Congressman calls for OIG investigation into CMS administrator consultant contracts

CMS | April 02, 2019

Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone Jr., a Democrat from New Jersey, is calling for the Office of Inspector General to investigate reports that CMS Administrator Seema Verma directed millions of dollars in contracts to outside Republican communications consultants. Pallone issued a statement Friday calling for an investigation following a Politico story also published Friday reporting that Verma, who was appointed by President Donald Trump to head CMS, quietly directed millions of taxpayer dollars in contracts with Republican communications consultants, including hiring one well-connected GOP media adviser to bolster her public profile. “The communications subcontracts approved by CMS Administrator Verma—routed through a larger federal contract and described to POLITICO by three individuals with firsthand knowledge of the agreements—represent a sharp break from precedent at the agency,” Politico reported.

Spotlight

The results are back and the prognosis is excellent: The digital health industry will grow at an average of 21 percent per year through to 2020. A healthy diet of large investments, young start-ups, and favorable policymaking is contributing to the multi-billion-dollar industry's growth spurt. In Roland Berger's recent publication "Digital and disrupted: All change for healthcare", the role of key stakeholders in the healthcare systems of the future receives an in-depth examination.


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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

PRIA Healthcare Announces Investment from Aldrich Capital Partners

PRIA Healthcare Management | January 27, 2022

PRIA Healthcare Management (PRIA), a leader in technology-enabled Market Access services that accelerate the adoption and rapid commercialization of innovative devices and procedures, today announced a significant investment fromVirginiabased growth equity firm, Aldrich Capital Partners. With the support of growth capital, PRIA Healthcare will quickly expand its Market Access solutions to innovative Medtech companies facing clinical trials and early reimbursement challenges of novel and life changing therapies. "After bootstrapping PRIA since our founding in 2012, we could see it was time for us to take the next step as the business grew and the needs in the market continued to expand. After meeting with many potential partners, we chose to work with the team at Aldrich Capital Partners because of their deep experience within our space and enormous set of resources they will bring to the table, outside of just capital." Mike Simon, Founder and CEO of PRIA Healthcare PRIA looks to further advance its mission to provide patients and providers across dozens of specialties access to innovative medical devices. PRIA's deep expertise in early reimbursement strategy, clinical trial reimbursement programs, and market-leading patient access programs ultimately enhance the market success of ground-breaking medical device procedures. The investment will be used to develop new products and services, as well as expand its reach to additional medical device manufacturers accelerating PRIA's already impressive growth rate. PRIA and Aldrich Capital Partners share a common vision around the importance of patient-centric services within the life sciences ecosystem. "Over the last several years, we have set out to invest in an innovative patient services business serving the life sciences segment and after meeting the PRIA team, we were immediately impressed", saysRaz Zia, General Partner of Aldrich Capital. "The sector-specific expertise, use of technology and vision set PRIA apart from other vendors in the space and we are excited to leverage our resources, relationships and decades of experience in scaling businesses to help the PRIA team realize their full potential." Informed by clinical data, PRIA partners with leading medical device manufactures and emerging medical device start-ups across the country and uses centralized, data-driven process workflows to deliver coordinated patient access programs that navigate the complexity of coding, coverage and payment for novel procedures. PRIA brings together patients, providers, medical device manufacturers and health insurers to ensure patients receive the best possible care for their situation. About PRIA Healthcare PRIA Healthcare Management is a patient access and reimbursement solutions company specializing in patient-based appeals of denied care. PRIA partners with medical device companies, healthcare providers, and healthcare organizations to ensure that patients are afforded appropriate coverage for the care that they are prescribed. Guided by the PRIA Patient Access Process our team of Patient Access Specialists have the experience and expertise to ensure that patient's rights to prescribed care will always be exercised to the fullest extent. About Aldrich Capital Partners Aldrich Capital Partners supports disruptive innovation in healthcare IT, fintech, and application software by investing equity capital in privately held growing companies. Founded by experienced investors and operators, who were also successful entrepreneurs, the founders of Aldrich Capital have been responsible for over$1 billionin technology investments since 1999. Both an operations partner and board-level advisor, ACP brings its portfolio companies strategic insight and access to a broad network of relationships built over 50 combined years of entrepreneurship and investing. Aldrich Capital Partners was founded in 2014 and has offices in Silicon Valley and theWashington, DCmetro area.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

