Humana, Aledade team up to expand value-based care

FierceHealthcare | February 07, 2019

Insurance giant Humana is teaming with Bethesda, Maryland-based primary care consulting company Aledade to expand access to value-based care for its Medicare Advantage members in three states.  Physicians working in Aledade’s accountable care organizations in Pennsylvania, Louisiana and West Virginia will be able to take advantage of technological tools, data and other resources from both Aledade and Humana under the agreement, according to an announcement. Louisville, Kentucky-based Humana has made value-based care a central focus over the past year and in April launched its Hospital Incentive Program with the goal of reducing duplicative services and readmissions. Cleveland Clinic Florida and Georgia’s WellStar Health System were among the first providers to jump into the program.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Virta Health Highlights Lasting, Transformative Health Improvements In 5-Year Diabetes Reversal Study

Virta Health | June 07, 2022

Virta Health, the leader in type 2 diabetes reversal, revealed preliminary five-year results from its landmark clinical trial at the American Diabetes Association 82nd Scientific Sessions. Presenting four unique abstracts, Virta highlighted myriad, lasting health improvements for people with type 2 diabetes and prediabetes, including blood sugar control, clinically-significant weight loss, reduced inflammation, and improvements in other markers of cardiometabolic health. These transformative health outcomes coincided with medication reduction or elimination for many trial patients, including Jane Ann Dimitt. For over two decades, Jane Ann was prescribed increasing levels of medications as her blood sugar and weight continued to climb. By the time she joined Virta in 2015, her A1c had reached 11.4%; the next step was insulin. Through Virta’s treatment, Jane Ann lowered her blood sugar to 5.5% (below even the prediabetes threshold) and lost over 50 pounds, while drastically reducing her reliance on medications. She also saw improved mobility, decreased inflammation and neuropathy, and now has the energy to play with her grandchildren—all without needing the insulin doctors said was imminent. The outcomes of Jane Ann and Virta’s other trial patients contradict the belief that progression of diabetes—and a lifetime of increasing medications—is inevitable. One-fifth of Virta patients completing five years of treatment saw full remission. One-third of patients achieved A1c below 6.5% without any diabetes medications, or only requiring Metformin. Notably, inflammatory markers, triglycerides, and HDL cholesterol all improved significantly. These outcomes, in conjunction with previous research demonstrating improvements in cardiovascular disease risk factors, depression symptoms, sleep, and knee pain, establish the promise of Virta’s approach to impact a wide range of conditions amid America’s metabolic disease epidemic. In the U.S., costs are rising as patient outcomes continue to worsen, including surges in amputations, hyperglycemic events, and diabetes-related deaths during the COVID-19 pandemic. Meanwhile, getting patients to stick with an intervention remains a significant challenge in diabetes therapy. Rates of medication adherence—that is, whether patients take their medications as prescribed—fall as low as 34% over the first three years for those starting insulin. For the National Diabetes Prevention Program, considered the gold standard in lifestyle interventions, only 13% of patients were retained at one year. In contrast, in Virta’s trial nearly 50% of participants with type 2 diabetes were retained at five years. Of those who continued past year two, 72% remained for an additional three years to year five. For Kim Shepherd, who lost 55 pounds, eliminated 10 different medications, reversed her diabetes, and even saw her GERD (acid reflux) and plantar fasciitis disappear, the reasons to stick with the treatment are clear. “Diabetes runs in my family, and I know that this disease can rob you of your whole life; it can take your eyes, your feet, and your kidneys. I have 4 kids and 9 grandkids to keep up with. I’ve learned to love hiking and biking. Nothing is worth losing all of that and going back to how I was before.” Additional key outcomes demonstrating the success of Virta’s approach at five years include Sustained blood sugar control. Virta patients experienced persistent improvements in blood sugar on average, while requiring significantly fewer medications. Medication deprescription. Half of patients prescribed insulin at the start of the trial no longer needed it at five years. Across all diabetes drugs, prescriptions were reduced by nearly 50%. Weight loss. Average weight among Virta participants decreased by 7.6%, exceeding the 5% benchmark for clinically significant weight loss by more than 50%. Broad improvement in cardiometabolic health. In addition to improvements in triglycerides, HDL cholesterol, and markers of inflammation, patients even showed encouraging signs in reversing the progression of chronic kidney disease. “Virta’s patients are helping redefine what long-term success can look like in type 2 diabetes care. The patient outcomes set a new standard for real-world applications of diabetes treatment." Dr. Alan Moses, former Senior Vice President and Global Chief Medical Officer of Novo Nordisk, and Virta advisor Trial participants with prediabetes also saw meaningful improvements, with progression rates far below what has been demonstrated in other studies. Further, Virta patients sustained 6% weight loss over five years, exceeding the clinically-significant benchmark for diabetes prevention and far surpassing the 2% weight loss observed in the NIH Diabetes Prevention Program lifestyle intervention. The study is also notable for its longevity. Five-year published results are extremely rare in digital health, where most studies follow populations for no more than a year, and usually significantly less. For many Virta patients, the five-year clinical trial has facilitated a lasting lifestyle change, improving not only traditional markers of health but overall mood, quality of life, and outlook on the future. Says patient Denise Lamb, who has maintained diabetes reversal alongside a nearly 70 pound weight loss, “My journey has been phenomenal. The Virta program has not only helped me achieve healthy blood glucose, but also attain a far better weight, normal blood pressure, and better understanding of my body. Virta’s lifestyle changed my lifestyle!” About Virta Health Virta Health helps people reverse type 2 diabetes and other chronic conditions. Current approaches manage disease progression through increased medication use and infrequent doctor visits. Virta reverses type 2 diabetes through innovations in technology, nutrition science, and continuous remote care from physicians and behavioral experts. In clinical studies, 94% of patients reduce or eliminate insulin use, and weight-loss exceeds FDA benchmarks by nearly 150%. Virta works with the largest health plans, employers, and government organizations and puts 100% of its fees at risk based on clinical and financial outcomes.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Prenosis Announces Investment from PACE Healthcare Capital, bringing Total Funding to Over $20 million

