing this great Health 2.0 community in the Netherlands, with the support of the mothership in San Francisco.
Since joining SoftServe in January of this year, I have hosted health care innovators’ dinners in Berlin, Manchester, and now Copenhagen.
On March 27th, together with the US Embassy, we gathered 30 opinion leaders in the market to learn about SoftServe and our capabilities (ofcourse), but most importantly learn about each other, share ideas, success stories, and discuss the challenges in Denmark and beyond.
People were intrigued but were not sure what the outcome should be from the dinner aside from some networking. We had 30 of us (and all were very hungry), but I asked everyone to give a 30 second elevator pitch on who they are, where they are from, and what is the ONE innovation that will make a big impact in health care in the next few years.
I will try to summarize in no particular order what I gathered around the table (though I put the juicier ones towards the end):
- Mobile – If Matthew Holt reads this he will get chills in his bones, but a big topic ofcourse, was mHealth (yes Matthew – Health Interface Layer has not picked up steam just yet), and explicitly, it’s impact in developing countries.
- Cloud – another sexy word, but it is happening; and the ability to access your data anytime anywhere, and scale up down based on demand is certainly on people’s agendas – though not sure if I would call it a true innovation at this point
- Quantified Self devices – well now with the Basis Science acquisition by Intel, enough said
- Personalized Medicine – this is a lose definition that really describes anti-industrialization in health care, and ranged from actual personalized drugs to personalized treatments to personalized clinical analytics and pathways.
- Women running hospitals – this was a great one! The innovative idea is that when all the hospitals are run by women, total and holistic and personalized health care will make its way into the system quickly
- Telemedicine – how long have we been talking about this now?? Still not here but the person that made this statement is standing behind this innovation, and believes strongly this will happen and change health care!
- Patients around the world owning their data – must I say more?
- Getting rid of printers – had to throw this one in but of course the key behind this is complete digitization, interoperability, and adoption of all the technologies.
This brings me to the last and probably most important point: 26% of the attendees listed the same thing as their choice of one innovation that will make a difference – innovation adoption practices. The key point here is that we have a lot of activity in the health IT market, but if you notice the name as it stands, “Health IT” ends up drawing a box around the IT department, and another box around everyone else. There was a strong feeling in the room that while technology has absolutely tremendous value, we need to ensure that the organizational structures and the internal/external incentive systems are aligned for all this great technology to be adopted.
Eugene Burokhovich is the VP Healthcare, European Markets at SoftServe Inc. He is also the founder and a community organizer of Health 2.0 NYC & Health 2.0 Amsterdam. He can be reached at @HealthEugene or MyReal360.com.
Starting this week, we’ll be announcing sneak preview interviews of our talented speakers for the HxRefactored conference coming up this May 13-14 in Brooklyn, NY!
Today, we have Trey Swann, Founder, TrueVault and his personal journey in health care:
What is your burning mission in health and why?
TS: Regulation puts an undo burden on programmers who want to create new ways of doing things. Startups are designed to grow fast by creating new technology, and compliance introduces friction that slows this process. The healthcare experience is ripe for improvement; we need programmers to build what’s missing. My mission, and the reason that we built TrueVault, is to unburden startups of time consuming, process stalling HIPAA compliance so that they can focus on improving our health experience.
What is your patient story?
TS: My mother, who I love very much, is a breast cancer survivor! Her primary care physician referred her to multiple specialists (e.g. surgeons, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, etc.). Her doctors tried very hard to work together as a team; the people involved were fantastic, but the technology that facilitated that teamwork was not great. My mother had to visit several different sites during the course of her treatment, and the flow of information between sites was unsatisfactory. The patient feels the pain of this inefficiency. I build things for people who build things. I do this because my mother’s doctors and nurses are incredible, and I want to make sure that the technology they use lives up to the high standard that they set.
What new health-related website, app, or technology do you think will improve health?
TS: Doctor On Demand recently introduced the $40 (virtual) house call to healthcare. I think that this is an exciting development for the treatment of non-emergent medical issues. You can even use Doctor On Demand for a short-term prescription or refill. Augmedix has a promising service for Google Glass that frees physicians and allows them to focus on what they do best – taking care of patients. I’m a big fan of LifeVest Health and getting paid for getting healthy. LifeVest is an online health incentive program that companies can use to reward employees for improving their health. Millions of X-Rays, CT Scans, MRIs, and other medical imaging studies are created every day. But, complicated rules and incompatible software makes is hard to share these images. image32 makes it easy to securely share medical imaging studies on any device, anywhere. Lastly, by simplifying the complexities of HIPAA, TrueVault is powering the new tech and innovations that are transforming healthcare for the better.
Why should people come to your session?
TS: I’ve worked with hundreds of startups on their ideas. I can help you navigate the technical requirements mandated by the HIPAA Security Rule, save you countless dev hours, and get you to market faster.
Wellframe secured $1.5M in seed funding. Wellframe is a Boston-based company that combines mobile technology and artificial intelligence to amplify caring clinical relationships by engaging patients in personalized care plans.
