News & Updates

Doctors who have an ownership stake in their practices are more likely to have trouble adopting electronic health records, according to a study that examined factors that made EHR implementation difficult. Researchers from Boston University Medical School and Boston Medical Center surveyed 156 Massachusetts physicians and reported that 35% of the sample said EHR implementation was difficult. The study’s authors concluded that physician owners reported difficulties in adopting EHRs because of the financial risk they take process.

The American Medical Association recently posted three online tutorials to help practices implement health information technology. The short videos cover ePrescribing, pre-visit planning and point-of-care documentation. The tutorials also feature downloadable tools and describe health IT best practices.

Startup incubator Rock Health hosted a three-day Health Innovation Summit in San Francisco this week. Friday was CEO day with discussion on the difficulties CEOs face in the health care system including reimbursement, regulation and research collaboration challenges. The day also featured demos from startups Docphin, Habit Labs, LUMOback, mscripts and Pipette.

The Health IT industry raised nearly $500 million in venture capital in 2011, according to a report from communications and consulting firm Mercom Capital Group. This amount is up significantly from $211 million raised in 2010. Health information management companies alone raised a combined $336 million through 30 venture capital deals.

UC Davis Health System dermatologists said that telemedicine helps them to better care for their patients. An article in the Archives of Dermatology, a JAMA/Archives journal, describes how physicians use videoconferencing to get real-time information from their patients as well as still and video images of skin conditions. “Live interactive technology is nearly equivalent to physically being in the room with a patient,” study author April Armstrong said.

Hospitals in Western Europe spent $3.2 billion on Health IT in 2010, according to a report by the European Coordination Committee of the Radiological, Electromedical and Healthcare IT Industry, a non-profit trade association. The report found that the United Kingdom was the biggest investor in HIT with $221.3 million spent. Germany and France were the second and third-largest spenders.

Massachusetts General Hospital deployed Voalté‘s iPhone system to the hospital’s nurses, allowing them to send text messages, make calls and receive critical care alarms. The deployment comes after a research test phase in which Voalté was compared with other technologies. Voalte’s list of other customers includes Cedars-Sinai, Nebraska Medical Center, Texas Children’s, Heartland Health, Huntington Hospital and Sarasota Memorial, according to mobihealth news.

NovaSom, Inc.’s AccuSom Home Sleep Test released a an FDA-cleared obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) test kit that uses Verizon Wireless’ cellular network to collect and transfer sleep data to a cloud-based platform. Data is collected over several nights and then physicians can access it for interpretation and diagnosis. OSA goes undiagnosed in many cases, but it’s a condition that nearly 18 million Americans have.

The Informatics Corporation of America, developer of health information exchange technology for hospitals, joined a multi-state workgroup to develop connectivity standards for health data. ICA singed a Memorandum of Understanding with the New York eHealth Collaborative, a nonprofit organization. the ICA and NYeC will join a work group of EHR and HIE vendors in order to work toward establishing a single set of easily implementable standards to facilitate HIT adoption.

The market for mHealth applications in the United States reached $718 Million in 2011, according to Global Information, Inc., a market research company. Of course several other estimates vary wildly.

The National Quality Foundation (NQF) has fallen behind on five of eight projects connected to readying quality data for EHRs, which it’s conducting for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). NQF and HHS both said the estimated time frames were overly ambitious given the technical complexity of the work.

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