Prenosis | March 10, 2022

Prenosis, Inc., a precision medicine company,announced a venture investment from PACE Healthcare Capital, an early-stage investment firm committed to improving health outcomes. This investment brings total funding in the company to over$20 million, including partnerships with Foxconn, Roche Diagnostics, the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, and others. Prenosisis leveraging machine learning algorithms trained on deep biological data and broad clinical data to create precise and comprehensive maps of acute disease. Using these maps, Prenosis develops and markets valuable navigational tools to improve patient care by illuminating the optimal treatment pathways for each patient. "This capital will further accelerate our deep biological mapping of acute disease and to further grow the NOSIS™dataset/biobank, which is the largest such dataset/biobank ever created for sepsis," saidBobby Reddy, Jr., CEO and Co-Founder, Prenosis Inc. "Using our mapping technology, we are developing sophisticated methods to define, divide, and conquer diseases. The navigational guidance solutions based on our health state maps will address the critical challenge of sepsis by providing critical and actionable information tailored to each patient's health state." Prenosis is pioneering a revolution in managing acute diseases that have previously eluded conventional methods, starting with sepsis. Sepsis occurs when the immune system reacts abnormally to an infection, setting off a chain of events that leads to tissue damage and organ failure. Sepsis is currently one of the leading causes of mortality in U.S. hospitals, and the WHO estimates that it causes 1 in 5 deaths worldwide1. Prenosis has spent nearly a decade building fit-for-purpose biological and clinical datasets at an unprecedented level to better understand sepsis and other acute care conditions. Using this information, Prenosis has developed patient maps and valuable navigational tools to empower physicians to administer optimal treatment to patients faster. Prenosis' first such tool, the Sepsis ImmunoScoreTM, is a Software-as-a-Medical Device (SaMD) digital diagnostic designed to aid in the risk assessment for progression to sepsis of patients admitted in the emergency department or hospital. Prenosis is currently seeking to obtain FDA clearance for the tool by the end of 2022. The test runs on Prenosis's Immunix™software platform, which interfaces with hospital Electronic Medical Records that hosts multiple products to improve patient care. "Personalized medicine is the next frontier of healthcare. Complex acute diseases, such as sepsis, can only be conquered through a robust understanding of the biological response of each patient's immune system – one patient at a time. Prenosis brings our understanding of the disease patterns to a whole new level and enables physicians to make better decisions faster for their patients. We are excited to partner with Bobby and the whole Prenosis team as they continue to develop their technology and transform the way we understand and provide care for patients with complex acute diseases." Julia Monfrini Peev, Founder and Managing Partner of PACE Healthcare Capital The funding builds on a recent string of strategic partnerships and accolades for Prenosis, including being selected as part of the MedTech Innovator 2021 Showcase, being named the #2 Medtech Startup of 2021 by MDDI, and being asked to present its research at scientific meetings, including the forthcoming 2022 annual meetings for the Society of Critical Care Medicine and the American Thoracic Society. "In addition to support from other investors and partners, PACE Healthcare Capital's involvement is a strong endorsement of our solutions and will help to accelerate our growth as we further expand our proprietary dataset and work towards commercialization of the Immunix™platform later this year," said Reddy. "As we use our technology to map acute disease, we hope to usher in a new age of data-driven treatment and medical discovery." About Prenosis Prenosis is a health tech innovator devoted to ushering in a new era of precision diagnostics in acute care using artificial intelligence. Its Immunix™precision diagnostics platform leverages machine learning algorithms trained on deep biological data and broad clinical data designed to capture and illuminate the complex health states of patients more holistically. Its proprietary NOSISTMdataset is one of the largest and fastest-growing hybrid biomarker-clinical datasets for sepsis care. The Sepsis ImmunoScore™diagnostic on the Immunix™platform has the potential to save thousands of lives and billions of dollars in healthcare spending annually. The Sepsis ImmunoScore™is not yet approved for commercial use in the United States. About PACE Healthcare Capital PACE Healthcare Capitalis an early-stage venture capital firm focused on investing in companies that have developed high-impact solutions to critical healthcare challenges. With decades of combined experience and $1B+ of capital raised and deployed in healthcare, PACE applies institutional-grade investment processes to identify the best entrepreneurs and deploy financial and human capital to help them grow their business.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

