Cigna launches new benefits solution aimed at making gene therapy more affordable

Fierce Healthcare | September 06, 2019

Cigna is launching a new solution as part of its health services business aimed at mitigating the high cost of emerging gene therapy treatments.  The Embarc Benefit Protection platform brings together expertise on medical management, health services and specialty pharmacy from Express Scripts, eviCore, Accredo and CuraScript SD, Cigna announced. The model is designed to alleviate high cost-sharing for patients and also prevent shock claims for employers and plan sponsors. Health plans that adopt Embarc will pay a per-member, per-month fee to participate in a gene therapy network. Physicians will be required to submit prior authorization for the drugs, but once they’re approved a patient will not be charged a copay at the pharmacy counter.

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LifeLong Medical Care celebrates 40 years of providing high-quality medical care to thousands of low-income people of all ages in Alameda, Contra Costa and Marin Counties. This video is of LifeLong's dedication and commitment to providing care and compassion to our communities who are in need of medical, dental and social services, regardless of income.


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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

PointClickCare Launches Integrated Virtual Health Solution for Long-Term and Post-Acute Care Providers

PointClickCare | October 11, 2022

PointClickCare Technologies, a leading healthcare technology platform enabling meaningful collaboration and access to real‐time insights announced the launch of its Virtual Health offering – an integrated telemedicine solution to the Skilled Nursing Facilities market. With the help of partner Sound Physicians, this technology is currently being implemented in more than half of the states across the U.S. Over the next two days at the AHCA/NCAL Convention and Expo, PointClickCare will be showcasing the innovative ways providers can better achieve quality care and reach the full potential of virtual health in the post‐acute setting. According to the Forrester U.S. Tech Outlook, 2022 Report, investment in virtual health, remote monitoring, and hospital-at-home, are spending priorities in 2022. Forrester analysts have confirmed that these technologies have the power to reduce the cost of administrative complexity, which is currently $265 billion. Recent data from the US Department of Health & Human Services explains that the share of Medicare visits conducted through telehealth rose to 52.7 million in 2020, from approximately 840,000 in 2019. Knowing that telehealth has become an increasingly important, yet sometimes complicated component of healthcare, PointClickCare has developed an alternative to traditional telehealth by applying technological improvements to offer an integrated solution. “Telehealth is no longer a futuristic concept in long-term care, it’s table stakes. Our customers continue to navigate between care settings and our team has sought to innovate and push the envelope on providing virtual care. We’re proud to announce this technology that has been specifically designed to meet the mission‐critical needs of post‐acute providers to improve clinical care and reduce healthcare costs, consistently driving down hospital readmissions by 30%.” Travis Palmquist, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Senior Care at PointClickCare With PointClickCare’s Virtual Health offering, providers can now Improve patient care & staff satisfaction: By streamlining operations through a sophisticated level of integration into existing workflows, care teams have access to shared patient records, and can cut down on administrative tasks and can focus on what matters most – patient care. Reduce healthcare service costs: With the ability to “treat in place,” facilities experience stabilized occupancy rates and can reduce the need for after-hours readmissions or emergency room department transfers, ultimately lowering overall costs. “The ongoing staffing crisis has created a new level of pressure for our staff. With PointClickCare’s Virtual Health solution, our care teams can access an on-shift physician with just one click, streamlining operations and cutting down on a lot of the administrative burdens we are faced with, all while ensuring our patients are getting the best quality of care, any time,” said Kevin Baxter, Vice President of Operations at Health Services Management. About PointClickCare PointClickCare is a leading healthcare technology platform enabling meaningful collaboration and access to real‐time insights at any stage of a patient’s healthcare journey. PointClickCare’s single platform spans the care continuum, fostering proactive, holistic decision‐making and improved outcomes for all. Over 27,000 long‐term post‐acute care providers, and 2,700 hospitals use PointClickCare today, enabling care collaboration and value‐based care delivery for millions of lives across North America.

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HEALTHTECH SECURITY

Zócalo Health’s Culturally Competent Virtual Healthcare Services for Latino Communities Now Available

