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, January 05, 2019

Weekly Overseas Health IT Links – 05th January, 2019.

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.

Patient experience: Where your hospital needs to be five years from now

Here’s a look at what experts are saying hospital business decision makers should be doing today to prepare for the future.
December 28, 2018 09:16 AM
Healthcare C-suites are very concerned with how patients experience their organizations and the care delivered within. The patient experience is a factor that has grown in importance over the years. And forward-looking provider organizations are branching out by doing such things as signing agreements with Uber and Lyft to transport patients to appointments.
A big question today is what should the patient experience look like tomorrow? And in five years? But to understand where the patient experience should go, healthcare C-suites need to know where the patient experience is right now, and how health IT can help. CIOs and similar executives have a lot to say on the subject.
Looking for new methods
Children’s Hospital of Alabama has systems in place for doing things like measuring patient satisfaction and reporting patient satisfaction and things that show follow-through, according to CIO Bob Sarnecki. From an IT perspective, the organization is trying to find ways besides just logging satisfaction.

Why Cybersecurity Remains a Top C-Suite Concern

UPMC CISO John Houston Discusses Top Cyber Challenges for 2019
December 26, 2018
Healthcare C-suite executives shouldn't have to worry about cybersecurity, contends John Houston, CISO and chief privacy officer at Pittsburgh-based integrated health delivery network UPMC. Nevertheless, for the second year in a row, cybersecurity was named the top priority for senior executives in a survey of 40 U.S. health systems.
The study was conducted by the Health Management Academy and the Center for Connected Medicine, which is jointly operated by UPMC, GE Healthcare and Nokia.
Among those surveyed for the Top of Mind for Top Health Systems in 2019 study were CIOs, chief medical informatics officers, chief nursing informatics officers as well as CEOs and chief operating officers.
"It's troubling that cybersecurity remains a high priority for those individuals," Houston says in an interview with Information Security Media Group. "It's also sad because those individuals shouldn't be worried about cybersecurity. They should be worried about things like improving quality of care and [patient] outcomes.

SRTI, WebMD team on study to better understand pregnancy health

Published December 28 2018, 7:10am EST
The Scripps Research Translational Institute has partnered with WebMD on a smartphone-based platform to recruit pregnant women to participate in a study aimed at better understanding pregnancy.
The study’s platform—built on Apple’s ResearchKit framework—has been embedded into the WebMD Pregnancy App, which offers physician-approved content and tools. The goal is to recruit a large and diverse population of pregnant women to participate in the research that includes surveys and sensor-collected data measuring activity, blood pressure, heart rate, and sleep.
“We’re looking at many different factors during pregnancy and being better able to understand what’s normal during pregnancy, and to provide women with more individualized feedback and information about what is typical for women with their individual characteristics,” says Jennifer Radin, an epidemiologist and digital medicine expert at SRTI. “We’re hoping this will be a multi-decade research project.”

HIT Think 7 best practices for combating cybersecurity risks

Published December 28 2018, 5:13pm EST
In 2018 alone there have been more than 600 cybersecurity data breaches, exposing more than 22 million records, with no clear end in sight.
Despite the massive number of breaches, Deloitte recently found that only 25 percent of organizations are scenario planning to defend against these attacks. With consumer and employee displeasure with corporate leaders only continuing to grow and calls for regulation coming from elected officials, it is crucial that leaders begin to regulate themselves by prioritizing cybersecurity to make their business stronger.
As we approach the end of the year and move forward into a year with new cyber risks, here are seven tips to avoid and combat cybersecurity risks.

