Texas hospital CEO pleads guilty to role in multimillion-dollar pass-through payment scheme

FierceHealthcare | March 13, 2019

The former CEO of a small Texas hospital pleaded guilty to defrauding three of the state’s largest payers out of millions through a laboratory billing scheme. The Department of Justice announced that Harris Brooks, former CEO of Palo Pinto General Hospital in Mineral Wells, Texas, will face a prison sentence of up to five years and restitution payments for his role in the scheme. Brooks and co-conspirators took advantage of the hospital’s in-network deals with Cigna Texas, BlueCross BlueShield of Texas and UnitedHealthcare to use pass-through billing for laboratory services. Brooks and other participants and the scheme submitted billing for allergy and genetic tests they said were performed on-site at PPGH, according to DOJ. However, the hospital did not actually own the equipment for such tests, and patients were provided these services elsewhere.

Spotlight

Losing weight, eating better, and having a more active lifestyle—they are some of the most common New Year resolutions—But what if your resolution lowered your risk of developing cancer? “Only about a very small percentage of five to maybe 10 percent of all cancer diagnosis is related to genetics, the rest are all environmental factors,” said Valerie Butram, an oncology education and survivorship coordinator with Lee Health.


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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Leading ACOs are Choosing Innovaccer’s ACO REACH Solution Suite to Improve Population Health and Advance Health Equity

Innovaccer Inc., | August 05, 2022

Innovaccer Inc., the Health Cloud company, announced the expansion of its Solution Suite for ACO REACH participants. With its ACO REACH Solution Suite, Innovaccer has taken its entire portfolio of solutions that several leading ACOs across the country use, to help New Entrant ACOs and High Needs Population ACOs accelerate their transformation and advance health equity. Since the initial launch of the ACO REACH Solution Suite in April, Innovaccer has rapidly expanded its client base to include new entrants such as UpStream, Florence Health, and many more organizations that are accelerating their transformation to value-based care. These organizations are leveraging Innovaccer’s end-to-end technology platform to build a unified data foundation, develop population health management strategies, and better engage physicians and patients. For example, UpStream chose Innovaccer as their technology partner to get a 360-degree patient view that provides actionable insights at the point of care to help improve outcomes, employ advanced analytics to assess and predict health risks to help keep patients out of the hospital, and use clinically contextual patient engagement throughout the care continuum to help improve chronic care management and the overall patient experience. “Traditionally, many practices don’t have the experience or resources to take on the financial risks associated with value-based care models, especially for older, higher-risk populations,” said Lucas Sahm, chief information officer at UpStream. “UpStream is deeply rooted in data, which makes partnering with Innovaccer a logical step for us because we speak the same language and have the same goal: to connect, curate, and make better use of healthcare data to improve patient outcomes, improve the patient experience, while also improving financial outcomes for providers.” Innovaccer’s ACO REACH Solution Suite brings technology and services together to help providers jump-start and excel at this new value-based model: the Innovaccer Health Cloud’s Data Activation Platform, Innovaccer’s industry-leading population health management solution, Innovaccer’s world-class population health analytics; and Innovaccer’s comprehensive SDoH solution for identifying, understanding, and mitigating social determinants—an absolute essential for supporting health equity, access to care, and community health. “Through ACO REACH, the CMS is paving the way for provider organizations to advance health equity through value-based care. To succeed with this new program, they need the right people, processes, and technologies to help develop, implement, and optimize their shared savings strategies. As a technology-enabled service, our enhanced ACO REACH Solutions Suite enables providers to identify and address SDoH factors, reach vulnerable populations with remote patient monitoring, identify relevant care gaps and utilization trends, predict obstacles, and assist providers and patients in optimizing outcomes. We’ve strived to include everything a provider could need in a technology-enabled solution to succeed as a REACH ACO.” Abhinav Shashank, cofounder and CEO at Innovaccer Innovaccer has a proven history of helping health organizations succeed under risk-bearing, value-based care models. Reach out to an Innovaccer representative today to get a demo of the Innovaccer® Health Cloud’s Data Activation Platform or to find out how we are helping provider partners like you with the tools they need to reach underserved patients, identify and address SDoH, and progress in the movement toward health equity. For more information, please visit https://innovaccer.com/accelerators/aco-reach. About Innovaccer Innovaccer Inc., the Health Cloud company, is dedicated to accelerating innovation in healthcare. The Innovaccer® Health Cloud unifies patient data across systems and care settings, and empowers healthcare organizations to develop scalable, modern applications that improve clinical, financial, and operational outcomes. Innovaccer’s solutions have been deployed across more than 1,600 care settings in the U.S., enabling more than 96,000 providers to transform care delivery and work collaboratively with payers and life sciences companies. Innovaccer has helped its customers unify health records for more than 39 million people and generate over $1B in cumulative cost savings. Innovaccer is the #1 rated Data and Analytics Platform by KLAS, and the #1 rated population health technology platform by Black Book.

