What Is the Significance of the Roche Acquisition of Flatiron?
People are talking about the acquisition ofFlatiron Health by Roche. Here is an article fromForbes that discusses the possible rationale for the purchase (see:The Flatiron Health Acquisition Is A Shot In The Arm For Roche's Oncology Real-World Evidence Needs) and below is an excerpt from the article:...Roche, a global pharmaceutical giant, [has] acquired Flatiron Health, an oncology-focused electronic health records (EHR) company, for $1.9 billion....[Flatiron] has a partnership with a large network of oncology clinics and a few major research facilities to gather patient data. While it was not entirely unexpected...
Source: Lab Soft News - May 22, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Electronic Health Record (EHR) Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Medical Research Pharmaceutical Industry Source Type: blogs

VA Finalizes Telehealth Initiative; What's the Likelihood of Success?
In various previous blog notes, I have strongly advocated for the expansion of telemedicine across most sectors of the healthcare system. My rationale for this recommendation is that it's one of the only ways to expand healthcare delivery in a cost-effective manner. The approach also avoids the rigidity of a bricks-and-morter strategy with physical facilities becoming quickly outmoded as the style of practice changes. The VA is now finalizing plans for its telehealth program. In order to achieve this goal, the VA is circumventing the various state rules governing the licensing of providers. All of this was described in...
Source: Lab Soft News - May 18, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Electronic Health Record (EHR) Healthcare Delivery Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Hospital Executive Management Telemedicine Source Type: blogs

New At-Home Lab Testing Device Provides CBC Counts for Cancer Patients
I have been closely tracking the development of new at-home lab testing devices because I think, accompanied by expanded telemedicine choices, the face of healthcare will be changed forever. A recent article inDark Daily announced such a device for complete blood counts (CBC) (see:New At-Home CBC Device Enables Complete Blood Testing for Cancer Treatments and Biological/Viral Monitoring). Below is an excerpt from it:.....[N]ew devices that enable chronic disease patients to monitor and report findings to care providers continue to be developed and embraced by healthcare consumers. One such device fromAthelas, a diagno...
Source: Lab Soft News - May 15, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Clinical Lab Testing Cost of Healthcare Food and Drug Administration Healthcare Information Technology Lab Industry Trends Lab Processes and Procedures Medical Consumerism Point-of-Care Testing Test Kits and Ho Source Type: blogs

AI Predicts Which Patients Will Code, Allowing Early Intervention
I will occasionally report inLab Soft News about examples of artificial intelligence (AI) that are being introduced into healthcare because the use of such tools will radically change the way care is rendered. One such example is a recently developed algorithm that generates warnings about which patients are in imminent danger of"coding" in the hospital (see: Ochsner Health System: Preventing cardiac arrests with AI that predicts which patients will ‘code’). Such a warning enables physicians to intervene earlier for them. Below is an excerpt from the article:In modern hospitals, doctors and nurse...
Source: Lab Soft News - May 13, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Healthcare Delivery Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Medical Ethics Medical Research Quality of Care Source Type: blogs

Geisinger to Perform Routine DNA Sequencing for 1,000 Patients in Pilot Study
We are entering an era in which DNA sequencing will become a routine laboratory test for a high percentage of patients. Geisinger, always a leader in innovation, is beginning the validation of this diagnostic approach (see:Geisinger to perform DNA sequencing as routine care). The key question, of course, is what actions hospital personnel will take based on this DNA information. This question is partly answered in the excerpt from the article below:Geisinger will soon roll out DNA sequencing as part of its preventive care for patients....Over the next six months, the Danville, Pa.-based system will enroll 1,000 patients in...
Source: Lab Soft News - May 10, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Clinical Lab Testing Genomic Testing Healthcare Delivery Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Lab Industry Trends Lab Processes and Procedures Medical Consumerism Medical Research Medicole Source Type: blogs

Don't Miss the 2018 Pathology Informatics Summit in Pittsburgh, May 21-24
It's not too late to register for the2018 Pathology Informatics Summit that will be held in Pittsburgh on May 21-24, 2018. Early bird pricing has been extended. The PI Summit can boast of a 35-year history as the only national conference devoted solely to the field of pathology informatics. It's sponsored by theAssociation for Pathology Informatics. Browse the conference schedule and you will discover a wide variety of lectures devoted to both applied and research topics. Also pay attention to the workshops on the first day, May 21, that are included in the registration fee of the conferenc...
Source: Lab Soft News - May 7, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Digital Imaging in Pathology Electronic Health Record (EHR) Healthcare Information Technology Lab Information LIS Definitions and Strategy LIS Vendor News Pathology Informatics Source Type: blogs

