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| Vol. 14 No. 5, March 8, 2017 | 


Only 39% of U.S. Hospital CIOs are Working on a Digital Health Strategy
Hospital chief information officers plan to make electronic health records, population health applications and digital healthcare tools their biggest investment priorities over the next three years, says a new survey by the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives and KPMG LLP.
But healthcare CIOs also have lots of work to do in developing and launching a system-wide digital technology strategy.
The survey of 112 hospital CIOs found that 38% are making electronic health records integration their top spending priority, followed by accountable care (population health technology) and consumer, clinical and operational analytics at 21% and 16%, respectively. Other technology spending priorities for hospital CIOs include virtual/telehealth technology enhancements at 13%, revenue cycle systems and replacement at 7% and enterprise resource planning systems at 6%.
The survey found more than three-fourths (80%) of hospital CIOs believe they have a growing strategic role in their organization, but many hospitals and health systems apparently still lack a clear digital healthcare strategy. Only 50% of hospital CIOs have a clear digital business strategy and vision and only 39% of CIOs are currently working on a digital healthcare strategy.


Incomplete Population Health Data in the U.S. Exacerbates Care Disparities
Health plans are particularly deficient in collecting information on race, ethnicity, and patient language needs, with commercial entities being among the worst offenders. 
Between 2012 and 2015, more than 80 percent of commercial plans were missing at least half of their HEDIS data about ethnicity, primary spoken language, and primary written language for their beneficiaries.
Medicaid plan providers were also caught short on ethnicity data, with approximately 70 percent of plans holding incomplete information on more than half of their patients.

Raids on Sensitive Health Data among Looming Threats, Say Experts
Attacks on people’s healthcare data and on “big data” are going to among the greatest security threats in the coming years, a conference in Dublin has heard.
Industry experts from Ireland and worldwide gathered at the Convention Centre on Tuesday to share insights on current and future cybersecurity threats to governments and businesses.
Zero Day Conference heard that the sheer volume of data in circulation was one of the greatest challenges in dealing with cybercrime and that ransomware was also becoming more prevalent.


Pill-Sized Device Could Revolutionise Medicine by Sending Health Data to your Phone from Inside your Body
The tiny piece of technology is powered by acid found inside the stomach and the monitoring of these vital signs could significantly improve medical care.
The sensor was unveiled at the world’s biggest science fair in Boston, USA, where Dr Phillip Nadeau, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, said: “The self-powered pill would monitor your vital signs from inside for weeks.
“It sits there making measurements and transmitting them to your phone.” The information could be used to help doctors decide what medicine and treatment is best to give their patients.

World’s Smallest Jet Engine to Power Tiny Medical Devices
Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems in Stuttgart, Germany and Harbin Institute of Technology in Shenzhen, China have come up with a tiny self-powered propulsion system for devices small enough to move through various vessels inside our bodies. The technique does not generate any bubbles to push microscopic objects, but instead works similar to a jet engine that pushes air through itself to generate thrust.
These microengines consist of nanotubes made of silicon dioxide. They are coated with the enzyme urease that reacts with urea, turning it into ammonia and carbon dioxide. As the nanotubes encounter urea, the reaction occurs and forces liquid to move through the tube. Any irregularities within the structure of the nanotube and/or the distribution of urea over the nanotube determines its direction of motion. These nanotube engines, the smallest jet engines ever made, may eventually be attached to devices that deliver drugs or perform some other diagnostic or therapeutic task.


How Bloomberg's Data for Health Initiative is Helping Reshape Australian Aid
Two years since its launch, Data for Health is showing its worth, allowing the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and other partners such as the CDC Foundation and Johns Hopkins University to work with governments in developing countries on evidence-based health policies. For the first time, programs covering everything from infant mortality rates to traffic deaths can draw from a robust body of data. And the early results are impressing stakeholders.

New National Data System Launched for Primary Care in Scotland
A new primary care information system that will let GPs, NHS Scotland, the Scottish Government and medical researchers have a better understanding of the health and social care needs of the population has been launched today.
SPIRE (the Scottish Primary Care Information Resource) will provide anonymised data from GP practices to help medical professionals more effectively target resources and treatments at a time when people are living longer with multiple conditions. It can also be used by researchers to help develop new treatments for particular conditions or diseases.


12 Top Technology Trends from HIMSS17
About 43,000 attendees were traversing the floors of the recent conference and exhibition annually held by the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society. At educational sessions and on the floor of the exhibition, several key trends emerged, giving insight to some of the leading trends that will pace the healthcare industry in the coming year. Click the link below for some of the most significant IT industry themes to watch this coming year, as selected by the editors of Health Data Management.


TELUS Health Achieves National Class Recertification of Electronic Medical Record Solution
Canada Health Infoway (Infoway) announced that TELUS Health’s Med Access Electronic Medical Record (EMR) versions 4.9 and 5.0 have successfully achieved Infoway’s EMR National Class certification. This process involves a rigorous re-assessment of a previously certified product.
Med Access EMR, originally certified in August 2012, has been recertified and continues to conform to national and international standards for privacy, security and interoperability.
By recertifying this product with Infoway, TELUS has shown they are dedicated to ensuring their product meets pan-Canadian industry standards, playing an integral role in ensuring patient safety and health system efficiency.

Winners of ONC's Move Health Data Forward Phase 2 Challenge Show Viable New Approaches to Information Exchange
The US Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT announced the Phase 2 winners of the Move Health Data Forward Challenge at HIMSS17 this past week. Awarded $20,000 each, the five winning groups will now move on to final phase of the challenge – which seeks new applications enabling individuals to securely share their own health information with caregivers.
Phase 1 of the challenge called plans describing how applicants would develop tools to do that. Ten winners were awarded $5,000 and moved on to Phase 2, which requires the demonstration of a viable solution to achieve those goals.


The Association between Health Information Technology Adoption and Family Physicians’ Practice Patterns in Canada: Evidence from 2007 and 2010 National Physician Surveys         
Sisira Sarma, Mohammad Hajizadeh, Amardeep Thind and Rick Chan
Use of HIT is found to be associated with fewer patient visits and longer visit length among family physicians in Canada relative to NO users, but this association weakened in the multivariable analysis of 2010.

Implementing and Maintaining a Researchable Database from Electronic Medical Records: A Perspective from an Academic Family Medicine Department         
Moira Stewart, Amardeep Thind, Amanda L. Terry, Vijaya Chevendra and J. Neil Marshall
There is currently keen interest in electronic medical records ( EMRs ) as a tool for improving practice policy and research in family medicine and interdisciplinary primary healthcare.


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