Remedy debuted at DEMO Spring 2014 in San Francisco, Calif. With Remedy’s Google Glass application Beam, clinicians are able to securely collaborate more meaningfully and more often. The application enables the physician with the patient to capture and sync clinically relevant media to a specialist’s screen.
Scanadu started distributing its popular $199 tricorder-type diagnostic to its Indiegogo backers, but stopped when problems arose, including algorithm errors, incorrect temperature readouts, and breakdown of the device’s case. The Scanadu Scout can’t be sold until approved by FDA, but with such problems approval may come into question.
Humana partnered with Pharos Innovations to use their engagement platform in a new program called Activities in Daily Living. The program helps Humana’s Medicare Advantage members better manage their Type 2 diabetes at home. This is the fourth remote monitoring pilot Humana has launched recently; other partners include Valued Relationships, Healthsense (two separate pilots), and AMC Health.
AOL founder Steve Case invested $100,000 each in all 10 startup teams pitching at the inaugural Google for Entrepreneurs Day. Among the companies funded is InvisionHeart, a Vanderbilt spinoff that is developing technology that converts EKGs to digital form for sharing in the cloud.
edgeMED, a provider of cloud-based medical office software, medical billing services and healthcare IT solutions, acquired Physician’s Billing Alternative, a provider of medical billing and collections solutions for physicians and health care organizations.
Proventix Systems, a RFID technology company, reached 50M monitored hand hygiene events with its nGage™ automated hand-hygiene monitoring system. This database of hand hygiene and correlated workflow events will provide hospitals with robust analytics to accurately benchmark hand hygiene performance and develop action plans for patient safety and satisfaction.
Antelope Valley ACO partnered with eClinicalWorks, a provider of ambulatory health care IT solutions, to use the eClinicalWorks Care Coordination Medical Record (CCMR) for population health management to meet the quality measures, performance metrics, and other ACO-related objectives.
Update: Best Doctors formally launched Medting, the physicians collaboration platform, in the US last week. However, Medting has been operating in Europe since 2008, and has been with Health 2.0 Europe since 2010.
For the first time ever in Brooklyn, designers and developers will convene on May 13-14 at the HxRefactored Conference to share ideas on how to improve the health experience. As a burgeoning center for health tech innovation, NYC is a prime location for the newest trends in this space. In addition to presentations from leaders in the design and health industries HxRefactored will include exclusive workshops from leading experts.
Susan Dybbs of CollectiveHealth and User Experience Designer Katie McCurdy will be leading the half day workshop, All Together Now: Leveraging Participatory Design. This session will explore how participatory design can be used to create solutions that reflect the user’s need. Attendees will understand the basics and benefits of participatory design as well as experience the process first hand.
In Beyond Gamification: Designing Behavior Change Games, Dustin DiTommaso,Vice President of Experience Design at Mad*Pow will delve into clinically tested behavior change interventions as well as techniques game designers use to engage players. Participants can expect by the end of this full day workshop to design and pitch structured behavior change games.
Learn how to develop a clear vision for customers in Journey Mapping: Illustrating the Big Picture. This half day workshop led by Mad*Pow Experience Strategy Director, Megan Grocki will discuss how to use journey maps to create a vision that will provide high level overview of all the interactions the user has with your organization and provide guidance for all the touch points along that spectrum.
HxRefactored will be held at the New York Marriott at the Brooklyn Bridge on May 13 and 14, 2014. More information on how to get tickets to the workshops and the conference can be found here.
ArborMetrix is a health care analytics company. It’s objective is to remove the noise from data, and generate actionable insights. Health 2.0 met with Brett Furst, CEO of ArborMetrix, at HIMSS 2014 to learn more about their work. Following are the excerpts from the interview.
Health 2.0: What is ArborMetrix?
Brett Furst: ArborMetrix is a clinical analytics company, focused on performance in acute care and specialty care settings. Our solution is cloud-based, and available as a subscription product. It is used by health systems, health plans, and specialty societies, to identify where variations in care exists and what can be done to resolve it. We collect data on factors like complication rates, device requirements, procedures, etc.; aggregate it, benchmark, and apply a statistical approach to understand the effect on overall quality and cost. Our focus is on improving acute and specialty care through evidence.
Health 2.0: Can you give an example of a use case for your products?
Brett Furst: American Hernia Society uses our solutions to provide clinical registry, quality, and analytical tools to their members. Our analytics end studied the efficiency of meshes used in hernia surgeries, and found that the bio-based mesh, costing about $22000 a piece, was being outperformed by the synthetic mesh, costing about $1200 a piece, and with better outcomes.
Another example is from the Michigan Bariatric Collaborative, where our analytical platform evaluated a particular device used for tracking blood clots. We found that use of this device was increasing mortality instead of decreasing it. Acting upon our findings, Michigan became the safest state to have bariatric surgery, the mortality rates went down from 3 in 1000 to 1 in 10000.
There is significant risk involved when a provider is taking on a large number of patients, or a health plan is writing a value based care program. They want to know the costs associated with variations in outcomes. We can tell where the best performing providers are, what procedures and devices might be best for the patient, what is medically appropriate, etc. We are the only solution out there that can provide this information.
Health 2.0: Are there any significant barriers to entry?
