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e-Learning Gift Card – Black Friday Promo

Posted on November 29, 2013 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

4med_masthead2 (1) (600x76).jpg     BLACK FRIDAY PROMOTION  

    

 

Beginning Wednesday November 27 through Sunday December 1, 2013, Healthcare Scene is offering 4MedTraining E-learning Gift Cards at 40% OFF with this special BLACK FRIDAY coupon code: HEALTHCARE40

To take advantage of this limited offer visit: www.4medapproved.com/education/giftcard.html Don’t forget to apply the coupon code (HEALTHCARE40) to get the discount.

Buyers will be able to apply this gift card for one full year to any single course in the current or future catalog, up to a retail value of $449!

If you need assistance applying your code or questions about the gift card offer, please contact 4med@4medapproved.com or call (800) 671-1028 to speak with a training advisor! 

Some Perspective on Mobile Health

Posted on November 28, 2013 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

This holiday weekend with family has been really interesting. It’s been fascinating to hear what my relatives and friends have to say about the mobile revolution that’s happening in healthcare and in every part of our lives. The most interesting observation is how little many of my relatives know about what’s really happening in mobile and definitely in mobile health.

Offhand I’ve mentioned a few of these topics to my relatives to see how they respond. As is often the case, it’s met with a general silence based on their lack of understanding of the subject. They certainly listen intently, but they know so little about the subject that they have very little to add to the conversation.

Of course, I’m dealing with a relatively small sample, but I think there’s a lesson there for those of us who live, eat, and breathe this stuff every day. A huge shift is happening, but most of the people out there know nothing about it.

I’m not sure this is a bad thing. While they know very little of the high level stuff, my wife, her sisters and mother did go wait in line for the $199 iPad mini deal today. So, there’s definitely interest in the devices. Although, I think few of them have any idea of how important all of these devices will be to their lives in a few years. They did however introduce me to a pointless, but addictive game called Space Team. At least they know about the most important things.

Giving Thanks

Posted on I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Last week I did a #HITThanks post as part of the move to show some gratitude for all the great things that are happening in healthcare IT. Jennifer Dennard also followed up with her post talking about being thankful for Patient Portals. However, the thing I’m most thankful for are all the readers and supporters of this site. I sometimes find myself shaking with joy as I think how lucky I am that I make a living as a blogger. None of this would be possible if it weren’t for all of you. So, a big heartfelt thank you to all of you.

I’m also really thankful to be embarking on the new journey after adding Healthcare IT Central to the Healthcare Scene family. It’s a really exciting time for me to see the bond between the two websites grow. I think we’re in for a really special ride and I’m grateful that I have the opportunity to see it first hand.

I hope everyone has a great day today. I know I’ll be enjoying some time with family, amazing food, and football.

Epic Builds Lab Installations At Oregon University

Posted on November 27, 2013 I Written By

Anne Zieger is a healthcare journalist who has written about the industry for 30 years. Her work has appeared in all of the leading healthcare industry publications, and she's served as editor in chief of several healthcare B2B sites.

Epic Systems has agreed to build two lab installations of its EpicCare EMR at the Oregon Health & Science University, one to be used for medical informatics education, and the other giving the school access its source code on the research side, reports Healthcare IT News.

Though the school’s OHSU Healthcare system already runs EpicCare for its hospitals and clinics, students and teachers have had to rely on a basic installation of the open-source VistA system for OSHU’s EMR laboratory course.

According to HIN, this is Epic’s first partnership with an academic informatics program, and potentially an important turning point for the company, which has conducted research and development almost exclusively on its Verona, Wis. campus. (It does release its source code to commercial customers.) And the agreement didn’t come easily; In fact, the school spent several years persuading Epic to participate before it agreed to commit to an academic partnership, Healthcare IT News said.

In a press statement, OSHU notes that the EpicCare research environment should allow students to delve into usability, data analytics, simulation, interoperability,  patient safety and more. The school also expects to prepare prototypes of solutions to to real-world healthcare problems.

Students in both OHSU’s on-campus and distance learning programs will pursue coursework based on the Epic EMR, with classes using the live Epic environment beginning March 2014. Work students will undertake include learning to configure screens, implementing clinical decision support and generating reports.