Israeli Medical Records Placed On-Line to Promote Research
Electronic medical records are being viewed in some smaller countries like Iceland as a national asset. They are viewed as a means to improve population health and also to stimulate research in the country and elsewhere. Iceland has been pursuing such a strategy for years (see:Centralized Health Databases: Lessons from Iceland; Iceland ’s Research Resources: The Health Sector Database, Genealogy Databases, and Biobanks; PDF) and Israel now seems to be pursuing a similar goal (see:Israelis' medical records to be put online for research):The Israeli Cabinet...[recently] passed a decision launching the"Nat...
Source: Lab Soft News - May 5, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Electronic Health Record (EHR) Genomic Testing Healthcare Business Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Lab Information Medical Research Public Health Source Type: blogs

Can Digital Therapeutics Substitute for Drugs or Other Therapies?
This article provocatively asks the question whether some of these apps can ultimately substitute for drug therapy. Below is an excerpt from it:The idea: software that can improve a person ’s health as much as a drug can, but without the same cost and side-effects.....[D]efining exactly what a digital therapeutic actually is can be as elusive as finding the famous chalice....[The CEO of a startup] says digital therapies fall into two groups, which he calls “medication augmentation” and “medication replacement.”He saysSleepio is in the latter category because it actually makes sleeping pills un...
Source: Lab Soft News - May 4, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Food and Drug Administration Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Medical Consumerism Medical Research Point-of-Care Testing Preventive Medicine Public Health Test Kits and Home Testing Source Type: blogs

Third Parties Harvest Patient Health Data; Is Anonymized Data Secure?
Nearly six years, I cautioned that the"horse was already out of the barn" regarding privacy of health data (see: On the Privacy of Health Information: The Horse Is Already Out of the Barn).This note also made reference toIngenix, now renamed Optum, and Milliman that sell patient data. Optum is owned byUnited Health Group which is one of the largest health insurance companies in the country, Here's a quote from that article from the referenced Washington Post article:...Washington Post revealed that health insurers can now obtain a sort of health “credit report” on ind...
Source: Lab Soft News - May 2, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Genomic Testing Healthcare Business Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Insurance Hospital Financial Medical Consumerism Medical Ethics Pharmaceutical Industry Source Type: blogs

CMS Requires Hospitals to Post Prices for Medicare Patients; Useful Step?
It is commonly understood that hospital pricing is a mess, a topic that I have blogged about frequently in the past (see:Two Reasons Why Medical and Hospital Bills Are Such a Mess;High Deductible-Health Plans Causing Hospital Billing Problems;Coding for Hospital Services; One Reason for the High Cost of Healthcare). CMS has been trying to alleviate this problem, at least in part, by requiring hospitals to post their price lists on-line (see:Hospitals may soon have to post prices for patients online). Below is an excerpt from the article:Hospitals may soon have to post their standard prices for patients online, under a...
Source: Lab Soft News - April 29, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Cost of Healthcare Healthcare Business Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Insurance Hospital Financial Medical Consumerism Source Type: blogs

Digital Front Doors Versus Physical Front Doors in Healthcare; Hospitals Lagging
Vince Kuraitis ofBetter Health Technologies made a very important point with a recent series of Tweets. He proposed the interesting idea that hospitals are providing patients with physical front doors but were lagging in providingdigital front doors. Below are his comments suggesting that hospital digital front doors currently consist of often inadequate patient portals but that the leadership of most hospitals are"clueless" about a broader set of digital services. He provides six reasons to explain why they have ceded patient portal leadership:Delivery systems have had (and still have) the ability to contro...
Source: Lab Soft News - April 26, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Electronic Health Record (EHR) Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Hospital Executive Management Medical Consumerism Source Type: blogs

Uber Launches Uber Health; Responding to Needs of Clinical Trial Subjects
A recent article aboutUber Health addressed a number of the features that will be available with this transportation service. I found the details interesting in terms of what Uber perceives as an important niche in the healthcare sector (see:Uber Launches Uber Health, Looks To Improve Patient Experience In Clinical Research) Below is an excerpt from the article:...Uber, is looking to expand their outreach to the clinical research community with the launch of Uber Health, a new dashboard the company hopes will remove transportation as a barrier to proper care.Using Uber Health, doctors and hospitals will be able to arr...
Source: Lab Soft News - April 24, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Healthcare Delivery Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Medical Consumerism Source Type: blogs

Short-Term Solutions to Correct the Known EHR Problems Will Be Insufficient
In a recent article about the defects of the EHR in theHarvard Business Review, there was a passage that briefly but directly summarized many of the problems of current EHRs (see:To Combat Physician Burnout and Improve Care, Fix the Electronic Health Record). Note that the title of the article suggested that these EHR fixes were necessary in order to partly correct physician burn-out. Below is that passage:The EHR is a lot more than merely an electronic version of the patient ’s chart.It has also become the control panel for managing the clinical encounter through clinician order entry. Moreover, through billing and ...
Source: Lab Soft News - April 22, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Cost of Healthcare Electronic Health Record (EHR) Healthcare Business Healthcare Information Technology Hospital Executive Management Quality of Care Source Type: blogs

