Google Health unveils EHR data aggregation tool for clinicians

Digital Health | November 27, 2019

Google Health is working on a new EHR-like tool capable of pulling data from various clinical systems into a unified interface. The as-yet-unnamed product provides a single login through which doctors can access a unified view of data that would normally spread across different systems. This includes vitals, labs, medications and notes, as well as scanned documents and faxes. Rather than a fully-fledged EPR system – which Google representatives have previously suggested the company is not interested in – the demo hints towards an interoperable aggregation platform that sits on top of the clinical desktop. Doctors can search for keywords and use clinical shorthand to find results. For example, searching “abx” would return mentions of antibiotics in the results, including any medications administered. The system also uses “a variety of Google technologies” such as those lifted from its autocomplete and autocorrect functionalities so that misspelled terms that are not identical matches to the searched-for term show up in results. Clicking on any value will begin a deeper exploration showing recent and historical trends in graphs and tables, explained Alvin Rajkomar, Google product manager and practicing clinician, in a video demo.

Spotlight

The United States spends more on healthcare than any other industrialized nation, and much of that spending is concentrated on a small percentage of individuals with complex medical, behavioral, and social needs, according to a new infographic by the Center for Health Care Strategies. The infographic highlights recommendations for advancing the field, based on input from stakeholders across the country.


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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Northwell Health and Aegis Ventures Launch Ascertain – Healthcare AI Company Creation Platform to Improve Quality and Access to Care

