Google’s acquisition of Fitbit could pose ‘high level of risk to privacy and data protection’

Healthcare IT News | February 26, 2020

In a plenary session on February 20, concerns were raised about the privacy implications of a merger of obligations under the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPB). The Board urged both firms “to mitigate possible risks to the rights to privacy and data protection before notifying the merger to the European Commission”.It added that the EDPB will “consider any implications for the protection of personal data in the European Economic Area”.  Google and Fitbit did not respond to requests for comments from HIMSS Media. There have been questions around what will happen to Fitbit’s sensitive health and wellness data, since Google announced the acquisition in November last year.UK’s data watchdog, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), and the US Department of Justice are both looking into privacy concerns around the deal. In a blog post about the acquisition, Google’s senior vice president of devices and services, Rick Osterloh, reassured consumers that “privacy and security are paramount

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Profitability and cost management is an imperative for healthcare insurance providers. This is being driven by both regulatory requirements and competitive pressures. Effectively addressing the challenges of profitability and cost management involves mastering a methodology, understanding the business drivers, changing business processes, and introducing a system that supports an efficient process.


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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Gozio Health Announces Financial Partnership with Morgan Stanley Expansion Capital

Gozio Health | March 31, 2022

Gozio Health, an industry-leading location-aware mobile patient engagement platform, announced the closing of an investment from funds managed by Morgan Stanley Expansion Capital. The investment round will be used to accelerate Gozio's growth and sets the stage for a long-term financial partnership. “We are at a turning point in healthcare where digital strategy is not only a competitive differentiator for health systems but is foundational to positive consumer experiences. An effective digital platform can enhance engagement with patients, prevent revenue leakage and increase overall patient satisfaction. With the strong support of Morgan Stanley, Gozio is poised to substantially ramp up efforts to equip health systems with the kind of robust, extensible platform needed to optimize digital engagement.” Joshua Titus, Founder and CEO of Gozio Gozio’s mobile patient engagement solution provides health systems with a turnkey digital front door, offering a unified platform which integrates HCIT applications, including physician directories, appointment scheduling, EHR and patient record access, into an easy-to-use mobile application. Gozio’s solution also leverages the Company’s patented, industry-leading wayfinding technology to provide real-time, turn-by-turn directions to patients and staff. “The consumerization of healthcare is driving hospitals and health systems to increasingly focus on patient experience and engagement. Gozio offers a solution that helps patients not only navigate the physical network of the health system, but also provides patients mobile access to the services, information and applications necessary to engage patients in their own care,” said Melissa Daniels, Managing Director at Morgan Stanley Expansion Capital. “We believe Gozio’s digital front door and wayfinding technology provide a compelling value proposition by enhancing the personal end-to-end consumer experience within the network of the health system. We are thrilled to be partnering with Joshua and the Gozio team to support the Company as it continues on its growth trajectory.” Gozio will use the funding to expand its client base among leading health systems, grow its client services and engineering teams, and advance the extensibility of its platform to support a digital health ecosystem. About Gozio Health Gozio Health offers an end-to-end, customizable digital health platform exclusively for healthcare systems. Gozio’s extensible mobile platform enables seamless consumer interactions and provides an anytime, anywhere connection to patients that improves their overall experience and access to care. Popular patient engagement features include patented indoor wayfinding with turn-by-turn navigation, virtual visits, physician directories, appointment scheduling, access to electronic health records, Urgent Care and Emergency Department wait-times, and extensive analytics capabilities. Gozio customers surveyed in a 2021 KLAS Research Emerging Technology Spotlight report found 100% satisfaction and improved experience for patients and staff. About Morgan Stanley Expansion Capital Morgan Stanley Expansion Capital is the growth-focused private investment platform within Morgan Stanley Investment Management. Morgan Stanley Expansion Capital targets growth equity and credit investments within technology, healthcare, consumer, digital media and other high-growth sectors. For over three decades, Morgan Stanley Expansion Capital has successfully pursued growth investment opportunities and has completed investments in over 200 companies, leveraging the global brand and network of Morgan Stanley.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Change Healthcare and Optum Extend Merger Agreement

