VA expands data sharing with private providers with new accreditation

FierceHealthcare | April 03, 2019

The Department of Veterans Affairs is improving its data-sharing capabilities with VA hospitals and private sector providers with new accreditation from the nonprofit association DirectTrust. The VA has joined DirectTrust’s accredited trust anchor bundle, enabling VA clinicians to more easily coordinate care with the 1.8 million providers that are already part of the bundle. The development will improve care coordination between the VA and private healthcare providers, VA and DirectTrust officials said. DirectTrust is an association that brings together healthcare providers, insurers and technology vendors as part of the Direct exchange network. Direct is a technical standard to exchange patient data. The VA has been a member of DirectTrust and one of its accredited network operators since September 2015, according to Scott Stuewe, DirectTrust president and CEO. However, until now, the VA needed to negotiate separate connections in order to “trust” facilities outside the VA for clinical information exchange, he said.

Spotlight

Patients financial liability in paying for healthcare services isalmost unrecognizable from that prior to the early 2000s, yet many organizations, including clinical laboratories, have struggled to modernize their collection practices in turn. As a result of this mismatch, labs risk not just losing out on uncollected revenue, but also wasting time and resources on futile or minimally effective back-end collection efforts. Reversing the problem is possible, however, by implementing the right best practices and revenue cycle management technologies. In particular, maximizing patient access early in the revenue cycle can
help patients manage their financial responsibility and preempt many unnecessary denials, payment delays, and uncollected balances.


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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

Ivenix to be Acquired by Fresenius Kabi

Ivenix | April 01, 2022

Ivenix, Inc. announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by Fresenius Kabi, a global health care leader specializing in lifesaving medicines and technologies for infusion, transfusion and clinical nutrition. Ivenix’s advanced infusion system combined with Fresenius Kabi’s intravenous fluids and infusion therapy offerings will bring a comprehensive portfolio of infusion products to U.S. hospitals. The purchase price will be a combination of US$240 million upfront payment and milestone payments linked to achievements of commercial and operating targets. The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions and is expected to close by mid-2022. The transaction is designed to Create a comprehensive portfolio that joins the industry’s most advanced infusion pump technology with the newest source of intravenous fluids, infusion supplies and accessories. Accelerate operational and commercial growth and scale providing a platform for rapid expansion. Build on a shared culture of exceptional customer service. Establish Fresenius Kabi as a leader in the approximately $5 billion infusion segment. This pivotal transaction will accelerate innovation, expand our combined infusion therapy portfolio and enhance our infusion capabilities, resulting in improved medication safety and operational efficiency. “We’re very pleased to partner with Fresenius Kabi, a leading global health care company. Together, we intend to transform the standard of care for North American health care providers and patients by providing the highest level of safe and effective integrated infusion care,” Jorgen B. Hansen, Ivenix’s Chief Executive Officer The Ivenix Infusion System includes a large-volume infusion pump with administration sets, infusion management tools, and analytics to inform care and advance efficiency. Ivenix centered the system around the patient and clinician and designed it to reduce infusion-related errors and drive down the total cost of ownership. After receiving U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) clearance, Ivenix successfully launched the infusion system in 2021. “Combining Ivenix’s expertise in pump technology and software with our infrastructure, portfolio, and presence in hospital settings represents an ideal opportunity. We intend to scale the launch of Ivenix’s next-generation infusion system while driving growth opportunities in the United States. With today’s announcement, Fresenius Kabi expects to create a leading, comprehensive infusion therapy offering,” said Michael Sen, President and CEO, Fresenius Kabi. About Ivenix Ivenix, Inc. is a medical technology company with a vision to eliminate infusion-related patient harm. The company was founded to develop innovative solutions that transform infusion delivery. Ivenix designed an infusion system from the ground up to streamline medication delivery and bring infusion technology into the digital age. The Ivenix Infusion System includes a large-volume infusion pump supported by a robust infusion management system designed to set new standards in simplicity, intelligence, and reliability. For more information, visit ivenix.com. The Ivenix Infusion System is cleared by the FDA.

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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Ascensus Closes Newport Merger Agreement

