Quote Of The Year

Timeless Quotes - Sadly The Late Paul Shetler - "Its not Your Health Record it's a Government Record Of Your Health Information"


H. L. Mencken - "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong."

Saturday, December 05, 2015

Weekly Overseas Health IT Links -5th December, 2015.

Note: Each link is followed by a title and few paragraphs. For the full article click on the link above title of the article. Note also that full access to some links may require site registration or subscription payment.

Dorset plans £20m shared record scheme

Rebecca McBeth
25 November 2015
Dorset is planning a shared care record scheme worth up to £20 million.
A tender notice in the Official Journal of the European Union says a group of nine local social and health care organisations are looking to establish a £2 million to £20 million framework agreement to deliver a Dorset Care Record.
Dorset County Council is leading the procurement. A council spokesperson said the Dorset Care Record is part of its work to integrate health and social care.
The plan is to agree a supplier by June 2016 with full implementation from December next year.

NHS boost includes £1 billion for IT

Lyn Whitfield and Thomas Meek
24 November 2015
The government is to "fully fund" the NHS 'Five Year Forward View" over the course of this Parliament; and Treasury documents indicate that £1 billion will go on NHS IT over the next five years.
Chancellor George Osborne told the Commons this lunchtime that the NHS will recieve a funding increase of £4 billion next year, to front-load the Conservative's election promise to deliver an additional £8 billion a year to the health service by 2020-21.
However, £1.5 billion will be diverted to the Better Care Fund, which is meant to support initiatives to integrate health and social care.

Five Cyber Security Predictions for 2016

NOV 24, 2015 5:02pm ET
Information security and risk management professionals will rebel against cookie-cutter approaches to cyber security in 2016 – that’s just one of many ways that prevention, detection and response to cyber threats will change in the next year, according to a new report from Forrester Research.
“Security investments based on a checklist of technology required to meet compliance fails to address underlying or existing vulnerabilities,” Forrester authors Rick Holland and Heidi Shey contend. “Assess the maturity of your security program to build a strategic road map to reach higher levels of maturity, and identify existing gaps and centers of excellence.”

Challenges Ahead for Portals

NOV 24, 2015 1:50pm ET
With the rush to implement electronic health record systems and meet meaningful use requirements, there have been mixed results in getting patients to use patient portals.
As the preferred approach for engaging patients and giving them access to their medical records, portals were developed as an additional technology linked to EHR systems by system vendors. However, clinicians and federal regulators are reassessing their value and utility.
"Portals have caught on with providers because they are easy to integrate into an electronic health record and they meet meaningful use requirements," says Khaled Abdel-Kader, MD, an assistant professor of medicine at Vanderbilt University. "But I think the bigger question is, what do patients want? And how do we build a tool that's responsive to those needs?"

El Camino Hospital goes live with Epic

Posted on Nov 25, 2015
By Mike Miliard, Editor
Mountain View, Calif.-based El Camino Hospital, an electronic health records pioneer for nearly five decades, has completed its customized $150 million Epic implementation, known as iCare.
El Camino is a trailblazer in health IT. Its 1960s-era chief information officer is the namesake for the John E. Gall, Jr. CIO of the Year Award, given each year by HIMSS and CHIME.
"El Camino Hospital has always been a leader in electronic clinical communications with its launch of the nation's first computerized physician order system in 1971," said Debbi Muro, the iCare the project leader upon the start of the initiative in 2014. "With iCare we are moving into the next generation of electronic information systems."

Report: Ransomware attacks on med devices a real possibility in 2016

November 25, 2015 | By Susan D. Hall
Ransomware will come to medical devices or wearables in 2016, Forrester Research predicts in a new report.
A Motherboard article poses a scenario in which a person's pacemaker is hacked to create chest pain, then receiving a text message: "Want to keep living? Pay us a ransom now, or you die."
Ransomware generally involves taking control of a computer system and holding data hostage until a ransom is paid to unlock it.

Future shock: five predictions for a new 'health attitude'

James Furbush
Nov 24, 2015
Dr. John R. Patrick has a pretty good record at predicting the future. In his 2001 book, Net Attitude: What It Is, How to Get It, and Why Your Company Can’t Survive Without It, Dr. Patrick, former VP of Internet Technology at IBM, predicted just how important the Internet would become for modern business.
Now, in his new book, Health Attitude: Unraveling and Solving the Complexities of Healthcare, Dr. Patrick offers predictions about the future of healthcare. And boy, does he have the qualifications to do so.
In addition to holding a Doctorate in Health Administration (DHA), Dr. Patrick has degrees in electrical engineering, management, and law. He has more than four decades of experience in business and nine years serving on the board of a hospital. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives. He is a board member at OCLC Online Computer Library Center and a member of the Western Connecticut Health Network Biomedical Research Institute Advisory Council.

