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, August 18, 2018

Weekly Overseas Health IT Links – 18th August, 2018

Here are a few I came across last week.
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.

142 healthcare data breaches in Q2, 30% caused by repeat offenders

More than 3 million patient records were breached between April and June, highlighting an even bigger issue: Risk increases over time without proper education or reporting.
August 09, 2018 04:29 PM

The healthcare sector suffered 142 healthcare data breaches from April through June, impacting 3.14 million patient records – nearly three times the number reported in the first part of the year, according to the latest Protenus Breach Barometer.
What’s worse is that about 30 percent of those breaches were caused by repeat offenders from within the organizations. It highlights a continued issue facing the sector: Risk accumulates over time when proper education and reporting do not happen.
“If an individual healthcare employee breaches patient privacy once, there is a greater than 30 percent chance that they will do so again in three months’ time, and a greater than 66 percent chance they will do so again in a years’ time,” the report authors wrote.

AI can save US insurers $7B in admin costs, Accenture says

Author Rebecca Pifer

Published Aug. 9, 2018

Dive Brief:

·         U.S. insurers can unlock $7 billion in total value — 10-15% of operating expenses — in 18 months by using artificial intelligence to automate certain core administrative functions, according to a new study from Accenture.
·         The savings could stem from streamlining core functions for payers across the board, including customer service, billing, enrollment, claims and quality and compliance. Automating these functions for an individual health plan would bring in $1.5 million in operating income for every 100 full-time employee by the end of next calendar year for large and small payers alike, the report concludes.
·         In 2017, 72% of payer executives said that, within the year, AI would be among the top three strategic priorities for their organizations, according to a separate Accenture survey, adding to industry buzz around the technology’s potential. The top three current areas to target for near-term value were anticipating and resolving customer questions, improving the benefits loading and design process and accelerating prior authorization and clinical review of claims.

HIT Think How providers could achieve returns on data through AI

Published August 10 2018, 5:05pm EDT
Healthcare delivery organizations face stiff competition for business, and in light of that, administrators are focusing on strategies like cost containment, consumerism and vertical integration. Given significant recent investment in digitization, CIOs are increasingly being asked to obtain a return on those investments.
Even so, many organizations are still seeking the value that they expected with digitalization. One reason why is perhaps because they have not applied the capabilities that come with digitization to processes and services or products in healthcare. When that happens, it’s likely that healthcare will see the increased efficiency, consumer-centricity and more profitable business models that have benefited industries like airlines and banking.
Turning digitized data into value-added information sounds simple enough, but the complexities of healthcare data, government incentives and technology advancements have given rise to a relatively new sector of the health care IT industry: analytics and intelligence. Hundreds of companies are vying to help healthcare organizations become data-driven through artificial intelligence, machine learning and digital transformation.

The healthcare industry is in a world of cybersecurity hurt

Robert Ackerman Jr., TechCrunch's, 10 August 2018
As a relentless swarm of successful cyber attacks severely disrupt companies in every industry and require enormous expenditures to repair the damage, what typically gets lost in the shuffle is that some industries are victimized more than others — sometimes far more. The corporate victim that almost always grabs this dubious spotlight is the healthcare industry — the second-largest industry in the U.S. and one in which hacker meddling of operations not only costs lots of time, money and operational downtime, but threatens lives.
The healthcare industry itself is partly responsible. In a seemingly admirable quest to maximize the quality of patient care, tunnel vision gives short shrift to other priorities, specifically cybersecurity.
In aggregate, healthcare organizations on average spend only half as much on cybersecurity as other industries. For this and other reasons, such as the unusually high value of stolen patient records on the black market, attracting extra-large flocks of hackers, hospitals especially find themselves in a never-ending cyber war zone. FortiGuard Labs, a major security protection firm, reports that in 2017, healthcare saw an average of almost 32,000 intrusion attacks per day per organization as compared to more than 14,300 per organization in other industries.

Why are US, Australia, UK health orgs still wrangling with legacy fax machines?