Doctors are asking Silicon Valley engineers to spend more time in the hospital before building apps

Published Fri, Dec 28 2018 • 9:38 AM EST | Updated Fri, Dec 28 2018 • 12:43 PM EST

Key Points
  • Richard Zane, an emergency room physician, developed a program so that engineers can understand the clinician’s workflow before they build their products
  • RxRevu is one start-up that shadows Zane on the job.
  • In the Bay Area, it’s become common for doctors to invite technologists from Google and elsewhere to follow them on the job.
As an emergency room physician, Richard Zane often considers how software can help him with patients. The problem is that engineers and doctors are from different worlds.
Zane, who’s also the chief innovation officer at UCHealth in Colorado, said that most technologists he’s met have never seen the inner workings of a hospital and don’t have a deep understanding of what doctors want and need.
“We found that tech companies more often than not had a preconceived notion of how health care worked,” Zane told CNBC. They’ve “gone very far down the path of building a product” without that input, he said.

How a government shutdown affects America’s cybersecurity workforce

America’s federal cybersecurity workforce will see sharp reductions if Congress fails to pass a spending bill to keep the government open, according to planning documents from federal agencies.
If a new budget is not signed by midnight Dec. 21, roughly 800,000 federal government workers will be affected by a shutdown, according to the White House.
Among the heaviest hit agencies would be the National Institute of Standards and Technology, which would have 85 percent of its staff furloughed. Only 435 employees are considered “essential,” according to a planning document from the Department of Commerce.

InterSystems exec on distributed, data-intensive, rapidly changing world of health IT

The health IT vendor is also concentrating on AI and FHIR heading into HIMSS19.
December 26, 2018 09:16 AM
There are three primary factors driving health IT today: It is distributed, it is information-intensive, and it is changing rapidly, said Kathleen Aller, director of market strategy for healthcare at InterSystems.
The vendor will be focusing on these and other health IT trends, including FHIR and AI, at HIMSS19 in February in Orlando.
“The distributed nature of it means that patients are seeking care from all points of the healthcare ecosystem, and the data from these points of care – social, outpatient, inpatient, specialty clinics, etc. – have to be aggregated into a unified patient record,” Aller explained.

A C-suite guide to telemedicine

NewYork-Presbyterian, UPMC and Thibodaux executives discuss the advantages and imperatives of creating wide-ranging telehealth programs.
December 27, 2018 09:02 AM
Telemedicine is much more than two video cameras, two screens, a doctor and a patient. Telemedicine is a major change in the way healthcare is delivered, and an opportunity for healthcare provider organizations to expand the geography and range of patients they serve.
From the business point of view, there are a variety of things a hospital or health system C-suite should be prepared for when it comes to launching and maintaining telemedicine programs.
We interviewed top telehealth leaders at NewYork-Presbyterian, UPMC and Thibodaux Regional Medical Center about how they have instituted successful telemedicine tools and programs, what works well, and other considerations for healthcare business decision makers.

Stanford sees healthcare democratization a big trend for 2019 and beyond

A new report from the university says intelligent computing and data sharing advances spurred by companies such as Apple are reshaping old ways of doing business.
December 27, 2018 10:50 AM
With the extreme proliferation of data comes the opportunity to further democratize healthcare, according to Stanford University School of Medicine's 2018 Health Trends Report.
The university found that the influx of data was taking healthcare by storm and that technologies that were old hat in other industries  are still in their infancy in the healthcare. The barriers to this data are falling fast, however, and the report identifies three main trends in technology that are driving remarkable change in how physicians, researchers and patients all share information.
Intelligent computing. Physicians will be able to use new computing power to develop tailored treatment plans based on the complex interplay of health data that is a patient. Greater insight into patient data, along with being able to utilize a much wider range of trial-based information gathered and presented by intelligent computing could help reduce healthcare spending by billions in only a manner of years.
Data sharing. The report notes that "democratization necessitates openness," and that all of the computing and insights in the world will not amount to much unless the data is shared between all stakeholders. Interoperability is still a great challenge but technologies like APIs, which standardize how applications communicate with one another, promise to help improve the exchange of data. Much of this is being driven by companies new to healthcare, like Lyft or Apple.