Hospital co-develops app with SeamlessMD to improve joint replacement care

 Nov 24, 2015 at 1:35 PM
Just two weeks after securing a $1.1 million seed round, SeamlessMD, a startup developer of a communications app for postoperative patients, has teamed with Canada’s largest provider of hip and knee replacements on a specialized version of the app.
Toronto-based SeamlessMD is partnering with Holland Orthopaedic & Arthritic Centre, part of Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in the same city, to introduce myHip&Knee. The free app helps patients both before and after joint replacements.
“After conducting focus groups, we learned that many of our patients had access to smartphones and tablets, and wanted to be engaged through mobile applications,” Deborah Kennedy, manager of Hip & Knee program development at the Holland Centre, said in a statement from SeamlessMD. “This led our team to pursue this additional partner in care – a mobile app for smartphone and tablet users.”

The Medical Tricorder: Symbolizing Our Journey From SciFi to the Health Care Model of the Future

The vision for new devices isn't to replace physicians – it's to educate and engage the population about their own health.

By Mony Weschler Nov. 24, 2015 | 6:00 a.m. EST
Growing up, I was a huge fan of "Star Trek." A tech geek to the core, what wowed me the most were devices like the Tricorder. For non-Trekkies, the Tricorder was a handheld medical scanner that noninvasively analyzed a patient's cellular makeup and helped diagnose diseases. Recent developments are making the Tricorder jump from fiction to reality. Some even argue that the alpha version of the Tricorder already exists, its core being the smartphone in your pocket coupled with a multitude of smart devices powered by microelectromechanical systems and sensors.
I'm not the only one with the dream of the Tricorder and optimism about what it represents. The X Prize Foundation, an organization that aims to speed up innovation by offering cash prizes, created a prize, financed by an American global semiconductor maker and telcom giant, to push for the development of Tricorders as well.

6 things physicians wish health IT developers knew

11/9/2015, 10:06 PM
Input from physicians and patients is vital to the development of successful digital health solutions, but what are some of the top things developers need to know to start this process? Physicians, developers, professors, bloggers and med students all weighed in last week during a vibrant #AHealthierNation tweet chat on the future of digital health.
Designing the future is an indefinite process. The input of those who will live in that future is critical. Here are six things to take away from Thursday’s tweet chat:
1. Physician interest exists. 
Many participants agreed that physicians don’t need a push to get involved in digital medicine. 

How Personalized Medicine Affects IT at Partners

NOV 24, 2015 3:20am ET
The use of genetic data is at the forefront of many innovators' approaches for increasing personalized medicine, and making healthcare treatements more targeted and effective.
But getting from genetic data to clinical action will require some significant support from information technology. Personalized medicine will pose major challenges to electronic health records systems, analytics approaches and systems that provide clinical decision support.
Partners HealthCare in Boston is examining the issues through its personalized medicine initiative, in which it is accelerating the use of genetic and genomic information in the clinical setting to improve patient care. Doing that requires a significant transition for information systems that manage data and enable intelligent reporting combined with expert analyses.

Health IT outsourcing: a rising priority

Posted on Nov 24, 2015
By Jessica Davis, Associate Editor
Nearly three-quarters (73 percent) of health systems with more than 300 beds -- and 81 percent of providers with fewer than 300 beds -- are shifting their focus to IT outsourcing for development and complex infrastructure services.
Black Book Research surveyed 1,030 hospital CIOs and IT leaders and 243 CFOs and financial executives from 266 hospitals and the business managers from 1,400 outpatient, alternative care and physician practices for their insights on technology and outsourcing services options.
The overwhelming conclusion was that immediate access to a fully-trained staff and its technology, in combination with a positive return-on-investment, are driving forces behind the turn toward IT outsourcing, especially as the demand on healthcare organizations grow in complexity.

Cerner, InterSystems dominate overseas health IT markets

Posted on Nov 24, 2015
By Jack McCarthy, Contributing Writer
Even though much of what CIOs and IT departments hear about electronic health record adoption is about providers in the U.S., adoption rates are increasing in many other countries and the market landscape looks somewhat different.
Cerner and InterSystems, in fact, "stand out as the top-performing fully rated vendors" when it comes to regional performance, according to a new report from the healthcare research firm KLAS.
More specifically, Cerner dominates Europe and the Middle East while InterSystems is strong in Asia/Oceania, KLAS found.

Patient email and texting: How to keep data safe

November 24, 2015 | By Debra Beaulieu-Volk
Patients may be hungry for easy electronic communications with their doctors, such as text messages and email, but practices are wise to consider the risks before they proceed.
In fact, taking inventory of patient information passed through all devices and channels must be part of every practice's Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) risk assessment, as required by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Civil Rights (OCR), noted a recent article from Medical Economics.