athenahealth Expands Mobile EHR Voice Capabilities for Healthcare Providers

athenahealth, Inc. | June 29, 2022

athenahealth, Inc., a leading provider of network-enabled software and services for medical groups and health systems nationwide, announced the release of athenaOne® Voice Assistant Powered by Nuance®, a mobile-embedded, voice-driven digital companion that streamlines information retrieval and enables hands-free completion of meaningful clinical tasks for healthcare providers using athenahealth’s electronic health records (EHR) solution. Leveraging the power of their voice and iOS-based mobile device, clinicians can spend less time on the computer and more time interacting with patients. Voice Assistant is a natural command-based, virtual assistant developed and built by athenahealth and powered by Nuance's Dragon Medical technology. Voice Assistant is available for use with the award-winning athenaOne mobile app and athenaOne® Dictation Powered by Nuance®, which allows clinicians to dictate patient documentation naturally and accurately. Together, athenahealth’s voice-enabled solutions help clinicians improve documentation accuracy, save time, and provide a better patient experience. According to a recent survey by athenahealth, 92% of physicians surveyed report one or more issues cause them to feel burned out on a regular basis with the leading cause of regular burnout being excessive documentation requirements. However, numerous clinicians using Voice Assistant have experienced significant documentation time savings, thus allowing them to reallocate their time to other high-priority tasks. “I started using Voice Assistant because I’m curious about tech and AI, and I wanted to see if it would help me be more productive. Because I can so easily document anywhere, anytime, I’ve found it to be very useful and convenient, and it helps me make better use of my time. I wouldn’t want to work without it now.” Dr. Terence M. Grogan, DO, FAAFP, Grogan Family Medicine Using simple, intuitive voice commands, clinicians using Voice Assistant can document exams, create draft orders, retrieve clinical information, and review their schedule to accelerate tasks and save valuable time. As an AI-backed technology, Voice Assistant will become even smarter and more efficient with widespread use, and athenahealth will continue to expand the number of available commands and introduce new use cases. “We are delighted to expand our provider mobile app capabilities with Voice Assistant as we continue to transform the provider and patient experience,” said Paul Brient, chief product officer for athenahealth. “Clinicians should be able to experience technology at work just like they do in their everyday lives, and Voice Assistant brings us one step closer to that.” Brient added that with provider burnout and patient expectations increasing simultaneously, athenahealth is focused on accelerating product innovation, using tools like AI to help solve some of healthcare's biggest challenges. “As our data show, administrative requirements are taking too much time and attention away from providers, and it’s the responsibility of all EHR companies to decrease that burden so providers can spend more face time with patients,” he said. About athenahealth, Inc. athenahealth creates innovative healthcare technology that connects clinicians, patients, payers, and partners in differentiated ways. Our electronic health records, revenue cycle management, and patient engagement tools allow anytime, anywhere access, driving better financial outcomes for our customers and enabling our provider customers to deliver better quality care. In everything we do, we’re inspired by our vision to create a thriving ecosystem that delivers accessible, high-quality, and sustainable healthcare for all.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

NextGen Healthcare Partners with Circuit Clinical to Bolster Diversity in Clinical Trials by Extending Access to Underserved Communities