HIT Think Three key trends that will change cybersecurity strategies in 2019

Published December 27 2018, 2:59pm EST
Look back at 2018 and you’ll see how turbulent of a year it was for the security industry. Unprecedented data breaches from the likes of Facebook and Marriott, among many more, prove that organizations and security professionals must do a better job at proactively protecting sensitive information.
In 2018 we also saw governments step in and enforce new security regulations to protect consumers. It’s safe to say security policies and reporting will both undergo major updates over the next 1-2 years. And as security infrastructures evolve as a result, it is certain that new attack vectors and vulnerabilities will emerge, and security teams will need to be able to identify and prioritize the mitigation actions needed to prevent more breaches of this scale.
As we approach 2019, here are three major shifts that security teams and organizations alike can expect.

Chuck Norris laments serious problems for patients: physician burnout

Notes doctors seldom have time to address health-behavior links due to job stress
22 December, 2018
Last month, I reported on vitamin and mineral supplements that roughly half of all Americans routinely take and are said to make up 5 percent of all grocery sales in the United States. When faced with more than 90,000 dietary supplement products for sale, it is important to choose your sources carefully and with expert help.
Commercially available vitamins, minerals and herbs are all lumped together as supplements and are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration. You can be assured of a product’s dosage, the correctness of its ingredients and that it does not contain toxins or contaminating organisms if the label shows it is certified as tested by independent labs such as U.S. Pharmacopeia, Consumer Lab or NSF International. Such certification will be visible on the product’s label.
I also tried to make clear that our bodies prefer naturally occurring sources of vitamins and minerals. Studies consistently show that people who eat diets rich in fruits, vegetables, nuts, whole grains and fish consume high levels of vitamins and minerals from them. As a result, they have a lower risk of many diseases, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes and cancer.

3 ways AI will improve healthcare in 2019

by John Stevens — 22 December, 2018 in Contributors
In a recent piece, I explained why AI’s complexity shouldn’t be a deterrent for its adoption. In fact, I went as far as stating that artificial intelligence will be just as disruptive as the internet was. This is a view I am doubling down on.
As far as artificial intelligence is concerned, one industry most likely to be most disrupted is the healthcare industry. Why will AI have such an impact on the healthcare industry? Facts like the ones below are why:
  • Hospital error — which can be significantly addressed and prevented by AI — is the third leading cause of patient death
  • Depending on what source you pay attention to, up to 440,000 Americans die annually from preventable medical errors
  • According to data from the National Safety Council, 2016 was the deadliest year on American roads in a decade — with 40,000 deaths. This means preventable hospital deaths due to hospital error are 11 times the number of road accidents in the United States
  • 86 percent of mistakes in the healthcare industry are purely administrative and preventable
  • Effective application of AI is projected to result in annual savings of $150 billion in the US healthcare industry
  • The AI health market is projected to grow more than 10 times within the next five years
When we look at both the physical and economic implications, the healthcare industry is one industry that is very much in need of an artificial intelligence disruption. That said, there are certain key healthcare AI trends to pay attention to in 2019:

Five innovation trends that will impact the healthcare industry in 2019

The behavioral health epidemic, artificial intelligence and more procedures being done in outpatient settings are some the key 2019 trends that will determine how decision makers purchase technology.

Dec 25, 2018 at 2:00 PM
What role will technology play in the healthcare industry in the next year?
For venture capitalists and others with interests in the healthcare industry, being able to anticipate industry innovations is critical. However, it isn’t enough to simply study emerging technology.
While understanding current innovations is important, we also need to study the underlying challenges they aim to solve. A solid grasp of how care delivery is changing provides deeper insights into how new technologies can advance care or resolve real industry problems.
To help you navigate the next year of healthcare changes, here are five health innovation trends that will impact the industry in 2019 and how you can prepare for them:
Behavioral Health Epidemic
There is little denying that the United States is in the throes of a serious opioid epidemic. Currently, over 130 people die each day from opioid-related drug overdoses. A full 80 percent of heroin users report misusing prescription opioids prior to moving on to using heroin.