How big data will cause an evolution in medicine

November 24, 2015 | By Susan D. Hall
The use of big data in healthcare will not be like flipping a switch. Rather the use of data will inform models of our understanding of disease that will evolve as they're tested and applied to individuals, according to Eric Schadt, M.D., founding director of the Icahn Institute for Genomics and Multiscale Biology at New York's Mount Sinai Health System.
In an interview at McKinsey & Co., Schadt says questions will become easier to answer as more data is pulled together.
"We are at the very beginning stages of this revolution, but I think it's going to go very fast, because there's great maturity in the information sciences beyond medicine," he says.

HIE Documentary Shocks, Angers Patients

Scott Mace, for HealthLeaders Media , November 24, 2015

The filmmaker's objective was not to start a patient-led movement for better health information exchanges. But the way audiences react when they learn their EHRs are largely unable to be shared may spur them into action.

One may pound podiums in Congress or write convincingly about the sorry state of interoperability among healthcare IT systems, but Kevin Johnson, MD, made a movie, and judging by audience reaction at early screenings, he may be awakening the public at large about this mess.
Patients who believe that their electronic health records can already follow them wherever they go in the U.S. have been leaving the screenings "shocked and angry," Johnson told a post-screening audience at last week's annual symposium of the American Medical Informatics Association in San Francisco.

Studying Health IT Security of the Future

NOV 23, 2015 7:26am ET
While recent high-profile health data breaches like the Anthem, CareFirst, Excellus, and Premera hackings have the industry focused on cyber threats, Avi Rubin is focused on threat vectors in the not-too-distant future.
Rubin is director of the Health and Medical Security Lab at Johns Hopkins, which was established about six years ago with funding from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology. His latest research focuses on security for healthcare IT systems, based on a $10 million grant from the National Science Foundation that is shared between himself and three other professors at Dartmouth (David Kotz), University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (Carl Gunter), and University of Michigan (Kevin Fu).
Health Data Management spoke to Rubin about cybersecurity and the challenges in securing health IT.
HDM: Many surveys and studies find that healthcare is lagging behind other industries, such as financial services, when it comes to cybersecurity. Do you share that view?
Rubin: In the financial services industry, they’ll have many more professional staff devoted to security than in healthcare systems. Just by devoting more resources to the problem and monitoring their systems more carefully, financial services are much more secure than healthcare. Of all the industries I’ve seen, healthcare seems to be the most behind in terms of securing their IT.

Security Trends That Will Impact Your Data in 2016

NOV 23, 2015 2:00am ET
As expected, technology forecasts and predictions for 2016 continue to come in at a brisk pace now, with the latest concerning data protection and cybersecurity.
Haiyan Song, senior vice president, security markets, at Splunk, offered Information Management her thoughts this week on what will be the top security trends that data professionals and cybersecurity managers need to be aware of. Splunk is a market-leading platform that powers operational intelligence.
According to Song, top security trends will include:
Behavioral analysis
Behavioral analysis will shift from an emphasis on user credentials to machine-to-machine credentials, Song believes. Behavioral analytics and anomaly detection will become less about analyzing users or entities and more about leveraging machine learning and data science.
In addition, Song says the growth of micro services and containerization will lead to an emphasis on machine and service-level credentials rather than human credentials.

Advice for better security? User-friendly systems

Posted on Nov 20, 2015
By Jessica Davis, Associate Editor
Recent security breaches, especially in healthcare, have put the spotlight on major companies to be diligent on revamping systems to prevent data theft.
But the problem is that the systems aren't designed with the user in mind and are too difficult for the average user to navigate.
"Humans are the weak point, but you design systems that are hard to use," Jennifer Golbeck, associate professor, College of Information Studies, University of Maryland, told Healthcare IT News.

Report: HIE-sponsored PHRs offer 'one-stop shopping'

November 22, 2015 | By Marla Durben Hirsch
Health information exchanges (HIEs) may wish to consider offering personal health records (PHRs) as part of their array of services, according to a report recently unveiled by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT.
Many current PHRs are tethered to EHRs and portals in a single provider organization, which invariably means that the PHR is incomplete. There has been a growing interest in HIE-sponsored PHRs because of their potential to provide greater interoperability, depth of information and data integration. They make it easier for a patient to use a PHR, which may increase patient engagement and simplify a provider's ability to meet the patient engagement Meaningful Use compliance requirements. 