U.S. federal officials this week called on physicians to eradicate faxes by 2020 while hospitals in Australia and England had situations of their own.
August 09, 2018 01:04 PM
Fax machines are still prominent enough in U.S. healthcare that Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Administrator Seema Verma just this week challenged developers to create new tools that could help doctors do away with faxing. 
The issue of lingering fax machines, however, is also playing out in other countries, notably Australia and the UK during the last couple weeks. 
In what is a step back in Queensland Health’s efforts to eradicate the fax, Ipswich Hospital has directed clinics to only issue urgent patient referrals via the unreliable and out-of-date technology. 

Apple health exec says hospitals are at a convergence point

Tech, policy and an ecosystem of smartphone platforms are all cause to be very optimistic, says Ricky Bloomfield.
August 08, 2018 02:12 PM
Apple's clinical and health informatics lead, Ricky Bloomfield, MD, said on Wednesday that health IT is at a unique period in time.
"We have the convergence of the technology required, with the regulatory pieces in the 21st Century Cures Act and Promoting Interoperability and the ecosystem of platforms and phones that can run apps," Bloomfield said.
Speaking at the at Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT's Interoperability Forum, Bloomfield pointed to the FHIR standard in particular, which Apple is using with its Health Records app to enable patients to control who can access their data.

CVS, Teladoc Partner on Direct-to-Consumer Telehealth Service

CVS Health is expanding its three-year-old partnership with Teladoc Health to offer 24/7 direct-to-consumer telehealth through an mHealth app. It's the latest in a flurry of connected health announcements involving pharmacy chains.

August 08, 2018 - The direct-to-consumer telehealth battle is heating up, with the announcement that CVS will offer round-the-clock care for non-urgent issues through its mHealth app.
CVS Health’s MinuteClinic is offering video visits through its CVS Pharmacy app in an expansion of a three-year partnership with Teladoc Health. The announcement follows on the heels of Walgreens’ recent rollout of its new “Find Care Now” connected health platform, including a connection to MDLive’s telehealth platform, and a partnership between Anthem and American Well to give its members access to non-urgent care on mobile devices through the Samsung Health app.
CVS officials say the new telehealth service is a logical expansion of its commitment to offering healthcare access through connected care platforms. During a test of the digital health platform, a company survey found that 95 percent of patients were “highly satisfied” with the quality of care they received in a telehealth visit, as well as with the convenience of using the telehealth service and the overall telehealth experience.
August 8, 2018 / 8:04 PM / 2 days ago

New genre of artificial intelligence programs take computer hacking to another level

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - The nightmare scenario for computer security - artificial intelligence programs that can learn how to evade even the best defenses - may already have arrived.
That warning from security researchers is driven home by a team from IBM Corp. (IBM.N) who have used the artificial intelligence technique known as machine learning to build hacking programs that could slip past top-tier defensive measures. The group will unveil details of its experiment at the Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas on Wednesday.
State-of-the-art defenses generally rely on examining what the attack software is doing, rather than the more commonplace technique of analyzing software code for danger signs. But the new genre of AI-driven programs can be trained to stay dormant until they reach a very specific target, making them exceptionally hard to stop.

Cyber Insurance Recommended for All Physician Practices

Patient data hacking is a risk even for small practices
WEDNESDAY, Aug. 8, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- The growing threat of hacking is increasing the number of physicians buying cyber insurance, according to an article published in Medical Economics.
According to the article, cyber insurance covers losses and damages resulting from patient data being stolen, exposed, held for ransom, or improperly shared as a result of both deliberate actions (hacking or ransomware) and accidents, like a lost laptop or a coding error that accidentally exposes patient data. The covered consequences of a data breach can include paying fines and compensation for loss of income as well as the fees to hire information technology experts, a public relations firm, attorneys, and even a call center to handle patient inquiries.