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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

Cue Health Provides Enhanced Care & Protection for Immunocompromised Populations & Clinical Care Teams at Fresenius Kidney Care

Cue Health Inc. | August 25, 2022

Cue Health Inc. a healthcare technology company announced a new collaboration with Fresenius Kidney Care to provide the most accurate* COVID-19 self-test to certain patients and clinical care teams. People who are immunocompromised have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19 throughout the pandemic and remain highly dependent on measures that reduce the likelihood of infections, including vaccination. Cue can be used by vulnerable patient populations and their care partners to detect and treat COVID-19 early, often before complications arise and hospitalization is required. This is especially important in remote locations where timely and accurate results are critical for making clinical treatment decisions. Fresenius Kidney Care in Hawaii, Alaska, Puerto Rico, Guam, and Saipan will use the Cue Health Monitoring System and Cue COVID-19 Test to screen employees and test symptomatic immunocompromised patients in-center and at-home. "This is a great example of how Fresenius Kidney Care is seeking out the best technologies to ensure we do everything we can to protect our vulnerable patient population from COVID-19," said Ines Dahne-Steuber, President of Spectra Laboratories, a Fresenius Medical Care company providing laboratory diagnostics to dialysis centers across the country. "This collaboration with Cue will help us provide patients with greater access to high-quality timely diagnosis and care in our effort to improve health outcomes while lowering costs." Fresenius Kidney Care operates more than 2,600 dialysis centers in the U.S., providing more than 200,000 patients annually with services that include at-home peritoneal dialysis, at-home hemodialysis, in-center hemodialysis, and additional clinical care resources. "By utilizing Cue's platform, Fresenius Kidney Care can continue to provide its life-saving services to immunocompromised patients with confidence they are using the most accurate COVID-19 self-test. We treat accuracy as non-negotiable so healthcare-affiliated organizations across the country can continue to trust Cue for their testing needs in high-stakes environments." Ayub Khattak, Chairman and CEO of Cue Health Fresenius Kidney Care is one of the growing number of healthcare-affiliated organizations and internationally-recognized hospital systems throughout the U.S working with Cue to transform how diagnostic healthcare is delivered to close gaps in the patient journey and drive improved health outcomes. Cue is used in many other point-of-care settings such as Johns Hopkins Medicine and Mayo Clinic, by world-class organizations across the country, including Google, the National Basketball Association, and Major League Baseball, and in homes. Cue's test uses molecular nucleic acid amplification technology (NAAT) providing lab-quality results directly to connected mobile devices in 20 minutes. The test can detect all known COVID-19 variants and subvariants of concern - including Omicron, BA.4, and BA.5 - and can be used on adults and children (age 2 years and over for over-the-counter (OTC) / home use and under 2 for professional use), with or without symptoms. About Cue Health Cue Health is a healthcare technology company that makes it easy for individuals to access health information and places diagnostic information at the center of care. Cue Health enables people to manage their health through real-time, actionable, and connected health information, offering individuals and their healthcare providers easy access to lab-quality diagnostics anywhere, anytime, in a device that fits in the palm of the hand. Cue Health's first-of-its-kind COVID-19 test was the first FDA-authorized molecular diagnostic test for at-home and over-the-counter use without a prescription and physician supervision. Outside the United States, Cue Health has received the CE mark in the European Union, Interim Order authorization from Health Canada, regulatory approval from India's Central Drugs Standard Control Organization, and PSAR authorization from Singapore's Health Sciences Authority. Cue was founded in 2010 and is headquartered in San Diego.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Azenta Announces Agreement to Acquire B Medical Systems

