MedClimate Health News Daily http://medclimate.com/feed en-us Copyright MedClimate, Inc2018 Women with pregnancy-related diabetes may be at risk for chronic kidney disease http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/women-pregnancy-related-diabetes-may-be-risk-chronic-kidney-disease http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/women-pregnancy-related-diabetes-may-be-risk-chronic-kidney-disease Mon, 21 May 2018 16:15:00 CDT NIH News Release Gestational diabetes occurs only in pregnancy and results when the level of blood sugar is too high. ]]> NIH-funded researchers identify target for chikungunya treatment http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/nih-funded-researchers-identify-target-chikungunya-treatment http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/nih-funded-researchers-identify-target-chikungunya-treatment Mon, 21 May 2018 15:30:00 CDT NIH News Release Chikungunya is transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected mosquito. ]]> Age-related racial disparity in suicide rates among U.S. youth http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/age-related-racial-disparity-suicide-rates-among-us-youth http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/age-related-racial-disparity-suicide-rates-among-us-youth Mon, 21 May 2018 15:00:00 CDT NIH News Release NIH-funded study suggests need for more research into contributing factors; targeted interventions for children. ]]> Cerner President Zane Burke suggests DoD MHS Genesis criticism fake news http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/cerner-president-zane-burke-suggests-dod-mhs-genesis-criticism-fake-news http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/cerner-president-zane-burke-suggests-dod-mhs-genesis-criticism-fake-news Mon, 21 May 2018 13:03:01 CDT walmeida at Healthcare IT News - Government & Policy Just one day after signing a $10 billion EHR contract with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Cerner President Zane Burke told investors that the company’s other major government project with the Defense Department has taught him a lot about ‘fake news’ and that one of Cerner’s competitors may have been involved. “I have learned the term fake news a little bit,” Burke said on a call with investors. “If you followed the one side of this, there’s been concern about some of the delivery on the DoD side. So, if you had an axe to grind with us and wanted to perhaps keep us from getting to a veterans contract – and you’re one of our competitors – you might want to use some information negatively.”  Burke was likely referring to multiple media reports that came to light early this year that pointed to serious user issues with four of the DoD pilot test sites. Members of Congress caught wind of these and let DoD officials know they were concerned. But a DoD Initial Operational Test and Evaluation report released on May 11 echoed a lot of those reports and found that issues with usability, cybersecurity, user training and the help desk rendered the platform “not operationally suitable.” DoD officials agreed with recommendations made in the report, but refuted the negative reports and said the EHR rollout will continue as scheduled. Burke echoed those sentiments. “I tell you that’s gone incredibly well, overall,” Burke said. “There were some known elements upfront as we rolled through the first three sites. The plan was always to come back and do a remediation of those three sites and do an evaluation and make things better.” Burke said the good news in all this is that Cerner’s client, the DoD, understands the value of what the software company is delivering.  To Burke, the VA contract provides a real opportunity to “provide seamless care across the continuum” and ensure that men and women in the service can keep their records with them as they move into the VA. Not only that, but the $10 billion contract is half of the projected cost to support VistA for the next 20 years if VA kept that proprietary EHR and its modernization in-house.  Former VA Secretary David Shulkin, MD, announced his plan to give the EHR modernization contract to Cerner through a no-bid process to expedite the project and to match the platform currently in a pilot phase. Not all EHR vendors were pleased with this decision, and CliniComp actually sued to stop the process. The judge later dismissed that case. Twitter: @JessieFDavis Email the writer: jessica.davis@himssmedia.com Primary Topic: Electronic Health RecordsAdditional Topics: TechnologyEHRPolicyPolicySpecific Terms: Electronic Health RecordsCustom Tags: Electronic Health RecordsDisable Auto Tagging: Short Headline: Cerner President Zane Burke suggests DoD MHS Genesis criticism fake newsNewsletter hed: Cerner President Zane Burke: DoD MHS Genesis criticism taught him fake news termNewsletter teaser: On a call with investors, Burke praised the EHR pilot at the Defense Department and suggested those negative media reports may have involved a competitor.HOT @HIMSS: Featured Decision Content: 

Just one day after signing a $10 billion EHR contract with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Cerner President Zane Burke told investors that the company’s other major government project with the Defense Department has taught him a lot about ‘fake news’ and that one of Cerner’s competitors may have been involved.

“I have learned the term fake news a little bit,” Burke said on a call with investors. “If you followed the one side of this, there’s been concern about some of the delivery on the DoD side. So, if you had an axe to grind with us and wanted to perhaps keep us from getting to a veterans contract – and you’re one of our competitors – you might want to use some information negatively.” 

Burke was likely referring to multiple media reports that came to light early this year that pointed to serious user issues with four of the DoD pilot test sites. Members of Congress caught wind of these and let DoD officials know they were concerned.

But a DoD Initial Operational Test and Evaluation report released on May 11 echoed a lot of those reports and found that issues with usability, cybersecurity, user training and the help desk rendered the platform “not operationally suitable.”

DoD officials agreed with recommendations made in the report, but refuted the negative reports and said the EHR rollout will continue as scheduled.

Burke echoed those sentiments.

“I tell you that’s gone incredibly well, overall,” Burke said. “There were some known elements upfront as we rolled through the first three sites. The plan was always to come back and do a remediation of those three sites and do an evaluation and make things better.”

Burke said the good news in all this is that Cerner’s client, the DoD, understands the value of what the software company is delivering. 

To Burke, the VA contract provides a real opportunity to “provide seamless care across the continuum” and ensure that men and women in the service can keep their records with them as they move into the VA. Not only that, but the $10 billion contract is half of the projected cost to support VistA for the next 20 years if VA kept that proprietary EHR and its modernization in-house. 

Former VA Secretary David Shulkin, MD, announced his plan to give the EHR modernization contract to Cerner through a no-bid process to expedite the project and to match the platform currently in a pilot phase. Not all EHR vendors were pleased with this decision, and CliniComp actually sued to stop the process. The judge later dismissed that case.

