Healthcare Consumerism Lags Behind New Industry Players

Patientengagementhit | June 11, 2019

Despite pressure from new medical industry entrants, hospitals and health systems aren’t responding to trends in healthcare consumerism and patient experience, according to the 2019 State of Consumerism report from Kaufman Hall.A survey of hospital and health system leaders across the country revealed that most industry experts are aware of a growing need for consumer-centricity. Eighty-eight percent of respondents agreed that their businesses may be vulnerable to new healthcare market players that have a proven track record of driving consumer experiences.
Sixty-seven percent of respondents said they believed the UnitedHealth and Optum healthcare giant holds a strong or extreme threat to traditional healthcare providers. Sixty-six percent said the same of CVS Health and Aetna, 56 percent about Amazon, 39 percent about Google and Alphabet, and 38 percent about Apple.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Signify Health Opens New Regional Service Center in Oklahoma City

Signify Health, Inc. | June 15, 2022

Signify Health, Inc. a leading healthcare platform that leverages advanced analytics, technology, and nationwide healthcare networks to create and power value-based payment programs, announced the official opening of its new regional service center in Oklahoma City. The Company will mark the opening of its 25,000 square-foot site with a ceremonial ribbon cutting event with state and local government representatives, business community leaders, and employees. “Our investment in workforce and economic development is attracting industry-leading companies like Signify Health who recognize the many attributes Oklahoma has to offer growing businesses,” said Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt. “We are delighted to officially welcome Signify Health to our business community and look forward to supporting their continued success for many years to come.” Last December, Signify Health announced its decision to locate its third regional service center hub in Oklahoma City and plans to bring more than 200 new jobs to the region. Since that time, the Company has hired more than 130 new employees who work both on-site and remotely. “We truly appreciate the warm welcome and support we have received from both the Governor’s and Mayor’s administrations. They helped make the process of opening up a new facility and sourcing talented people a seamless and positive experience. We knew at the outset of this journey that Oklahoma City was a place where we would find people who share our values and passion for making a positive difference in people’s health. What we found here exceeded our high expectations,” David Pierre, Chief Operating Officer at Signify Health “The healthcare industry in Oklahoma City is an extremely important economic driver for our region, and more importantly it’s a major contributor to a high quality of life for our residents,” said Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt. “We congratulate Signify on opening its doors in Oklahoma City and look forward to the contributions they will make to our community, from both economic and quality of life perspectives.” Located at 5400 E. Memorial Road, Signify’s service center was designed to support the distinct needs of a hybrid workforce, including a flexible floor plan and collaboration spaces. In working with Turner & Company, Signify adopted a number of healthy workplace elements used in its Dallas office. Among the eco-friendly features are a geo-thermal HVAC system, LED lighting and an onsite wastewater treatment system. Signify Health’s Chief Operating Officer, David Pierre, will host a ceremonial ribbon cutting event on June 15, 2022 at 10:00 AM CT. Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt; Brent Kisling, Executive Director of Commerce, Oklahoma State Department of Commerce; and, Jeff Seymour, Executive Vice President, Greater Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce are expected to participate in the ceremony and offer remarks. About Signify Health Signify Health is a leading healthcare platform that leverages advanced analytics, technology, and nationwide healthcare provider networks to create and power value-based payment programs. Our mission is to transform how care is paid for and delivered so that people can enjoy more healthy, happy days at home. Our solutions support value-based payment programs by aligning financial incentives around outcomes, providing tools to health plans and healthcare organizations designed to assess and manage risk and identify actionable opportunities for improved patient outcomes, coordination and cost-savings. Through our platform, we coordinate what we believe is a holistic suite of clinical, social, and behavioral services to address an individual’s healthcare needs and prevent adverse events that drive excess cost, all while shifting services towards the home. For more information on how we are taking health homeward, visit us at signifyhealth.com.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Astorg Completes Acquisition of OPEN Health From Amulet Capital Partners