Northwell Health | April 13, 2022

Northwell Health, New York’s largest healthcare provider, and Aegis Ventures, a New York-based startup studio announced at their inaugural Healthcare AI Innovation Summit the finalization of definitive agreements to launch Ascertain, a joint company creation platform. Ascertain is a first-of-its-kind partnership that pairs a dynamic venture studio with one of the nation’s largest and most impactful health systems to develop and commercialize breakthrough healthcare AI companies that improve quality and access to care and close health equity gaps. Ascertain represents a novel, more targeted approach to the way entrepreneurs and healthcare systems collaborate to solve major healthcare challenges. The platform combines clinical and business leadership, expert technical and product teams, access to Northwell’s leading, diverse datasets, and capital resources within a single ecosystem – with a sole focus on building and validating effective solutions that can be rapidly brought to market. “Ascertain brings a unique structure, an innovative approach, and a compelling vision to create breakthrough healthcare AI companies that are set up for success. We are all driven by the idea that everyone deserves access to high-quality, affordable healthcare. Our aim is clear: to find new, cost-efficient ways to create and accelerate companies that deliver real, equitable solutions.” Michael Dowling, President and CEO of Northwell Health Ascertain has commenced the creation of its first portfolio companies in partnership with Northwell’s clinicians and administrators. One such collaboration is focused on bringing substantive improvements in maternal health, working hand-in-hand with Northwell’s recently launched Center for Maternal Health to develop new approaches to detecting and managing serious complications for expectant mothers and babies. Ascertain’s data science team has been working hand-in-hand with Northwell’s Maternal and Fetal Medicine team to examine tens of thousands of cases of preeclampsia, a hypertensive pregnancy complication that disproportionately affects Black mothers in the United States. Using cutting-edge data science techniques, the Ascertain team aims to deliver an AI solution that helps clinicians predict the risk of developing preeclampsia, enabling them to intervene earlier than previously possible. “Existing approaches to the detection of preeclampsia often occur too late in pregnancy, once the condition has begun to manifest. An important enabler for a solution to this challenge is predictive analytics, applying available knowledge of a patient's history to enable action far earlier with simple, yet life-saving, clinical interventions. We believe the AI solution Ascertain is currently developing will enable this,” shared Burt Rochelson, MD, Chief of Maternal Medicine at Northwell Health. “Aegis and Northwell’s multidisciplinary teams are pursuing innovation through a systematic approach that will bring validated solutions to patients more quickly and at a lower cost,” said Bill Schoenfeld, Aegis Ventures Chairman. “Our skillsets are extraordinarily complementary and enable us to address healthcare’s most entrenched quality, equity, and cost problems far more powerfully than either organization could alone.” Ascertain is preparing to launch multiple companies in 2022 that focus on maternal health, chronic disease detection and management, and next-generation AI tools. Ascertain’s Chairman Tom Manning shared, “Together, we’re paving a new way forward, a monumental step toward real, proven AI solutions that can bring impact to the world. It is a bold collaboration to drive AI-backed companies that save lives and resolve long-standing health inequities – and realize results that deliver something greater in healthcare.” Ascertain is committed to building exceptional teams that will embrace this unique opportunity to create unparalleled impact. To learn more about Ascertain or register your interest, please visit https://ascertain.com/. About Ascertain Ascertain is a revolutionary new partnership between Northwell Health, New York’s largest healthcare provider, and Aegis Ventures, a dynamic startup studio. This unique partnership assembles leading medical, technology, and business resources to create a first-of-its-kind company creation platform for healthcare innovation to address healthcare’s most challenging quality, equity, and cost problems. Ascertain brings $100M in seed-stage capital to bear in pursuit of a three-pronged approach to company creation: internal ideation, commercialization of scientific breakthroughs, and US market entry partnerships for global ventures. Ascertain creates companies that improve quality of care, patient experience, and long-standing health, placing patient needs at the center of every business model, technology solution, and product. About Northwell Health Northwell Health is New York State’s largest healthcare provider and private employer, with 23 hospitals, 830 outpatient facilities and more than 16,600 affiliated physicians. We care for over two million people annually in the New York metro area and beyond, thanks to philanthropic support from our communities. Our 77,000 employees – 18,900 nurses and 4,800 employed doctors, including members of Northwell Health Physician Partners – are working to change healthcare for the better. We’re making breakthroughs in medicine at the Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research. We're training the next generation of medical professionals at the visionary Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell and the Hofstra Northwell School of Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies. About Aegis Ventures Aegis Ventures is a next-generation startup studio that partners with entrepreneurs and industry leaders to originate, launch, and scale transformative companies. Our platform brings together market-shaping ideas, permanent growth capital, and ambitious individuals driven to solve major societal problems. We aim to build companies with the capacity for vast impact, with an initial focus on artificial intelligence and digital health. Within these verticals, Aegis seeks to create companies that leverage technology to better optimize tradeoffs between quality, access, and cost, focusing on innovations that promote seamless continuity of care, patient empowerment, and better-informed clinical decision-making.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Peloton Announces Growth Recapitalization of Grenova

