COVID-19 pandemic opens up new frontiers for health data privacy

Healthcare IT News | April 08, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has turned up the volume of the ongoing debate around health data privacy across Europe. New frontiers are opening up daily as the European Commission and individual member states seek ways to engage digital technology in their efforts to contain the spread of the virus while adhering to the requirements of GDPR and the region’s exacting ePrivacy regulations. Against a background of widespread urgency, some countries have forged ahead without waiting for international efforts to provide a framework for sharing health data for the public good while preserving the principles of personal privacy.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

MCI Onehealth Partners with MDClone to Accelerate Research through Global Clinical Intelligence Offering

MCI Onehealth Technologies, Inc. | July 29, 2022

MCI Onehealth Technologies Inc. a clinician-led healthcare technology company focused on increasing access to and quality of healthcare, and MDClone, a digital health company and leader in synthetic data, are pleased to announce an advanced clinical intelligence offering for their global partners. This offering combines real-world health insights with mirrored synthetic data to power deeper research and inspire novel therapeutic development. “MCI’s collaboration with MDClone will provide our partners with greater access to high-value data-insights-as-a-service for an array of research, clinical and data science needs. Whether through MCI’s clinic network, international healthcare providers, or pharmaceutical, life sciences and biotech partners, our mutually enhanced insights will help to quickly translate healthcare data and research into improved health and quality of life for patients.” Dr. Alexander Dobranowski, MD, Chief Executive Officer of MCI The real-world patient health journeys that MCI’s tech-enabled network is able to capture offer a comprehensive picture to researchers, who can benefit from a fuller perspective. The partnership between MCI and MDClone will leverage MDClone’s technology to load, organize and protect MCI-generated patient data and use this data to help find insights to improve care. In addition, MCI and MDClone intend to work together to improve data collection and curation to better serve the needs of applied healthcare research. MDClone offers clients robust, detailed data for thorough end-to-end, real-world analysis. Using the MDClone ADAMS Platform analytics tools and synthetic data capabilities, clinicians, researchers, and healthcare professionals can explore healthcare data more efficiently to accelerate real-world evidence processes. With synthetic data capabilities at the forefront, users can leverage self-service tools to access, analyze, and share information without privacy concerns. Additionally, the real-time identification and extraction of information about a specific population of interest allows users at healthcare systems to overcome some of the common barriers that can slow clinical data projects’ progress. “We’re thrilled to partner with innovators like MCI in the healthcare and life science industries and beyond. Together, we can provide tailored clinical insights that meet clients’ needs, and from those insights, MDClone can generate synthetic data that researchers can use to better understand disease progression, enhance care delivery, and develop new products that can improve patient outcomes,” said Josh Rubel, Chief Operating Officer of MDClone. In keeping with its objective to be a preeminent health technology leader, MCI nurtures international opportunities to leverage its vast pool of high-quality structured clinical information. The MDClone ADAMS Platform’s unique ability to convert datasets and cohorts of interest into synthetic files that are statistically comparable to the original data, but composed entirely of artificial patients, aids in broader and more secure access and opens the doors to third-party access and larger-scale research impact. MCI’s audience for health insights continues to grow in Canada and will further benefit from access to MDClone’s global roster of top-tier health system and pharma relationships. The collaboration with MDClone will accelerate MCI’s entry into the clinical insights and analytics sectors in the United States of America and Israel, including potential access to headquarter-level decision-makers of global pharma and life science leaders. “Through this commercial arrangement, we each have the benefit of immediate introduction to the active client rosters of the other, and we each gain a superior — and unique — offering to acquire new partners, fueling the expansion of MCI’s health insight services into international markets,” added Dr. Dobranowski. About MCI MCI is a healthcare technology company focused on empowering patients and doctors with advanced technologies to increase access, improve quality, and reduce healthcare costs. As part of the healthcare community for over 30 years, MCI operates one of Canada’s leading primary care networks with nearly 260 physicians and specialists, serves more than one million patients annually and had nearly 300,000 telehealth visits last year, including online visits via mciconnect.ca. MCI additionally offers an expanding suite of occupational health service offerings that support a growing list of nearly 600 corporate customers. Led by a proven management team of doctors and experienced executives, MCI remains focused on executing a strategy centered around acquiring technology and health services that complement the company’s current roadmap. About MDClone MDClone offers an innovative, self-service data analytics environment powering exploration, discovery, and collaboration throughout healthcare ecosystems cross-institutionally and globally. The powerful underlying infrastructure of the MDClone ADAMS Platform allows users to overcome common barriers in healthcare in order to organize, access, and protect the privacy of patient data while accelerating research, improving operations and quality, and driving innovation to deliver better patient outcomes. Founded in Israel in 2016, MDClone serves major health systems, payers, and life science customers in the United States, Canada, and Israel.