Twitter: @JessieFDavis
Email the writer: jessica.davis@himssmedia.com

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How EHR vendor Epic became involved in a major Supreme Court labor law decision http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/how-ehr-vendor-epic-became-involved-major-supreme-court-labor-law-decision http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/how-ehr-vendor-epic-became-involved-major-supreme-court-labor-law-decision Mon, 21 May 2018 11:24:29 CDT walmeida at Healthcare IT News - Government & Policy In a 5-4 decision decided by the conservative justices of the U.S. Supreme Court and handed down on May 21, Epic Systems – along with two other employers – came out on top in a labor law case experts say will have a significant impact on American workers' rights. The case, Epic Systems Corporation v. Lewis, was argued in October 2017 and focused on whether the National Labor Relations Act allowed for collective redress in arbitration situations. It involved Epic's requirement that employees resolve individual wage-and-hour claims through the arbitration process, with an agreement that also prohibited them from pursuing those claims via a class action or collective action. It asserts that continued employment at Epic is tantamount to consent to that agreement once employees have clicked two buttons acknowledging it. Jacob Lewis, a technical writer at Epic, filed a class action lawsuit in federal court against the Verona, Wisconsin-based health IT company, alleging that it violated the Fair Labor Standards Act and Wisconsin state law by failing to compensate him and other similar employees for overtime pay, due to misclassifying their employment status. Lewis also claimed that the employment arbitration agreement violated the National Labor Relations Act in depriving him of the chance to pursue collective action against Epic. Epic's move to dismiss that lawsuit and to compel arbitration was denied; the company appealed to the U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, where Chief Judge Diane Wood ruled that Section 7 of the NLRA protects "concerted activities," and the "collective or class legal proceedings fit well within the ordinary understanding" of what such a term means. Epic petitioned the Supreme Court to take the case in September 2016, arguing that its arbitration waiver was consistent with NLRA. The Court agreed to take the case, combining it with two other similar arguments: Ernst and Young v. Morris and NLRB v. Murphy Oil. The central question of the case: "Whether an agreement that requires an employer and an employee to resolve employment-related disputes through individual arbitration, and waive class and collective proceedings, is enforceable under the Federal Arbitration Act, notwithstanding the provisions of the National Labor Relations Act." In its decision on Epic v. Lewis, the Supreme Court has ruled that companies such as Epic can require labor and wage disputes to be hashed out individually, and not allow workers to collectively bring class action lawsuits against their employers. In his majority opinion, Justice Neil Gorsuch wrote that the NLRA is trumped by the 1925 Federal Arbitration Act, and said workers who sign such arbitration agreements have to do so individually rather than collectively. The decision affects "tens of millions of private non-union employees, who will be barred from suing collectively over the terms of their employment," according to NPR. "The policy may be debatable but the law is clear: Congress has instructed that arbitration agreements like those before us must be enforced as written," Gorsuch wrote. "While Congress is of course always free to amend this judgment, we see nothing suggesting it did so in the NLRA — much less that it manifested a clear intention to displace the Arbitration Act.  In her dissent, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg called "urgently" on Congress to "correct the court's elevation of the Arbitration Act over workers' rights to act in concert." The Court's decision means "there will be huge under-enforcement of federal and state statutes designed to advance the well-being of vulnerable workers," she wrote. In a statement given to Healthcare IT News, Epic Founder and CEO Judy Faulkner said, "It is important that employers protect an employees’ right to file complaints, while also providing for a fair forum in which those grievances are addressed. When it comes to grievances regarding wages and hours, we believe individual arbitration agreements strike that reasonable balance and are pleased with the court’s decision in support of this." Twitter: @MikeMiliardHITN Email the writer: mike.miliard@himssmedia.com Primary Topic: ComplianceAdditional Topics: PolicyMeaningful UsePolicyWorkforceLeadershipPolicyMeaningful UseSpecific Terms: ComplianceComplianceCustom Tags: ComplianceWorkforceComplianceDisable Auto Tagging: Short Headline: How Epic became involved in a major Supreme Court labor law decisionNewsletter hed: How EHR vendor Epic became involved in a major Supreme Court labor law decisionNewsletter teaser: Supreme Court sides with Epic and other employers over workers in the May 21 decision, with Justice Neil Gorsuch writing the 5-4 majority opinion.HOT @HIMSS: Featured Decision Content: 

In a 5-4 decision decided by the conservative justices of the U.S. Supreme Court and handed down on May 21, Epic Systems – along with two other employers – came out on top in a labor law case experts say will have a significant impact on American workers' rights.

The case, Epic Systems Corporation v. Lewis, was argued in October 2017 and focused on whether the National Labor Relations Act allowed for collective redress in arbitration situations.

It involved Epic's requirement that employees resolve individual wage-and-hour claims through the arbitration process, with an agreement that also prohibited them from pursuing those claims via a class action or collective action. It asserts that continued employment at Epic is tantamount to consent to that agreement once employees have clicked two buttons acknowledging it.

Jacob Lewis, a technical writer at Epic, filed a class action lawsuit in federal court against the Verona, Wisconsin-based health IT company, alleging that it violated the Fair Labor Standards Act and Wisconsin state law by failing to compensate him and other similar employees for overtime pay, due to misclassifying their employment status. Lewis also claimed that the employment arbitration agreement violated the National Labor Relations Act in depriving him of the chance to pursue collective action against Epic.

Epic's move to dismiss that lawsuit and to compel arbitration was denied; the company appealed to the U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, where Chief Judge Diane Wood ruled that Section 7 of the NLRA protects "concerted activities," and the "collective or class legal proceedings fit well within the ordinary understanding" of what such a term means.

Epic petitioned the Supreme Court to take the case in September 2016, arguing that its arbitration waiver was consistent with NLRA. The Court agreed to take the case, combining it with two other similar arguments: Ernst and Young v. Morris and NLRB v. Murphy Oil.

The central question of the case: "Whether an agreement that requires an employer and an employee to resolve employment-related disputes through individual arbitration, and waive class and collective proceedings, is enforceable under the Federal Arbitration Act, notwithstanding the provisions of the National Labor Relations Act."

In its decision on Epic v. Lewis, the Supreme Court has ruled that companies such as Epic can require labor and wage disputes to be hashed out individually, and not allow workers to collectively bring class action lawsuits against their employers.

In his majority opinion, Justice Neil Gorsuch wrote that the NLRA is trumped by the 1925 Federal Arbitration Act, and said workers who sign such arbitration agreements have to do so individually rather than collectively.

The decision affects "tens of millions of private non-union employees, who will be barred from suing collectively over the terms of their employment," according to NPR.

"The policy may be debatable but the law is clear: Congress has instructed that arbitration agreements like those before us must be enforced as written," Gorsuch wrote. "While Congress is of course always free to amend this judgment, we see nothing suggesting it did so in the NLRA — much less that it manifested a clear intention to displace the Arbitration Act. 