Report: More than 3M Patient Records Breached in Second Quarter of 2018

August 8, 2018
by Heather Landi
More than 3.14 million patient records were breached in 142 disclosed health data breach incidents during a three-month span from April to June 2018, according to new data released in the Protenus Breach Barometer.
Published by Protenus, a cybersecurity software company that issues a Breach Barometer report each month, the latest data showed that in the second quarter of 2018 the number of affected patient records almost tripled from those reported in the first quarter of this year (1.13 million patient records).
Protenus and DataBreaches.net compiled the report using health data breaches reported to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) or to the media. The data found that there were several large data breach incidents during the second quarter, including a theft incident in April involving a Sacramento-based office of the Department of Developmental Services, affecting 582,000 patient records, and a hacking incident at a healthcare provider in May that impacted 566,000 patient records.

Apple sees FHIR as way to liberate patient data

Published August 09 2018, 7:18am EDT
As healthcare seeks to solve its interoperability challenges, tech giant Apple is positioned to empower data-sharing on a massive scale with consumer mobile apps that use emerging industry standards.
In particular, Apple is leveraging HL7’s Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) standard for transferring electronic medical records and OAuth 2.0 security profiles for authentication to enable consumers to securely access their health data on their iPhones.
“Standards are only real if they’re used—and, if they’re used at scale,” said Apple’s clinical informatics lead Ricky Bloomfield, MD, on Wednesday at the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT’s Interoperability Forum in Washington. “If any of you have an iPhone in your pocket running the latest version of iOS, you likely already have a FHIR app on it. That’s a real FHIR app, not some pretend or watered-down FHIR app.”

As app and IoT device use rises, so do security concerns

Published August 09 2018, 7:29am EDT
Across the healthcare industry, the use of apps and devices connected to the Internet of Things are viewed as the most promising ways to engage consumers in their care.
However, consumer participation could be derailed if there are fears that the use of these tools poses a risk to security and privacy.
A variety of developers and provider organizations have taken notice of these concerns and are ramping up security initiatives.
An app or IoT device program should not be put in place until appropriate intrusion detection tools, malware protection and auditing processes are established, warns John Halamka, MD, chief information officer at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

New initiative hopes to help providers apply algorithms to treatment

Published August 09 2018, 2:43pm EDT
Premier is partnering with a startup vendor to develop real-time predictive algorithms to inform patient treatment by using specific genetic markers.
The goal is to bring precision medicine within the reach of any health system regardless of size or budget.
Premier is working with new vendor Progknowse, led by former Inova Health System chief technology officer Marshall Ruffin, MD, and the team intends to engage with leading research universities and data scientists.

HIT Think Why resolving patient identification issues is a top priority

Published August 09 2018, 5:05pm EDT
Accurate patient identification is a fundamental prerequisite for quality care, which is why resolving the long-standing patient matching challenge has moved front and center as a top priority. Not only is misidentification expensive, but it exposes healthcare organizations to significant risks from privacy breaches, fines and litigation.
The gravity of the issue was underscored in this May, when healthcare’s most powerful provider, payer, IT and interoperability organizations collectively called on the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to make patient matching and safety a national priority. In a letter to HHS, the group noted that the “absence of a consistent approach to accurately identifying patients has resulted in significant costs to hospitals, health systems, physician practices and long-term post-acute care facilities, as well as hindered efforts to facilitate health information exchange.”
How costly? An estimated $17.4 million per year in denied claims and potential lost revenue for the average facility, according to the Ponemon Institute’s 2016 National Patient Misidentification Report, a survey of more than 500 top-level U.S. healthcare executives and care providers.

Healthcare IT Security Worst of Any Sector With External Threats

Healthcare IT security is the worst of any sector when it comes to dealing with external threats, according to a recent report by security advisory firm Coalfire.

August 07, 2018 - Healthcare IT security is the worst of any sector when it comes to external security posture, according to a recent report by security advisory firm Coalfire.
The Coalfire Penetration Risk Report used customer penetration test data to analyze the security challenges within enterprises of various sizes and in different industries, including retail, healthcare, financial services, and technology industries, and compared the security posture between small, mid-sized, and large organizations.
In terms of external security posture, healthcare organizations had the highest level of severe issues in their external security posture, followed by tech, retail, and financial services. In terms of internal security posture, retail had the highest level of severe security issues, followed closely by healthcare, tech, and financial services.