H2O.ai Showcases Healthcare and Life Sciences Leadership with Customer Successes, Breadth of AI Apps at HIMSS 2022

H2O.ai | March 14, 2022

H2O.ai, the AI Cloud leader, announced it has expanded its healthcare capabilities, now offering 40 AI applications across population health, precision medicine, public health and intelligent supply chain, supporting customers throughout the healthcare ecosystem including Bon Secours Mercy Health and Kaiser Permanente. The company will demonstrate its technologies at the healthcare industry’s flagship technology conference, HIMSS, in Booth No. 8141, March 15-17 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando. Healthcare and life sciences organizations have been stretched thin over the past few years and are actively looking for new technologies to streamline operations and improve patient outcomes across the private and public sectors. AI will empower physicians, hospital administrators, researchers and pharmaceutical companies with models and applications that produce more affordable, more accessible and more efficient healthcare. H2O.ai is at the forefront of this effort, helping organizations rapidly transform to improve health equity, access and care. For example, the Center for Digital Health Innovation (CDHI) at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) is collaborating with H2O.ai on the development and training of AI algorithms that automate the processing of the 1.4 million faxed patient referrals and other documents that UCSF’s health system receives annually. The algorithms identify, classify and prioritize document types. For referrals, the AI extracts key patient data, history and relevant health information that will assist staff and eliminate manual data entry and validation tasks. “AI in healthcare has the potential to dramatically improve the operational processes that can prevent patients from getting care quickly, at the right place, and from the right provider. Our work with H2O.ai for health document handling is just one aspect of the transformation in the ways patients access and receive care.” Alon Konchitsky, associate director for data science and machine learning at CDHI H2O.ai has developed 40 AI apps supporting various components of the healthcare ecosystem, including Population Health H2O.ai’s Covid-19 hospital occupancy simulator allows hospital administrators to track, predict and manage Covid-19-related hospital admissions by U.S. county. The company also has a pop-up predictor that allows for the quick identification of specific addresses in the U.S. that would be most suitable for temporary vaccination clinics, mobile testing centers, public education stands and more. H2O.ai’s customers - leading providers, payers and accountable care organizations (ACOs) - are developing and deploying AI models and apps around patient no shows, 30-day readmission predictors, risk stratification and omni-channel patient engagement NLP. Precision Medicine H2O.ai has developed a gene mutation app, a machine learning-powered patient risk assessment application that uses the Snowflake Data Cloud and the H2O AI Cloud to bring intelligent clinical decision support directly to clinicians. In another use case, H2O.ai’s gene expression tumor classification app uses gene expression information from patient biopsies to evaluate the risk of malignancy and understand how common the risk has been among past patients. “H2O AI Cloud, integrated with the Snowflake Data Cloud, is making it easier for health organizations to rapidly develop precision medicine solutions,” said Todd Crosslin, Global Head of Healthcare and Life Sciences at Snowflake. “The Gene mutation app is just the beginning of our health partnership and our ability to deliver improved care and patient outcomes.” Public Health The company’s Covid-19 forecasting application enables hospital staff, policymakers and others to predict the next wave of infection as well as potential case and death rates. H2O.ai also provides a vaccine sentiment tool that leverages natural language processing (NLP) to understand the sentiment around Covid-19 vaccines, and the company is currently working with leaders to address the risks and care associated with PASC (AKA Long COVID). Intelligent Supply Chain To provide intelligent supply chain support, H2O.ai’s route optimizer application helps health manufacturers best optimize transportation routes to ensure products arrive on time and to standard. H2O.ai also has developed an order and inventory management app to aid health manufacturers’ inefficient warehouse and inventory management decisions. Avoiding AI “Pilot-itis” Many health and life sciences organizations are struggling to implement AI projects that improve patient outcomes, reduce costs and more. Through its expertise and the H2O AI Cloud platform, H2O.ai is able to break companies out of the pilot cycle and successfully take them to AI maturity to deliver impactful results. In fact, H2O.ai has experienced an increase in healthcare customers moving from the pilot phase to full-blown production AI programs. “Artificial Intelligence and deep learning are not only driving the latest innovations in medicine but also are enabling healthcare organizations to connect fragmented data into a format that can be used to improve operational efficiency and provide more user-centric patient experiences,” said Sri Ambati, CEO and co-founder of H2O.ai. “From its use in drug discovery and forecasting the next COVID-19 variant to streamlining supply chain operations and reducing healthcare worker churn, AI will have a significant impact on democratizing health and improving patient outcomes.” About H2O.ai H2O.ai is the leading AI cloud company, on a mission to democratize AI for everyone. Customers use the H2O AI Cloud platform to rapidly solve complex business problems and accelerate the discovery of new ideas. H2O.ai is the trusted AI provider to more than 20,000 global organizations, including AT&T, Bon Secours Mercy Health, Capital One, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, GlaxoSmithKline, Hitachi, Kaiser Permanente, Procter & Gamble, PayPal, PwC, Reckitt, Unilever and Walgreens, over half of the Fortune 500 and one million data scientists. Goldman Sachs, NVIDIA and Wells Fargo are not only customers and partners, but strategic investors in the company. H2O.ai’s customers have honored the company with a Net Promoter Score (NPS) of 78— the highest in the industry based on breadth of technology and deep employee expertise. The world’s top 20 Kaggle Grandmasters (the community of best-in-the-world machine learning practitioners and data scientists) are employees of H2O.ai. A strong AI for Good ethos to make the world a better place and Responsible AI drive the company’s purpose. Please join our movement at H2O.ai.