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MEDICAL DEVICES

Astorg Acquires Majority Interest in Avania

Avania | June 21, 2022

Avania, the preeminent, full-service global MedTech contract research organization announced that Astorg has acquired a majority stake in the company. Astorg, together with Kester Capital current investor who intends to retain a minority stake will actively support management’s plans to advance Avania’s development as a MedTech solution provider. Headquartered in the Netherlands, Avania was formed in March 2020 from the combination of five complementary businesses and started a successful journey to establish a fully integrated platform to serve sponsors worldwide in advancing medical technology products from early development to post-market ensuring customized, scalable solutions that optimize efficiencies and streamline the advancement of medical technology. Astorg brings an impressive global network of relationships in the MedTech space which will strengthen Avania’s pipeline and broaden its customer base while the capital access will help accelerate its growth, both organically and via acquisitions. “The platform we have built has positioned us ahead of our competition in the MedTech CRO space, and this deal will bring additional investment to strengthen our infrastructure, capital for acquisitions, and added support as we continue to grow Avania into the clear market leader. The largest CROs do not have the specialization that we bring, and the regional niche providers do not have the scale and reach of Avania. This unique positioning, along with the continued changes to the MedTech regulatory landscape, will allow us to push ourselves to the next era of growth.” Sapna Hornyak, president and CEO of Avania “We are extremely pleased to partner with Sapna and her team, as well as Kester, on this transaction,” said Managing Partner of Astorg Mid-Cap Edouard Pillot. “Being one of the global leaders in a profitable and fast-growing niche market, Avania squarely fits with Astorg’s investment criteria, and we are delighted to have Avania as our first Mid-Cap Healthcare deal, sitting within Astorg’s broader healthcare portfolio.” About Avania Avania is a leading, global full-service contract research organization focused on the management of clinical studies for medical technology, IVDs, biologics, and device-drug combination products internationally. Avania supports products from the first-in-human phase through the post-market phase with the same customized approach. When you need to advance your medical technology, it takes Avania. Avania’s vision is to be your trusted global partner in the evolution of your medical technology from innovation to commercialization to improving patient health and well-being. About Astorg Astorg is a leading private equity firm with over €17 billion of assets under management. We work with entrepreneurs and management teams to acquire market-leading global companies headquartered in Europe or the US, providing them with the strategic guidance, governance, and capital they need to achieve their growth goals. Astorg enjoys a distinct entrepreneurial culture, a long-term shareholder perspective, and a lean decision-making body. We have valuable industry expertise in healthcare, software, business-to-business professional services and technology-based industrial companies. Astorg has offices in London, Paris, New York, Frankfurt, Milan and Luxembourg. About Kester Capital Kester Capital is a primary buy-out specialist. Kester focuses on the healthcare, data & information and technology sectors, targeting businesses that require capital in order to unlock their potential.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Walmart To Acquire AR Optical Tech Company Memomi

Walmart and Memomi | June 30, 2022

Walmart and Memomi, an augmented reality optical tech companyannounced they have entered into an agreement for Walmart to acquire Memomi. This reinforces Walmart’s commitment to frictionless and omnichannel optical care. Since 2019, Memomi has enabled digital measurements for all Walmart and Sam’s Optical customers, across more than 2,800 Walmart Vision Centers and 550 Sam’s Clubs, and also powers the Optical eCommerce experience on SamsClub.com. Acquiring Memomi, an AR company, is the next step in Walmart’s journey of offering personalized, affordable access to optical care. This acquisition furthers Walmart Health & Wellness’ strategy to deliver integrated, omnichannel healthcare, leveraging data and technology to improve engagement, health equity and outcomes. “Customers are looking for access to care digitally, in their homes, and purchasing eyeglasses is no different. This acquisition supports our Health & Wellness mission to provide accessible care to the communities we serve.” David Reitnauer, Vice President, Specialty Services, Walmart Health & Wellness Memomi is a leading provider of technology to enhance virtual optical try-on experiences, helping customers virtually “try on” eyewear in real-time for a seamless, easy and fun omnichannel experience. “Walmart’s ability to roll out our virtual try-on and contact-free digital measurements service in a short period of time shows how committed Walmart is to its customers’ need for digital care in-stores and at home,” said Ofer Saban, Chief Technology Officer, Memomi. The acquisition is expected to close in the coming weeks, and Memomi employees will join the Walmart Global Tech organization. “We’re excited to welcome the Memomi team to Walmart and add their capabilities to our leading virtual reality technology that is transforming the retail experience for our customers and members,” said Cheryl Ainoa, Senior Vice President, New Businesses & Emerging Tech, Walmart Global Tech. “We are looking forward to joining Walmart and offering our innovations and user experiences to such a large scale both in-store and online,” said Salvador Nissi Vilcovsky, CEO, Memomi. About Walmart Walmart Inc. helps people around the world save money and live better - anytime and anywhere - in retail stores, online, and through their mobile devices. Each week, approximately 220 million customers and members visit approximately 10,500 stores and clubs under 48 banners in 24 countries and eCommerce websites. With fiscal year 2021 revenue of $559 billion, Walmart employs over 2.2 million associates worldwide. Walmart continues to be a leader in sustainability, corporate philanthropy and employment opportunity. About Memomi Memomi Labs Inc is a leading provider of cutting-edge technology to enhance virtual try-on user experiences through artificial intelligence, deep learning and augmented reality. Memomi helps customers virtually “try on” eyewear in real-time for a seamless, easy and fun omnichannel experience. In addition to the try-on experience, Memomi technology has created an accurate, easy measurement experience in-store once glasses are selected, leading to time savings for the customer and cost savings for the store. Memomi was founded in 2014 by Salvador Nissi Vilcovsky and Ofer Saban, experts in conceptualized solutions and interactive design.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Nomi Health Acquires Everyone Health, Sano Surgery