OpenEMR patches security bugs that put millions of patient records at risk

Security researchers notified the open source EHR managing software of nearly 30 critical vulnerabilities – the second set of vulnerabilities found in a year.
August 08, 2018 02:57 PM
Millions of patient records were potentially left vulnerable to attack by more than 20 vulnerabilities discovered by cybersecurity researchers from Project Insecurity.
The widely used open source EHR management platform is used across the world by thousands of providers and small healthcare organizations for lab integration, CMS reporting, scheduling and storing records. Up until OpenEMR addressed the issues, the platform had 18 severe vulnerabilities.
As a result, Project Insecurity held its report until OpenEMR was able to address the findings.

NHS units to deploy Allscripts EPR

The hospitals already run the vendor’s Patient Administration System and will now be implementing the Electronic Patient Record software.
August 08, 2018 09:56 AM
Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust’s board has approved a full business case that will see the organization deploy Allscripts' Sunrise EPR. 
A recent KLAS Research report looking at the 2017 global EPR market share noted that the UK was one of Allscripts’ primary EPR markets outside of the United States -- while HIMSS Analytics created two maps that demonstrate how Allscripts acquisition of McKesson’s health IT business expanded the vendor’s footprint west of the Mississippi in the U.S. 
The NHS trust, which comprises two major hospitals and a cancer service, deployed the Allscripts Patient Administration System last October. 

HHS offers guidance on disposing devices or media with PHI

The HHS Office for Civil Rights is providing suggestions for getting rid of technology that contains financial or protected health information.
The OCR is targeting the guidance to providers, insurers and other stakeholders on proper secure disposal of IT that may contain the sensitive information.
This equipment covers desktops, laptops, tablets, copiers, servers, smartphones, hard drives, USB drives and other type of electronic storage devices.

More than 600 developers sign up for Blue Button 2.0

Published August 08 2018, 7:26am EDT
App developers are lining up to use an application programming interface that will let Medicare beneficiaries share their claims data with third-party apps.
So far, more than 600 developers have signed up to experiment with the API. The Blue Button 2.0 API leverages HL7’s Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) standard for beneficiary data and the OAuth 2.0 standard for beneficiary authorization. Developers can build integrations to access more than four years of Medicare Part A, B and D data for 53 million Medicare beneficiaries.
“We’re trying to create this ecosystem where app developers can go and create tools that are really useful for beneficiaries and hopefully for the wider patient population,” said Mark Scrimshire, entrepreneur-in-residence at NewWave Telecoms and Technologies, who is currently on assignment as Blue Button 2.0 innovator at the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Mayo, University of Illinois tap genomic data with new informatics tool

Published August 08 2018, 7:40am EDT
A newly developed tool combines different types of genomic data to predict patients’ specific responses to therapeutic drugs.
The application, developed by the University of Illinois and the Mayo Clinic, is based on information contained in human genomes and enables researchers to predict patient reactions.
“We all know treatment outcomes for complex diseases like cancers vary dramatically among individuals, from lacking of efficacy resulting in disease recurring to severe toxicity resulting in noncompliance in patients who cannot tolerate these life-saving drugs,” says Leiwei Wang, professor of pharmacology at the Mayo Clinic. “Therefore, it is extremely important for us to understand better of how and why patients respond differently, so that we can truly individualize their therapies by choosing the right drug at the right dose.”

HIT Think 4 ways healthcare IT will eventually pay off for providers

Published August 08 2018, 5:39pm EDT
In 2018, the phrase “learning curve” is used so frequently that it’s essentially part of the English lexicon with little need for definitions and etymologies.
In the late nineteenth century, however, both phrase and concept were yet to be invented. German psychologist Hermann Ebbinghaus described what we know as the learning curve in the late 1800s, and the term itself was first used in a 1903 issue of the American Journal of Psychology.
Both the learning curve and institutional maturity have been much on my mind since reading about a recent Health Affairs study on the impact of EHRs over a five-year period. According to the research, EHRs were associated with an 11 percent uptick in 30-day mortality rates in 2008, but five years later, they were credited with a .09 percent decrease against the same baseline.