Zócalo Health | October 12, 2022

Zócalo Health, a Latino-founded healthcare service designed for Latino patients, announced the launch of its primary care memberships for residents across California and Texas. Starting members can access same day virtual care visits and care navigation services via Zócalo’s website, introducing the Latino community to an improved and long overdue healthcare experience built on trust, relationships, and culture. Zócalo Health, which premiered as an invite-only service to select members earlier this summer, was founded by Erik Cardenas and Mariza Hardin to strengthen the health and wellbeing of the Latino community by eliminating barriers to high-quality healthcare services. This multi-state launch demonstrates the company’s continued commitment to delivering affordable and accessible primary care that blends tradition with innovation and prioritizes trusting relationships between providers and patients. Members will have access to a range of services and care options that would typically be addressed in primary care including: mental health conditions, preventative and lifestyle needs, chronic disease management, urgent care, and other more specific health conditions. The Zócalo primary care model includes the use of community health workers (CHWs) – or as they’re known in the Latino community, promotores de salud. Research shows CHWs are crucial to helping health systems achieve their full potential, since they work to connect patients to local resources and care. At Zócalo, promotores work individually with members to coordinate their care across a team of physicians, nurses, and mental health therapists, as well as connect members to needed resources across the community. Clinicians and promotores are hired from the communities they serve and can provide culturally competent care in both English and Spanish. By building care teams that come from and look like the communities they serve, the team is better able to foster a primary care relationship with patients. Once care has been established with Zócalo Health, members have 24/7 access to chat with their promotor de salud to receive individual guidance on personal health goals and needs. “Today, I am immensely proud to open up Zócalo Health’s services to the community. As a kid, I remember the long waits in the community health clinic to see a doctor who often did not speak Spanish. I had to act as a translator for my mom about my own care and help her navigate next steps. I felt guilty that my mom had to take time off from work for my appointment and pay for any prescriptions or additional care needed. For my family, no work meant no pay, so a doctor’s visit was a heavy burden on everyone,” said Zócalo Health CEO Erik Cardenas. “As the landscape for healthcare delivery has changed with technology, our community continues to get left behind. The one-size-fits-all model for healthcare doesn’t work for everyone. I owe it to my parents and my family to do better. Zócalo Health is focused on giving our people a community built around their healthcare needs.” Despite the major cultural impact the Latino population has had on the U.S., and their increased spending power year after year, the U.S. healthcare system has been slow to adapt its services to the needs of this community’s unique health and cultural needs. Latinos still experience disproportionate barriers to healthcare access, particularly in primary care, where the average wait time to see a doctor is 24 days. This long delay, combined with fewer in-person appointments, high-deductible plans, and high out-of-pocket fees, results in many Latino patients avoiding treatment, using informal networks (family/friends), or waiting for hours in expensive emergency rooms to seek care. In addition to the existing disparities in healthcare access, the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic impact have exacerbated health inequities for the Latino community, particularly when it comes to accessing high-quality primary care and preventative services. “I’ve always been community-oriented and my role as a promotora gives me the opportunity to help other Latinos manage their health and navigate a system that unfortunately has not adapted to our needs. “I’m so excited to be able to guide my community through what can often be a stressful experience in order to deliver personalized care management from someone who understands our culture and needs. Our Zócalo Health team is ready to advocate for our members and ultimately impact our community’s health, one person at a time.” Zócalo Health promotora Caroline Carbajal Zócalo Health’s membership and payment options are designed to make access to primary care easy and affordable for Latinos. Services are offered through monthly memberships, with pricing starting at $40 per month or at a discounted rate of $420 a year when paid upfront. Patients in California and Texas can now purchase a membership and schedule same-day virtual appointments by visiting zocalo.health. Zócalo Health plans to expand to other states in 2022 and beyond. About Zócalo Health Zócalo Health is a Latino-founded healthcare service designed for the Latino patient. Our primary care model blends tradition with innovation and prioritizes trusting relationships between care teams and patients. Each member of Zócalo Health is paired with a promotor de salud (community health worker) to establish a relationship to better understand members’ goals and connect them to a Zócalo Health physician. Our team of physicians, hired from the community, focus on prevention, primary care, behavioral health, and traditional practices that work together to support our members’ wellness. Operating in the states of California and Texas, Zócalo Health offers affordable and convenient care memberships that provide same-day access to culturally-aligned providers.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Athlete Training and Health Expands with New Facilities, Team Members