Nomi Health | July 14, 2022

Everyone Health has agreements with self-funded employers and third-party administrators for pre-negotiated, all-inclusive prices that save employers up to 70% relative to commercial fee-for-service rates. The company delivers these savings via Sano Surgery’s direct contracting with more than 10,000 physicians and facilities — surgical hospitals, ambulatory surgery centers, endoscopy centers, radiology centers, labs and more — in 300 of the largest U.S. cities across 48 states, all now part of Nomi Health’s national provider network. “Nomi Health believes healthcare needs a rebuild, not a renovation. These companies share in our vision of extracting the complexity and cost from traditional healthcare, so buyers experience substantial savings and, most importantly, patients have greater access to more affordable care. In three short years, we expanded easy access to care to 15 million Americans, while significantly driving down cost of care to buyers. The immediate contributions of Everyone Health and Sano Surgery will accelerate this track record in the years ahead.” Mark Newman, founder and CEO of Nomi Health Founded by CEO Dutch Rojas 10 years ago, Sano Surgery has a network of nearly 6,000 medical facilities and 8,000 lab locations nationwide, ranging from radiology and orthopedics to women's health and oncology. This network enables Everyone Health to deliver higher quality medical treatments and services at lower prices. As a result, physicians benefit from predictable volumes and payments, while patients enjoy a more streamlined care and billing experience. “My goal is affordable and accessible healthcare for all. We’ve built a nationwide network of physicians and medical facilities that allows us to bring substantially lower pricing and more transparent transactions to the market, benefiting countless Americans,” said Rojas, founder and CEO of Sano Surgery and Everyone Health. “As the dual crisis of access and affordability grows on the heels of the pandemic, the time is right to increase our impact as part of Nomi Health.” The acquisitions enable buyers to turn to Nomi Health for a full suite of solutions — analytics, care delivery and a direct network — all underpinned by a modern claims infrastructure and payment rails. It also brings 12 full-time employees, including Rojas, to Nomi Health to accelerate the continued expansion of the company’s network of clinical partners, which is critical as Nomi Health takes its support and services into more communities nationwide. The acquisitions of Everyone Health and Sano Surgery come on the heels of Nomi’s $200 million acquisition of healthcare analytics leader Artemis Health in January. About Nomi Health Nomi Health is a nationwide direct healthcare system making it easier than ever for any buyer of healthcare to access the highest quality affordable care for their communities. The company’s direct care ecosystem encompasses a real-time operating and payment system — inclusive of analytics and payment rails — as well as an integrated care delivery infrastructure featuring essential care services, pharmacy and an open network. To date, Nomi Health has saved buyers of care an average of 30 percent compared to traditional healthcare costs, while enabling them to give their communities more access to lower cost, high quality care. From rural counties to some of the largest cities in America, Nomi Health has administered everyday healthcare services to more than 14 million Americans and counting in hundreds of communities nationwide. During COVID-19, this direct care model played a pivotal role in care access, public health and keeping economies open and operating. Based in Orem, Utah, Nomi Health employs more than 2,000 nationwide, working to lower healthcare expenses, widen care access and improve the patient experience. The company is led by an experienced, cross-functional leadership team with clinical, healthcare, technology and finance backgrounds. Nomi Health has so far invested more than $10 million dollars in improving the well-being of the communities it serves.

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Spotlight

Getting the Word Out is a guide to effective outreach for health organizations. In particular, this guide is intended for patient support organizations that would like to make their information, referral, support and advocacy services more accessible to people from a variety of cultural communities.

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