Astorg and Amulet | July 18, 2022

Astorg and Amulet Capital Partners announced that they have completed the previously announced transaction whereby Astorg has acquired OPEN Health, a leading global provider of scientific communications and market access services to the pharmaceutical industry. Established in 2011 and with more than 1,000 employees in 15 locations and six countries, OPEN Health leverages its extensive scientific knowledge and relentless focus on quality to deliver best-in-class scientific communications, health economics and outcomes research and market access services for more than 170 life sciences customers. OPEN Health’s existing management team will continue to lead the organization, building on a strong track-record of organic growth and strategic acquisitions. “The past three and a half years have been the most successful, exciting years in our company’s history, and we are appreciative of the support and partnership Amulet has provided over the course of our relationship. We are eager to work with the Astorg team as we continue expanding our capabilities and product offerings to deliver best-in-class scientific communication services to our custome Rob Barker, CEO of OPEN Health “We are thrilled to officially welcome OPEN Health to the Astorg family and look forward to working with Rob and his talented team in continuing to build a global leader in the medical affairs and market access space,” said Judith Charpentier, Partner and Head of Healthcare at Astorg. “OPEN Health’s industry-leading expertise is only becoming more important for today’s pharmaceutical products, and we see a number of opportunities to further support the company’s diverse and growing customer base.” “Our investment in OPEN Health embodies Amulet’s comprehensive value creation approach: we partner with exceptional management teams to build industry-leading businesses in the most attractive subsectors of healthcare,” said Ramsey Frank, President and Managing Partner of Amulet. “We are pleased to complete this transaction and are confident OPEN Health will continue to experience continued growth and success in partnership with Astorg.” About OPEN Health OPEN Health brings together deep scientific knowledge, global understanding and broad specialist expertise to support our clients in improving health outcomes and patient wellbeing. We are united as one flexible organization, harnessing the power of the collective to solve complex challenges. About Astorg Astorg is a European private equity firm with over €17 billion of assets under management. Astorg works 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 plans. Enjoying a distinct entrepreneurial culture, a long-term shareholder perspective and a lean decision-making body, Astorg has valuable industry expertise in healthcare, software, technology, business services and technology-based industrial companies. Astorg has offices in London, Paris, New York, Frankfurt, Milan and Luxembourg. About Amulet Capital Partners, LP Amulet Capital Partners, LP is a middle-market private equity investment firm based in Greenwich, CT, focused exclusively on the healthcare sector. Amulet seeks to achieve long-term capital appreciation through privately negotiated investments in companies. Amulet Capital Partners focuses on those segments it believes have the most attractive long-term fundamentals with a target investment size generally between $25 million to $150 million.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Office Ally Announces Acquisition of Bluemark

Office Ally | May 11, 2022

Office Ally, a leading provider of electronic clearinghouse and healthcare software solutions,announced that is has acquired Bluemark, LLC, a provider of specialized healthcare software for healthcare professionals and community-based organizations. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Founded in 2001, Bluemark provides specialized healthcare software and adaptive technology, including revenue integrity and Medicaid enrollment solutions, for hospitals, health systems, nursing homes and community-based organizations across the country. Bluemark offers four unique products that span Payer Audit Management and Assistance Program Enrollment, enabling healthcare professionals to both enhance reimbursement processes and achieve workflow efficiencies. “As a leader in healthcare revenue cycle software, Bluemark has built an impressive suite of high-quality RCM products that are designed to provide mature cloud-based technology solutions that simplify some of the most complex processes in healthcare finance. Not only are Bluemark’s self-pay and health information handling solutions highly complementary to our solution set at Office Ally, but the company’s network of hospital and health system relationships expands our customer base into some of the largest providers of care in the US.” Chris Hart, CEO of Office Ally “We are thrilled to be growing the Office Ally platform with the addition of Bluemark. Together, we believe there is an incredible opportunity to leverage our extensive network of providers and combined solution set to further scale our offerings as a leading healthcare technology company,” continued Hart. With the acquisition of Bluemark, Office Ally will be able to expand its product set and add new health information handler credentials. In addition, the complementary nature of the two businesses will allow Office Ally to better serve existing customers with an integrated suite of healthcare software solutions now spanning self-pay management and Medicaid enrollment. “Over the last two decades, Bluemark has been a pioneer and innovator in healthcare finance by developing unique solutions to drive the enrollment of self-pay patients into Medicaid and associated benefit programs, as well as the electronic exchange of health information between providers and audit contractors. We are thrilled to be joining Office Ally, and look forward to better serving our customers as the healthcare market continues to evolve,” said Ken Sacks, CEO of Bluemark. About Office Ally Office Ally is a healthcare technology company that offers cloud-based solutions to healthcare providers, independent physician associations (IPAs) and health plans. Office Ally’s platform supports both the management of care and facilitates payments between providers, health plans and patients. Office Ally’s platform is paired with a clearinghouse that enables the secure exchange of healthcare information including claims, remits, and eligibility information between covered entities and across the healthcare market. About Bluemark Bluemark, LLC, is a specialized software and technology developer that provides expert solutions for healthcare professionals. Bluemark helps clients maximize reimbursement and achieve workflow efficiencies through the development of technology-based business process solutions for revenue cycle and HIM audit and compliance processes. Backed by a national footprint and strong industry relationships, Bluemark offers mature SAAS-based technology solutions that are time-tested, proven and positioned to evolve with the healthcare market’s changing needs.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Easterseals and the Abbott Fund Join Together to Advance Education and Health Equity