NextGen Healthcare, Inc. | May 05, 2022

NextGen Healthcare, Inc. a leading provider of innovative, cloud-based healthcare technology solutions, announced a partnership with Circuit Clinical to bring clinical trial access to patients of Federally Qualified Health Centers through over 14,000 providers that utilize NextGen Healthcare solutions. Historically, these underserved communities have not had easy access to participate in transformative clinical research that can provide enhanced treatment options. Such research-as-care can also improve health outcomes and offers revenue generation for the clinics that participate. NextGen Healthcare’s innovative collaboration with Circuit Clinical, whose mission is to transform how patients find and choose clinical trials by bringing them to the doctors they know and trust, will improve the participation of diverse patients in clinical trials and provide greater health equity by facilitating access to the underserved. “This partnership underscores NextGen Healthcare’s commitment to FQHCs and highlights our commitment to serving diverse patient populations. NextGen Healthcare’s technology is empowering providers to build healthier communities. Our work with Circuit Clinical is a milestone that provides real impact for our clients and their patients, and delivers on our pledge to facilitate better healthcare outcomes for all.” Srinivas (Sri) Velamoor, chief growth and strategy officer at NextGen Healthcare The collaboration contributes to the vision of the NextGen® Community Health Collaborative, a first-of-its-kind initiative announced late last year that offers data benchmarking, comparative analytics and reporting services, plus a forum for members to connect and share best practices to advance the mission of community health and health equity among underserved populations. NextGen Healthcare-powered practices, in conjunction with Circuit Clinical, will now be able to offer clinical trial patient recruitment, referral and enrollment services, eliminating obstacles to such care. Furthermore, participation provides tangible benefits to participants, including extra care visits without co-pays, therapeutic improvement on a better regimen, and patient stipends. “Our partnership with NextGen Healthcare will create a comprehensive solution for improving access to clinical trials for diverse communities across the country,” said Dr. Irfan Khan, founder and chief executive officer of Circuit Clinical. “Combining NextGen Healthcare’s comprehensive data insights and national reach with Circuit Clinical’s expert ecosystem offers pharmaceutical, biotech and vaccine companies a groundbreaking opportunity for accelerating therapeutic development and improving diversity in clinical trials.” In April, the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) issued updated guidance to provide recommendations to those developing medical products on the approach for developing a Race and Ethnicity Diversity Plan to help enroll adequate numbers of participants in clinical trials from underrepresented racial and ethnic populations. Adequate representation in clinical trials helps ensure that the data generated reflects the racial and ethnic diversity of the intended use population and may potentially identify safety or efficacy outcomes, the FDA said. About NextGen Healthcare, Inc. NextGen Healthcare, Inc. is a leading provider of innovative healthcare technology solutions. We are reimagining ambulatory healthcare with award-winning solutions that enable high-performing practices to create healthier communities. We partner with medical, behavioral and dental providers in their journey toward whole-person health and value-based care. Our highly integrated, intelligent and interoperable solutions go beyond EHR and Practice Management to increase clinical quality and productivity, enrich the patient experience and drive superior financial performance. We are on a quest to achieve better healthcare outcomes for all. About Circuit Clinical Circuit Clinical®, one of the largest integrated research organizations in the USA, is dedicated to empowering patients to choose clinical research as a care option. Circuit Clinical® is committed to transforming the way physicians and their patients find, choose, and participate in clinical research. The company delivers clinical research services and an award-winning patient engagement platform, trialjourney.com.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