In her dissent, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg called "urgently" on Congress to "correct the court's elevation of the Arbitration Act over workers' rights to act in concert." The Court's decision means "there will be huge under-enforcement of federal and state statutes designed to advance the well-being of vulnerable workers," she wrote.

In a statement given to Healthcare IT News, Epic Founder and CEO Judy Faulkner said, "It is important that employers protect an employees’ right to file complaints, while also providing for a fair forum in which those grievances are addressed. When it comes to grievances regarding wages and hours, we believe individual arbitration agreements strike that reasonable balance and are pleased with the court’s decision in support of this."

Twitter: @MikeMiliardHITN
Email the writer: mike.miliard@himssmedia.com

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How Epic became involved in a major Supreme Court labor law decision
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Supreme Court sides with Epic and other employers over workers in the May 21 decision, with Justice Neil Gorsuch writing the 5-4 majority opinion.
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Healthcare Roundup—Alaska out of Medicaid funds; groups warn SNAP cuts will hit Medicare, Medicaid http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/healthcare-roundup-governor-responds-to-medicaid-lawsuit-groups-worry-snap-cuts-will-hit?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/healthcare-roundup-governor-responds-to-medicaid-lawsuit-groups-worry-snap-cuts-will-hit?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Fri, 18 May 2018 17:50:29 CDT Mike Stankiewicz at FierceHealthcare: Payer Maine Gov. Paul LePage continues to drag his feet on Medicaid expansion, while Alaska also struggles with Medicaid funds. Plus, more than a dozen groups are warning that cuts to SNAP will lead to higher Medicare and Medicaid costs. Aetna suspends whistleblower in CVS fraud case after she refused to destroy documents http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/aetna-cvs-caremark-whistleblower-fraud-pbm-drug-prices-paid-leave?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/aetna-cvs-caremark-whistleblower-fraud-pbm-drug-prices-paid-leave?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Fri, 18 May 2018 16:35:35 CDT Evan Sweeney at FierceHealthcare: Payer Sarah Behnke, an Aetna actuary who accused CVS Caremark of engaging in a massive fraud scheme, was placed on paid administrative leave days after her suit was unsealed. Behnke's attorney told FierceHealthcare that Aetna placed her on leave after she refused the insurer's request to destroy documents. Advocacy groups blast CMS for incorrectly promoting MA plans, misleading beneficiaries http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/cms-incorrectly-promoting-ma-plans-lying-to-beneficiaries-groups?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/cms-incorrectly-promoting-ma-plans-lying-to-beneficiaries-groups?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Fri, 18 May 2018 14:55:28 CDT Mike Stankiewicz at FierceHealthcare: Payer Three senior health advocacy groups are calling out CMS for improperly "distorting" and "mischaracterizing" Medicare Advantage plan benefits in official education documents. Experimental MERS treatments enter clinical trial http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/experimental-mers-treatments-enter-clinical-trial http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/experimental-mers-treatments-enter-clinical-trial Fri, 18 May 2018 14:30:00 CDT NIH News Release NIH-sponsored trial to test two human monoclonal antibodies. ]]> CMS warns insurers to knock off 'gag clauses,' but is it enough to lower drug costs? http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/hhs-wags-finger-at-pbms-asks-them-to-knock-off-gag-clauses?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/hhs-wags-finger-at-pbms-asks-them-to-knock-off-gag-clauses?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Fri, 18 May 2018 14:03:10 CDT Mike Stankiewicz at FierceHealthcare: Payer The CMS' call for an end to lesser known "gag clauses" is likely an attempt to put such contracts in the public spotlight, a healthcare expert tells FierceHealthcare. Method to identify undetected drug suicides wins top NIDA Addiction Science Award http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/method-identify-undetected-drug-suicides-wins-top-nida-addiction-science-award http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/method-identify-undetected-drug-suicides-wins-top-nida-addiction-science-award Fri, 18 May 2018 14:00:00 CDT NIH News Release A chip to monitor mouse movements and new rules for identifying natural compounds for research take second and third place. ]]> NIH statement on HIV Vaccine Awareness Day - May 18, 2018 http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/nih-statement-hiv-vaccine-awareness-day-may-18-2018 http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/nih-statement-hiv-vaccine-awareness-day-may-18-2018 Fri, 18 May 2018 13:30:00 CDT NIH News Release HIV remains a burden to individuals and communities in the United States and abroad. ]]> Trump to nominate acting VA Secretary Wilkie to permanently head the agency http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/trump-nominate-acting-va-secretary-wilkie-permanently-head-agency http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/trump-nominate-acting-va-secretary-wilkie-permanently-head-agency Fri, 18 May 2018 13:28:25 CDT walmeida at Healthcare IT News - Government & Policy President Donald Trump plans to nominate acting U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie to permanently lead the agency, the President announced on Friday at the White House summit on prison reform. The news will come as a surprise to Wilkie, as the President hadn’t even told him before the announcement. “Wilkie, who, by the way, has done an incredible job at the VA” said Trump. “I’ll be informing him in a little while — he doesn’t know this yet — that we’re going to be putting his name up for nomination to be Secretary of the Veterans Administration. Fantastic. I’m sorry that I ruined the surprise.” The President also applauded the agency’s moves to expand the VA Choice and accountability programs. The nomination comes just three weeks after Trump’s first nominee former White House physician Ronny Jackson withdrew his nomination amid the emergence of workplace controversies. Currently, Wilkie is the Department of Defense Undersecretary for personnel and readiness. Trump pulled him into the role after the President fired former VA Secretary David Shulkin, MD. The move came as a surprise, as Trump sidestepped Deputy Secretary Thomas Bowman -- next in line to the position. In fact, two veterans groups sued the VA over what they argue was Trump’s ‘unlawful’ choice. While that lawsuit is still pending, it remains to be seen how those groups will view the most recent nomination. While another large veterans group AMVETS initially urged Trump to reconsider his choice, they’ve since changed their tune. “Wilkie has clearly been working hard to learn the many extremely complicated and most pressing issues facing veterans right now,” AMVETS Executive Director Joe Chenelly said in a statement. “His early work has earned him the confidence of AMVETS, and we’re looking forward to a thorough but hopefully speedy confirmation process.” The VA just announced it will officially sign a $10 billion EHR modernization contract with Cerner, nearly a year after Shulkin said the agency planned to build an EHR to match DoD. Twitter: @JessieFDavis Email the writer: jessica.davis@himssmedia.com Primary Topic: Electronic Health RecordsAdditional Topics: TechnologyEHRPolicyPolicySpecific Terms: Electronic Health RecordsCustom Tags: Electronic Health RecordsDisable Auto Tagging: Short Headline: Trump to nominate acting VA Secretary Wilkie to permanently head the agencyNewsletter hed: Trump to nominate acting VA Secretary Wilkie to permanently head the agencyNewsletter teaser: Joking that he “ruined the surprise,” the President made the announcement at the White House prison reform summit Friday afternoon.HOT @HIMSS: Featured Decision Content: 

President Donald Trump plans to nominate acting U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie to permanently lead the agency, the President announced on Friday at the White House summit on prison reform.