Peloton Equity | March 22, 2022

Peloton Equity, LLC a Connecticut-based private equity firm that seeks to invest growth capital in innovative healthcare companies, announced that it has closed a growth and recapitalization investment in Grenova, Inc. a fast-growing manufacturer of green technology for the life sciences industry. Peloton, along with Hamilton Lane Impact Fund II and Morgan Stanley AIP Private Markets, invested growth capital and partnered with management and other investors to acquire a majority stake in Richmond, Virginia-based Grenova. The transaction is anticipated to enable Grenova to accelerate its sales and marketing efforts, launch additional products, and build out its presence globally. Ali Safavi, founder, president and CEO of Grenova, along with other management and certain existing shareholders will retain a significant ownership stake in the Company. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Founded in 2014 by Ali Safavi, Grenova designs, manufactures, and distributes instruments and associated consumables to the lab industry. The Company’s technology enables its customers – clinical labs, pharmaceutical/biotech companies, research institutions, agricultural companies, and others – to wash, dry and re-use single-use plastics. Grenova’s products aim to advance healthcare toward a more sustainable future by lowering costs in the laboratory industry, reducing biohazard waste in the environment, and mitigating supply chain risk for plastic consumables. “I am thrilled to be partnering with Peloton to help Grenova capitalize on the massive and unmet need for sustainability solutions in laboratories around the world,” said CEO Ali Safavi. “Peloton’s expertise and network will bring additional resources and business development opportunities to Grenova, and this growth-oriented transaction will help us accelerate the industry’s adoption of our innovative products and technologies.” “Peloton seeks to partner with high-growth companies like Grenova that deliver tangible and enduring value to the healthcare industry. The utilization of disposable plastics in the lab setting is rapidly growing and we are excited to support Grenova’s mission to address this unsustainable trend.” Michael O’Rourke, partner at Peloton, added, “We believe Grenova’s combination of differentiated product technology, sustainability value proposition and high-quality customer service is unique in the massive and growing life sciences tools industry. We are very excited to work with Ali and his team in supporting Grenova’s next phase of growth.” Ted Lundberg, partner and co-founder of Peloton Equity Crosstree served as the exclusive financial advisor to Grenova with respect to this transaction. Goodwin Procter LLP acted as legal advisor to Peloton and Williams Mullen acted as legal advisor to the Company. About Grenova Founded in 2014, Grenova™ is an innovative company that is revolutionizing lab consumables through high-quality waste reduction solutions. Grenova’s mission is to lower costs in the laboratory industry and reduce biohazard waste in the environment by delivering groundbreaking approaches in dealing with plastic consumables. Grenova’s existing products include the TipNovusTM family of pipette tip-washing solutions for labs such as the Automated TipNovus (ATN) Package, a fully integrated tip-washing solution; the TipLumisTM family of HEPA-filtered, temperature-controlled, UV-sanitized tip storage solutions; GrenoClean, a proprietary and scientifically validated cleaning solution; and Purus by Grenova™, a novel microwell plate cleaner launching in 2022. For more information, visit Grenova. About Peloton Equity Peloton Equity, LLC is a private equity firm focused exclusively on growth capital investments in the healthcare industry. Peloton was formed in 2014 as the successor firm to Ferrer Freeman & Company and invests in companies with between $10 million and $200 million of revenue that have the management team, market opportunity and business model to grow revenues significantly over the life of its investment. Peloton seeks to be a significant investor in companies with high-growth potential, driven by a clear value proposition to the healthcare industry. Peloton’s investment team has invested in over 35 unique healthcare companies and has deployed over $800 million in capital. Recent investments include AeroSafe Global, ClearSky Health, Friday Health Plans, and Journey Health & Lifestyle. About Hamilton Lane Hamilton Lane is a leading private markets investment management firm providing innovative solutions to sophisticated investors around the world. Dedicated exclusively to private markets investing for 30 years, the firm currently employs more than 520 professionals operating in offices throughout North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and the Middle East. Hamilton Lane has $851 billion in assets under management and supervision, composed of over $98 billion in discretionary assets and nearly $753 billion in advisory assets, as of December 31, 2021. Hamilton Lane specializes in building flexible investment programs that provide clients access to the full spectrum of private markets strategies, sectors and geographies. About Morgan Stanley AIP Private Markets AIP Private Markets, an investment team within Morgan Stanley Investment Management, seeks to deliver innovative private markets solutions to a global client base. It’s built-for-purpose team of ~60 dedicated professionals draws.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

House Rx Secures $30 Million in Financing to Improve the Specialty Pharmacy Experience for Patients and Their Care Teams