Optum | April 06, 2022

Optum, a diversified health services company, and Change Healthcare a health care technology leader, have agreed to extend their merger agreement to December 31, 2022. “The extended agreement reflects our firm belief in the potential of our combination to improve health care, and in our commitment to contesting the meritless legal challenge to this merger.” In a joint statement, the companies Change Healthcare and Optum share a vision for achieving a simpler, more intelligent and adaptive health system for patients, payers and providers. The combination of Optum and Change Healthcare will connect and simplify the core clinical, administrative and payment processes health care providers and payers depend on to serve patients. Increasing efficiency and reducing friction will benefit the entire health system, resulting in lower costs and a better experience for all stakeholders. Change Healthcare and Optum will detail the benefits of this combination at a two-week trial scheduled to begin on August 1. The U.S. Department of Justice’s attempt to block the combination is without merit and serves only to delay improving the experience and outcomes for all participants in the health system. As part of the extension, Optum will pay a $650 million fee to Change Healthcare in the event the merger is unable to be completed because of the court’s decision. Change Healthcare will pay a special cash dividend of $2.00 per share to its shareholders at or about the time of the closing. About Optum Optum is a leading information and technology-enabled health services business dedicated to helping make the health system work better for everyone. With more than 190,000 people worldwide, Optum delivers intelligent, integrated solutions that help to modernize the health system and improve overall population health. Optum is part of UnitedHealth Group. About Change Healthcare Change Healthcare is a leading healthcare technology company focused on insights, innovation, and accelerating the transformation of the U.S. healthcare system through the power of the Change Healthcare Platform. We provide data and analytics-driven solutions to improve clinical, financial, administrative, and patient-engagement outcomes in the U.S. healthcare system.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

TRC Healthcare Expands Portfolio with the Acquisition of QURE Healthcare

TRC Healthcare | March 16, 2022

TRC Healthcare a trusted leader in continuing education, has acquired QURE Healthcare, a recognized innovator in clinical measurement and quality improvement. QURE's provider-focused solutions lead to better patient outcomes and lower costs for healthcare systems and coverage and reimbursement for life-science clients. TRC's acquisition paves the way for QURE to scale its innovative Clinical Performance and Value (CPV®) patient simulation software solutions. "Through the acquisition, TRC Healthcare intends to augment its already robust suite of products by focusing on improving patient outcomes with evidence-based training, education and continuing education/continuing medical education for physicians and other providers" TRC Healthcare's CEO,Wes Crews, announced. "QURE is excited to join a company that is so aligned with our mission to raise the quality of healthcare, standardize practice and lower costs by changing clinician behavior. Measuring and reducing care variation using CPV®vignettes is QURE's core business. We have demonstrated in the peer-review literature that we can do this from the ambulatory to the intensive care setting and for diseases ranging from angina to zoonoses, all with the goal to eliminate unwarranted variation, raise quality for patients and lower costs for payers." Dr.John Peabody, the founder and president of QURE TRC Healthcare regards QURE as another key addition to its recent acquisition of NetCE, an industry leading continuing education platform that educates nurses, physicians, and mental health professionals. Together, QURE and NetCE fortify the evidence-based healthcare solutions TRC offers, "The addition of QURE increases our link between strong education and better patient outcomes," remarkedWes Crews. Dr. Peabody will continue to serve as QURE's President and will take on the additional role of Chief Medical Officer at TRC Healthcare. Dr. Peabody is a renowned international health care figure in clinical care quality and a professor at theUniversity of California, San FranciscoandLos Angeles. In 2012, John started QURE Healthcare. The QURE platform – CPV® vignettes – has grown and become a widely adopted standard for measuring clinical practice. QURE CPVs are used by organizations looking to engage their providers in clinical variation reduction efforts, including large health care systems, independent practice associations, public and private payers, governments, non-governmental associations, and intergovernmental organizations. Dr. Peabody has contributed more than 200 articles, books, and abstracts to the peer-review literature, served on blue ribbon committees, testified before congress and advised heads of state on a wide variety of subjects notably quality improvement and the economic benefits of standardizing practice in healthcare systems. "QURE is an extraordinary company, with a validated product and team and an incredibly passionate community of users," saidWes Crews. "Together we can transform the way we engage providers and change patient care." About TRC Healthcare TRC Healthcare (TRC) is a premier source of lifelong learning solutions for healthcare professionals. TRC is most recognized for their education and CE offerings within the highly-regarded Pharmacist's Letter, Prescriber's Letter, and Pharmacy Technician's Letter. TRC also offers Pharmacy Technicians University, the leading online training program for pharmacy technicians. The Natural Medicines database makes it easy for subscribers to find unbiased, evidenced-based research about alternative drug therapies. Through the acquisition of CriticalPoint, NetCE and Bula TRC Healthcare has been expanding its offerings. CriticalPoint increases patient safety through a variety of educational compounding offerings concentrating on USP 797, 800, and 795. NetCE is an industry-leading, continuing- education platform supporting multiple professions including nurses, physicians, and mental health. And Bula provides legal and regulatory advice to retail pharmacies. These additions give TRC Healthcare the industry's largest catalog of continuing education and advisory services, with thousands of courses trusted by healthcare professionals to provide accredited training that meets continuing education and licensing requirements. About QURE QURE Healthcare is a provider engagement company committed to improving the quality of clinical care. using its proprietary technology, CPV®(Clinical Performance and Value) vignettes. CPV®vignettes