Easterseals | June 23, 2022

Easterseals announced today that it has received a grant of $750,000 from the Abbott Fund, the foundation of the global healthcare company Abbott, to pilot the Project on Education and Community Health Equity from now through 2025. The three-year project aims to address systemic barriers to high-quality education and healthcare experienced by children and families in underinvested communities. Research shows that many young children, particularly children with disabilities and children of color, face significant gaps in access to crucial health and social services that can provide the targeted support they need to be prepared to succeed in school. One example: according to a study by the American Academy of Pediatrics, Black children with autism and other disabilities are diagnosed an average of more than three years after their parents expressed concerns about their development. This delay in diagnosis means these children miss out on age-appropriate care and the chance to improve their health and cognitive skills, often resulting in them entering kindergarten with knowledge and skill deficits that many are not able to overcome throughout their K-12 educational journey. The Project on Education and Community Health Equity will create an integrated system that addresses the educational and healthcare needs of children to help them be kindergarten ready and reach their full potential. This includes work in three areas: expanding access to essential physical and mental health screenings and care for children; providing targeted social services to help families overcome gaps in basic needs, nutrition, transportation, and other social and economic barriers; and ensuring that early childhood administrators and educators have the right training to identify and address health and social challenges and provide culturally appropriate support for children. The project will be implemented at Easterseals Childhood Development Centers in Southern California, Atlanta and North Georgia, and the greater Washington, D.C., area. "Addressing the healthcare needs of infants and toddlers as early as possible in their lives is one of the critical ways in which Easterseals serves young children and families across the country. The Project on Education and Community Health Equity will allow us to better address healthcare disparities experienced by young BIPOC children and their families in historically underserved and marginalized communities, and to better understand the connection between more equitable access to healthcare and kindergarten readiness. Centering communities of color in our efforts is a critical strategy to close the gap. Outcomes from the project promise to inform its future expansion to early childhood and early education programs throughout the Easterseals Network of 70 affiliates in communities nationwide." Erika L. Watson, National Director of Childhood Development, Education and Equity at Easterseals "We're proud to support Easterseals' important work to help close equity gaps in education and community health," said Melissa Brotz, president of the Abbott Fund and vice president of Global Marketing and External Affairs at Abbott. "We're committed to advancing health equity and fighting racial health disparities, and our partnership with Easterseals will help reduce barriers to care for children, their families and their communities." The Project on Education and Community Health Equity builds on results seen through another Easterseals program, the Black Child Fund. Launched in 2021 with support from the Abbott Fund and others, the Black Child Fund advanced early identification and interventions among Black children with autism and other disabilities to reduce health disparities often experienced in early childhood. The Abbott Fund investment launched pilots at Easterseals locations serving Chicagoland and Greater Rockford, DuPage and the Fox Valley Region (IL), and Kansas City and St. Louis (MO). Through these pilot programs, an 87% increase in the number of Black families seeking services and support was realized, with more than 300 Black children screened for early diagnosis of autism and other disabilities in just one year. Of these children, 80% were five years old or younger, with 75% requiring and receiving additional services through Easterseals. An important outcome of these pilots has been the strengthening of relationships within Black communities across these Easterseals service areas to ensure more equitable and more culturally responsive services and supports to young children of color with disabilities and their families. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released data revealing that during the pandemic public health emergency, rates for primary and preventive services among children in Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) declined substantially. This decline in care for millions of children from low-income families will potentially have a significant impact on long-term health outcomes for the nearly 40 million children in the U.S. who rely on Medicaid and CHIP, including three-quarters of children living in poverty and many with special healthcare needs including infants, toddlers, and young children with disabilities. "Through the Project on Education and Community Health Equity, it is Easterseals' intention to address the disparities in healthcare among young children in low-investment communities and to understand the connection between health equity and early childhood educational attainment. We intend to center the experiences of children of color and their families, for whom inequities have only been exacerbated because of the pandemic," Watson concluded. The Abbott Fund's partnership with Easterseals supports Abbott's 2030 Sustainability Plan, which aims to advance health access and equity through partnership. Abbott's ongoing commitment to address health equity challenges includes targeted programs to increase diversity in clinical trials, create opportunities in STEM for women and underrepresented groups, and empower communities to break down social and economic barriers to better health. About Easterseals Easterseals is leading the way to full equity, inclusion, and access through life-changing disability and community services. For more than 100 years, we have worked tirelessly with our partners to enhance quality of life and expand local access to healthcare, education, and employment opportunities. And we won't rest until every one of us is valued, respected, and accepted. Through our national network of Affiliates, Easterseals provides essential services and on-the-ground supports to more than 1.5 million people each year – from early childhood programs for the critical first five years, to autism services, medical rehabilitation and employment programs, veterans' services, and more. Our public education, policy, and advocacy initiatives positively shape perceptions and address the urgent and evolving needs of the one in four Americans living with disabilities today. Together, we're empowering people with disabilities, families, and communities to be full and equal participants in society. About Abbott and the Abbott Fund Abbott is a global healthcare leader that helps people live more fully at all stages of life. Our portfolio of life-changing technologies spans the spectrum of healthcare, with leading businesses and products in diagnostics, medical devices, nutritionals and branded generic medicines. Our 113,000 colleagues serve people in more than 160 countries.

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