Cybersecurity pros share countermeasures for protecting against insider threats

Active training via simulated phishing, progressive disciplinary measures, disabling hyperlinks and document execution from emails are among the suggestions.
August 07, 2018 03:56 PM
Several years back, Memorial Healthcare System in Florida was attacked from within. Two employees accessed the protected health information of more than 115,000 patients, stealing the patient data. That breach led Memorial to completely revamp its security procedures to guard against future insider threats. It still ended up paying a $5.5 million HIPAA settlement as a result of the breach.
It's not just mystery hackers from Russia trying to gain access to U.S. information systems. Insider security threats are becoming more common in healthcare, and the cause of many breaches. A recent Verizon report noted that 60 percent of healthcare data breaches involve insiders.
There are two types of insider threats that healthcare organizations can face: malicious and accidental. Malicious actors aim to do harm; unintentional insiders are often employees that were trying to do the right thing but made a mistake or acted in ignorance.

Think tank urges social media sites to address mental health of young people

NHS officials In the UK said that social media platforms can have an “insidious grip” on people’s lives and companies such as Facebook have to face up to their responsibilities.
August 07, 2018 10:13 AM
Tech companies could take further action to address rising concerns over cyberbullying and the impact of social media on the mental health of children and young people, the government has said.
In its response to a report from the Commons education and health select committees joint inquiry scrutinizing the scope of the green paper on Children and Young People’s Mental Health, the government said that, while some firms had been “taking steps toward addressing some of these important issues,” it was “disappointed with their overall ambition.”  
A recent report from London-based think-tank Legatum Institute – which was criticized earlier this year for breaching charity regulations after publishing a report on the benefits of free trade after Brexit – said the majority of analyses found the ‘digital world’ and social media in particular to be a major contributor to increasing distress among teenagers, even though, in some cases, it could also “enhance relational skills and social connections.” 

More hospitals, clinics join Apple's health records project

Written by Jessica Kim Cohen | August 06, 2018 |
Louisville, Ky.-based Baptist Health and Arlington-based Texas Health Resources are among the latest healthcare organizations to join Apple's health records project.
In January, the Cupertino, Calif.-based tech giant unveiled plans to integrate patient health records into the iPhone's Health app as part of its iOS 11.3 beta rollout. The program first launched at 12 hospitals, including leading providers like Danville, Pa.-based Geisinger and Baltimore-based Johns Hopkins Medicine. Since then, nearly 80 hospitals have signed onto the project, according to Apple's tally.
Here are nine hospitals and clinics that joined Apple's health records project in the past two weeks, according to a series of tweets by Ricky Bloomfield, MD, clinical and health informatics lead at Apple:

Pentagon bans use of fitness trackers, other devices from areas deemed sensitive

By COREY DICKSTEIN | STARS AND STRIPES Published: August 6, 2018
WASHINGTON — U.S. servicemembers and other Defense Department personnel can no longer use fitness trackers or certain other geolocation devices and applications in parts of the world deemed operational areas, including warzones, Pentagon officials announced Monday.
The prohibition of such tracking services, which range from smartphone and tablet applications to wearable fitness trackers, is designed to protect information about where American servicemembers are operating, said Army Col. Rob Manning, a Pentagon spokesman. The policy stops short of banning all devices capable of geolocation, such as smart phones, if the service can be turned off.
The new policy was announced in a memorandum dated Aug. 3 and signed by Deputy Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan. The memo said the new policy was effective immediately.