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DIGITAL HEALTHCARE

Hero and AdhereHealth Establish Strategic Partnership to Improve Medication Adherence Among Vulnerable Patients

AdhereHealth | December 18, 2021

AdhereHealth, a healthcare technology leader in medication adherence insights and health outcomes, has entered into a strategic partnership with Hero, the market leader in digital in-home care. This new agreement enables AdhereHealth to deploy Hero's digital in-home care platform to help high-risk, high-cost, chronically ill patients adhere to complex medication regimens. Hero's platform includes a connected smart pill dispenser, which automatically sorts and dispenses medications according to a patient's unique medication schedule. Hero's connected app then tracks what a patient took and when, and sends real-time alerts to the patient's care team if a dose is missed or a medication is ready for refill. Hero continually monitors the patient's medication inventory and facilitates real-time medication reconciliation and synchronization. "Combining Hero's industry-leading medication management platform with AdhereHealth's advanced technologies and its nationwide AdhereRx digital pharmacy creates the first complete lifecycle medication management service," said Kal Vepuri, founder and CEO of Hero. "Our partnership will also simultaneously improve patient safety by focusing on medication management, further support caregivers and help people take more control of their health," added Mr. Vepuri. AdhereHealth's digital pharmacy, AdhereRx, leverages data analytics to identify and prioritize vulnerable populations most at risk for nonadherence or drug safety problems. Trained pharmacists then connect via phone with patients to conduct comprehensive medication reviews and address social determinants of health (SDOH) that might get in the way of medication adherence. "Hero's patient-centric technology will enable care managers, providers and health plans to remotely monitor medication intake, providing real-time visibility into how patients are adhering to medication regimens at home. Combined with our medication synchronization technologies and our nationwide AdhereRx digital pharmacy solution, we can drive better patient experience and improve value-based outcomes for vulnerable populations." Jason Z. Rose, CEO of AdhereHealth Poor medication adherence is a leading cause of re-hospitalizations and ER visits, especially among the elderly and those with chronic conditions. The financial impact is significant: medication nonadherence accounts for 16% of U.S. healthcare spending annually, accounting for more than half a trillion dollars. About Hero Hero is a leading digital in-home care platform delivering the first end-to-end medication management service for patients and caregivers. Hero's solution includes its award-winning smart pill dispenser, medication management app, automatic refills with free delivery and 24/7 live support. Since launching in 2018, Hero has dispensed more than 70 million medications. Hero is used as a care management solution by individuals, caregivers and medical providers. About AdhereHealth™ AdhereHealth delivers purpose-built, innovative technology solutions to improve quality of care, medication adherence, and cost outcomes – all with an emphasis on overcoming social determinants of health (SDOH) and improving patient experience. AdhereRx, an AdhereHealth digital pharmacy, provides high-risk, underserved patients with personalized pharmacy services that drive medication compliance and reduce unnecessary utilization costs. This unique combination of predictive analytics, intelligent clinical workflow software and proactive telepharmacy outreach performed by a nationwide team of licensed clinicians addresses an estimated half a trillion dollars of unnecessary annual medical costs attributed to medication adherence issues. Today, the Adhere™ Platform touches nearly 30 million patients across dozens of health plans, self-insured employers and other risk-bearing entities.

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Spotlight

Profitability and cost management is an imperative for healthcare insurance providers. This is being driven by both regulatory requirements and competitive pressures. Effectively addressing the challenges of profitability and cost management involves mastering a methodology, understanding the business drivers, changing business processes, and introducing a system that supports an efficient process.

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