Athlete | September 27, 2022

Whether for active adults or Olympians, Athlete Training and Health (ATH) encourages its athletes to strive for their own personal best. ATH is raising its own bar on community health and performance training once again, with the announcement of two new facilities in the Houston area and the addition of another world-renowned coach to its executive staff. “What we know is that evidence-led training allows everyone to benefit from the science behind the best in health and performance. Expanding and offering this world-class environment and approach will benefit athletes of all ages and abilities. We are pleased to collaborate with healthcare systems, professional sports teams, universities and school districts to continue pursuing a new level of health and performance training for many communities.” Greg Centilli, chief operating officer for ATH and a recent addition to the growing ATH organization Construction has begun on a new ATH sports medicine and human performance facility in Pearland. Located on the Memorial Hermann Pearland Hospital campus at 16100 South Freeway, the roughly 13K-square-foot facility will house unparalleled human performance expertise and opportunities to train in an adult fitness space, a professional sport-style weight room, and on indoor and outdoor turf fields. The facility, a collaboration between ATH, Memorial Hermann and UT Physicians Orthopedics, is expected to open fall 2023. Also in the works is an ATH facility in Cypress, also in collaboration with Memorial Hermann. On the campus of Memorial Hermann Cypress Hospital at 27800 Highway 290, ATH will open and operate a roughly 13K-square-foot facility in 2024. At this location, student, collegiate, professional and adult athletes will find the expertise needed to up their game on their own performance. “We are extremely pleased to welcome Professor Cronin to ATH. His science-based expertise and educational experience, alongside his international standing, will help educate investors and the general markets on the significance and industry importance of ATH-led initiatives,” said Centilli. Cronin serves as professor of strength and conditioning at the Sports Performance Research Institute of New Zealand (SPRINZ) at Auckland University of Technology (AUT). His research interests are in human movement, particularly around strengthening of muscle, injury resistance, return to play and high-performance sports. Cronin’s research has been published in more than 400 peer-reviewed papers. AUT and ATH have a long-standing history. Post-graduate fellows from AUT conduct research at ATH as part of a team involving coaches and select students, as well as collaborate on sport technology development. “I know the organization well, and my research interests and expertise align well with ATH’s interest in sporting performance and allied health, so I’m very excited to be advising ATH about the latest science-based studies and learnings to support their people, programs and products,” Cronin said. Celebrating Wins While its clients celebrate personal victories, ATH celebrates industry wins. Readers of Living Magazine recently voted ATH the “2022 Best Health Club/Gym” winner in McKinney/Allen and in Katy/Fulshear via an annual award competition that allows readers to nominate and then vote for their favorite companies by category and market. ATH also was honored to be named a “2022 Neighborhood Favorite” in NextDoor’s annual celebration of local businesses, and a finalist for “2022 Best Gym/Fitness Center in Houston” by readers of Houston Chronicle in an annual awards competition voted on by Houstonians. “While it’s important for us to acknowledge the hard work of our coaches and staff who make awards like these possible, it’s our job to continuously raise the bar, so we consider this just the beginning,” noted Centilli. “We are excited about what we have accomplished and are even more excited for the developments ahead.” Whether it’s losing the pandemic pounds, living in a healthier body, or even reaching the pinnacle of your sport, the certified, experienced sports performance experts at ATH have the expertise and a program tailored just for you. ABOUT ATHLETE TRAINING AND HEALTH (ATH) ATH is more than a gym. It’s a place of community, inspiration and results. ATH provides award-winning adult fitness and sports performance training for youth, collegiate and professional athletes. ATH utilizes best practices from human performance research to provide a world-class training environment for athletes and adults of all fitness levels collaborating with hospitals, professional sports teams, universities and school districts to set new standards for health and performance training. ATH invests heavily in the post-graduate education of its performance coaches, who in turn develop evidence-led training programs guaranteed to deliver sustainable results. ATH currently operates two training centers in the Houston metro area and one in Allen, north of DFW.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Zynx Health Introduces Complimentary Monkeypox Order Set and Care Plan Bundle

Zynx Health | September 20, 2022

Zynx Health announced that it has published new order set and care plan guidelines to aid clinicians in the treatment of patients diagnosed with monkeypox. Created by the Zynx Clinical Team and based on recommendations from World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the content is available as a single, downloadable PDF on the Zynx Health website. Given the public health emergency, this content is being made available at no cost. “As monkeypox cases continue to rise, and with hospitals still facing shortfalls in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, our Zynx clinicians have developed and deployed this comprehensive order set and care plan bundle to alleviate the burden of researching the underlying evidence and then building the associated clinical decision support from scratch,” said Chuck Tuchinda, MD, president of Zynx Health. “The monkeypox content on the Zynx site is comprehensive, evidence-based, and ready for use.” The Zynx Clinical Team will continue to update its monkeypox care guidance as new evidence emerges and best-practice recommendations evolve. About Zynx Health Zynx Health, a market leader in providing evidence- and experience-based clinical improvement solutions since 1996 and part of the Hearst Health network, provides healthcare professionals with vital information and processes that guide care decisions and reduce complexity across the entire patient journey in a way that leads to healthier lives for all. Named the “Best in KLAS” Category Leader for Clinical Decision Support – Care Plans and Order Sets in 2021 and 2022, Zynx is a pioneer and market leader in evidence- and experience-based clinical solutions that help health systems improve patient outcomes, financial outcomes, clinical engagement, and technology performance. With Zynx Health, healthcare organizations exceed industry demands for delivering high-quality care at lower costs under value-based reimbursement models. About Hearst Health The mission of Hearst Health is to help guide the most important care moments by delivering vital information into the hands of everyone who touches a person’s health journey. Each year in the U.S., care guidance from Hearst Health reaches 85% of discharged patients, 205 million insured individuals, 103 million home health visits, and 3.2 billion dispensed prescriptions. The Hearst Health network includes FDB Zynx Health, MCG, Homecare Homebase, and MHK. Hearst also holds a minority interest in the precision medicine and oncology analytics company M2Gen.

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Spotlight

LifeLong Medical Care celebrates 40 years of providing high-quality medical care to thousands of low-income people of all ages in Alameda, Contra Costa and Marin Counties. This video is of LifeLong's dedication and commitment to providing care and compassion to our communities who are in need of medical, dental and social services, regardless of income.

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