Ascensus | April 11, 2022

Ascensus—whose technology and expertise help millions of people save for retirement, education, and healthcare—and Newport, the Walnut Creek, California-based retirement services provider—announced today that the two companies have closed their previously announced merger, the first step in their journey together as a combined organization. The union combines the capabilities and talents of two market leaders in tax-advantaged savings and related services, serving more than 15 million savers and overseeing more than $745 billion in assets under administration as of December 31, 2021. Together, the unified company employs more than 5,400 employees across the U.S. David Musto, president and chief executive officer of Ascensus, will serve as CEO of the combined company. Laura Ramanis, who has served as interim CEO of Newport since the announcement of the transaction last fall, and Kurt Laning, executive vice president of Newport Non-Qualified and Insurance Solutions, will join the Ascensus executive leadership team, reporting to Musto. "With today's announcement, Ascensus and Newport have taken an important step in our journey towards a stronger, unified company. Clients across our lines of business will benefit from our expanded capabilities—accelerated investments in technology, data analytics, and user experiences—and broadened expertise. And both Ascensus and Newport associates can look forward to new opportunities for personal growth and enhanced career development." Musto "Ascensus and Newport share a passion for helping people save for their futures and supporting the growth and success of our partners," said Ramanis. "We look forward to continuing that mission as a combined company." With industry-leading qualified and non-qualified retirement plan services, corporate and bank-owned life insurance (COLI and BOLI) practices, fiduciary and trust solutions, and other total rewards capabilities, Newport expands the services and expertise Ascensus provides to its clients and advisor partners. Newport's clients will benefit from greater access to unique tax-advantaged savings solutions across retirement, education, and health provided by Ascensus. The combined company's investments in technology, digital capabilities, and analytics will deliver enhanced value to clients, expand client relationships, and create even better outcomes for savers. Both the Ascensus and Newport brands remain in use at closing, with the Ascensus brand representing the unified company. "Our goal over the next several months is the successful unification of our company—built on the principle of 'best of the best' and our shared cultural attributes, and executed with the interests, quality, and stability of our client relationships foremost in mind," added Musto. "As a unified organization, Ascensus and Newport share a strong commitment to serving our clients and offering more—across the tax-advantaged retirement, education, and health savings expertise for which Ascensus is known, and capitalizing on Newport's well-established qualified and non-qualified retirement services, and fiduciary and COLI/BOLI capabilities as well." Evercore acted as exclusive financial advisor to Newport in connection with the transaction. Goldman Sachs Bank USA, SPC Financing Company LLC, and KKR Capital Markets LLC led the financing consortium. Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP acted as transactional counsel to Ascensus and Kirkland & Ellis LLP acted as financing counsel to Ascensus. Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP acted as legal counsel to Newport. About Ascensus Ascensus helps millions of people save for what matters—retirement, education, and healthcare. Through co-branded, private-labeled, and other governmental partnerships, our technology, market insights, and business knowledge enhance the growth and success of our partners, their clients, and savers. Ascensus is a leading recordkeeping services provider, third-party administrator, and government savings facilitator in the United States. About Newport Headquartered in Walnut Creek, California, Newport is a leading retirement services provider that helps employers—and the advisors who serve them—prepare employees for a more financially secure retirement. The company has more than $150 billion in retirement assets under administration and more than $300 billion in corporate retirement and insurance assets. Newport maintains investment objectivity, fee transparency and a commitment to flexible, responsive service. Staffed by an exceptional team of nearly 1,500 retirement, insurance, and consulting professionals, the company provides retirement solutions tailored to the needs of employers of every size, from small businesses to the Fortune 1000.

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MEDICAL DEVICES

Camelot Wins Cue Health Omnichannel Media Buying & Planning Business

Camelot | June 06, 2022

After a rigorous agency selection process, Camelot Strategic Marketing & Media has been chosen as media buying and planning agency for healthcare technology company Cue Health (“Cue”) as it aims to pioneer the digital transformation of healthcare, beginning with diagnostics. The scope of Camelot’s work for Cue includes integrated media planning and buying across Cue’s growing diagnostic platform, aimed at providing better patient outcomes by delivering on the promise of timely, informed, and connected healthcare. “There is no question that Cue Health is on the leading edge of healthcare technology. We’re thrilled to align our passion for innovation, deep data and analytics, and creative digital media and marketing strategy to help drive their success into the future.” Sam Bloom, CEO of Camelot Strategic Marketing & Media Cue empowers people to live their healthiest lives by giving 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 launched the first FDA-authorized COVID-19 molecular test for at-home and over-the-counter use as well as professional point-of-care use. Outside the U.S., 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. The company is developing future care offerings across several categories, including respiratory health, sexual health, cardiac and metabolic health, women's health, men's health, and chronic disease management. Within the health and wellness space, Camelot also works with Baylor Scott & White Health, the largest not-for-profit​ healthcare system in Texas and one of the largest in the U.S., and Glo, a digital health platform and app providing live and on-demand yoga, meditation, Pilates and fitness classes. About Camelot Celebrating 40 years in the media and marketing industry, Dallas-based Camelot Strategic Marketing & Media, is a fact-based, bottom-up, independent agency with 150 employees in cities across the U.S. – including Dallas, New York, Los Angeles and Baltimore. We partner with a select group of the world’s biggest brands – from TurboTax to Whole Foods to Michaels – to provide media-agnostic, transparent, insight-driven media and marketing strategy and execution.

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Spotlight

Patients financial liability in paying for healthcare services isalmost unrecognizable from that prior to the early 2000s, yet many organizations, including clinical laboratories, have struggled to modernize their collection practices in turn. As a result of this mismatch, labs risk not just losing out on uncollected revenue, but also wasting time and resources on futile or minimally effective back-end collection efforts. Reversing the problem is possible, however, by implementing the right best practices and revenue cycle management technologies. In particular, maximizing patient access early in the revenue cycle can
help patients manage their financial responsibility and preempt many unnecessary denials, payment delays, and uncollected balances.

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