While this isn’t quite the same thing, this agreement brings to mind a blog item by John in which he describes how prospective programmer hires at Elation are required to shadow a physician as part of their hiring process. In both cases, the people who will be working with the software are actually getting an idea of how the product is used in the field before they’re out serving commercial clients. Sadly, that’s still rare.

I think this will ultimately be a win for both Epic and OSHU. Epic will get a fresh set of insights into its product, and students will be prepared for a real world in which Epic plays a major part.

Qualcomm Toq Smartwatch

Posted on November 26, 2013 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Most of you will remember my post on the Qualcomm Toq Smartwatch announcement. I just got word that I’m on the list to get one of these watches. I can’t wait to try it out. In fact, I’m even more excited after watching this video demoing the smartwatch:

I can see a number of times I would love to have this smartwatch. I love having my calendar on it. Sure, I could pull out my phone, but a smartwatch right there seems a lot nicer for some reason. I also love the notification aspect of it. I often miss messages on my phone, but this would be easier to check and see if I need to address something or not. I also can see me reading my Twitter feed on it as well.

Of course, from a health perspective, I’m looking forward to see what health apps are built into the watches. I wonder if it and smartphones will replace all the other hardware based fitness trackers for example. Fred Wilson, a NYC VC, has a great post on Software vs Hardware startups. He asks an interesting question about whether the innovation will happen in hardware or software.

What do you think of the smartwatch?

Should ICD-10 Go Through Rigorous Outside Testing? Definitely. – ICD-10 Tuesdays

Posted on I Written By

Anne Zieger is a healthcare journalist who has written about the industry for 30 years. Her work has appeared in all of the leading healthcare industry publications, and she's served as editor in chief of several healthcare B2B sites.

Sometimes it’s fun to critique my health IT editor colleagues in this space, but this time, I can do nothing but agree with a column written by FierceHealthIT editor Dan Bowman.

In his column, he notes that physician practices and hospitals have been quite worried about the transition from ICD-9 to ICD-10, something which is inevitable given the complexity of the switchover. And with the switch set to go into effect Oct. 1, 2014, the time available to prepare is flying by.

So, he says, it’s definitely a Good Thing that CMS may be amenable to do external ICD-10 testing, despite previously asserting that it wouldn’t do so. Now, bear in mind that CMS hasn’t promised to do external testing — it’s just said that it would consider the  idea — but that’s encouraging news.

After the mind-blowing failure of HealthCare.gov, CMS hardly needs another disastrous failure of systems or operations in one of its key responsibility areas. What’s more, if ICD-10 coding doesn’t work right, we’re talking about tying up millions (or even billions) of dollars in reimbursement to providers. That could prove to be a disaster which makes the HealthCare.gov debacle look like a minor blip.

Given that a failure of testing was instrumental in the HealthCare.gov debacle, I can’t imagine why CMS wouldn’t have become super-cautious in its wake. The last thing CMS needs is mass confusion, delayed payments, undercoding, upcoding, fraud….need I go on?

As things stand, CMS’s IT operation is already in turmoil, with the agency’s CIO having resigned and other heads still likely to roll. And Congress, for once understandably, isn’t going to have a lot of patience with anything resembling another IT failure.

CMS, don’t tell the public you don’t have the resources to do more extensive ICD-10 testing. Find them. Your future as an agency may depend on it.

Meanwhile, readers, if you want to keep up with ICD-10 twists and turns, don’t miss John Lynn’s ICD-10 Tuesdays. He’ll have plenty of insights to offer as the big day approaches.

23andMe Testing Shut Down by FDA

Posted on November 25, 2013 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

I’ll admit that I’m not an expert on FDA clearance, but I found this notice from the FDA to 23andMe really interesting. As stated in the notice, “23andMe must immediately discontinue marketing the PGS until such time as it receives FDA marketing authorization for the device.”