Med school platform puts knowledge in computable format

Published December 26 2018, 7:43am EST
Health information technology is enabling healthcare organizations to analyze the data they generate during the process of taking care of patients to create new “local” evidence to improve outcomes.
Combining this locally generated evidence with evidence from peer-reviewed medical literature is critical to creating a learning health system that can continuously study and improve itself while rapidly integrating this knowledge into best practice models, moving research out of journals and into the clinical environment.
So says Charles Friedman, chair of the University of Michigan Medical School’s Department of Learning Health Sciences and the Josiah Macy Jr. Professor of Medical Education.

Providers turning to health IT to combat the opioid crisis

Published December 26 2018, 7:49am EST
Providers have begun to harness technology to improve their management of opioids and avoid misuse.
It’s not a moment too soon. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s most recent reports, released in November, confirm that the opioid crisis is worsening. The number of drug overdose deaths in the United states in 2017 was 9.6 percent higher than in 2016. The rate of drug overdose deaths involving natural and semisynthetic opioids like oxycodone and hydrocodone has risen steadily since 1999. The rate of drug overdose deaths involving synthetic opioids such as fentanyl, which individuals frequently turn to when they can no longer obtain prescribed opioids, increased 45 percent between 2016 and 2017.
One of the key components to reversing these trends is to keep people from becoming addicted in the first place, says Jim Turnbull, CIO of University of Utah Health and Co-chair of the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) Opioid Task Force. Providers are uniquely positioned to address this problem because they are the ones prescribing the drugs.
“We want to make sure we’re not contributing to addiction. We don’t want to be the source of people getting addicted,” Turnbull adds.

Enthusiasm for AI is outpacing adoption, study finds

Published December 26 2018, 4:50pm EST
Artificial intelligence and machine learning have become essential for organizations to stay competitive. But adoption is lagging, even among key decision-makers championing change.
That is the finding of a new survey by the RELX Group, a global provider of information and analytics. The company surveyed 1,000 U.S.-based senior executives across government, healthcare, insurance, legal, science/medical and banking in September, and the research found that 88 percent agree that AI and machine learning will help their organizations be more competitive.
While the value of the technologies is clear to executives, only 56 percent of organizations use machine learning or AI. In addition, only 18 percent of those surveyed plan to increase investment in these technologies.

A retrospective look at the work of HIMSS Communities in Europe in 2018

European HIMSS Communities collaborate to advance the development of a digital health ecosystem.
December 26, 2018 07:19 AM
This is the time of the year when we take a moment to look back at the work of our HIMSS communities in Europe during the past 12 months and create new goals for the year to come. For a number of reasons, 2018 has made us proud and energized to make 2019 the best it can be. 

“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much," Helen Keller

This quote encapsulates best the drive behind the work of our Nordic community. We started with small steps in March during the Nordic Workshop at HIMSS18, discussing ownership and use of data within national health systems. The more we deep-dived into the philosophical questions of who owns the data and what the greater good (or threat) would be from its use – the more we realised that we are hitting nails while trying to drive down the road.
The rhetoric shifted a few months later during the HIMSS Europe annual conference in Spain – from the ever-pressing “how” to “why” we need interoperability and what’s in for the patient. We “brought to life” patient Julie and Julie’s story of shuffling between Nordic countries all while trying to live a normal life as a young student diagnosed with diabetes Type 1. By looking into how we can help Julie and her condition, a momentum for the Nordics to step up as a region in view of EU Strategy for a Pan-European exchange of health data came to the surface. 

5 blockchain developments in 2018

Amazon, Change Healthcare and Walmart all made moves worth watching as we head into 2019.
December 26, 2018 11:44 AM
Blockchain moved from mostly hype in 2017 to early technological developments, proofs-of-concept and pilot projects during the last 12 months.  
Deloitte, in a late summer report, predicted a breakout moment for the distributed ledger technology is approaching as almost 75 percent of research respondents see a compelling business case for DLT.  
So it’s no surprise that major tech vendors are embracing Blockchain. Here are five such moves made in 2018.

