How to minimize ransomware attacks in healthcare

Medical Economics | February 06, 2020

How to minimize ransomware attacks in healthcare
Ransomware attacks are on the rise. Everywhere you look, yet another healthcare network or business has fallen victim to these cybercriminals. Harbor Medical Group and Health Alliance Plan are just a couple examples from 2019’s headlines. Ransomware attacks have become a worldwide epidemic and show no sign of slowing. In fact, recent reports state that by 2021, ransomware damages could cost the world $20 billion.  Not only expensive to attempt to resolve, ransomware attacks also can be very difficult to prevent; cybercriminals continue to evolve their strategy. Recent attacks have demanded more substantial sums of money than ever before and targeted small and midsize providers who often have less sophisticated IT systems and therefore are more willing to pay to protect their patients’ information. So how can healthcare providers harden their security measures and protect information in the event of an attack? Let’s start by taking a more in-depth look at how ransomware works.

Spotlight

Dana Alexander, RN, kicks off the Opening Keynote session at HIMSS16 with poignant remarks about the state of the healthcare industry and how advancements in health IT have driven fundamental change - but there is still work to be done.


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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Philips and IJsselland Hospital sign long-term technology partnership

Royal Philips | December 24, 2021

Royal Philips, a global leader in health technology, today announced it has signed a 12-year strategic partnership with IJsselland Hospital (Capelle aan den Ijssel, The Netherlands). As the hospital’s strategic technology partner, Philips will target improved care for patients and care providers at IJsselland Hospital and in the surrounding region. The collaboration will focus on innovation, digitalization and optimization, and includes the purchase of patient monitoring and radiology solutions including CT and MRI systems. Home monitoring collaboration expanded In addition to the new strategic partnership, Philips and IJsselland Hospital plan to expand their existing home monitoring partnership for patients with heart failure and COPD. Philips will provide clinical and patient decision support software which enables implementation of remote health and care programs and facilitates collaboration between different healthcare providers. “Technological developments in healthcare are currently moving very fast,” said Albert van Wijk, Chairman of IJsselland Hospital’s Board of Directors. “As a regional hospital, we want to keep up with these developments to provide the best care for our patients. We have chosen Philips as a technology partner to jointly develop the hospital of the future. This will be good for our patients and our healthcare professionals. Moreover, Philips’ vision fits well with our strategy.” “Over the past year, we have worked with IJsselland Hospital to convert their strategy and challenges into a partnership. I am very proud of this partnership, in which we don’t focus solely on technology but look more broadly at the challenges the hospital faces. A great deal of attention is paid to innovation, which is why we are starting a joint fund for innovation and optimization. We also want to work explicitly on optimizing care processes, so that the hospital can work smarter and save costs.” Léon Kempeneers, Health Systems, Philips Benelux About Royal Philips Royal Philipsis a leading health technology company focused on improving people's health and well-being, and enabling better outcomes across the health continuum – from healthy living and prevention, to diagnosis, treatment and home care. Philips leverages advanced technology and deep clinical and consumer insights to deliver integrated solutions. Headquartered in the Netherlands, the company is a leader in diagnostic imaging, image-guided therapy, patient monitoring and health informatics, as well as in consumer health and home care. Philips generated 2020 sales of EUR 17.3 billion and employs approximately 78,000 employees with sales and services in more than 100 countries.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Mental Health Provider Meru Health collaborates with Tech-Savvy Health Insurance Company Evry Health To Deliver Outcomes-Based Mental Healthcare