A Strategy for Optimizing Beaker Functionality: Leveraging the Hospital C-Suite
I am reconciled to the fact that many pathology departments will be running Epic's LIS, Beaker. Hospital executives continue to seek anenterprise wide solutionto support their hospital IT needs. After perhaps selecting Epic's EHR, they will often gravitate to Beaker for their LIS. Beaker has added sufficient functionality such that it now can be described as a satisfactory choice in the face of pressure from the C-suite. Beaker can thus be described as agenericLIS. It will never achieve the status of a best-of-breed LIS because there is no need for Epic to improve it to the highest functionality leve...
Source: Lab Soft News - April 20, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Digital Imaging in Pathology Electronic Health Record (EHR) Genomic Testing Healthcare Information Technology Hospital Executive Management Lab Industry Trends LIS Definitions and Strategy Pathology Informatics Source Type: blogs

Continued Growth of Personal Genomics with a PerkinElmer/Helix Collaboration
Genomic testing is beginning to explode in the consumer marketplace. The phenomenon started with DNA analysis for those interested in their family lineage and is now proceeding to diagnostics such as the determination of selected variants ofBRCA1/BRCA 2. This is only one of the analytes included in the genetic risk report of 23andMe (see:Do You Speak BRCA). Now comes the news that PerkinElmer, a well established IVD company, is collaborating withHelix to offer personal genomic testing to consumers (see:PerkinElmer Collaborates With Helix To Drive Innovation In Exome-Based Personal Genomics). Below is an excerpt f...
Source: Lab Soft News - April 19, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Clinical Lab Testing Genomic Testing Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Lab Industry Trends Lab Processes and Procedures Reference Laboratories Source Type: blogs

Is " Curing Patients " a Good Business Model for Pharma?
An interesting point was made in a recent article that the stock market may"punish" companies likeGilead Sciences which has developed a drug called Harvoni to cure hepatitis C. The supposed reason for the punishment is that the prospects for drug profits will diminish as its highly effective use continues (see:Goldman Sachs report:"Is curing patients a sustainable business model?"). Below is an excerpt from the article:In Goldman Sachs's April 10 report,"The Genome Revolution," its analysts ponder the rise of biotech companies who believe they will develop"one-shot" cures fo...
Source: Lab Soft News - April 17, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Cost of Healthcare Genomic Testing Healthcare Business Medical Consumerism Medical Ethics Medical Research Pharmaceutical Industry Public Health Source Type: blogs

Register Now for the 2018 Pathology Informatics Summit, May 21-24, in Pittsburgh
It's time for all of the readers ofLab Soft News to register for the2018 Pathology Informatics Summit that will be held in Pittsburgh on May 21-24, 2018. The lineage of this conference dates back to 1983 with an Ann Arbor conference referred to as AIMCL. The PI Summit can thus boast of a 35-year continuous history as the only national conference devoted solely to the field of pathology informatics. It's sponsored by theAssociation for Pathology Informatics. Browse the conference schedule and you will discover a wide variety of lectures devoted to both applied and research topics. Also pay a...
Source: Lab Soft News - April 14, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Digital Imaging in Pathology Electronic Health Record (EHR) Genomic Testing Healthcare Information Technology Lab Information Lab Standards LIS Definitions and Strategy LIS Vendor News Pathology Informatics Source Type: blogs

Why Is U.S. Healthcare So Expensive; Administrative Costs Part of Problem
A recent long and complex article discussed the question of why the U.S. spends so much more on healthcare than similar countries (see:Why does the U.S. spend so much more on healthcare?). One of the major reasons cited is the admistrative costs of the U.S. health system with its large number of health plans, each of may have different criteria for billing and collection. Below is an excerpt from the article with an emphasis on administrative costsEight percent of U.S. healthcare spending went to administrative costs incurred by private and public insurers, compared with an average of 3% in the 10 other wealthy countr...
Source: Lab Soft News - April 12, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Cost of Healthcare Healthcare Business Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Healthcare Insurance Pharmaceutical Industry Source Type: blogs

Big Tech Is Knocking on Hospital Doors; It's All About the Data
Fortune magazine recently published a long article about the escalating interest on the part of Big Tech in the enormous cache of data controlled (managed?) by large health systems (see:Tech's Next Big Wave: Big Data Meets Biology). Below is an excerpt from it. This is only a small fraction of the article so navigate to it if you are interested in the topic:...[T]here ’s a...powerful catalyst [for Big Tech's interest in healthcare] —one so gargantuan and infinitesimal at the same time that it sounds like the answer to a riddle. And that’s data. More specifically, it’s your data: your individ...
Source: Lab Soft News - April 10, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Electronic Health Record (EHR) Healthcare Information Technology Hospital Executive Management Lab Information Medical Research Pathology Informatics Source Type: blogs