Information blocking rule difficult for ONC to sort out

Published August 07 2018, 7:15am EDT
Without health IT interoperability, the country will not be able to achieve patient-centered care and build a healthcare system that delivers value, according to National Coordinator for HIT Don Rucker, MD.
Interoperable electronic health information is at the heart of a modern healthcare system that is economically efficient, Rucker said Monday during the opening session of ONC’s second Interoperability Forum in Washington.
“If we’re going to have empowered patients who are going to be able to control their medical care, it is hard to imagine that isn’t going to happen through the tools and fruits of interoperability,” he declared.

Spending for machine learning in radiology expected to soar

Published August 07 2018, 4:23pm EDT
The market for machine learning in medical imaging will continue to grow, reaching about $2 billion in annual expenditures worldwide by 2023.
That’s the estimate of Signify Research, a research organization based in the United Kingdom.
Signify Research sees particularly rapid expansion of the market for algorithms using deep learning to support software used in image analysis. It estimates the market at less than $200 million this year, but growing to nearly $1.4 billion by 2023.
Aug 7, 2018, 07:45am

How Does AI Fit Into Health Care's Priorities Of 2018?

EVP of Digital Products and Services at Persistent Systems, driving digital transformation across healthcare providers and institutions.
Interest in artificial intelligence (AI) is exploding, with Accenture forecasting that AI in health care will grow to $6.6 billion in a few short years, at a 40% annual compounded growth rate. Accenture also believes this technology will enable an opportunity for $150 billion in industry savings. So, is this hype justified? The short answer is yes, but it belies a much deeper question: How do we weed out the hype and determine exactly what is the most effective role for AI so that we make the rest of 2018 a year for positive change and not disruptive chaos?
AI can augment a physician’s thought process and how he or she reasons out a problem. It can uncover hidden health markers that medical professionals do not observe manually. It can look at both structured and unstructured data -- the results and experience of practitioners from across the health care ecosystem -- to identify trends and predict potential future health issues. But does this mean that entirely automated processes are going to replace physicians?

Healthcare cybersecurity is in a rut, and hackers keep swinging

Tied down by staffing and budget issues, while the industry is still debating the best way to fix healthcare’s security woes, hackers are only getting smarter and continuing to shell the industry in full force.
August 06, 2018 02:19 PM
The number of breached patient records has declined from 100 million in 2015 to just 5 million in 2017, according to a recent Symantec report. But don’t take that at as good news: 10 percent more organizations reported a breach in 2017 than the previous year.
These results could be interpreted in a number of ways. First, possibly certain state actors, like China, have stayed away from healthcare data, said Axel Wirth, a healthcare solutions architect at Symantec. Findings may also suggest that larger organizations are becoming more secure, while smaller providers are still struggling.
But “it doesn’t matter how many records you hold hostage, it’s equally painful for the organization. It may explain why we see a lot of smaller breaches,” Wirth said.

CMS Administrator Seema Verma calls for an end to physician fax machines by 2020

CMS is also seeking Blue Button 2.0 app developers, Verma says at second interoperability forum hosted by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT in Washington, D.C.
August 06, 2018 04:59 PM
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services are working together to realize a shared vision for a health ecosystem that sees the free flow of information between patient, provider and payer, CMS Administrator Seema Verma said Monday during the ONC's Interoperability Forum in Washington, D.C.
Verma set a goal for digital health information to replace the current use of fax machines in physician offices to send patient information.

Allscripts, Cerner offer a glimpse at tech priorities in new earnings reports

Rival EHR vendors have differing plans for 2018, with Allscripts diversifying its product portfolio and Cerner focusing on two landmark EHR modernizations that could have industry-wide gravitational pull.
August 03, 2018 03:35 PM
Allscripts' revenue was up 23 percent and earnings up 142 percent for the second quarter of 2018. Cerner's revenues were up 6 percent, but earnings were down by the same number.
Two of the largest publicly-traded health IT vendors have some very different priorities for 2018 and beyond, as Allscripts focuses expanding its scope offerings to an array of different clients and partners, while Cerner knuckles down for the ongoing rollout of the Defense Department's MHS Genesis and the looming VA modernization project.
On its earnings call, Allscripts President Rick conceded that the company was a "bit disappointed" with the quarter's booking of $278 million," and said long sales cycles and timing uncertainty could lead to more "quarter-to-quarter volatility" ahead – but he expected some but said its remains "very confident in our pipeline of opportunities."

