Thursday, August 30, 2007

ZIX Corp (ZIXI) Announces Contract with United HealthCare (UNH)

Cudos to UnitedHealthCare for paying a transaction fee for each prescription.
Eventually, a portion of the money saved via ePrescribing through increased formulary compliance, decreased drug interactions and improved medication choices will need to trickle to front line providers of care. SV

Zix Corporation is announcing that it has signed a contract with United HealthCare (NYSE: UNH) for an e-prescribing program with the Company's PocketScript® e-prescribing service, including new prescriber sponsorships and a nationwide script fee. The new sponsorship will consist of 100 new prescribers, to be split between Florida and Ohio to evaluate the impact of e-prescribing in the first phase of this e-prescribing program.

The script fee component will enable the full functionality and decision support of the Company's e-prescribing service to all of its between 3,100 to 3,200 existing active prescribers and any new doctors deployed in the future whenever they see a member of a United insured health plan. The $1.50 script fee would be paid for all qualified scripts for United's members written by any PocketScript user, with a portion of the fee to go towards sponsoring additional new prescribers.

Monday, August 27, 2007

HRSA Awards $31.4 Million to Expand Use of Health Information Technology at Health Centers

HRSA Administrator Elizabeth M. Duke today announced $31.4 million in grants to help health centers prepare to adopt and implement Electronic Health Records (EHR) and other health information technology (HIT) innovations.


Friday, August 24, 2007

CCHIT 2007 Certified Ambulatory EHRs

Well folks, remember that long list of 2006 products?
The current list for 2007 is significantly shorter.
The bar got raised a little higher, as it will each year.

Among the new criteria:
true eRx, not just faxing of labs
receipt of lab results electronically. SV

2007 Ambulatory EHR Certified Products

Community Computer Service (MEDENT 17) 7/11/2007

eClinicalWorks, LCC (eClinicalWorks 7.6.15) 8/10/2007

e-MDs, Inc. (e-MDs Solution Series 6.1.2) 7/18/2007

Greenway Medical Technologies (PrimeSuite 2007 R2) 6/22/2007

McKesson Provider Technologies (Practice Partner 9.2.1) 7/17/2007

NextGen Healthcare Information Systems, Inc. (NextGen EMR 5.4.29) 6/25/2007

Purkinje (CareSeries EHR 2.0) 7/27/2007


Tuesday, August 21, 2007

CalRHIO to provide $340,000 to health care information networks

Savings from efficiences may not have been enough to pay for expansion. SV

CalRHIO, a statewide initiative to create a secure health care information network linking California hospitals, doctors and clinics, said Monday it is funneling up to $340,000 to four "safety net" health information exchanges in San Francisco, Healdsburg, Santa Clara and Southern California's Tehachapi Valley.

Three of the four networks are based in the greater San Francisco Bay Area.

The funding was made available through an earlier grant from Blue Shield of California Foundation, officials at San Francisco-based CalRHIO said Aug. 20. The four awardees, who will net up to $85,000 each to strengthen or expand existing information networks, include:

The San Francisco Community Clinic Consortium.

Healdsburg's Alliance Medical Center.

Santa Clara's Community Health Partnership.

The Tehachapi Valley Health Care District.

East Bay Business Times

Monday, August 20, 2007

Minnesota e-Health Initiative Summit

Plans on each citizen having access to a PHR and inter-operable EHRs for all physicians by 2015.
Great news for a great state.
More details are needed on the financing. SV

Minnesota Summit

Minnesota e-health

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Corsair’s Flash Padlock USB

How this for security?
Now if they could just add a keychain loop. SV

Corsair’s Flash Padlock gives users the confidence of having a hardware-secured lock to protect their data on an USB drive. Featuring auto-lock hardware security, Flash Padlock is the best way to secure your data while on the go. This prevents any unauthorized access or “Brute Force” attack to the data on Flash Padlock. Users can program in a PIN, much like they do for an ATM machine, to lock/unlock their data. An easy to use keypad in conjunction with lock/unlock indicator lights makes the Flash Padlock highly intuitive to use. Lastly, the Flash Padlock is fully plug-and-play, and requires no software or drivers to work properly.
Auto-Locking – Self locking after removal from computer
Customizable PIN – Set your own PIN and make it easy to remember
Easy to Use – Direct keypad access and indicator lights make locking/unlocking simple
Plug and Play – Hardware based security works without installing or running software
Platform independent – Works on Windows, MAC and Linux platforms without the use of software

Flash Padlock 1GB ~ $29.99 USD MSRP
Flash Padlock 2GB ~ $39.99 USD MSRP


Thursday, August 16, 2007

Trade group: More government action needed on e-health

What does everyone think?
Should health related communications have routing priorty over entertainment and others? SV

An ISP trade group says government regulation ensures health initiatives get transmission priority.