The Molecular Autopsy: Not Ready Yet for Prime Time
Although I have always been a strong advocate for sophisticated molecular and genomic testing, I tend to get a severe case of indigestion when I see references to themolecular autopsy(see:Can Interest in the Molecular Autopsy Rekindle Interest in the Classic Autopsy?). First, let's start with an excerpt from a recent article on this particular topic which is presented below (see:When Genetic Autopsies Go Awry):Mayo Clinic doctor Michael Ackerman pioneered the so-called molecular autopsy in 1999, using a DNA test to explain the sudden death of a 19-year-old woman with a previously-undiagnosed inherited heart condit...
Source: Lab Soft News - April 6, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Testing Genomic Testing Healthcare Innovations Lab Industry Trends Medicolegal Issues Source Type: blogs

Genetic Risk Scores (GRSs): Ready for Inclusion in the Medical Record?
Conclusions: Polygenic hazard scores can be used for personalised genetic risk estimates that can predict for age at onset of aggressive PCa.We are on the cusp of the emergence of proposals to pursue broad predictive genetic screening for cancer (see: Broader Genetic Testing for Cancers May Benefit Population Health). Such screening will inevitably lead to the reporting of"actionable" results to patients' physicians and inclusion in the EHR. In the paper cited above, it was shown that the analysis of a patient's DNA SNIPs can be used to calculate a GRS that predicts the age of onset for aggressive ca...
Source: Lab Soft News - April 4, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Source Type: blogs

Some Details about Hospital-at-Home (HaH) Services for Selected ER Patients
In a recent note, I discussed the question of whether hospitals are becoming obsolete (see: Are Hospitals Becoming Obsolete; Consequences for Pathology and the Labs). I believe that the answer to this question is partly true with some supporting evidence provided by the emergence of"bedless hospitals." They are being built primarily to provide ambulatory care services, clinical labs, radiology, operating rooms, and telemedicine (see, for example:The Design of Bedless Hospitals Continue to Evolve Based on Cost and Technology;Some Additional Ideas About the Bedless Hospitals of the Future). These ideas we...
Source: Lab Soft News - April 2, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Healthcare Delivery Healthcare Innovations Hospital Financial Quality of Care Telemedicine Source Type: blogs

Apple Getting Traction with Its App to Access EHR Records with iPhones
I have previously commented on the Apple plans to provide access by consumers to their hospital EHR data via iPhones was well as other Big Tech initiatives in healthcare (see:Apple Has Plans to Copy EHR Records to iPhones and Apple Watches;What Are the Consequences of Big Tech Entering the Healthcare Market?). In this latter note, I had this to say:Many of Big Tech's initiatives in the healthcare market in the past have failed or been disappointing....There is no question that the equity deals will continue....We all know that healthcare organizations are sitting on a mountain of data but the leadership has little unde...
Source: Lab Soft News - March 31, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Testing Electronic Health Record (EHR) Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Lab Information Medical Consumerism Medical Research Source Type: blogs

Are Hospitals Becoming Obsolete; Consequences for Pathology and the Labs
I have blogged in the past about how the mission and nature of hospitals in the U.S. is changing rapidly (see, for example:The Design of Bedless Hospitals Continue to Evolve Based on Cost and Technology; Some Additional Ideas About the Bedless Hospitals of the Future; The Case of the"Disappearing Hospital Beds"; Implications for Pathologists). This same idea was covered in a somewhat controversial recent article by Ezekiel Emanuel with the provocative headline that asked whether hospitals were becoming obsolete (see:Are Hospitals Becoming Obsolete?). Below is an excerpt from it:What year saw the ma...
Source: Lab Soft News - March 28, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Cost of Healthcare Healthcare Delivery Healthcare Innovations Hospital Financial Reference Laboratories Source Type: blogs

Holmes and Shkreli: Why Different Treatment for Their Financial Misdeeds?
In a recent note about Elizabeth Holmes and Theranos, I commented on the rough similarity of the financial fraud committed by her and Martin Shkreli. However, he is now serving a jail sentence of seven years and she seems to have escaped, at least thus far, with a relatively minor punishment. These divergent outcomes were discussed in a recent article (see:Shkreli vs. Holmes: 2 Frauds, 2 Divergent Outcomes. Were They Fair?). Below is an excerpt from it:Few white-collar defendants have been more reviled than the man known as the Pharma Bro, Martin Shkreli, even before he was convicted on multiple counts of securit...
Source: Lab Soft News - March 26, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Source Type: blogs