Brett Furst: There is still a large amount of unstructured data that could give us valuable information. We are looking to partner with technologies around image processing that can help us decipher those. Surprisingly, we did not encounter much hesitation from physicians and surgeons, they were eager to embrace the technology that could help improve their performace. Providing additional incentives through policy changes can get more doctors to sign up for the registry, and help us generate additional data to make the results more actionable and insightful.
3Pillar Global, a software company, entered in a product development partnership with Valencell, a mobile health technology company. Their product will use data from Valencell’s PerformTek sensor technology to help consumers understand a biometric information.
SweatGuru, an online marketplace for fitness classes and experiences, is launching 1:1 Personal Training, an online business management solution. It will give personal trainers and independent fitness professionals tools to grow their brand, increase revenue, and manage their entire business in one place.
Omnicell, a provider of medication and supply management solutions and analytics software for health care providers, achieved certification for International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 14001:2004 Environmental Management System (EMS).
Best Doctors, a health consultancy providing second opinion services, launched Medting, an online physician collaboration platform. It allows doctors to collaborate with a network of clinicians for patient treatment plans, and share access to diagnostic image and video files.
Rise Health, a provider of integrated population health management solutions, and Integrated Health Partners (IHP), a physician hospital organization based in Michigan, partnered to help IHP boost its data interconnectivity in preparation for a move into disease management.
Imprivata filed for a $115 million IPO, planning to list its shares on the NYSE. According to the SEC filing, the company lost $5.5 million on revenue of $71 million for the year ended December 31, 2013.
Fitness membership startup ClassPass raised $2 million in seed funding from angel investors. ClassPass lets users go to any class at any gym with a monthly $99 subscription, handling scheduling and registration via its mobile app.
OnCall, a team of young physicians and developers, won top prize at Startup Weekend in Philadelphia. The group proposed developing an app and charging people $100 for a visit — a fee that would be split between the medical professional and the company. As top winners, the team gets an accelerated application for DreamIt Health Philadelphia.
Meriter Health Services partnered with Box and Dignity Health App Challenge semi-finalist Wellbe to offer a new experience for their JointCare program. Total joint replacement surgery patients will now be able to access and interact with their care plans online.
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Interview with NYeC Exec. Director, Dave Whitlinger
If you’re interested in applying for the program, please visit http://digitalhealthaccelerator.com/
1. Why have you decided to launch another Digital Health Accelerator class?
The first Accelerator program surpassed our expectations and was tremendously successful. Having seen the impact the program had we felt that continuing the Accelerator could have a positive impact on New York State’s Health IT ecosystem by helping to foster digital health innovation in the state. The eight members of the Inaugural Class, who graduated in May, 2013, launched 17 pilots with their provider mentors, created over 120 new high tech jobs in New York, and raised over $12 MM from sources outside of the program. In addition, two of the companies have been acquired. We are very proud of the accomplishments of the first Accelerator Class members and we are excited to the launch the 2014 program.
2. How did the alliance with the Partnership Fund for New York City come about?
The New York eHealth Collaborative was formed in 2006 to advance health care information technology) in New York State and to develop the Statewide Health Information Network of New York, or SHIN-NY, a technology platform will connect electronic health records across New York State. The Partnership Fund for New York City was formed as a private fund with a civic mission to create jobs in New York City. The collaboration between our two organizations is logical: the Partnership Fund is committed to company and job growth and the New York eHealth Collaborative wants to accelerate health It innovation using top talent. The timing of the Accelerator is perfect: New York has one of the most vibrant digital health markets and is increasingly becoming a center of entrepreneurial growth.
3. What are the key differentiating features of the program?
The program is unique in that it offers participants the opportunity to engage directly with a broad network of providers in New York State, including hospitals, long-term care providers, community health centers, and primary care providers. Tech companies accepted into the program will receive direct mentorship and feedback from senior executives of the participating providers.
In addition, each company accepted into the program will receive $100,000 in up-front funding from a syndicate of leading venture capital and strategic investors. Also, winners will have the opportunity to meet and learn from other leading digital health entrepreneurs in the New York community.
Finally, the selected companies will be afforded access to the technology platform that is connecting electronic health records across New York State, the Statewide Health Information Network of New York (SHIN-NY).
4. What would constitute a successful application to the accelerator program?
Applicants and their respective solutions should directly address any combination of four focus areas: care coordination, patient engagement, predictive analytics and workflow management. These categories were developed in partnership with clinical advisors from leading healthcare organizations that are part of our providers’ network. At a minimum, companies must have products that are ready for beta testing. Established companies with deployed products will receive preferential consideration. Incubated teams will see the highest rates of success during the accelerator if they are able to work with hospitals and providers who can use their products today.
5. What expectations do you have for companies that are accepted in the accelerator program?
Companies who are accepted into the program can expect to see strong growth in their product pipelines once they start working with their provider mentors. The feedback they receive will also help them refining the product by better understanding the true needs of hospitals.
6. What is your vision for the program down the line?
Our goal for this program is to continue to seed innovative companies that leverage clinical data within the SHIN-NY in order to provide meaningful solutions to improve healthcare.