The news will come as a surprise to Wilkie, as the President hadn’t even told him before the announcement.

“Wilkie, who, by the way, has done an incredible job at the VA” said Trump. “I’ll be informing him in a little while — he doesn’t know this yet — that we’re going to be putting his name up for nomination to be Secretary of the Veterans Administration. Fantastic. I’m sorry that I ruined the surprise.”

The President also applauded the agency’s moves to expand the VA Choice and accountability programs.

The nomination comes just three weeks after Trump’s first nominee former White House physician Ronny Jackson withdrew his nomination amid the emergence of workplace controversies.

Currently, Wilkie is the Department of Defense Undersecretary for personnel and readiness. Trump pulled him into the role after the President fired former VA Secretary David Shulkin, MD. The move came as a surprise, as Trump sidestepped Deputy Secretary Thomas Bowman -- next in line to the position.

In fact, two veterans groups sued the VA over what they argue was Trump’s ‘unlawful’ choice. While that lawsuit is still pending, it remains to be seen how those groups will view the most recent nomination.

While another large veterans group AMVETS initially urged Trump to reconsider his choice, they’ve since changed their tune.

“Wilkie has clearly been working hard to learn the many extremely complicated and most pressing issues facing veterans right now,” AMVETS Executive Director Joe Chenelly said in a statement. “His early work has earned him the confidence of AMVETS, and we’re looking forward to a thorough but hopefully speedy confirmation process.”

The VA just announced it will officially sign a $10 billion EHR modernization contract with Cerner, nearly a year after Shulkin said the agency planned to build an EHR to match DoD.

Twitter: @JessieFDavis
Email the writer: jessica.davis@himssmedia.com

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VA officially signs with Cerner on EHR modernization project http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/va-officially-signs-cerner-ehr-modernization-project http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/va-officially-signs-cerner-ehr-modernization-project Fri, 18 May 2018 08:30:07 CDT walmeida at Healthcare IT News - Government & Policy Nearly a year after the initial announcement, Cerner can add another government contract to its belt: The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs will officially contract with the EHR-giant to overhaul its legacy VistA EHR. The pair made the announcement Thursday night, after a year of speculation over whether the contract would be signed. Former VA Secretary David Shulkin, MD, said he planned to transition the VA to Cerner last June, but interoperability concerns and staffing shake-ups have left the contract in limbo. [Update: Trump to nominate Acting VA Secretary Wilkie to permanently head the agency] According to the announcement -- and a budget forecast -- the Cerner EHR at the VA will be identical to the one currently in the pilot phase at the Department of Defense. Currently, officials at both agencies are working together to impart lessons learned into the VA project. The agency will also add its own capabilities to support the special needs of veterans, such as mental health. If successful, the EHR will allow for seamless data sharing between the agency and community providers. The project is slated to cost $10 billion over the next 10 years and currently has a starting budget of $782 million for Fiscal Year 2018. This week is not only significant for @Cerner, but it's personal for me. As the son of a veteran, I want to thank the @DeptVetAffairs for taking the necessary steps to provide vital care for the millions of individuals who have served our country. https://t.co/QHoKZZfId1 — Brent Shafer (@BrentShaferCEO) May 17, 2018 We are humbled and honored by the responsibility that comes with serving our nation's active duty military personnel, and now, its veterans. This is a historic day for @Cerner and the @DeptVetAffairs. https://t.co/oCQLUH4TNk — Zane Burke (@zanemburke) May 17, 2018 “This is one of the largest IT contracts in the federal government,” said Acting VA Secretary Robert Wilkie in a statement. “And with a contract of that size, you can understand why Shulkin and I took some extra time to do our due diligence and make sure the contract does what the President wanted.” “We expect this program to be a positive catalyst for interoperability across the public and private healthcare sectors,” said Cerner President Zane Burke in a statement. “We look forward to moving quickly with organizations across the industry to deliver on the promise of this Mission.” Neither the announcement or officials have said when the project will kick-off, but Cerner officials said that the VA will roll-out its project in waves to match the DoD implementations. At the moment, the DoD project is facing serious challenges with usability and patient safety concerns, which it has been addressing for more than two months. DoD officials remain firm that the agency will still complete implementation timelines. Twitter: @JessieFDavis Email the writer: jessica.davis@himssmedia.com Primary Topic: Electronic Health RecordsAdditional Topics: TechnologyEHRPolicyTechnologyEHRSpecific Terms: Electronic Health RecordsElectronic Health RecordsCustom Tags: Electronic Health RecordsElectronic Health RecordsDisable Auto Tagging: Short Headline: VA signs $10 billion Cerner EHR contractNewsletter hed: VA signs $10 billion Cerner EHR contractNewsletter teaser: After nearly a year of speculation, the Veterans Affairs Department will implement the same EHR as the Department of Defense. HOT @HIMSS: Featured Decision Content: 

Nearly a year after the initial announcement, Cerner can add another government contract to its belt: The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs will officially contract with the EHR-giant to overhaul its legacy VistA EHR.

The pair made the announcement Thursday night, after a year of speculation over whether the contract would be signed. Former VA Secretary David Shulkin, MD, said he planned to transition the VA to Cerner last June, but interoperability concerns and staffing shake-ups have left the contract in limbo.

[Update: Trump to nominate Acting VA Secretary Wilkie to permanently head the agency]

According to the announcement -- and a budget forecast -- the Cerner EHR at the VA will be identical to the one currently in the pilot phase at the Department of Defense. Currently, officials at both agencies are working together to impart lessons learned into the VA project.

The agency will also add its own capabilities to support the special needs of veterans, such as mental health. If successful, the EHR will allow for seamless data sharing between the agency and community providers.