The Faltering Effort to Develop an NIH Biobank; Time to Pull the Plug?
For three years, the NIH has been trying to build a biobank containing personal health information plus DNA analyses for one million U.S. citizens. However, not a single person's DNA has yet been sequenced. This NIH project was discussed in a recent article in the NYT (see:The Struggle to Build a Massive ‘Biobank’ of Patient Data). Below is an excerpt from the article:This spring, the National Institutes of Health will start recruiting participants for one of the most ambitious medical projects ever envisioned. The goal is to find one million people in the United States...who are willing to have their ...
Source: Lab Soft News - March 23, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Clinical Lab Testing Genomic Testing Healthcare Innovations Lab Information Medical Research Public Health Source Type: blogs

First Blood Test for Traumatic Brain Injuries Receives FDA Approval
I have posted a number of previous notes about traumatic brain injury (TBI) with some attention to the need for a biomarker to rapidly diagnose the lesion (see, for example:NFL Physician Says Diagnosis of"Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy" Lacks Validity;Biomarker Proposed to Detect Traumatic Brain Injury; Possible Future Scenarios). Some of my comments have commented on professional football where such a test could change the nature of the game by removing injured players from a game. The first blood test to diagnose traumatic brain injuries has just been approved by the FDA (see:First blood test to help dia...
Source: Lab Soft News - March 22, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Clinical Lab Testing Food and Drug Administration Healthcare Innovations Lab Industry Trends Medical Research Source Type: blogs

What's Next Legally for Elizabeth Holmes? Criminal charges from the DOJ?
A long-time reader ofLab Soft News, Barry Portugal, submitted a comment in response to my recent note about the legal problems of Elizabeth Holmes, founder of Theranos (see:Elizabeth Holmes, Founder of Theranos, Charged by SEC with Massive Fraud). Below is his comment:Holmes' and her CEO's monetary penalty and prohibition from sitting on a corporate board amount to little more than a slap on the wrist.The significant danger of inaccurate testing techniques and fraudulent business activities deserve jail time and much larger penalties.I think that most of us will agree that, like Barry, her penalty for fraud was a a...
Source: Lab Soft News - March 20, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Clinical Lab Testing Lab Regulation Medical Consumerism Medical Ethics Quality of Care Source Type: blogs

Theranos " Demo's " Would Not Have Fooled Competent Lab Professionals
In a recent note I discussed the fraud charges that have been brought against Elizabeth Holmes, founder of Theranos (see: Elizabeth Holmes, Founder of Theranos, Charged by SEC with Massive Fraud). In the final paragraph of this note, I questioned how the executives of Pharmacy A (possibly Walgreens) could have been duped by Holmes and her associates into believing that the Theranos analyzer was market-ready. On this basis, they invested in the company. Walgreens reportedly settled a suit against Theranos for under $30M (see:Theranos, Walgreens reportedly reach a deal to settle suit for under $30 million). Here is...
Source: Lab Soft News - March 16, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Clinical Lab Testing Healthcare Innovations Lab Industry Trends Lab Processes and Procedures Lab Standards Point-of-Care Testing Source Type: blogs

Elizabeth Holmes, Founder of Theranos, Charged by SEC with Massive Fraud
Elizabeth Holmes, the funder of Theranos, has been called a number of things over the years such aswunderkind but never fraudster -- until today. The SEC charged her and Ramesh"Sunny" Balwani, president of Theranos, with massive fraud (see: Theranos CEO Holmes and former president Balwani charged with massive fraud). Below is an excerpt from the article:Elizabeth Holmes, founder of embattled blood testing start-up Theranos, has been charged with"massive fraud," the Securities and Exchange Commission ....The SEC alleged in a complaint that Theranos raised more than $700 million from late 2013 t...
Source: Lab Soft News - March 14, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Clinical Lab Testing Healthcare Information Technology Lab Industry Trends Lab Regulation Medical Ethics Point-of-Care Testing Source Type: blogs

U.S. Coast Guard EHR Project Ends in $67M Fiasco
The VA and the military continue to have problems managing large IT projects and particularly those relating to EHRs (see, for example:Why the Military and the VA Healthcare Systems Are Not Amenable to Change;Epic Partners with IBM for Military EHR Proposal; This May Be a Problem;VA-Cerner EHR Deal Paused Over Interoperability Concerns). The U.S. Coast Guard turns out to be no exception to this rule based on a recent story about the travails of this branch with an attempted Epic EHR install (see:U.S. Coast Guard ’s $67 Million EHR Fiasco). Below is an excerpt from the article:In late January, the U.S. House of Repres...
Source: Lab Soft News - March 14, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Electronic Health Record (EHR) Healthcare Information Technology Hospital Financial Source Type: blogs