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AI

TapCloud and Maxwell Healthcare Associates Join Forces to Transform Post-Acute Space

TapCloud | January 28, 2022

TapCloud, a technology leader in patient-directed care, will partner with Maxwell Healthcare Associates (MHA), a leading post-acute operational, financial, technological and regulatory consulting firm, to transform the post-acute industry with their innovative patient communication and artificial intelligence (AI) solution. TapCloud's technology uses AI-driven tools to capture symptoms that automatically identify patients in need. The system supplies patients or their caregivers with words to indicate how they're feeling. The word cloud symptom tracker is unique to the patient, their-conditions, their medications and their history as it learns and evolves each time they use it. MHA's reach and influence within the post-acute space is expansive, and their unique ability to connect industry partners with strategic solutions continues as they ally with TapCloud. They integrate result-orientated products and services to post-acute organizations that seek immediate answers for their problems. With MHA's organizational expertise and TapCloud's advanced solution, home health, palliative, and hospice providers will have the necessary tools to improve end-of-life care. "We're very excited about 2022 and the opportunities that it will present us. TapCloud is an extraordinary organization that will enhance the care and communication with patients in the post-acute setting. Our goals at MHA are to equip our customers with tools that will not only enhance the care they provide but expose them to tools that have been vetted through our review process." CEO of Maxwell Healthcare Associates,Jennifer Maxwell President of TapCloud,Jolinda Lambert, shares in the enthusiasm and strongly believes the partnership will blossom into the new year. "Our product's ability to change how care is delivered is transformative. We can't wait to get started with MHA to help shape personalized care." About TapCloud TapCloud is aChicago-based health-tech company founded in 2013. They produce an AI-driven application that provides better insights into a patient's symptoms and automatically identifies patients in need at the right time. About Maxwell Healthcare Associates Maxwell Healthcare Associates boasts an average of 20 years of experience in the post-acute space and has a pulse on what's relevant now in the industry. MHA can work with home health and hospice agencies to strategize, optimize and transform agencies across the nation.

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Pretty much every rich, developed nation on the planet has universal healthcare, EXCEPT for the U.S. Should we join them, or does our current healthcare system have advantages that we don’t want to lose?

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