The project is slated to cost $10 billion over the next 10 years and currently has a starting budget of $782 million for Fiscal Year 2018.

This week is not only significant for @Cerner, but it's personal for me. As the son of a veteran, I want to thank the @DeptVetAffairs for taking the necessary steps to provide vital care for the millions of individuals who have served our country. https://t.co/QHoKZZfId1

— Brent Shafer (@BrentShaferCEO) May 17, 2018

We are humbled and honored by the responsibility that comes with serving our nation's active duty military personnel, and now, its veterans. This is a historic day for @Cerner and the @DeptVetAffairs. https://t.co/oCQLUH4TNk

— Zane Burke (@zanemburke) May 17, 2018

“This is one of the largest IT contracts in the federal government,” said Acting VA Secretary Robert Wilkie in a statement. “And with a contract of that size, you can understand why Shulkin and I took some extra time to do our due diligence and make sure the contract does what the President wanted.”

“We expect this program to be a positive catalyst for interoperability across the public and private healthcare sectors,” said Cerner President Zane Burke in a statement. “We look forward to moving quickly with organizations across the industry to deliver on the promise of this Mission.”

Neither the announcement or officials have said when the project will kick-off, but Cerner officials said that the VA will roll-out its project in waves to match the DoD implementations. At the moment, the DoD project is facing serious challenges with usability and patient safety concerns, which it has been addressing for more than two months.

DoD officials remain firm that the agency will still complete implementation timelines.