MERU HEALTH | January 18, 2022

Meru Health, the most comprehensive mental health solution in the market with industry-leading outcomes, and Evry Health, a modern business-to-business health insurance company announced today that they will partner on delivering Meru Health's solution to Evry Health's members in Dallas, Texas starting January 2022. The Meru Health online mental health solution will be embedded as part of Evry Health's tailored wellness plans that come at no cost to the employer or their employees. These specialized, optional wellness solutions provide a wide range of resources, tools and rewards that are different from other health insurance plans, including benefits such as mental health support through Meru Health. Members will be recommended to the program based on pre-screening criteria as well as Evry Health's data analysis. For example, if Evry Health receives a claim for cancer screening and oncologist claims, this is a flag to proactively loop the member into Meru Health's mental health program and support cycles. The partnership will focus on delivering outcomes-based mental healthcare and it rewards members for following their personalized care pathways. A member who completes Meru Health's 12-week Therapy program can get up to $100 reward for doing so. "This is a completely new way of delivering mental healthcare and we are proud to partner with Meru Health to together change how the system works," said Chris Gay, Evry Health CEO. "Focusing on outcomes is the way mental healthcare – and healthcare in general – should be delivered now and in the future. We are confident our members will get the best possible value-based care, and see their mental health improve as they go through the Meru Health program." Incentivizing members to take care of their mental health can lead to major cost savings down the line. According to data from BCBS, people with major depression are on average nearly 30 percent less healthy than those without depression. This decrease in overall health translates into increased costs: a depressed person has $6,390 more healthcare costs than nondepressed people every year. Evry Health incentivizes participants to focus on better mental health through its voluntary wellness plans. Rewards are deposited to an Evry Health Reward Card that members use like any other credit card. Meru Health is focused on delivering the best long- and short-term outcomes in the market. After program completion, 75% of people are in depression or anxiety symptom remission and 85% of people show clinically significant improvement, measured on industry standard PHQ-9 (depression) and GAD-7 (anxiety) scales. The Meru Health Program is one of only digital mental health interventions with published research that shows that these treatment gains last 12 months after the end of treatment. "We could not be more excited to partner Evry Health, who is changing health insurance just like we are transforming mental healthcare. Together we can really deliver patient-centric care that ensures that people prioritize their mental health. Health plans and employers would benefit a lot focusing more on outcomes. The question we should be asking is are people getting better and staying better after the treatment? I believe trailblazers like Evry Health will be a role model in the industry to start focusing more on care outcomes." Kristian Ranta, the CEO of Meru Health About Meru Health Meru Health is setting the new standard in mental healthcare with the most comprehensive online solution that combines licensed therapists and psychiatrists, a smartphone-based treatment program, biofeedback training, anonymous peer support, and habit-changing activities for sleep, nutrition, and more. The company is committed to evidence-based care and has published groundbreaking clinical outcomes with Stanford, Harvard, and UC Davis that show promising clinical effectiveness and lasting results. Meru Health offers a convenient, accessible, side-effect-free mental health treatment option in contrast to the standard of care in the U.S. today. Meru Health partners with major health insurance providers like Cigna, Humana, and Moda Health, as well as leading businesses that want to provide best-in-class mental health care for their employees or members. About Evry Health Headquartered in Dallas, Evry Health is not your standard health plan. We're on a mission to make healthcare affordable, transparent and high quality again by providing expanded benefits at an affordable price, lowering premiums by up to 20%. We're building the health insurance we've always wanted for ourselves, with a high-tech, mobile-first experience focused on helping people live better, healthier lives.

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MEDICAL DEVICES

BD Acquires Scanwell Health, Inc. to Expand and Scale Digital At-Home Testing

BD | December 22, 2021

BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company), a leading global medical technology company, today announced it has completed the acquisition of privately held Scanwell Health Inc., a leader in smartphone-enabled at-home medical tests.BD collaborated with Scanwell to develop the app used with the recently launched BD Veritor™ At-Home COVID-19 Test, the first at-home COVID-19 test that uniquely uses a smartphone camera and app to capture and interpret results, eliminating the human subjectivity in other visually read at-home antigen tests. Scanwell will become the foundational digital platform upon which BD plans to develop at-home diagnostic tests for a range of infectious diseases including COVID-19/influenza A+B, group A strep and additional menu for detecting infections and managing chronic disease. "The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the shift to new care settings, and BD is ready to deliver a smart, connected at-home diagnostic ecosystem to support traditional and telehealth providers and consumers. This acquisition will enable us to expand and scale our digital capabilities in-house to speed time to market for transformative at-home solutions now and in the future." Dave Hickey, president of Life Sciences for BD The Scanwell app is a key differentiator in the market for at-home COVID-19 testing. To date, no other company uses the phone's camera to capture the image of the test that is then analyzed and interpreted by the app. Other COVID-19 home tests use smartphones as part of their process, but BD Veritor™ At-Home COVID-19 Test is the first and only test to use the smartphone as the analyzer to digitally interpret the test results and provide a definitive POSITIVE or NEGATIVE digital display of testing results. The app also has the capabilities to securely store and report test results to organizations, including businesses, public health authorities and schools. The results of tests are stored in the app and can be referenced and displayed at any time by simply logging into the app. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to be immaterial to BD's fiscal 2022 financial results. Scanwell financial results will be reported under the Integrated Diagnostic Solutions business within the Life Sciences segment. About the BD Veritor™ At-Home COVID-19 Test The BD Veritor™ At-Home COVID-19 Test has not been FDA cleared or approved; but has been authorized by FDA under Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). This product has been authorized only for the detection of proteins from SARS-CoV-2, not for any other viruses or pathogens. The emergency use of this product is only authorized for the duration of the declaration that circumstances exist justifying the authorization of emergency use of IVDs for detection and/or diagnosis of COVID-19 under Section 564(b)(1) of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, 21 U.S.C. § 360bbb-3(b)(1), unless the declaration is terminated or authorization is revoked sooner. About BD BD is one of the largest global medical technology companies in the world and is advancing the world of health by improving medical discovery, diagnostics and the delivery of care. The company supports the heroes on the frontlines of health care by developing innovative technology, services and solutions that help advance both clinical therapy for patients and clinical process for health care providers. BD and its 70,000 employees have a passion and commitment to help enhance the safety and efficiency of clinicians' care delivery process, enable laboratory scientists to accurately detect disease and advance researchers' capabilities to develop the next generation of diagnostics and therapeutics. BD has a presence in virtually every country and partners with organizations around the world to address some of the most challenging global health issues. By working in close collaboration with customers, BD can help enhance outcomes, lower costs, increase efficiencies, improve safety and expand access to health care.

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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

Dana Alexander, RN, kicks off the Opening Keynote session at HIMSS16 with poignant remarks about the state of the healthcare industry and how advancements in health IT have driven fundamental change - but there is still work to be done.

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