Azenta, Inc. | August 09, 2022

Azenta, Inc. announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire B Medical Systems S.á r.l and its subsidiaries a market leader in temperature-controlled storage and transportation solutions that enables the delivery of life-saving treatments across the globe. The cash purchase price to be paid at closing will be approximately €410 million. Additional cash consideration, up to €50 million, may be paid upon achievement of certain future performance milestones. The transaction is expected to close in October 2022. B Medical is headquartered in Hosingen, Luxembourg and is one of the leading vaccine cold chain providers serving primarily fast-growing emerging markets, which require secure and reliable temperature-controlled storage and transport solutions. The portfolio includes vaccine transport systems with real-time monitoring solutions, medical refrigeration for ambient to -86°C temperatures, and blood management solutions. B Medical has an installed base of more than 500,000 units spanning approximately 150 countries across the globe. The Luxembourg headquarters includes a state-of-the-art, highly automated manufacturing facility. This acquisition complements Azenta's cold chain capabilities, adding differentiated solutions for reliable and traceable transport of temperature-sensitive specimens. "We are excited to add B Medical into our growing portfolio of offerings. B Medical has done an outstanding job carving out a strong market position in the vaccine cold chain, and we see a breadth of opportunities to drive even further value from the portfolio by leveraging the Azenta platform." Steve Schwartz, President and CEO of Azenta B Medical CEO, Luc Provost, who has been with the company for over 20 years, and Jesal Doshi, Deputy CEO since 2015, are expected to join Azenta and continue to lead the business. Mr. Provost commented, "We are excited to join the Azenta team as we combine our capabilities and expertise in cold chain solutions to drive the next leg of growth. Together, I look forward to continuing our mission to create technology that helps save lives across the world." B Medical generated approximately €109 million in revenue over the past twelve months ending June 30, 2022. Management expects the acquisition to be accretive to non-GAAP earnings in fiscal year 2023 and accretive to GAAP earnings in fiscal year 2024. About B Medical Systems B Medical is a global manufacturer and distributor of cold chain solutions. Based in Hosingen, Luxembourg, the company was founded in 1979, when the World Health Organization (WHO) approached Electrolux to provide a solution to safely store and transport vaccines around the world. The three major business portfolios include Vaccine Cold Chain, Medical Refrigeration, and Blood Management solutions. Notable products include vaccine transport systems (ice-lined and solar direct drive) with remote temperature monitoring devices, laboratory refrigerators, ultra-low freezers, contact-shock freezers, and transport solutions. B Medical Systems' products are used in approximately 150 countries and have an installed base of more than half a million products across the world. About Azenta Life Sciences Azenta, Inc. is a leading provider of life sciences solutions worldwide, enabling impactful breakthroughs and therapies to market faster. Azenta provides a full suite of reliable cold-chain sample management solutions and genomic services across areas such as drug development, clinical research and advanced cell therapies for the industry's top pharmaceutical, biotech, academic and healthcare institutions globally. As of December 1st, the company changed its name and ticker to Azenta, Inc.from Brooks Automation, Inc.

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Spotlight

Losing weight, eating better, and having a more active lifestyle—they are some of the most common New Year resolutions—But what if your resolution lowered your risk of developing cancer? “Only about a very small percentage of five to maybe 10 percent of all cancer diagnosis is related to genetics, the rest are all environmental factors,” said Valerie Butram, an oncology education and survivorship coordinator with Lee Health.

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