Clock is Ticking on Watch that Could Predict Illness

By Mandy Roth  |   December 21, 2018

HHS awards research funds to help Israeli company further develop technology; more funding opportunities are available.

Wristwatches for telling time are so old school. Devices adorning tomorrow's wrists might alert those wearing them that they've been exposed to a pathogen, they're contagious, and the clock is ticking before they begin feeling sick.
Biobeat Technologies of Israel aims to do just that, and a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is betting the company can, investing nearly $600,000 to further develop Biobeat's existing technology. If perfected, such a device could play a role in health systems' chronic disease management programs, readmission prevention efforts, or population health initiatives by delivering care and medications soon after an individual's exposure to reduce the impact of illnesses. 

Watching for Signs of Illness

The project will employ Biobeat’s wrist watch, an FDA-cleared monitoring device that continuously measures blood pressure, heart rate, heart rate variability, oxygen saturation, respiratory rate, stroke volume, cardiac output and index, systemic vascular resistance, sweat, skin temperature, and more. The new funding will be used to further develop its technology to track bodily changes that signal the user potentially has been exposed to an influenza virus or other pathogen.

New Healthcare Trends in 2019

Indian Healthcare sector is evolving rapidly after the introduction of new age technologies. The time has gone when the healthcare industry was just based on doctor and patient interaction and has now reached at the real time engagement without any geographical limitation, writes Kunal Kishore Dhawan, CEO, Navia Life Care, for Elets News Network (ENN).
With advances in technology in the healthcare industry, public is becoming more aware and smart to lead a healthy life. The consciousness of people especially for their health is resulting in the acceptance of more efficient and innovative systems along with hospitals and other healthcare service providers. With the continuous adoption of new age technologies, the healthcare industry is going through a major transformation and likely to move towards “Value-Based Care”.
In the upcoming year, there will be a huge impact on healthcare sector with two of the most talked about technologies – Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Blockchain.

3D-printed electronic pill can wirelessly dispense medicine from inside stomach

A customizable electronic pill capable of delivering medication via wireless commands from inside the body has been developed by researchers at MIT, Draper, and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, all in Massachusetts. As described in a paper published in the December 13, 2018 issue of Advanced Materials Technologies, this ingestible device could provide a system of monitoring and treating medical conditions typically requiring injections or strict dosing regiments such as HIV and malaria. Early signs of disease or adverse reaction could be also detected with onboard sensors in at-risk patients, such as those receiving chemotherapy or immunosuppressants, and medicine dispensed accordingly. Tests of similar devices have begun using pigs, and the researchers estimate human trials to start in about two years.
The electronic pill is a Y-shaped compartmented device whose legs have been folded into a smooth capsule that dissolves once swallowed. After the legs unfold again, it lodges into the stomach where it remains for approximately one month before being broken down and fully digested. The scientists in the study anticipate that the pill’s compartments could be designed to be opened using low-energy wireless communication technology such as Bluetooth to release specified amounts of medication. Further, sensors in the pill could connect to other wearable devices, creating an all-in-one communication tool and treatment system connecting the patient’s health data to theirs or their doctor’s smartphone.

Innovation in Healthcare Technology Changing the Game

Panelists at the recent RealShare Healthcare conference agree that new tech advances will create efficiency but will not take away from the real estate.

By Natalie Dolce | December 20, 2018 at 05:00 AM
SCOTTSDALE, AZ—Innovation in healthcare technology has changed the rules of the game for hospitals and healthcare centers. It has and continues to do so. As in other industries, healthcare will be disrupted by advancements in technology like telemedicine and virtualized care programs, which are already rising in popularity with patients. But how will it impact brick-and-mortar space?
Panelists at the recent RealShare Healthcare conference here in Scottsdale, AZ, said that telemedicine will not replace the need for office visits. “I will not take away from the real estate,” panelists said.