Researchers chart roadmap to restore trust in big data

In the wake of the Cambridge Analytica and Facebook data scandal, researchers call for a clear social contract that involves citizens in decision making processes, ethical rigor and clear sanctions to avoid breaches.
August 06, 2018 10:41 AM
A team of international researchers is urging the health and science community to ‘redouble its commitment’ to be open and transparent and deliver effective and robust governance frameworks under which personal health information can be used following recent data harvesting controversies.
Programs addressing global health challenges, such as the 100,000 Genomes Project or the US Cancer Moonshot, which are dependent on comprehensive data analytics, ‘risk being fatally undermined’ in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica – Facebook scandal, experts said.  

Move over risk scores, what healthcare needs now is Risk Science

Risk science is an emerging requirement for value-based care and population health programs.
August 06, 2018 10:53 AM
 “What’s their risk score?” That’s a natural question to ask when a discussion arises concerning patient risk. Unfortunately, it’s also how most conversations both start and finish.
The idea is that a single score sorted from highest to lowest will tell you which patients need your attention, regardless of the person’s specific clinical or social needs or the care programs that you may be able to offer them.
Indeed, historical models based primarily on claims data aim to capture a general health status of a patient and were designed around actuarial prediction of future costs.

How NorthShore's Epic EHR is impacting its precision medicine primary care model

The health system is ahead of the curve in routinely working genetics into primary care, and patient-shared genomic data has found a home in its EHR for physicians to reference.
August 03, 2018 02:19 PM
As consumer at-home genetic tests become more popular, patients are increasingly interested in how their inherited health impacts their future wellness. At the same time, some hospitals are exploring ways to incorporate genetic information into the delivery of healthcare.
NorthShore University HealthSystem's "advanced primary care" model is designed so a patient's genetic and family history are seamlessly factored into the standard diagnostic assessments performed by primary care physicians.
This means, for instance, that blood pressure and cholesterol are measured and recorded in the electronic health record, and genetic information is gathered from both patient-shared data and associated genetic testing.
The information gathered through a patient's advanced primary care visit is saved to the EHR so pertinent details – whether a high risk for cancer based on genetic mutation or an inherited sensitivity to select medications – are flagged to providers throughout that person's lifetime.

Capsule more accurately measures stomach gases and sends readings to your smartphone

August 3rd, 2018
Bit by bit, scientists are shining the light on the complex relationship between the bacteria in our gut and our overall health. Its links with weight loss, gene activity, anxiety and depression are just a few promising strands researchers have begun tugging at of late. A new pill could prove a useful tool in learning more about the mechanics at play, hiding sensors inside that can take important gas measurements and send its findings to a smartphone.
Packing sensors into pills in the interests of our well-being isn't a novel idea. For the better part of the last decade scientists have been busily building connected capsules that could serve a variety of uses, from carrying cameras into into the body, to notifying doctors when a patient has taken their drugs, to others that swim through intestinal tracts in search of cancer.
Researchers at Melbourne's RMIT are looking to take advantage of ever-smaller electronics to gain a clearer picture of the gases circulating in our stomachs, which could mean much more efficient ways of diagnosing gut disorders. They've been developing a gas-sensing swallowable capsule that detects and measures hydrogen, carbon dioxide and oxygen in the gut, with the data able to be transmitted wirelessly to a smartphone in real-time over Bluetooth, via an RF receiver. It then passes safely through the body once its job is done.