House Rx | March 15, 2022

House Rx, a health technology platform focused on improving affordability and patient access to specialty medications, announced it has secured $25 million in Series A financing led by Bessemer Venture Partners, bringing total funding to $30 million. House Rx's technology platform and pharmacy service enable specialty practices to offer medically-integrated dispensing, which means patients can receive both their physician and pharmacy care from one team, collaborating on a unified technology platform. Since it launched in March 2021, House Rx has partnered with four medical specialty practices and 30 prescribers in California and Washington. "We have a simple idea: partner with specialty clinics all over the country to enable medically integrated dispensing where the physician, pharmacist, nurses and techs can work together as one team, under one proverbial roof, to improve patient care. Our vision for the future of specialty pharmacy is a more local, more collaborative, and ultimately a more affordable system that leads to much better outcomes for patients." Ogi Kavazovic, CEO and a co-founder Specialty medications, which include treatments for cancers, rheumatic diseases and other chronic and acute conditions, are some of the most expensive drugs available. Unlike infused therapies which are administered in the clinics, the burden of specialty medication access and adherence often falls on patients, who typically need to battle several large bureaucracies to gain access to their medications. These often lead to multi-week delays in treatment and much lower adherence rates compared to medications administered in clinics. Currently, specialty medications are mainly dispensed via mail by a patient's insurance company, not their doctor or a pharmacy a patient chooses. A growing body of research demonstrates that when patients obtain timely access to cancer treatments directly from their care team, they have better outcomes, including improved quality of life and increased survivability. House Rx currently has over 30 employees, who are mostly software engineers and pharmacy operations. In addition to Bessemer Venture Partners, First Round Capital, Character.vc, and 1984.vc participated in the Series A funding. First Round Capital led the seed round as the initial investor alongside Khosla Ventures, Maverick Ventures, and 1984.vc. The funding from this latest round will go towards continued investments in House Rx's technology platform and scaling pharmacy operations. "The specialty pharmacy market is in much need of a new approach - the current system severely lacks in patient choice and innovation, and we think House Rx's vision for a more modern, more decentralized approach will have incredible impact," said Steve Kraus, Partner, Bessemer Venture Partners. "Bessemer is proud to back a company with a mission to ultimately make it easier and more cost effective for patients to get the treatment they need." In addition to Kavazovic, the health technology start-up was co-founded by Tesh Khullar, who serves as the company's President. Kavazovic and Khullar are former Flatiron Health executives, where they gained experience working closely with hundreds of oncology clinics. The company's Chief Pharmacy & Operating Officer is Denali Cahoon, PharmD, who is a former executive at Trellis Rx. "The antiquated pharmacy systems developed decades ago inhibit coordinated patient care and increase costs. The current system also prevents patients from choosing where they can get their medically prescribed life-sustaining therapies," said Tesh Khullar, President and a co-founder. "We started House Rx to make the medically integrated dispensing model the new normal in specialty pharmacy. With the right technology, and the right distribution partners, we can re-establish the partnership between physicians and pharmacists that brings a new level of transparency and patient care." House Rx's technology platform helps prescribers and pharmacists collaborate more effectively via one integrated system. Built based on in-depth feedback from pharmacists and physicians, the platform is designed specifically for the management of specialty medication, and includes built-in analytics to enable continuous improvement in operational efficiency and quality of care. The specialty medical practices that have already partnered with House Rx include Care Oncology Center, California; Sarcoma Oncology, California; Arthritis Northwest Washington; and Northwest Medical Specialties, Washington. About House Rx House Rx is a technology-enabled service company focused on making specialty medication more accessible and affordable. We do so by helping clinics dispense specialty medications to their patients in a medically-integrated way using pharmacist expertise and modern technology. By helping physicians and pharmacists collaborate on patient care, we're able to improve patient outcomes, lower the cost of care, and create a better experience for patients and their caregivers.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Trinity Health to Acquire CommonSpirit Health's Share of MercyOne Health System Become Sole Parent