Grant Gross
PC World
Wednesday, August 15, 2007; 9:19 AM

U.S. lawmakers should avoid passing net neutrality laws as a way to help electronic-health initiatives move forward, an Internet provider trade group said Tuesday.

E-health and telemedicine applications will need to have priority routing over broadband networks in order to function properly, said David McClure, president and CEO of the U.S. Internet Industry Association (USIIA), which represents broadband providers and other Internet-based companies. Any legislation that would prohibit providers from prioritizing network traffic would be detrimental to e-health initiatives, he said.

State Alliance for e-Health Adopts Taskforce Recommendations

BURLINGTON, VT—The State Alliance for e-Health (State Alliance) today adopted the following recommendations from two of its three taskforces. Full text of the recommendations will be available Thursday, August 16, please visit

The Health Care Practice Taskforce is charged by the State Alliance with identifying and addressing issues pertaining to the regulatory, legal and professional standards that have an impact on the practice of medicine and create barriers to interoperable, electronic health information exchange.

The Health Information Protection Taskforce is charged by the State Alliance with identifying and addressing issues pertaining to the privacy and security of consumer health information while allowing for seamless electronic health information exchange within and across states

National Governors Association
The Guide to Medicare Preventive Services is now available

The 2nd Edition of The Guide to Medicare Preventive Services for Physicians, Providers, Suppliers, and Other Health Care Professionals is now available in downloadable format from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, Medicare Learning Network (MLN). This comprehensive guide provides fee-for-service health care providers and suppliers with coverage, coding, billing and reimbursement information for preventive services and screenings covered by Medicare. This guide gives clinicians and their staff the information they need to help them in recommending Medicare-covered preventive services and screenings that are right for their Medicare patients and provides information needed to effectively bill Medicare for services furnished. To view online, go to (5.05MB) on the CMS website.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007


It is good to see the private sector working with a Medical Academy to promote best practices. SV

SureScripts, founded by the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) and the National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA), today announced that it is collaborating with the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association (BCBSA), Humana Inc., Intel Corporation, and the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) to launch The Center for Improving Medication Management.

Operating as a center of excellence, The Center will initiate programs to gather and disseminate best practices for deployment of technology that electronically links physicians, pharmacists and patients. The Center will conduct research that details how physicians, pharmacists and patients can use technology and health information exchange to improve the way medications are prescribed, filled, used and evaluated for patient outcomes – i.e. to improve the way medications are managed. For certain projects, SureScripts and The Center’s co-founders – AAFP, BCBS Association, Humana Inc., Intel, MGMA – will work with additional organizations to support The Center’s mission, including some of the nation’s leading research organizations.

The Center for Improving Medication Management

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Fujitsu LifeBook T2010 Tablet PC just released.

I've used the 1510 for almost two years. It has an 8.9 inch screen and has worked very well. This could very well become my second Fujitsu once they offer the solid state hard drive. SV

The newest, innovative LifeBook T2010 sports the latest Intel® Core™ 2 Duo Processor, a brilliant 12.1-inch wide active digitizer display with wide viewing angles, and a robust bi-directional hinge. Weighing approximately 3.5 lbs, with durable magnesium-alloy housing and extensive security features, the T2010 is perfect for users who desire a reliable, ultra-light yet powerful Tablet PC with all-day computing capability with the optional high-capacity battery to get your work done.

ACP joins UnitedHealth and physician groups on medical home in Florida

It wouldn't hurt to have an EHR.
I know a few groups in NYC that would like to participate. SV

Last week ACP joined with UnitedHealth Group, the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) to announce the planned launch a pilot project of the patient-centered medical home.
The patient-centered medical home is a model of care designed to improve patients’ total health and care delivery through patients partnering with their primary care physicians. The physician, as leader of a multidisciplinary care team, takes responsibility for the whole care of the patient and coordinates that care with other physicians and professionals across the full spectrum on an ongoing basis. The pilot program will be launched in approximately six primary care practices in Florida.

