The Trusted Exchange Accreditation Program will leverage frameworks and best practices across the health care industry and align with federal efforts to promote interoperability, including the ONC's Trusted Exchange Framework and Common Agreement, says Electronic Healthcare Network Accreditation Commission Executive Director Lee Barrett. Organizations using old technology will need guidance and incentives to adopt new technology so health data exchange can be advanced, comprehensive and interoperable, Barrett said.
Nevada will spend $1.5 million this fiscal year and will nearly double the number of brokers, navigators, community organizations and in-person assistants who help residents enroll in Medicaid, the Children's Health Insurance Program and health insurance plans sold on the state's exchange. Silver State Health Insurance Exchange officials also said they are likely to stop using HealthCare.gov for enrollment and use a state-run platform for the 2020 plan year.
The open enrollment period on MNsure, Minnesota's health insurance exchange, will run from Nov. 1 through Jan. 13 because insurance agents and others who guide enrollment will also be helping residents subscribe to new Medicare plans, says MNsure acting CEO Nate Clark.
The health care sector reported eight major data breaches in the first half of 2018, down from 19 major breaches during the same period in 2017, according to a report released by the cybersecurity firm Cryptonite. However, the number of patient records breached in the first half of this year was a little over 1.9 million, compared with approximately 1.67 million records in the first half of 2017, researchers found.
Using the OnePartner health information exchange enabled multispecialty practice Holston Medical Group to identify patients who are "habitual utilizers of services," access data from disparate EHRs across its system and streamline hospital processes, said CIO Wesley Combs. "If you understand value-based medicine and the economics of health care, regarding insurance, risk identification and stratification, it doesn't take any time for an HIE to give a return on investment in value-based contracting -- if you are starting to go at risk," Combs said.
Researchers analyzed data from over 80,000 patients ages 18 and older who were transferred from one hospital to another and found that transfers were associated with lower rates of mortality and information loss when both hospitals used data-sharing capabilities. The findings, published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, showed that "the ability of two hospitals to talk to each other has the potential to improve patient safety, make care much more cost-effective and reduce mortality," study author Dr. Michael Usher said.
Although there was no evidence of a data breach, officials at LabCorp took some of its systems offline after hackers were able to access the company's information technology network, leading to system shutdowns that "temporarily affected test processing and customer access to test results on or over the weekend," according to the company's Securities and Exchange Commission filing. F. Samuel Eberts III, LabCorp's chief legal officer and secretary, wrote in Monday's filing that "testing operations have substantially resumed ... and we anticipate that additional systems and functions will be restored through the next several days."
A phishing email campaign allowed hackers to access multiple employee email accounts at Sunspire Health between March 1 and May 4, and officials only discovered the attack sometime between April 10 and May 17. The email accounts contained patients' names, medical data, health insurance information, dates of birth and Social Security numbers.
A jury in St. Louis last week ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay a total of $4.69 billion in compensatory and punitive damages to 22 women or families of affected women who said asbestos in talc products had caused them to develop ovarian cancer. J&J said it will appeal the verdict, which is the largest against the company so far.
In efforts to add more capabilities to its inpatient and ambulatory clinical portfolio, Allscripts has acquired several EHR companies so far this year, and athenahealth, amid pressure from hedge fund Elliott Management, is considering a merger or buyout after the exit of CEO Jonathan Bush, while Cerner has secured EHR implementation contracts with the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Coast Guard. Athenahealth, Epic and eClinicalWorks deployed their EHR-integrated virtual assistants as Apple, Amazon and Google moved to launch several innovations in EHR interoperability, patient data access and other development areas.
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