3 trends hackers at Black Hat and DEFCON are watching

Yahoo FinanceAugust 4, 2018
Cybersecurity is a constant game of cat-and-mouse — with every security improvement and criminal crackdown, there is a corresponding evolution in attacker methods and techniques. 
One of the best ways to gain insights into these evolving tactics is to follow the hacking announcements that come out each year at the Black Hat and DEF CON security conferences. These twin hacker cons, which take place in August this year, are a bellwether of sorts for the information security field. They cover a vast range of new hacking research and tend to be a good predictor of the new trends emerging in the hacker and cybercrime communities.
Right now, there are three big trends to watch:
Article by Ross Benes  |  Aug 3, 2018  |  3 min read

Why CMOs Are Agonizing Over Data Breaches

Reddit joins a host of others who have been hacked

On August 1, Reddit announced that hackers stole some of its user data from 2007.
If you feel like you’ve heard this story before, it is because you probably have. Since March, it became public that Under Armour, Timehop and MyHeritage each experienced data breaches. And before them, it was Yahoo, Equifax and Target. Data breaches are proliferating at a time when marketers are becoming increasingly reliant on user data, and this has left many CMOs in agony.
In a May survey of 1,000 senior-level marketers and CMOs worldwide conducted by Dentsu Aegis Network, about three in 10 respondents said that a data breach was the strategic risk that they’ll worry about the most over the next few years. The surveyed CMOs worried more about misuse of consumer data than they did about increasing competition and the dominance of tech platforms.

Vanderbilt issues warning about email spoofing, phishing attacks

Published August 06 2018, 7:21am EDT
A warning has been issued to the staff at Vanderbilt University Medical Center about email spoofing and phishing attacks.
The Nashville, Tenn.-based healthcare organization’s enterprise cybersecurity unit has detected phishing emails being sent using stolen or falsified names of employees to lure their colleagues into unknowingly engaging in fraudulent financial activity. In fact, it’s become almost a daily occurrence for someone at Vanderbilt to receive a phishing email, according to the unit.
“A recent example uses an employee’s name in an email to a colleague to encourage the recipient to quickly purchase and send along check cards,” states an announcement from the medical center. “The email usually comes from a phony email address that may only be one or two characters different from the real account, or it can come from a real account that has already been compromised.”

Health IT Now, professional groups push ONC on info blocking regs

Published August 06 2018, 5:41pm EDT
Industry group efforts are ramping up efforts to get a federal agency to publish regulations intended to enable the free flow of patient data.
Health IT Now, a coalition of industry stakeholders supporting the use of data and information technologies to improve healthcare, along with 14 other organizations is pushing the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology to publish information blocking regulations.
The groups contend that the rules were mandated under the 21st Century Cures Act, but have not yet been released, more than 600 days after enactment of the Act.

How real-world data could improve clinical decisions

Published August 06 2018, 5:22pm EDT
Traditionally, physicians have relied heavily on clinical evidence—most notably from randomized and controlled trials—to guide their medical decision making.
Today, however, clinicians have access to a wealth of additional data generated from sources outside traditional research settings, such as remote monitoring devices, wearables, disease registries, electronic health records, and claims and billing activities.
While evidence-based data from clinical trials remains the bedrock for clinical decision making, clinicians now have the opportunity to enhance the process by incorporating findings from real-world evidence. A recent New England Journal of Medicine opinion column proposes that real-world evidence derived from an analysis of real-world data can effectively complement “the knowledge gained from ‘traditional’ clinical trials, whose well-known limitations make it difficult to generalize findings to larger, more inclusive populations of patients, providers and healthcare delivery systems or settings reflective of actual use in practice.”

2 Minute Read: Digital Health Coaching and Chronic Conditions

By Amanda Natividad  |   August 06, 2018

From virtual doctor visits, to in-app messaging with hospital administrators and more, there’s no doubt technology has paved the way for additional avenues of communication for patients and their healthcare providers.

One growing opportunity is in online or digital health coaching. And there’s early support for its efficacy in managing certain conditions, particularly ones that require lifestyle interventions.
Because digital health coaching enables personalized care and one-on-one communication between a patient and a care provider, it is uniquely positioned to help improve the lives of people who are making lifestyle changes and may need ongoing guidance or motivation to sustain these changes.

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