Vendors team to try to reduce patient data snooping

Published December 21 2018, 3:18pm EST
Two health IT vendors are developing a service to enable providers to establish and maintain an effective privacy monitoring program.
CynergisTek is a cybersecurity and information management consultancy with expertise in the optimization of privacy programs and its partner, Protenus, offers technology to monitor health professionals’ behaviors using analytical and artificial intelligence technologies.
Key to their efforts are enabling providers to better monitor their staffs.
Most healthcare providers, staffers and other persons who have access to medical records strive to protect the privacy of patients, but there are those who will go snooping in a record they should not be accessing or are in a location that is inappropriate for the work they are supposed to be doing.

6 key areas that will separate the AI leaders from laggards

Published December 24 2018, 1:42pm EST
What’s on the horizon for artificial intelligence in 2019? There are certainly of theories floating about, but consulting firm PwC predicts that organizations that focus on six key areas will become AI leaders.
Here are the areas companies need to focus on in 2019 to be ahead of the competition when it comes to AI, according to the firm:
Organize for return on investment (ROI) and momentum
Pressure will increase to scale up AI in 2019 to enhance decision-making and provide forward-looking intelligence for users in every department and function. Having the right AI governance model enables companies to develop use cases that create quick wins.
Teach AI citizens and specialists to work together
AI is being democratized, but is still so complex that even trained business specialists can make mistakes. Organizations need to develop the right mix of citizen users, citizen developers, and data scientists, and give them the tools, training, and incentives to help them work collaboratively.

HIT Think AL and ML choices can dramatically improve data security

Published December 24 2018, 1:47pm EST
As networks have advanced in complexity, so have the tools and tactics of cybercriminals. Organizations increase their cybersecurity budgets and teams, yet breaches keep occurring. In the fight for stronger security, vendors are offering up AI and machine learning as a Holy Grail. But do these technologies actually deliver?
Frequent headlines make it clear that cybercriminals are currently are winning battles regularly. A successful intrusion attempt need only find a single flaw in an enterprise defense, while security teams are dealing with the increasing complexity of more instrumentation, tools, data and alerts that add to the attack surface.
The increased attack surface just increases alert fatigue and distracting noise, leaving organizations looking for a better solution. Vendors tout AI and machine learning as that better solution, but the reality is that they could actually exacerbate the existing problems and perpetuate the disadvantaged posture of security teams today.

How Intermountain Saved $1.2M With Neonatal Telehealth Program

By Christopher Cheney  |   December 21, 2018

Avoiding air medical transfers of newborns from community hospitals to tertiary hospitals saves an average of $18,000 per flight.


Ten percent of newborns require breathing assistance and 1% need resuscitation.
Intermountain Healthcare's neonatal telehealth service enables participating community hospitals to avoid transferring some critically ill newborns.
Averting transfers cuts costs and avoids clinical risks such as handoff communication errors.
Intermountain Healthcare's neonatal telehealth service has improved quality of care at community hospitals and reduced risky transfers of critically ill newborns, recent research published in Health Affairs shows.
Earlier studies have shown that 10% of newborns require breathing assistance, and 1% need resuscitation. Although hospital-based clinicians who care for newborns attend biannual newborn resuscitation programs, researchers have found key skills decline within months of course attendance.
Original Investigation
Health Policy
December 21, 2018

Feasibility of Reidentifying Individuals in Large National Physical Activity Data Sets From Which Protected Health Information Has Been Removed With Use of Machine Learning

Author Affiliations Article Information
JAMA Netw Open. 2018;1(8):e186040. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2018.6040
Key Points
Question  Is it possible to reidentify physical activity data that have had protected health information removed by using machine learning?
Findings  This cross-sectional study used national physical activity data from 14 451 individuals from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys 2003-2004 and 2005-2006. Linear support vector machine and random forests reidentified the 20-minute-level physical activity data of approximately 80% of children and 95% of adults.
Meaning  The findings of this study suggest that current practices for deidentifying physical activity data are insufficient for privacy and that deidentification should aggregate the physical activity data of many people to ensure individuals’ privacy.

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