NUTEX HEALTH ANNOUNCES TWO NEW FULLY FUNCTIONAL MICRO HOSPITALS

Nutex Health, Inc. | May 17, 2022

Nutex Health Inc. a physician-led, technology-enabled healthcare services company comprised of a hospital division with 21 facilities in 8 states and a primary care-centric, risk-bearing population health management division, announced two new fully operational micro hospitals. The first hospital, New Braunfels ER & Hospital, is in New Braunfels, Texas, located about 30 miles northeast of San Antonio. The state-of-the-art facility is open 24/7, 365 days a year, and includes an emergency room with 9 private exam rooms staffed with board-certified physicians and 4 private inpatient beds. The hospital provides both adult and pediatric care, and has the most advanced imaging and laboratory equipment, including CT, X-Ray and ultrasound with rapid radiological reports. The second hospital, East Valley ER & Hospital, is in Gilbert, Arizona, located about 21 miles southeast of Phoenix. The state-of-the-art hospital is open 24/7, 365 days a year, and includes an emergency room with 14 private exam rooms and 14 private inpatient beds. The hospital provides both adult and pediatric care, and has the most advanced imaging and laboratory equipment, including MRI, CT, X-Ray and ultrasound. Nutex currently anticipates opening 3 more facilities in 2022, with another 17 facilities either under construction or in advanced planning stages and anticipated to open in 2023 and 2024. There can be no assurance that these additional facilities will open in the anticipated timing or that they will open at all. Nutex micro hospitals focus on ensuring that patients receive a premium patient experience. Our hospitals feature short ER wait times averaging 15 minutes from entering the door to seeing a physician, high-quality care, lower nursing- and physician-to-patient staffing ratios and faster discharge times. Physicians, nurses and other employees are incentivized to provide quality, compassionate care to their patients. Nutex micro hospitals consistently have better outcomes and high patient satisfaction scores, with well over 1000 five-star Google reviews. "We are excited to continue to expand Nutex's network of micro hospitals across the country. Both New Braunfels and Gilbert are vibrant and rapidly growing suburbs of major metropolitan areas. Our goal is to provide high-quality acute medical care to the populations of these communities." Tom Vo, M.D., MBA, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Nutex Health "Entering the medical field, my goal was always to try to revolutionize the way healthcare is delivered to our patients. Our unique model allows physicians and nurses to retake control of patient care," stated Trey Allen, M.D., Medical Director at New Braunfels ER & Hospital. "We are committed to working with the community to make sure they can receive the healthcare they deserve." "As physicians, we saw how healthcare was being delivered, and we felt we could do better. We felt the humanity and compassion were absent from many medical interactions. We value and respect our patients, and treat them as family," stated Daniel Stites, M.D., Medical Director at East Valley ER & Hospital. About Nutex Health Inc. Headquartered in Houston, Texas and founded in 2011, Nutex Health Inc. is a physician-led, technology-enabled healthcare services company with approximately 1500 employees nationwide and is partnered with over 800 physicians. The Company has two divisions a Hospital division and a Population Health Management division. The hospital division owns and operates 21 facilities in eight different states. The division implements and operates different innovative health care models, including micro hospitals, specialty hospitals and hospital outpatient departments. The Population Health Management division owns and operates provider networks such as Independent Physician Associations (IPAs). Through our Management Services Organizations, we provide management, administrative and other support services to our affiliated hospitals and physician groups. Our cloud-based proprietary technology platform aggregates clinical and claims data across multiple settings, information systems and sources to create a holistic view of patients and providers, allowing us to deliver greater quality care more efficiently. Safe Harbor Certain statements and information included in this press release constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Federal Private Securities Litigation Act of 1995. When used in this press release, the words or phrases "will", "will likely result," "expected to," "will continue," "anticipated," "estimate," "projected," "intend," "goal," or similar expressions are intended to identify "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements are subject to certain risks, known and unknown, and uncertainties, many of which are beyond the control of the Company. Such uncertainties and risks include the ability to realize the anticipated benefits of the transaction, significant transaction costs and unknown liabilities and litigation and regulatory risks related to the transaction. In addition, forward-looking statements are subject to additional uncertainties and risks facing the Company, including but not limited to, economic conditions, dependence on management, dilution to stockholders, lack of capital, changes in laws or regulations, the effects of rapid growth upon the Company and the ability of management to effectively respond to the growth and demand for products and services of the Company, newly developing technologies, the Company's ability to compete, conflicts of interest in related party transactions, regulatory matters, protection of technology, lack of industry standards, the effects of competition and the ability of the Company to obtain future financing. Such factors could materially adversely affect the Company's financial performance and could cause the Company's actual results for future periods to differ materially from any opinions or statements expressed within this press release.

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Spotlight

The results are back and the prognosis is excellent: The digital health industry will grow at an average of 21 percent per year through to 2020. A healthy diet of large investments, young start-ups, and favorable policymaking is contributing to the multi-billion-dollar industry's growth spurt. In Roland Berger's recent publication "Digital and disrupted: All change for healthcare", the role of key stakeholders in the healthcare systems of the future receives an in-depth examination.

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