Investment in population health-management tools is expected to increase from about $3.6 billion in 2016 to almost $8 billion by 2021, growing at a compound annual growth rate of 16.6% and with electronic health records vendors controlling 55% of the North American PHM market, according to a study by Signify Research. The group also predicts a more than 80% increase in the number of lives in North America that will be managed by population health-management solutions, from 135 million lives in 2016 to 245 million in 2021.
AHIMA's model Patient Request for Health Information form has been released to help providers become compliant with HIPAA's right-of-access rules and to streamline the process for patient records requests, as called for in a recent report from ONC. Providers may edit the form, to be given to patients requesting for access to their EHR data, based on operational needs and system capabilities.
Health and wellness group PVHS-ICM informed 10,143 patients, who were seen at the UC Health Walk-In Clinic in Fort Collins, Colo., before Sept. 23, 2014, about a ransomware attack that could have potentially exposed their information, including names, medical information and Social Security numbers. Investigators found that an unauthorized user hacked the clinic's server, but they did not find any evidence that the information was accessed or removed from the server.
A proposed bill that aims to reduce the volume of future requests for EHR-related hardship requests will "infuse necessary flexibility to make the Meaningful Use program meaningful again," Cletis Earle, CHIME's chairman-elect, said before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health. In a letter to the bill's co-sponsors, Reps. Michael Burgess, R-Texas, and Debbie Dingell, D-Mich., Health IT Now Executive Director Joel White stated that if the bill is passed, the CMS should use the flexibility it provides to speed up its work to reach the Dec. 31, 2018, deadline to achieve nationwide EHR interoperability.
A LeadingAge Center for Aging Services Technologies survey revealed that 80% of the 150 largest nonprofit senior living providers in the US had implemented EHR systems in 2016, a 5% increase over the past two years. A follow-up survey showed that 30% of large senior living facilities classified their EHRs in the top two tiers of CAST's seven-stage EHR adoption model and just 4% put them in the bottom two tiers, while 23% of other long-term and post-acute care facilities classified their EHRs in the top two tiers of adoption and 20% put them in the bottom two tiers.
Integrated health system Kaiser Permanente will invest in telehealth technology for mental health as part of its settlement agreement with the California Department of Managed Health Care, after a $4 million fine for failure to provide adequate access to mental health services. The company will add and update therapy rooms with advanced technology for video consultations and conferences, said Dr. Patrick Courneya, executive vice president and chief medical officer at the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Kaiser Foundation Hospitals.
The number of health care organizations engaged in Direct exchange and served by DirectTrust's 129 health information service providers reached almost 100,000 in the second quarter of this year, a 68% increase from the same period last year. DirectTrust also experienced a 15% increase in the number of trusted Direct addresses that were able to share protected health information, while exchange transactions reached a cumulative total of more than 241 million at the end of the second quarter.
Americans will have fewer places to ask for help when signing up for coverage through public insurance exchanges after the Trump administration terminated contracts that provided Affordable Care Act enrollment assistance in libraries, businesses and neighborhoods in 18 cities. The move will make it more difficult for the uninsured and those already enrolled to shop for a new policy amid consumer confusion arising from the debate in Washington, D.C., and a shorter enrollment period, consumer groups say.
Some hospitals, including Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, have launched digital health accelerators that allow them to outsource technology development while maintaining some control over the final product. Cedars-Sinai and partner Techstars offer startups mentoring, pilot project opportunities and $20,000 up front plus an optional $100,000 grant in exchange for a 6% equity stake.
Uncertainty surrounding the Affordable Care Act is leaving insurance exchange officials unable to inform the public about how many insurers will offer plans and at what levels they will set premiums for next year. "The only thing right now keeping everyone on edge is what's going to happen in Washington, D.C.," said Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner Teresa Miller.
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