Twitter: @JessieFDavis
Email the writer: jessica.davis@himssmedia.com

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5 interesting plot twists in the Cigna-Express Scripts deal http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/cigna-express-scripts-sec-negotiations-amazon-anthem?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/cigna-express-scripts-sec-negotiations-amazon-anthem?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Thu, 17 May 2018 16:52:42 CDT Evan Sweeney at FierceHealthcare: Payer Anthem's decision to cancel its contract with Express Scripts factored into negotiations between the pharmacy benefit manager and Cigna, as did Amazon's interest in the healthcare industry. Those are just a couple of interesting nuggets we found in the most recent financial filing outlining the merger negotiations. States could face budgetary squeeze as Medicaid expansion funding drops off http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/medicaid-expansion-has-improved-coverage-access-to-care-without-hurting-other-state-programs?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/medicaid-expansion-has-improved-coverage-access-to-care-without-hurting-other-state-programs?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Thu, 17 May 2018 15:10:08 CDT Mike Stankiewicz at FierceHealthcare: Payer Several recent studies have highlighted the upside of Medicaid expansion, including better coverage and access to care. So far, those benefits haven't hurt other state funding priorities. But that trend is likely to change as federal funding for Medicaid expansion declines. Microglia are key defenders against prion diseases http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/microglia-are-key-defenders-against-prion-diseases http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/microglia-are-key-defenders-against-prion-diseases Thu, 17 May 2018 13:30:00 CDT NIH News Release Prion diseases are slow degenerative brain diseases that occur in people and various other mammals. ]]> International study suggests combination therapy may prevent stroke in certain people http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/international-study-suggests-combination-therapy-may-prevent-stroke-certain-people http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/international-study-suggests-combination-therapy-may-prevent-stroke-certain-people Thu, 17 May 2018 13:15:00 CDT NIH News Release NIH-funded trial finds lower rate of secondary stroke but small risk of bleeding. ]]> Male depression may lower pregnancy chances among infertile couples, NIH study suggests http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/male-depression-may-lower-pregnancy-chances-among-infertile-couples-nih-study-suggests http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/male-depression-may-lower-pregnancy-chances-among-infertile-couples-nih-study-suggests Thu, 17 May 2018 13:00:00 CDT NIH News Release Study also links women’s use of non-SSRI antidepressants to early pregnancy loss. ]]> Payer Roundup—Graham still trying to make ACA repeal happen; Vermont approves Canadian drug imports http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/payer-roundup-graham-still-trying-to-make-aca-repeal-happen?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/payer-roundup-graham-still-trying-to-make-aca-repeal-happen?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Thu, 17 May 2018 12:28:49 CDT Mike Stankiewicz at FierceHealthcare: Payer Sen. Lindsey Graham is taking another crack at ACA repeal, while Vermont becomes the first state to allow drug imports from Canada, along with other news you may have missed. EpiPens, blood-pressure medication rank among highest drug price increases, CMS database shows http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/renvela-orencia-lantus-rank-among-highest-drug-price-increases-cms-database?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/renvela-orencia-lantus-rank-among-highest-drug-price-increases-cms-database?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Thu, 17 May 2018 10:52:52 CDT Mike Stankiewicz at FierceHealthcare: Payer The newly updated drug pricing dashboards are shining light on who's responsible for the steadily increasing price of drugs. The cost of epinephrine, the main ingredient in EpiPens, increased 189.6% each year on average in Medicare Part D between 2012 and 2016. NIH, Northwestern scientists develop potential new approach to stop cancer metastasis http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/nih-northwestern-scientists-develop-potential-new-approach-stop-cancer-metastasis http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/nih-northwestern-scientists-develop-potential-new-approach-stop-cancer-metastasis Wed, 16 May 2018 18:00:00 CDT NIH News Release Identified compound blocks the spread of pancreatic and other cancers in various animal models. ]]> Payer Roundup—Vermont likely to approve its own individual mandate; Democrats to defend ACA in lawsuit http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/payer-roundup-vermont-moves-towards-individual-mandate-dems-to-defend-aca-lawsuit?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/payer-roundup-vermont-moves-towards-individual-mandate-dems-to-defend-aca-lawsuit?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Wed, 16 May 2018 16:00:09 CDT Mike Stankiewicz at FierceHealthcare: Payer A federal court is allowing state Democratic leaders to defend the ACA in a lawsuit filed by their GOP counterparts, and one state is moving toward implementing its own individual mandate, plus other news bites. Oscar Health posts first-ever quarterly profit, plans market expansion in 2019 http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/oscar-health-posts-first-ever-quarterly-profit-plans-westward-expansion?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/oscar-health-posts-first-ever-quarterly-profit-plans-westward-expansion?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Wed, 16 May 2018 14:46:00 CDT Mike Stankiewicz at FierceHealthcare: Payer The New York-based insurer posted a profit of $7.4 million in the first quarter of 2018 and is planning to expand individual plans to Arizona and three other markets next year. The first-quarter filing comes after several years of hundred-million-dollar losses. Hospital leaders: Further cuts to 340B would be 'devastating'  http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/finance/340b-hospital-cuts-jackson-health-system-wvu-vcu-mihs?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/finance/340b-hospital-cuts-jackson-health-system-wvu-vcu-mihs?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Wed, 16 May 2018 14:29:47 CDT Paige Minemyer at FierceHealthcare: Payer As legislators continue to debate the future of the 340B drug discount program, leaders at several major health systems gathered on Capitol Hill on Wednesday to provide a deeper look at the risks they face if savings are cut significantly.  CMS actuary undermines Verma: Short-term plans lead to higher premiums, steeper enrollment drops http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/cms-actuary-undermines-verma-s-short-term-plan-impacts-citing-higher-premium-enrollment-drops?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/cms-actuary-undermines-verma-s-short-term-plan-impacts-citing-higher-premium-enrollment-drops?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Wed, 16 May 2018 13:41:58 CDT Mike Stankiewicz at FierceHealthcare: Payer CMS Administrator Seema Verma has claimed that the agency's planned expansion of short-term health plans will have little impact on exchange enrollment and premiums, but a study by her agency's own independent actuary says that's not true. Update: Dems blast VA on EHR modernization progress, acting CIO controversy http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/update-dems-blast-va-ehr-modernization-progress-acting-cio-controversy http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/update-dems-blast-va-ehr-modernization-progress-acting-cio-controversy Wed, 16 May 2018 13:36:45 CDT walmeida at Healthcare IT News - Government & Policy A group of House and Senate Democrats are calling on the Department of Veterans Affairs to remove its Acting CIO over controversies that stem from his role on the Trump campaign, while expressing concerns about some in the President’s inner circle who may be “inappropriately influencing EHR modernization.” The letter, sent by 11 lawmakers include Sens. Richard Blumenthal, D-New York, and Tim Walz, D-Nebraska, blasts the VA for its “malign neglect” for failing to obtain qualified leadership and “reports of political interference hindering EHR implementation.” After Acting CIO Scott Blackburn resigned in April, Trump named Camilo Sandoval to the position. Sandoval, a former Trump campaign staffer, is surrounded by a growing list of controversies. Among the concerns addressed in the letter is Sandoval’s previous position as Director of Data Operations in 2016. During that time, the Trump campaign contracted with Cambridge Analytica, the company currently under fire for mining Facebook user data. “Cambridge Analytica’s misuse of personal information from tens of millions of Americans, including veterans, was an incredible breach of trust,” the letter authors wrote. “As such, Sandoval’s role in these activities must be thoroughly examined.” “He should be put nowhere near veterans’ health and benefits data,” they added. The letter also noted Sandoval is currently the subject of a $25 million lawsuit that claims he slandered, harassed and sexually discriminated against a campaign colleague. All of these items “raise serious red flags and indicate a history of interpersonal conflicts with coworkers.” As a result, the VA should remove him from the position, the Congressional members wrote. But Acting VA Secretary Robert Wilkie defended the choice of Sandoval, saying his "extensive experience in financial technology and digital mobile payments" make him "well-suited" to oversee the VA's IT infrastructure. “Senior VA officials are now on the same page, speaking with one voice to Veterans, employees and outside stakeholders, such as Congress and veterans service organizations, and Camilo is an important member of this leadership team,” Wilkie said in a statement to Healthcare IT News. But Sandoval is just one of many senior staffing issues concerning the Congressional members. There are more than 33,000 vacancies within the agency, including 553 in the Office of Information Technology. And about 40 senior staffers have stepped down in the last four months alone. These vacancies are adding to concerns about the EHR modernization project. “Current VA employees…are forced to shoulder the work of former colleagues -- contributing to low morale among the VA workforce,” the letter authors wrote. “The historic overhaul of the VA’s outdated [EHR] requires adequate staffing levels to ensure this project succeeds.” Given that the Department of Defense’s project is facing its own serious challenges, the need for a VA leader who understands the “risks and requirements” of the project is crucial, they continued. “The need for VA’s EHR modernization cannot be overstated.” Also notable is that the letter is addressed to Deputy Secretary Thomas Bowman instead of Acting Secretary Robert Wilkie. Some have called into question Wilkie’s authority in that role, given Trump sidestepped appointing Bowman as secretary after ousting VA Secretary David Shulkin, MD. In fact, two veterans’ groups have sued to have Wilkie removed. Despite this opposition, Wilkie has continued to forge ahead with plans to decide on the EHR modernization by May 28. This story was updated to include the Acting VA Secretary's response to the Congressional letter. Twitter: @JessieFDavis Email the writer: jessica.davis@himssmedia.com Primary Topic: Electronic Health RecordsAdditional Topics: TechnologyEHRPolicyTechnologyEHRSpecific Terms: Electronic Health RecordsElectronic Health RecordsCustom Tags: Electronic Health RecordsElectronic Health RecordsDisable Auto Tagging: Short Headline: Update: Dems blast VA on EHR modernization progress, acting CIO controversyNewsletter hed: Dems blast VA on EHR modernization progress, acting CIO controversyNewsletter teaser: In the last four months, the agency has lost about 40 senior staffers and the lack of experienced IT leadership puts the EHR modernization project at risk, 11 Congressional members argue.HOT @HIMSS: Featured Decision Content: 

A group of House and Senate Democrats are calling on the Department of Veterans Affairs to remove its Acting CIO over controversies that stem from his role on the Trump campaign, while expressing concerns about some in the President’s inner circle who may be “inappropriately influencing EHR modernization.”

The letter, sent by 11 lawmakers include Sens. Richard Blumenthal, D-New York, and Tim Walz, D-Nebraska, blasts the VA for its “malign neglect” for failing to obtain qualified leadership and “reports of political interference hindering EHR implementation.”

After Acting CIO Scott Blackburn resigned in April, Trump named Camilo Sandoval to the position. Sandoval, a former Trump campaign staffer, is surrounded by a growing list of controversies.

Among the concerns addressed in the letter is Sandoval’s previous position as Director of Data Operations in 2016. During that time, the Trump campaign contracted with Cambridge Analytica, the company currently under fire for mining Facebook user data.

“Cambridge Analytica’s misuse of personal information from tens of millions of Americans, including veterans, was an incredible breach of trust,” the letter authors wrote. “As such, Sandoval’s role in these activities must be thoroughly examined.”

“He should be put nowhere near veterans’ health and benefits data,” they added.