Trinity Health | April 20, 2022

Trinity Health and CommonSpirit Health announced they have signed an agreement for Trinity Health to acquire all facilities and assets of MercyOne, a regional health system based in Iowa. Since 1998, MercyOne has operated under a joint operating agreement between not-for-profit Catholic health care organizations Trinity Health and Catholic Health Initiatives, which is now CommonSpirit. MercyOne is a leading health system in Iowa and serves more than 3.3 million patients each year. The system includes 16 medical centers, 27 affiliate organizations and more than 420 care sites offering a range of health and wellness services, including provider services and urgent care, and more than 20,000 colleagues including 2,000 of the state's most talented doctors and providers. "True to our shared Catholic mission, our goal is to provide high-quality, compassionate care with the best patient/member experience possible. We will accomplish that goal through a holistic approach, with a range of health services and technologies that are fully connected and coordinated. This agreement creates a fully integrated MercyOne to care for more people in a unified way." Mike Slubowski, president and chief executive officer at Trinity Health After months of analysis and due diligence, Trinity Health and CommonSpirit determined a sole parent is the best path forward for MercyOne and for the communities it serves. Trinity Health, a national health system spanning 25 states, will bring unified strategies and operations to MercyOne's care sites, including one set of system services. As an example, MercyOne will transition to Trinity Health's common platforms, including a single electronic health record (EHR), ultimately allowing patients to easily manage their care across all MercyOne services and facilities. The result is a more convenient and consistent care experience for MercyOne's communities. "After two decades of successful collaboration, we are immensely proud of our partnership with Trinity Health and our efforts to advance health care statewide," said Marvin O'Quinn, president and chief operating officer at CommonSpirit Health. "While the current structure has been instrumental in growing our health care services in Iowa, we believe this decision is ultimately what is best for our patients, colleagues, and our communities." "We strongly believe this transition to become a full member of the Trinity Health family will result in a stronger, more cohesive health system better able to offer a convenient and personalized circle of care for all we serve," said Bob Ritz, president and chief executive officer at MercyOne. "We are delighted to have the agreement in place as we plan for the future of our mission. We are grateful to CommonSpirit for more than 20 years of partnership." Trinity Health and CommonSpirit will now plan for integration, complete regulatory filings, and take other steps necessary to finalize the transaction, which is expected to be completed summer 2022. This process will be seamless for the communities MercyOne serves, and patients can continue to expect the same compassionate care they have always received. About Trinity Health Trinity Health is one of the largest not-for-profit, Catholic health care systems in the nation. It is a family of 115,000 colleagues and nearly 26,000 physicians and clinicians caring for diverse communities across 25 states. Nationally recognized for care and experience, Trinity Health's network of care includes 88 hospitals, 131 continuing care locations, the second largest PACE program in the country, 125 urgent care locations, and many other health and well-being services. Based in Livonia, Michigan, its annual operating revenue is $20.2 billion with $1.2 billion returned to its communities in the form of charity care and other community benefit programs. For more information, visit www.trinity-health.org or follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter. About CommonSpirit Health CommonSpirit Health is a nonprofit, Catholic health system dedicated to advancing health for all people. It was created in February 2019 by Catholic Health Initiatives and Dignity Health. With its national office in Chicago and a team of over 150,000 employees and 25,000 physicians and advanced practice clinicians, CommonSpirit operates 140 hospitals and more than 1,500 care sites across 21 states. In FY 2021, CommonSpirit had revenues of $33.3 billion and provided $5.1 billion in charity care, community benefit, and unreimbursed government programs. Learn more at www.commonspirit.org. About MercyOne MercyOne is a connected system of health care facilities and services dedicated to helping people and communities live their best life. MercyOne's care providers and staff make health the highest priority. The system's clinics, medical centers, hospitals and affiliates are located throughout the state of Iowa and beyond. Headquartered in central Iowa, MercyOne was founded in 1998 through a collaboration between Catholic Health Initiatives, now CommonSpirit Health, and Trinity Health - two of the country's foremost, not-for-profit Catholic health organizations.

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Spotlight

The United States spends more on healthcare than any other industrialized nation, and much of that spending is concentrated on a small percentage of individuals with complex medical, behavioral, and social needs, according to a new infographic by the Center for Health Care Strategies. The infographic highlights recommendations for advancing the field, based on input from stakeholders across the country.

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