The letter does specify that 23andMe has been working with the FDA since July 2, 2012, but something has gone wrong in 23andMe’s clearance process. It does offer the following explanation of the issues the FDA has:

This product is a device within the meaning of section 201(h) of the FD&C Act, 21 U.S.C. 321(h), because it is intended for use in the diagnosis of disease or other conditions or in the cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease, or is intended to affect the structure or function of the body. For example, your company’s website at www.23andme.com/health (most recently viewed on November 6, 2013) markets the PGS for providing “health reports on 254 diseases and conditions,” including categories such as “carrier status,” “health risks,” and “drug response,” and specifically as a “first step in prevention” that enables users to “take steps toward mitigating serious diseases” such as diabetes, coronary heart disease, and breast cancer. Most of the intended uses for PGS listed on your website, a list that has grown over time, are medical device uses under section 201(h) of the FD&C Act. Most of these uses have not been classified and thus require premarket approval or de novo classification, as FDA has explained to you on numerous occasions.

Some of the uses for which PGS is intended are particularly concerning, such as assessments for BRCA-related genetic risk and drug responses (e.g., warfarin sensitivity, clopidogrel response, and 5-fluorouracil toxicity) because of the potential health consequences that could result from false positive or false negative assessments for high-risk indications such as these. For instance, if the BRCA-related risk assessment for breast or ovarian cancer reports a false positive, it could lead a patient to undergo prophylactic surgery, chemoprevention, intensive screening, or other morbidity-inducing actions, while a false negative could result in a failure to recognize an actual risk that may exist. Assessments for drug responses carry the risks that patients relying on such tests may begin to self-manage their treatments through dose changes or even abandon certain therapies depending on the outcome of the assessment. For example, false genotype results for your warfarin drug response test could have significant unreasonable risk of illness, injury, or death to the patient due to thrombosis or bleeding events that occur from treatment with a drug at a dose that does not provide the appropriately calibrated anticoagulant effect. These risks are typically mitigated by International Normalized Ratio (INR) management under a physician’s care. The risk of serious injury or death is known to be high when patients are either non-compliant or not properly dosed; combined with the risk that a direct-to-consumer test result may be used by a patient to self-manage, serious concerns are raised if test results are not adequately understood by patients or if incorrect test results are reported.

The 23andMe website doesn’t say anything about the FDA letter, but the company did put a statement for the media on their Facebook page. I guess Facebook is the new media hub for organizations (although, I found it from this tweet)

We have received the warning letter from the Food and Drug Administration. We recognize that we have not met the FDA’s expectations regarding timeline and communication regarding our submission. Our relationship with the FDA is extremely important to us and we are committed to fully engaging with them to address their concerns.

That’s a pretty vague statement. It is interesting that they chose to acknowledge that they haven’t met the FDA’s expectations. You can be sure there’s a whole lot more to this story and 23andMe’s interactions with the FDA.

Considering the big name people behind 23andMe, it will be really interesting to see this battle play out. It could certainly set precedent for many other healthcare applications in the future.

Should Patients Care About Their Doctors’ Text Messages?

Posted on I Written By

The following is a guest blog post by Dr. Jose Barreau, CEO of Doc Halo.

For all the money they spend on state-of-the-art EMRs, compliance officers and other measures to ensure they’re protecting their patients’ medical information, many healthcare organizations have a gaping hole in their security.

Physicians and other clinicians are as apt as anyone to send a quick text to a colleague. Maybe an attending physician wants to ask a resident about test results or an office worker needs to pass along a patient’s question.

But standard SMS text messages are not HIPAA compliant. Communicating protected health information in this way could compromise patient privacy and expose your organization to substantial fines.

That’s not to say doctors shouldn’t text. Because of its instantaneous nature, mobile messaging can improve efficiency and quality of care. But healthcare providers should make sure they’re using a secure texting platform.

If you have a non-HIPAA-compliant texting habit, you’re in good company. In research last year, nearly 60 percent of physicians at children’s hospitals said they sent or received text messages for work.

It’s easy to view text messages as “off the record.” Chances are they aren’t going into an EMR, and there’s a sense that no one but the sender and recipient will see them.