Eric Schmidt Discusses the Potential Value of Predictive Analytics in the ER
For me, one of the major future changes in diagnostic medicine will be the use of predictive analytics based on deep learning and big data (see:Integrated Clinical Research Databases: A New Way to"Monetize" Clinical Data;What Are the Consequences of Big Tech Entering the Healthcare Market?). This new science will enable the prediction of future"outcomes" for patients. This trend was emphasized by former Google CEO Eric Schmidt in a lecture at HIMSS 2018 (see:HIMSS 2018: ‘Run to the Cloud,’ says Former Google CEO Eric Schmidt). He referred to the trend as leveraging the power of predicti...
Source: Lab Soft News - March 13, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Testing Cost of Healthcare Healthcare Delivery Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Lab Processes and Procedures Medical Research Medicolegal Issues Quality of Care Source Type: blogs

Genalyte Reveals a POCT System with QC in the Cloud
The time is ripe for bringing to market a POCT analyzer with a relatively large test menu that can be managed by less skilled operators and requires micro-samples. That seems to be the business model forGenalyte (see:Real-time In Vitro Diagnostic Results at the Point of Care?). Below is an excerpt from an article about this new company:Genalyte ’s cloud-basedMaverick Detection System could potentially change how and when doctors order blood draws, altering long-standing clinical laboratory workflows. Anatomic pathologists and medical laboratory leaders may be aware of efforts in the in vitro diagnostics (IVD) in...
Source: Lab Soft News - March 6, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Clinical Lab Testing Healthcare Innovations Lab Industry Trends Lab Processes and Procedures Point-of-Care Testing Source Type: blogs

Could Apple or Amazon Make a Dent in the Hospital EHR Market?
I have posted previous notes about the ambitions of both Apple and Amazon in the healthcare market (see:What Are the Consequences of Big Tech Entering the Healthcare Market?;Three Major Corporations Will Form Healthcare Company for Their Employees). A recent article asked the question as to whether either could make a dent in it (see:Could Amazon or Apple actually make a dent in the EHR market?). Below is an excerpt from the articleWhat with rumors swirling that Apple and Amazon are each considering ways to drive deeper into healthcare, including EHRs and telehealth, it ’s time for a reality check. The central questi...
Source: Lab Soft News - March 1, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Cost of Healthcare Electronic Health Record (EHR) Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Medical Consumerism Preventive Medicine Quality of Care Source Type: blogs

Using Big Data to Discover Comorbitities Associated with Psoriasis
Discussion about Big Data; Relevance for Healthcare). A commonly accepted definition for big data is the use of extremely large data sets that may be analyzed computationally to reveal patterns, trends, and associations. I am particularly interested in the use of big data for predictive analytics in healthcare (see: Big data analytics in healthcare: promise and potential). Now comes an article about the use of big data to discover the co-morbidities associated with psoriasis (see:Researchers receive $6.5 million NIH grant to use big data to tackle psoriasis). Below is an excerpt from it:An experienced interd...
Source: Lab Soft News - February 27, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Medical Research Preventive Medicine Source Type: blogs

Sunquest Signs Contract to Provide LIS Support for 124 Hospitals in Australia
Sunquest Information Systems is embarking on a project that has the potential to change the face of lab computing. It has signed a contract to provide lab computing support for all of the hospitals in the state of Queensland, Australia, which has a population of about 4.5 million people (see:Queensland Health partners with Sunquest for Laboratory Information System). Below is an excerpt from the press release:The contemporary enterprise laboratory information system (LIS) and services will support improved care responsiveness, safety and healthcare outcomes for the millions of Queenslanders served by the state's 124 ho...
Source: Lab Soft News - February 22, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Clinical Lab Testing Digital Imaging in Pathology Genomic Testing Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Lab Industry Trends LIS Definitions and Strategy LIS Vendor News Pathology Informatics Source Type: blogs

One-Click Healthcare with Amazon; Narrow Networks Yield Savings and Quality
The recent announcement that a trio of powerful companies, Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan were entering the healthcare market has caused major reverberations on Wall Street and other sectors of the economy (see: Three Major Corporations Will Form Healthcare Company for Their Employees). The announcement has caused speculation about their actual business plan with some suggesting that the company would deploy new technology to disrupt this large part of the US economy. A recent article further suggested that the"Amazonification" of healthcare could start by bringing one-click"shopping"...
Source: Lab Soft News - February 19, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Cost of Healthcare Healthcare Business Healthcare Delivery Healthcare Innovations Healthcare Insurance Medical Consumerism Source Type: blogs