The letter also noted Sandoval is currently the subject of a $25 million lawsuit that claims he slandered, harassed and sexually discriminated against a campaign colleague. All of these items “raise serious red flags and indicate a history of interpersonal conflicts with coworkers.”

As a result, the VA should remove him from the position, the Congressional members wrote.

But Acting VA Secretary Robert Wilkie defended the choice of Sandoval, saying his "extensive experience in financial technology and digital mobile payments" make him "well-suited" to oversee the VA's IT infrastructure.

“Senior VA officials are now on the same page, speaking with one voice to Veterans, employees and outside stakeholders, such as Congress and veterans service organizations, and Camilo is an important member of this leadership team,” Wilkie said in a statement to Healthcare IT News.

But Sandoval is just one of many senior staffing issues concerning the Congressional members. There are more than 33,000 vacancies within the agency, including 553 in the Office of Information Technology. And about 40 senior staffers have stepped down in the last four months alone.

These vacancies are adding to concerns about the EHR modernization project.

“Current VA employees…are forced to shoulder the work of former colleagues -- contributing to low morale among the VA workforce,” the letter authors wrote. “The historic overhaul of the VA’s outdated [EHR] requires adequate staffing levels to ensure this project succeeds.”

Given that the Department of Defense’s project is facing its own serious challenges, the need for a VA leader who understands the “risks and requirements” of the project is crucial, they continued. “The need for VA’s EHR modernization cannot be overstated.”

Also notable is that the letter is addressed to Deputy Secretary Thomas Bowman instead of Acting Secretary Robert Wilkie. Some have called into question Wilkie’s authority in that role, given Trump sidestepped appointing Bowman as secretary after ousting VA Secretary David Shulkin, MD. In fact, two veterans’ groups have sued to have Wilkie removed.

Despite this opposition, Wilkie has continued to forge ahead with plans to decide on the EHR modernization by May 28.

This story was updated to include the Acting VA Secretary's response to the Congressional letter.

Twitter: @JessieFDavis
Email the writer: jessica.davis@himssmedia.com

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Why EHR data interoperability is such a mess in 3 charts http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/why-ehr-data-interoperability-such-mess-3-charts http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/why-ehr-data-interoperability-such-mess-3-charts Wed, 16 May 2018 09:07:54 CDT at Most Popular News from healthcareitnews.com Hospitals have a complex web of electronic health record vendors but once data sharing broadens it will open the door to innovation. Senators sent letter to Verma threatening to compel her testimony on Medicaid fraud http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/hospitals-health-systems/senators-sent-letter-to-verma-threatening-to-compel-her-testimony?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/hospitals-health-systems/senators-sent-letter-to-verma-threatening-to-compel-her-testimony?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Wed, 16 May 2018 06:59:01 CDT Tina Reed at FierceHealthcare: Payer Senators on the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee are seeking to hear CMS Administrator Seema Verma's testimony regarding the Medicaid system's vulnerabilities to fraud and overpayments. Verma has declined to confirm her availability since lawmakers first made the request in April. Payer Roundup—CMS approves Maryland's all-payer expansion; Groups call for an end to Medicaid waivers http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/payer-roundup-cms-approves-maryland-s-all-payer-expansion-groups-call-for-end-to-medicaid?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/payer-roundup-cms-approves-maryland-s-all-payer-expansion-groups-call-for-end-to-medicaid?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Tue, 15 May 2018 16:08:18 CDT Mike Stankiewicz at FierceHealthcare: Payer The Trump administration has approved Maryland's unique all-payer model, dozens of groups call for HHS to halt Medicaid waivers, plus more health payer news. Financial barriers prevent patients from accessing their health records http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/tech/patients-face-strong-financial-barriers-accessing-health-records?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/tech/patients-face-strong-financial-barriers-accessing-health-records?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Tue, 15 May 2018 15:06:49 CDT Mike Stankiewicz at FierceHealthcare: Payer A new audit by a government watchdog has found that patients still face many challenges when attempting to access their health information. Gottlieb: FDA to kick-start plans to increase competition in drug markets this week http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/regulatory/scott-gottlieb-fda-drug-prices-trump-administration-generics?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/regulatory/scott-gottlieb-fda-drug-prices-trump-administration-generics?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Tue, 15 May 2018 12:21:08 CDT Paige Minemyer at FierceHealthcare: Payer Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said the agency will launch one of its first programs following the release of the Trump administration's new drug price plan this week. The FDA head met with reporters Tuesday morning to offer a look at the agency's plans under the administration's proposal. Verma draws the line on any Medicaid lifetime limits http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/any-medicaid-lifetime-limit-proposal-doa-verma?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/any-medicaid-lifetime-limit-proposal-doa-verma?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Tue, 15 May 2018 12:13:22 CDT Mike Stankiewicz at FierceHealthcare: Payer Four state Medicaid waivers are all but dead after CMS Administrator Seema Verma said the agency won't approve any Medicaid lifetime limit proposals during an appearance in which she also unveiled the agency's new drug-pricing database. Cerner has almost double EHR global market share of closest rival Epic, Kalorama says http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/cerner-has-almost-double-ehr-global-market-share-closest-rival-epic-kalorama-says http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/cerner-has-almost-double-ehr-global-market-share-closest-rival-epic-kalorama-says Tue, 15 May 2018 08:32:36 CDT at Most Popular News from healthcareitnews.com But Epic leads in the physician office sector, according to the new report, and GE is now among the top four electronic health record vendors. Texas doctor charged in $240M fraud scheme for allegedly falsely diagnosing patients to buy luxury cars and a jet http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/practices/texas-doctor-charged-240m-fraud-scheme-jorge-zamora-quezada?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/practices/texas-doctor-charged-240m-fraud-scheme-jorge-zamora-quezada?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Tue, 15 May 2018 08:27:15 CDT Joanne Finnegan at FierceHealthcare: Payer In an indictment unsealed Monday, investigators said Dr. Jorge Zamora-Quezada's schemes were aimed at financing his opulent lifestyle. That included owning both his own private jet and a Maserati, both emblazoned with his initials, “ZQ." Patient-centrism: The data-driven trend to watch in healthcare transformation http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/regulatory/10-data-driven-trends-healthcare-transformation?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/regulatory/10-data-driven-trends-healthcare-transformation?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Mon, 14 May 2018 15:07:38 CDT Paige Minemyer at FierceHealthcare: Payer Big Data is one of the driving forces behind the transition from volume to value, experts say. Here's why patient-centrism is among the most important. New Jersey court rips up Optum's $6.7B prescription drug contract, orders rebid http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/court-rips-up-optum-s-6b-prescription-drug-contract-rebid-ordered?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/court-rips-up-optum-s-6b-prescription-drug-contract-rebid-ordered?utm_source=internal&utm_medium=rss Mon, 14 May 2018 14:56:43 CDT Mike Stankiewicz at FierceHealthcare: Payer A New Jersey court has found that OptumRx's proposal to serve as PBM for 835,000 public workers violated bidding rules. Express Scripts, which brought about the suit, tells FierceHealthcare it's ready for a rebid. DHS warns of security flaws in GE, Philips, Silex medical devices http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/dhs-warns-security-flaws-ge-philips-silex-medical-devices http://medclimate.com/external/index.php?http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/dhs-warns-security-flaws-ge-philips-silex-medical-devices Mon, 14 May 2018 14:24:10 CDT walmeida at Healthcare IT News - Government & Policy Serious security flaws were discovered in Philips, GE and Silex medical devices that, if exploited, could allow authorized access and let a hacker obtain elevated privileges, according to two separate U.S. Department of Homeland Security ICS-CERT alerts issued this month. According to the first alert, a flaw in the contained kiosk environment of Philips Brilliance CT Scanners could be exploited to let an unauthorized user gain elevated privileges and access to unauthorized resources within Windows. Another kiosk environment flaw could be exploited, allowing a user with limited access to break out of that environment and gain elevated privileges and access to other elements in Windows. DHS also sent an alert about a flaw with the hard-coded credentials for outbound communication, encryption of internal data and inbound authentication: An unauthorized user could compromise credentials to gain access to the network. Philips remediated this flaw for versions 4.x and above. Philips alerted the National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center of the vulnerability in early May and has been working to eliminate the issue. The company also worked with DHS to alert its users to the problem, as a way to mitigate some of the risk. So far, there’s been no evidence these flaws have been exploited in the wild. But Philips is still warning users to “implement a comprehensive, multi-layered strategy to protect their systems from internal and external security threats.” This includes restricting physical access to just authorized personnel. The second notice outlines flaws discovered in both Silex Technology and GE Healthcare MobileLink tech that could be exploited remotely with low-level skill and allow modification of system settings. Public exploits of these vulnerabilities are available. The flaws are found in these products: GEH-500, SX-500, GEH-SD-320AN and SD-320AN, along with some GE MAC Resting ECG analysis systems that may use MobileLink Technology. One flaw cites a lack of verification for authentication for some POST requests that could let an unauthorized user modify system settings. Another flaw cites an improperly sanitized system call parameter, which can allow remote code execution. Both Silex and GE recommended users to enable an ‘update’ account within the online interface, which is not the standard default. Users should also set a second password for this update account to prevent an unauthorized user from altering device configuration. The two companies have updated firmware to remediate some of these vulnerabilities, which will be available for download on May 31. These alerts have become more frequent, as security leaders, Congress, and the Food and Drug Administration are continuing to shore up these threats. In fact, not only have medical device recalls increased by 126 percent in the first quarter of 2018 from last year, often doctors have no idea if or when a hack occurs. In April, the FDA released a five-point plan to improve medical device security, while Congress is asking the industry to tackle these flaws. Twitter: @JessieFDavis Email the writer: jessica.davis@himssmedia.com Primary Topic: PolicyAdditional Topics: PolicyTechnologySecurityTechnologySecuritySpecific Terms: Privacy & SecurityPrivacy & SecurityCustom Tags: Privacy & SecurityPrivacy & SecurityDisable Auto Tagging: Short Headline: DHS warns of security flaws in GE, Philips, Silex medical devicesNewsletter hed: DHS warns of security flaws in GE, Philips, Silex medical devicesNewsletter teaser: Some vulnerabilities in Philips’ Brilliance CT scanners and GE Healthcare Mobile tech could allow an unauthorized user to obtain elevated credentials and make modifications to system settings.HOT @HIMSS: Featured Decision Content: 