But when you fire off a text, you don’t know where it will end up. Some of these text messages contain sensitive details of diagnosis and treatment that have been discussed.  Also it’s hard to say whose servers the messages might be stored on, or for how long.  When patients entrust healthcare providers to care for them, they expect their data to be cared for, too.

The Department of Health and Human Services certainly knows about the problem. Last year the agency told an Arizona physicians practice to address the issue in a risk-management plan. The group “must implement security measures sufficient to reduce risks and vulnerabilities to ePHI to a reasonable and appropriate level for ePHI in text messages that are transmitted to or from or stored on a portable device.”

Healthcare providers can text about their patients without violating HIPAA — but only with secure messaging technology. Here are features to look for in a healthcare texting solution:

  • Encryption at all levels — database, transmission and on the app — with federally validated standards
  • Tracking of whether messages have been delivered, with repeated ping of the user
  • A secure private server that is backed up
  • Remote mobile app wipe option if a phone is lost or stolen
  • Automatic logout with inactivity
  • Ability to work on all spectrums of cell data and Wi-Fi for broad coverage
  • Limited data life — for example, 30 days — for messages

Patients benefit when their healthcare providers have quick and secure ways to stay in touch. A secure text messaging platform can help you to provide better care while avoiding HIPAA violations.

Doc Halo, a leading secure physician communication application, is a proud sponsor of the Healthcare Scene Blog Network.

Epic Jobs, Cerner Jobs, Project Management Jobs, and More

Posted on November 24, 2013 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

As we posted about previously, Healthcare IT Central is now a part of the Healthcare Scene network. It’s been really exciting the past couple weeks seeing the two organizations merge together. Plus, I’ve been really impacted by the great work that Gwen has put in to create such an amazing healthcare IT job resource. I have to admit that looking at the various jobs posted and people applying for those jobs tugs at my heartstrings a bit. Seeing a company that’s able to fill a job they need to fill and seeing people find a job or a better job is incredibly satisfying.

Every other week, we’re going to take a minute on the weekend to highlight some of the EMR, EHR and Healthcare IT jobs that are listed on Healthcare IT central. Of course, you can always search the entire database of Healthcare IT jobs as well.

Here are a few of the recently posted Healthcare IT jobs:

Of course, those are just a few of the many EMR jobs that are listed on the site. Here are a few links which will always stay updated with the latest jobs posted for some of the most popular categories of jobs.

I certainly have a lot to learn when it comes to the Healthcare IT and EHR career space. I love to hear stories, experiences, and thoughts from those of you working in the space as well.

Giving Thanks for Healthcare IT – #HITThanks

Posted on November 22, 2013 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

I always love the creativity that comes out of the good people at HL7 Standards. In the latest example, I reference a post by Jon Mertz called Giving Thanks for Health Information Technology. In the post, he digs into the idea that gratitude is a mindset and suggests that we could use a little more gratitude in healthcare IT.

I love the concept and power of gratitude and appreciate Jon’s comments about the need for more gratitude in healthcare IT. While I try to avoid this, it’s often easier to report on the train wrecks than it is to report on the benefits. Plus, train wrecks drive readership.

Following Jon’s call for us to express more gratitude for the good things happening in healthcare IT, I thought I’d create my list of thanks. Hopefully you’ll join in with your list in the comments, on your blog, or on twitter (see the hashtag #HITThanks).

  • I’m grateful I don’t have to search for lost paper charts.
  • I’m thankful I don’t have coffee stained paper charts.
  • I appreciate that multiple people can add to the chart at the same time (at least in most EHR systems).
  • I’m glad I don’t see stacks of paper charts on my desk.
  • I appreciate being able to read whatever my doctor documents in my chart.
  • I’m thankful for the nurses who do a bang up job with EHR software that’s almost always developed with them as an afterthought.
  • I’m grateful we no longer have to remember that Aq comes after Am and that the person who filed the chart might have been moving quickly and filed Am after Aq.
  • I appreciate all the thousands of thoughtful, caring, and wonderful people that work day in and day out to provide amazing care.
  • I’m thankful a nobody in Las Vegas can start a blog and give back to the healthcare IT community in some way.

I’m sure I could list many more. I hope you’ll join in.