EHR adoption spurs data exchange
A new study authored by National Coordinator for Health Information Technology Farzad Mostashari, MD, and ONC researchers indicates that six in 10 hospitals actively exchanged electronic health information with providers and hospitals outside their organization in 2012. MORE

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Free app distracts children who don't like needles January 22, 2013 | Frank Irving - Editor
People who are afraid of needles avoid going to the doctor, skip vaccinations, avoid flu shots and don't donate blood. But a new iPhone app, offered free as part of a public health campaign, may help ease fears among children who don't like needles.
New research shows that a handheld mobile device can check patients' HIV status with just a finger prick, and synchronize the results in real time with electronic health records.
Final HIPAA rule puts proof burden on covered entities January 21, 2013 | Tom Sullivan - Government Health IT
The HIPAA Privacy and Security final rule, released Jan. 17, to a large extent tracks what was in the proposed rule, but also brings some significant changes that will have impact on healthcare, according to industry observers. The one that will probably get the most attention is the definition of a breach.
Online consumer ratings met with considerable physician distrust, ACPE finds January 18, 2013 | Madelyn Kearns - Associate Editor
Healthcare is becoming a more survey-soaked, quality-bent industry. Alongside the numerous inter-threads of restaurant reviews, film criticisms and Amazon stars, a patient can now shop for and rate an MD. But while this means quick and comfortable browsing for the patient, it’s a totally different experience for those being judged and marked — the physicians.
Infographic: A tweet a day keeps the doctor away January 18, 2013 | Allied Health World
From Facebook to Twitter to YouTube, social media has crept into mainstream America at an alarming rate. It's no different in healthcare, where providers and their patients are finding new benefits -- and challenges -- to their online interactions. Click through to an infographic that gives more details.
HHS releases 'sweeping changes' to HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules January 18, 2013 | Tom Sullivan - Government Health IT
Late in the day on Jan. 17, the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) released modifications to the HIPAA Privacy, Security, Enforcement, and Breach Notification Rules. Final rule final "marks the most sweeping changes to the HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules since they were first implemented," according to HHS OCR Director Leon Rodriguez.
Making EHRs better for pediatricians January 18, 2013 | Molly Merrill - Associate Editor
Meaningful use has unintentionally shifted the market's attention away from child health electronic health records (EHRs). However, this has not stopped advocates from working to get pediatric functionality into EHRs through innovative projects – some soon to be announced and others in the works - that could improve the technology for pediatricians and child heath.
Gastric banding may strike obesity in the long-term, study finds January 17, 2013 | Madelyn Kearns - Associate Editor
After 15 years of waiting on weight, a follow-up study evaluating the effectiveness of laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding (lap banding) has wrapped up with favorable results.

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5 ways to prevent a health data breach April 02, 2012 | Geoff Webb
Although breaches at large healthcare providers tend to grab the most headlines, even smaller practices need to be on guard to prevent malicious attackers or simple human error from exposing their protected information.
How to engage your Facebook visitors and get them to Like you March 15, 2012 | Lonnie Hirsch - Founding Partner, Healthcare Success Strategies, Stewart Gandolf, MBA - CEO, Healthcare Success Strategies
What motivates people to "like" a company, brand or association on Facebook? There's no absolute formula, but here's our take on survey data -- and six useful tips -- as insight for healthcare marketing professionals.
Are your financials in need of a checkup? March 02, 2012 | Kirk Simpson - CEO of Wave Accounting
No one opens their own practice with the intention of getting buried in financial administration and paperwork. In an ideal world, healthcare providers focus on quality care rather than worrying about compensation structures, outstanding accounts receivable and tax deductions.
Tackling the overwhelming: Planning tips for IT implementation projects February 23, 2012 | Ken Bradley - Vice President, Strategic Planning, Navicure
With the HIPAA 5010 conversion drawing to a close and the ICD-10 transition in flux, it may seem like physician practices are spending considerable time and effort preparing for, engaging in, and responding to large-scale system upgrades. These kinds of multi-faceted implementations can be daunting, particularly if a practice tries to address their many parts simultaneously.
Good call: patient portal improves efficiency, morale and patient care February 08, 2012 | Dan Nelson - Practice Administrator
Desert Ridge Family Physicians, a six-doctor practice in Phoenix, sought to improve its service by giving patients the ability to exchange e-mails with their doctors through a secure patient portal. There is no charge for the service, and to date more than 5,800 of 9,000 active adult patients have enrolled.
10 tips for optimal social media use January 31, 2012 | Michelle McNickle - New Media Producer
The days of tweeting, Yelp-ing, and checking-in are here to stay. But as social media's use expands, certain guidelines are needed to ensure its "optimal" practice in the healthcare realm. Christina Thielst offers 10 tips for proper use of social media in healthcare.