Serious security flaws were discovered in Philips, GE and Silex medical devices that, if exploited, could allow authorized access and let a hacker obtain elevated privileges, according to two separate U.S. Department of Homeland Security ICS-CERT alerts issued this month.

According to the first alert, a flaw in the contained kiosk environment of Philips Brilliance CT Scanners could be exploited to let an unauthorized user gain elevated privileges and access to unauthorized resources within Windows.

Another kiosk environment flaw could be exploited, allowing a user with limited access to break out of that environment and gain elevated privileges and access to other elements in Windows.

DHS also sent an alert about a flaw with the hard-coded credentials for outbound communication, encryption of internal data and inbound authentication: An unauthorized user could compromise credentials to gain access to the network. Philips remediated this flaw for versions 4.x and above.

Philips alerted the National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center of the vulnerability in early May and has been working to eliminate the issue. The company also worked with DHS to alert its users to the problem, as a way to mitigate some of the risk.

So far, there’s been no evidence these flaws have been exploited in the wild. But Philips is still warning users to “implement a comprehensive, multi-layered strategy to protect their systems from internal and external security threats.” This includes restricting physical access to just authorized personnel.

The second notice outlines flaws discovered in both Silex Technology and GE Healthcare MobileLink tech that could be exploited remotely with low-level skill and allow modification of system settings. Public exploits of these vulnerabilities are available.

The flaws are found in these products: GEH-500, SX-500, GEH-SD-320AN and SD-320AN, along with some GE MAC Resting ECG analysis systems that may use MobileLink Technology.

One flaw cites a lack of verification for authentication for some POST requests that could let an unauthorized user modify system settings. Another flaw cites an improperly sanitized system call parameter, which can allow remote code execution.

Both Silex and GE recommended users to enable an ‘update’ account within the online interface, which is not the standard default. Users should also set a second password for this update account to prevent an unauthorized user from altering device configuration.

The two companies have updated firmware to remediate some of these vulnerabilities, which will be available for download on May 31.

These alerts have become more frequent, as security leaders, Congress, and the Food and Drug Administration are continuing to shore up these threats. In fact, not only have medical device recalls increased by 126 percent in the first quarter of 2018 from last year, often doctors have no idea if or when a hack occurs.

In April, the FDA released a five-point plan to improve medical device security, while Congress is asking the industry to tackle these flaws.

Twitter: @JessieFDavis
Email the writer: jessica.davis@himssmedia.com

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