Equifax Releases Credit Locking App That May Not Work; Try Credit Freeze
Equifax is giving software a bad name. First there was the huge database breach of the company in the Fall of 2017 (see:Massive Equifax Data Breach Could Affect Half of the U.S. Population). Not only was this a major database security mishap but the company did not endear itself to consumers in terms of the remedies proposed to correct the problem. It also brought to light the fact that some big and often anonymous companies like Equifax can be the cause of many bad days for consumers through no fault of their own. Now comes news that the company has released a faulty app that is designed to allow consumers to lock access ...
Source: Lab Soft News - February 15, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Computer Security Electronic Health Record (EHR) Source Type: blogs

Intermountain Precision Genomics to Develop Hereditary Cancer Gene Panels
The emerging healthcare model which is dominated by a small number of very large health systems will be characterized, in part, by in-house, sophisticated genomic and molecular lab testing by these systems. This is because these large health systems will have the capital to invest in their own"laboratories of excellence" within their system. Such is the case withIntermountain Healthcare which has its own in-house genomics laboratory called Intermountain Precision Genomics. Intermountain Health is one of the giant health systems with 37,000 employees, 22 hospitals, and more than 185 clinics. Here is the missi...
Source: Lab Soft News - February 13, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Clinical Lab Testing Genomic Testing Healthcare Business Healthcare Innovations Lab Industry Trends Lab Processes and Procedures Medical Consumerism Pathology Informatics Reference Laboratories Test Kits and Source Type: blogs

Medical Chatbot Improves Patient Response Rate for Flu Shot Reminders
One of the continuing challenges in healthcare is developing techniques for communicating with patients in an efficient and effective way. The goal of such a conversation may be to remind them about an appointment or perhaps persuade them to take some action regarding their health. A recent article addressed a chatbot campaign launched by a physician office to increase patient response to flu shots (see:Chatbot campaign for flu shots bolsters patient response rate by 30%). A chatbot is a computer program which conducts a conversation via auditory or textual methods (see:Chatbot) Such programs are often designed t...
Source: Lab Soft News - February 9, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Electronic Health Record (EHR) Healthcare Delivery Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Medical Consumerism Medical Education Preventive Medicine Public Health Source Type: blogs

Inspirata Acquires Omnyx from GE Healthcare, Achieving an End-to-End Solution
The business model of Inspirata is relatively unique compared to other companies connected to digital pathology. The company seeks to enhance the digital pathology workflow of its clients presumably pathology departments and consulting firms. Here is a summary of the company goals copied from the company web page (WELCOME TO INSPIRATA):We...help cancer institutions overcome the financial barriers to adoption using our unique business and delivery model where we make the upfront capital investment in the hardware, software and storage needed to enable a cancer institution to move to a fully automated digital pathology ...
Source: Lab Soft News - February 7, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Digital Imaging in Pathology Food and Drug Administration Lab Industry Trends Lab Processes and Procedures Lab Regulation Pathology Informatics Surgical Pathology Source Type: blogs

Pathology Informatics Webinar on Precision Medicine; February 20 at 1:00 p.m. ET
You are all invited to participate in an upcoming free webinar entitled: The Challenges of Enabling Precision Medicine Diagnostics. This is part of a continuing series of presentations sponsored by theAssociation for Pathology Informatics (API) andSunquest Information Systems. The webinar will take place onTuesday, February 20, at 1:00 p.m. ET. You can register atthis link to reserve your spot. The recent surge in interest for precision medicine diagnostics has many healthcare facilities and laboratories facing a number of operational and clinical challenges, including volume of data produced, data interpret...
Source: Lab Soft News - February 5, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Source Type: blogs

Fitbit Bands Collect Data Describing Six Billion Nights of Sleep
We are entering a new era when billions of data points relating to health are being collected via health wearables such asFitbit bands. A recent article revealed some fascinating information about the sleep patterns of many people in the U.S. (see:What Fitbit's 6 billion nights of sleep data reveals about us). Below is an excerpt from the article. It's chock full of interesting data including graphs so read the whole thing if you are interested.Most of Fitibit ’s bands...have built-in heart-rate monitors, which produce much more accurate sleep-measurement results than earlier bands. These bands track you...
Source: Lab Soft News - February 3, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Healthcare Information Technology Healthcare Innovations Healthcare Insurance Medical Consumerism Public Health Source Type: blogs

Three Major Corporations Will Form Healthcare Company for Their Employees
Major tech companies like Microsoft have not been very successful in"disrupting" healthcare in the past (see:What Are the Consequences of Big Tech Entering the Healthcare Market?;Microsoft's Amalga/HealthVault Strategy Becomes Obvious). However, a recent announcement byAmazon,BerkshireHathaway, andJPMorgan Chase that they were forming a new health care company is garnering a lot of attention in the news (see:Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Team Up to Disrupt Health Care). Below is an excerpt from the article:Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase announced...that they would form an independent ...
Source: Lab Soft News - February 1, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Healthcare Business Healthcare Delivery Healthcare Innovations Hospital Financial Medical Consumerism Preventive Medicine Source Type: blogs