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The HIE delay February 24, 2012 | Hannah King - Health Information Exchange
Priorities in health IT seem to be changing for hospitals and providers almost every day. This shift in goals and activities is hardly shocking -- a CIO or IT professional in the healthcare field has had to become quite skilled at juggling in the past couple of years. And it appears that those skills are going to prove to be even more necessary in the years ahead.
ONC Town Hall brings attendees' questions to the fore February 23, 2012 | Frank Irving - Editor
Following confirmation that the proposed rules for meaningful use Stage 2 had been submitted to the Federal Register for publication, ONC personnel -- including National Coordinator Farzad Mostashari, MD -- fielded questions from HIMSS12 attendees Wednesday afternoon during the agency’s open-forum Town Hall session.
The ICD-10 Timeline: It's up for revision not destruction February 16, 2012 | Carl Natale - ICD10Watch
Don't cancel your next ICD-10 steering committee meeting. I know that acting Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) administrator Marilyn Tavenner promised to re-examine the ICD-10 timeline yesterday. But this is what she said Tuesday:
What you don’t need to know about ICD-10 February 15, 2012 | Rhonda Butler - ICD-10, 3M
Last blog I talked about why the number of ICD-10 codes is not a big deal. This blog describes two other aspects of ICD-10 you don't need to spend time or money to learn in detail.
How do digital health technologies get to older patients? February 08, 2012 | David Lee Scher, MD
Many of the digital health technologies on the market today are wellness products used by the relatively younger segment of the population. Technologies that are focused on chronic diseases have found it much harder to reach their intended target audience for a variety of reasons.
Where are you in the innovation supply chain? February 07, 2012 | Arlen Meyers - CEO, Society of Physician Entrepreneurs
Doctors should not just be on the receiving end of innovation. They should be actively involved in creating it in partnership with other innovation stakeholders.
Why the number of ICD-10 codes is not a big deal February 01, 2012 | Rhonda Butler - ICD-10, 3M
Believe it or not, you do not need to know or care about how many ICD-10 codes there are. I know this goes against the grain. It is almost the only thing that gets said about ICD-10.
Payoffs not always clear with IT investments January 04, 2012 | Jeff Rowe - Contributing Writer
Investments are often risky, but the current huge investment in health IT seems to bring a particularly unique risk. Why? Well, because when you come right down to it it’s not always clear what the payoff is going to be.

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Amcom Software, Inc. today announced the release of its new Amcom Care Connect solution, which enables caregivers and physicians to communicate more effectively. The solution was developed with input from healthcare customers who report that patient care would be improved by speeding communications among doctors and staff members. The solution integrates with Amcom’s Web directory and on-call scheduling solutions, as well as its smartphone and tablet messaging solution. Because of this tight integration, it leverages existing contact and schedule information to provide much-needed physician communication capabilities within the framework of familiar technology.
iPractice Group Becomes Gold Status Partner with Greenway January 26, 2012 | Industry Release
On Jan. 3, iPractice Group announced that it has become a “Gold Status” partner of Greenway Medical Technologies, Inc., provider of the PrimeSUITE software solution featuring integrated electronic health record (EHR), practice management and interoperability functionality.
Phytel announced Jan. 3 that it has reached an agreement with the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) that will allow physician practices using Phytel's solutions to automatically meet certain NCQA requirements for recognition as a patient-centered medical home (PCMH). Phytel is the first non-EHR vendor — and only the second company — with which NCQA has made this kind of arrangement.

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