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News 5/5/09

May 4, 2009 News No Comments

From Mr. Cleanjeans: "Re: infection. Next time after a flight, linger to see how well the post-flight clean-up goes. Some airlines (e.g. SWA) pride themselves on everyone pitching in to clean up to turn around the planes faster. What you see sometimes are people with gloves on to protect themselves. What you DON’T see is people with gloves on using antiseptic wipes on the seats, arm rests, tray tables, etc. I put a Purell or similar in the baggie and send it through the scanner!" 

From Albert Einstein: "I have noticed that there is rarely any mention of clinical trials IT vendors on this site. I am not associated with Clinical Trials nor any vendor or consulting group but keep bumping in to the problem of how to manage trials from patient access, revenue cycle and clinical IT integration perspectives. Can we get some help here?" Anyone have any insight on this? We asked Dr. Joel Diamond to share his thoughts on the topic and he replied: "There are some clinical trial vendors—they mostly help with administration of trials. The problem is that the pharma companies still insist on using rooms and rooms full of notebooks and paper to document everything. Some of the companies have some electronic capturing tools for reporting, but they tend to be proprietary for each trial and cumbersome to use. To date, there has been no significant tie-in to EMRs or any kind of standards for reporting and documentation. In my humble opinion, there is an incredible opportunity for EMRs to help with the inclusion and exclusion criteria for selecting patients for trial, and to monitor their follow-up."

The NY City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene wants to integrate a new substance abuse screening tool into the city’s eClinicalWorks EHR program. The interactive program would guide primary care providers through a series of questions and provide a substance abuse involvement score.

st vicent

Christus Health votes to provide St. Vincent Regional Medical Center and La Familia Medical Center (NM) $300,000 to digitize their medical records.

Doctors’ Administrative Solutions (FL) signs a sales and marketing partnership with iMedica to offer iMedica’s Patient Relationship Manager 2009 and Transition EHR system.

The developers of TurboTax and Quicken introduce Quicken Health Expense Tracker to help consumers monitor their medical bills and payments from insurance companies. The online tool allows patients to view insurance payments and track their portion of medical costs. Wonder if any web-portal companies want to provide any Quicken-ready billing information for patient use?

Allscripts and Edge Health Solutions announce that Edge will offer Allscripts MyWay solution for Mac as part of its portfolio of solutions for Apple hardware.

The owner of a Las Vegas medical spa files a lawsuit against a former employee and her retired cosmetic-surgeon husband after discovering the couple were running an after-hours, cash-only cosmetic procedure business. The former employee used her key to open the spa in the middle of the night and on Sundays. The husband and other plastic surgeons would perform cosmetic procedures that included everything from Botox injections to breast augmentations. The owner claims she knew nothing about the unauthorized after-hours business, which operated for several years and generated as much as $30,000 a night.

Researchers suggest that doctors should spend more time writing and editing Wikipedia on medical topics in order to improve accuracy. Wikipedia has become a major source of health information for consumers, but its editing policy allows anyone to submit or make changes to articles. More physician input could lead to increased credibility of the online encyclopedia.

Practice management billing company TRACT Radiology (OK) selects AMICAS to provide financial software for its billing operations.

McKesson releases its fourth quarter earnings for the period ending March 31, announcing total earnings of $281 million, or $1.01 a share. This is  down from $307 million, or$1.05 a share for the same period last year. The technology solutions segment saw a 2% drop in earnings and flat revenues. McKesson attributes the lower earnings and flat revenues on delayed technology purchases due to the slower economy.

MGMA publishes a list of five reasons why practice administrators should use social networking tools for themselves and their practice. The professional organization recommends the use Twitter, Facebook, and similar tools as a way a free way to gain personal or practice exposure and to help patients find medical information and details on your doctors. Other reasons mentioned include the ability to provide instant communication and to help advance one’s career. Interestingly, the article makes no mention of blogging for social networking.

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