Shutdown of Claritas Genomics Comes as a Surprise to Lab Community
The recent shutdown ofClaritas Genomics came as a surprise to many lab professionals with some reports making reference to the possibility that inadequate reimbursement for genetic testing may have been the root cause (see:Sudden Shutdown of Claritas Genomics After Five Years as A Leading Source of Pediatric Genetic Testing..) Below is an excerpt from the article:[The shutdown of Claritas may be] the latest market sign of how health insurers are making it difficult for labs to get paid for proprietary molecular diagnostic assays and genetic tests....Claritas was like other genetic testing laboratories... tha...
Source: Lab Soft News - January 31, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Clinical Lab Testing Food and Drug Administration Genomic Testing Lab Industry Trends Lab Regulation Medical Consumerism Medical Research Public Health Source Type: blogs

Hospital Groups Plan to Launch a Company to Manufacture Generic Drugs
Manufacturers of generic drugs likeTeva Pharmaceutical have been suffering serious financial reverses (see: Teva warns on profit as drugmaker's problems deepen). Moreover, periodic shortages of generic drugs have been exacerbated by the fact that some of them are manufactured by only one company (see:New Study Highlights Escalated Dangers of Generic Drug Shortages). Here is a quote from this article:In 2011, 251 drug shortages occurred, 73% of which were generic sterile injectables that served as treatments for sepsis, cancer, and other life-threatening illnesses. In February 2011, the FDA announced a severe natio...
Source: Lab Soft News - January 27, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Food and Drug Administration Healthcare Business Healthcare Innovations Hospital Executive Management Pharmaceutical Industry Quality of Care Source Type: blogs

Apple Has Plans to Copy EHR Records to iPhones and Apple Watches
A few weeks ago, I posted a note about"Big Tech" trying to enter the healthcare market (see: What Are the Consequences of Big Tech Entering the Healthcare Market?). Here's a quote from that note:My own view about the future of Big Tech in healthcare, in addition to the equity deals, is that it will focus on healthcare wearables....The reason for this is that personal devices ...are well understood by the Big Tech companies, certainly Apple, and they know how to market them to consumers.What they probably do not understand is the mindset of healthcare executives and their general lack of understanding of ...
Source: Lab Soft News - January 25, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Electronic Health Record (EHR) Healthcare Information Technology Medical Consumerism Source Type: blogs

VA-Cerner EHR Deal Paused Over Interoperability Concerns
In August, 2015, I blogged that Cerner had secured a contract to provide a global EHR to the military (see:Cerner/Leidos/Accenture Secure EHR Contract for a Global Military EHR). At that time, I made the following comment about the deal:As to Epic"failure" to win the contract, I suspect that there were a lot of smiles of relief in Verona when the winner was announced. I think that Epic was competing in the contest because everyone expected it to do so. The Epic culture and emphasis on client control was probably a non-starter for the military brass. Leidos/SAIC contrariwise was a known quantity for them.Epic has ...
Source: Lab Soft News - January 22, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Electronic Health Record (EHR) Healthcare Information Technology Source Type: blogs

Allscripts Hit by Ransomware, Knocking Some Services Offline
EHR vendorAllscripts was reported to have been hit by ransomware yesterday (see:Allscripts hit by ransomware, knocking some services offline). Users took to Twitter to complain about the company's cloud EHR being down, with some unable to access patient information all day. The Allscripts website and Twitter account don ’t specifically mention the outage. Instead, the company tweeted to users who specifically took to their social media accounts to voice their concerns. Mr. Histalkmade note of the incident.Allscripts serves a considerable number of physicians and patients (see:Who We Are):45,000 physicia...
Source: Lab Soft News - January 19, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Source Type: blogs

How to Explain the Increasing Use of the Term LIMS Instead of LIS
For about the last four decades, the termlaboratory information system (LIS) has been used to describe computer systems installed in hospital pathology departments. By way of comparison, the termlaboratory information management system (LIMS) was used to refer to systems installed in research laboratories and in industrial labs such as those associated with food processing. About five years ago, I began to hear pathology informaticians with a molecular and genomic lab background refer to the hospital lab systems as LIMSs. This made some sense to me given their connections in research. It's now commonplace in articles t...
Source: Lab Soft News - January 18, 2018 Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Bruce Friedman Tags: Clinical Lab Industry News Clinical Lab Testing Electronic Health Record (EHR) Genomic Testing Healthcare Information Technology Hospital Executive Management Lab Industry Trends LIS Definitions and Strategy LIS Vendor News Pathology Inf Source Type: blogs