Proper incentives essential to protecting health data

November 23, 2015 | By Susan D. Hall
Misalignment of incentives can prevent healthcare organizations from committing to the proper protections of sensitive information, according to Tyler Moore, an assistant professor of cybersecurity and information assurance at the University of Tulsa.
"Whenever organizations don't have appropriate incentives to protect information, they will not be able to adopt countermeasures to protect their systems," he told Healthcare IT News. "The importance of incentives in choosing the best types of security mechanisms cannot be underestimated."
Information asymmetry, when one party doesn't have adequate information about the other, also can affect security decisions--such as a hospital focusing on a vendor's observable features in a security product while there are other aspects not visible that need to be considered, he said.

Proper incentives essential to protecting health data

November 23, 2015 | By Susan D. Hall
Misalignment of incentives can prevent healthcare organizations from committing to the proper protections of sensitive information, according to Tyler Moore, an assistant professor of cybersecurity and information assurance at the University of Tulsa.
"Whenever organizations don't have appropriate incentives to protect information, they will not be able to adopt countermeasures to protect their systems," he told Healthcare IT News. "The importance of incentives in choosing the best types of security mechanisms cannot be underestimated."
Information asymmetry, when one party doesn't have adequate information about the other, also can affect security decisions--such as a hospital focusing on a vendor's observable features in a security product while there are other aspects not visible that need to be considered, he said.

The Time Has Come for Two-Factor Authentication in Health Care

by Ken Terry, iHealthBeat Contributing Reporter Monday, November 23, 2015
Amid all the hand wringing over security breaches in the health care industry, there has been much talk about encryption, virtualization and other methods of securing protected health information. But relatively little attention has been paid to a less elaborate way of foiling cyber thieves: two-factor authentication.
Two-factor authentication combines a username and password with something you have, something you know or something you are. It is commonly used in banking, but the majority of health care organizations have not deployed it. Yet security experts agree that it could prevent many security breaches.
CynergisTek CEO Mac McMillan said, "We're fast approaching a time where the threat is such that we have to do something better than user name and password. Two-factor authentication makes it 10 times harder for the bad guys to do something."
AMA Journal of Ethics. November 2015, Volume 17, Number 11: 1009-1018.
doi: 10.1001/journalofethics.2015.17.11.peer1-1511.
Peer-Reviewed Article

Why Can’t We Be Friends? A Case-Based Analysis of Ethical Issues with Social Media in Health Care

Kayhan Parsi, JD, PhD, and Nanette Elster, JD, MPH

“A George Divided Against Itself Cannot Stand!” [1]

This quote comes from the ever-popular ’90s sitcom Seinfeld. In this classic scene, the always-put-upon George Costanza complains to his best friend Jerry about his two selves—Independent George and Relationship George. Independent George is the George that both George and Jerry love (bawdy, lying, etc.), whereas Relationship George is the identity that George maintains with his girlfriend, Susan. His concern is that if he does not create a firewall between these two identities, Relationship George will subsume Independent George. The exchange between George and Jerry humorously illustrates the real-life challenges of our brave new world of social media. Like George, who wants to maintain a boundary between his two personal (“bawdy” and relationship) identities, health care professionals are concerned about keeping their professional identities separate from their personal identities online [2]. The issue of boundaries is but one of many that the use of social media raises. In fact, the ubiquitous use of social media has created a number of potential ethical and legal challenges, some of which we will cover in this article. Specifically, we will:
  1. Define social media;
  2. highlight some recent instances of the good, bad, and ugly—social media used for good purposes, bad purposes, and plain ugly purposes;
  3. outline salient professional and ethical issues;
  4. review some illustrative case examples; and
  5. highlight where to find recent policy recommendations.

The role of big data in medicine

Technology is revolutionizing our understanding and treatment of disease, says the founding director of the Icahn Institute for Genomics and Multiscale Biology at New York’s Mount Sinai Health System.

November 2015
Most companies make a conscious and deliberate decision to embrace digitization and the information revolution. Yet the role of big data in medicine seems almost to compel organizations to become involved. In this interview, Dr. Eric Schadt, the founding director of the Icahn Institute for Genomics and Multiscale Biology at New York’s Mount Sinai Health System, tells McKinsey’s Sastry Chilukuri how data-driven approaches to research can help patients, in what ways technology has the potential to transform medicine and the healthcare system, and how the Icahn Institute is building its talent base. An edited transcript of Schadt’s remarks follows.

Evolution or revolution?

The role of big data in medicine is one where we can build better health profiles and better predictive models around individual patients so that we can better diagnose and treat disease.
One of the main limitations with medicine today and in the pharmaceutical industry is our understanding of the biology of disease. Big data comes into play around aggregating more and more information around multiple scales for what constitutes a disease—from the DNA, proteins, and metabolites to cells, tissues, organs, organisms, and ecosystems. Those are the scales of the biology that we need to be modeling by integrating big data. If we do that, the models will evolve, the models will build, and they will be more predictive for given individuals.


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