This program will mark the first time that physicians are compensated with enhanced payments to reward the extensive work related to patient care that takes place outside the physician-patient encounter and to recognize the costs to the practice of maintaining the capability to provide patient-centered care. UnitedHealth Group and the medical societies have commissioned an independent research study on the pilot program.


Friday, August 10, 2007

Commissioner Daines Announces Statewide Plan to Enable Improvements in Health Care Quality, Affordability and Outcomes Through Health Information Technology

This represents an excellent opportunity to bring EHRs and HIT Collaboratives to small and medium sized practices. SV

ALBANY, N.Y., August 8, 2007 – Health Commissioner Richard F. Daines, M.D., today announced the launch of a comprehensive health information technology program, part of Governor Eliot Spitzer's agenda to advance patient-centered care and enable improvements in health care quality, affordability and outcomes for each person, family and business in New York.

An initial $106 million will be invested in the health care community during 2007-2008 to support the implementation of health IT tools to allow portability of patients' medical records and new tools to assess and target improvements in health care quality.

The Commissioner has charged his new Office of Health Information Technology Transformation with coordinating health IT programs and policies across the public and private health care sectors. These programs and policies will establish the health IT infrastructure and capacity to support clinicians in quality-based reimbursement programs and new models of care delivery.

DOH's effort is part of Governor Spitzer's 'Patients First' health care agenda to improve the quality of health care as it shifts from institution-based care to community care. The following key objectives will drive DOH's investment in a community-based health information infrastructure, including:

* Ensuring the privacy and security of patients' individually identified health information, and supporting the right of New Yorkers to have greater control over and secure access to their personal health information.
* Providing public information about the quality and cost of care by payers and providers so consumers can compare costs and value.
* Using health IT as a tool to support better management of chronic disease, community-based long-term care, improved public health surveillance and reporting, and a modified certificate-of-need process to advance health care reform.
* Providing health IT tools required for validated quality measurement and reporting to support reimbursement reform, which is under way in the Medicaid program – the largest health care insurance payer in the state.
* Helping prepare New Yorkers for health care emergencies by developing the capacity to receive and exchange health care information, such as medications and lab test results.
* Helping clinicians and providers in small practices, community health centers and rural and under-served areas close the health IT gap between them and larger or urban institutions. This requires development of a sustainable financing plan, which includes public- and private-sector investment in health IT.
* Increasing the use of telemedicine, remote monitoring devices and other medical device applications to exchange information regardless of the venue where the patient receives services.

ONCHIT's report for reducing fraud and improving data accuracy available

Of the recommendations:

22% can be mapped to current CCHIT criteria
45% can be partially mapped
23% are completely new

There's a lot of work ahead.



Friday, August 03, 2007

Rhode Island to Statewide Health Information Exchange System with EDS

A well-funded and designed "backbone" will greatly facilitate transfer of information from the multiple IT silos: doctors' and hospitals' EHRs. SV

Rhode Island is now one step closer to implementing a health information system that will allow physicians, with their patient's permission, to access important patient health data from a variety of sources when and where it is needed. The State has chosen Electronic Data Systems Corporation (EDS), and its subcontractor InterSystems Corporation, to build and integrate the necessary technology and software.

Rhode Island

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Vermont Health Information Technology (VITL) Plan Completed

Congratulations Vermont! SV

Monday, July 30, 2007

Montpelier, Vt. – Vermont Information Technology Leaders, Inc. (VITL), a non-profit public-private partnership, today announced the completion of the Vermont Health Information Technology Plan. The 140-page document provides Vermont with a roadmap for encouraging the use of health information technology and creating a statewide secure network for exchanging data between health care organizations.

The Vermont Health Information Technology Plan identifies a set of four core objectives for a five-year planning cycle:

Encourage and enable the deployment and use of electronic health record systems within the state to increase the amount of health information that exists in electronic form.

Establish and operate the infrastructure necessary to promote a secure electronic health information exchange to achieve the plan’s vision.

Empower consumers to take an active role in electronic health information initiatives in Vermont.

Enable public health agencies to leverage health information technology/health information exchange investments to monitor and ensure the public’s health more transparently and quickly.

Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) EHR guidelines

Here's an easy to read resource. SV