What Does Robotic Process Automation Look Like in Healthcare?

HealthTech Magazine | January 31, 2020

In an effort to streamline business processes, more CIOs are turning to robotic process automation, or RPA. KPMG estimates the value of the global IT robotic automation market to reach roughly $5 billion this year. The technology shows great potential to save companies time and money by performing repetitive, routine tasks at a quicker pace. Still, despite its maturing process and growing number of use cases — which include updating electronic medical records, simplifying claims processing and managing staffing levels — RPA isn’t yet widespread in healthcare settings. Logistical challenges could be to blame. A 2019 article from McKinsey suggests that RPA’s slow foray into healthcare may not be due to the technology itself, but rather rushed implementations that have postponed or scrapped many robotics initiatives. For organizations seeking a path forward, here’s an overview of the emerging technology, including what role RPA can play in a healthcare environment and what organizations should consider before they implement.

Spotlight

With an estimated 8,500 new cases of skin cancer diagnosed in the U.S. every day, it is important that you not only protect yourself from the sun’s UV rays, but also regularly check your skin for anything out of the ordinary. While freckles and moles are often harmless, it is important to perform regular self-exams and follow the ABCDEs (asymmetry, border, color, diameter, evolution) to determine if a mark could be something more serious.


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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Essentia Health Selects Press Ganey as Patient Experience and Nursing Excellence Partner

pressganey | July 07, 2022

Press Ganey, renowned leader in patient, member, employee and consumer experience across the healthcare ecosystem announced it has entered into a multi-year agreement to provide technology, counsel and additional knowledge resources to Essentia Health, an integrated healthcare system serving patients in Minnesota, Wisconsin and North Dakota. Effective July 1, Press Ganey will support Essentia Health through rapid patient experience transformation and nursing excellence across the health system’s 14 hospitals, 72 clinics and 12 care facilities. “The best collaborations create something bigger than the sum of what each partner can create on their own, and I’m incredibly excited to see the great, industry-leading work that the Essentia Health and Press Ganey teams are going to do together,” said Lanie Dixon, Vice President of Patient Experience, Essentia Health. “Press Ganey’s unparalleled expertise in healthcare industry benchmarking, leading-edge technology and wealth of knowledge and resources will help us drive meaningful organizational change for our patients, physicians, and nurses, as Essentia continues its journey to Magnet Recognition® status.” Press Ganey partners with 98% of hospitals recognized by the American Nurses’ Association’s Magnet program, which recognizes excellence in nursing. Press Ganey will support Essentia Health through an integrated, multifaceted approach, including Dynamic Surveying: Customizable, digital surveys tailored to patients’ unique experiences. Narrative Dx: Artificial Intelligence (AI)-driven Natural Language Processing (NLP) to quickly and efficiently derive insights from patient feedback. National Database of Nursing Quality Indicators® (NDNQI®): Press Ganey’s proprietary national database of 250+ nursing measures and quality indicators to get unit-level analysis to help improve patient outcomes. Transparency: A technology platform that publishes authentic ratings and reviews from real patient experience surveys to provider profiles and directories, helping earn patient trust and driving appointment scheduling. Reputation Management: A cutting-edge, purpose-built for healthcare tool that captures patient sentiment and comments from reviews and social media sites into one consolidated dashboard to enable fast responses to online feedback. “We’re thrilled to partner with and support an industry leader in Essentia Health as they track their end-to-end patient journey and improve nursing excellence system-wide. Our integrated technology platform will provide the award-winning Essentia team with the ability to monitor the connections between patient and consumer experience and high-quality care, so they can continue to serve their communities in profound ways.” Dan Litwer, chief client officer, Press Ganey About Press Ganey Press Ganey invented the healthcare performance improvement movement over 35 years ago. Today it offers an integrated suite of solutions that address safety, clinical excellence, patient experience and workforce engagement. The company works with more than 41,000 healthcare facilities in its mission to reduce patient suffering and enhance caregiver resilience to improve the overall safety, quality and experience of care. About Essentia Health Essentia Health is an integrated health system serving patients in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and North Dakota. Headquartered in Duluth, Minnesota, Essentia Health combines the strengths and talents of 14,100 employees, including more than 2,100 physicians and advanced practitioners, who serve our patients and communities through the mission of being called to make a healthy difference in people’s lives. The organization lives out its mission by having a patient-centered focus at 14 hospitals, 72 clinics, six long-term care facilities, three assisted living facilities, three independent living facilities, six ambulance services, 20 retail pharmacies, and one research institute.

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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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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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FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

WELL Health Enters into Automatic Share Purchase Plan

WELL Health Technologies Corp. | June 16, 2022

WELL Health Technologies Corp.ca company focused on positively impacting health outcomes by leveraging technology to empower practitioners and their patients globally, announced today that it has entered into an automatic share purchase plancwith a broker in order to facilitate repurchases of the Company's common shares under its previously announced normal course issuer bid. WELL previously announced that it had received approval from the Toronto Stock Exchange to, during the 12-month period commencing June 1, 2022 and terminating May 31, 2023, purchase up to 5,555,386 Common Shares, representing approximately 2.5% of the 222,215,443 Common Shares issued and outstanding as of May 30, 2022, by way of a NCIB on the TSX or through alternative trading systems or by such other means as may be permitted under applicable law. During the effective period of WELL's ASPP, WELL's broker may purchase Common Shares at times when WELL would not be active in the market due to insider trading rules and its own internal trading blackout periods. Purchases will be made by WELL's broker based upon parameters set by WELL when it is not in possession of any undisclosed material information about itself and its securities, and in accordance with the terms of the ASPP. Outside of the effective period of the ASPP, Common Shares may continue to be purchased in accordance with WELL's discretion, subject to applicable law. The ASPP has been entered into in accordance with the requirements of applicable Canadian securities laws. About WELL Health Technologies Corp. WELL is a practitioner focused digital healthcare company whose overarching objective is to positively impact health outcomes to empower and support healthcare practitioners and their patients. WELL has built an innovative practitioner enablement platform that includes comprehensive end to end practice management tools inclusive of virtual care and digital patient engagement capabilities as well as Electronic Medical Records (EMR), Revenue Cycle Management (RCM) and data protection services. WELL uses this platform to power healthcare practitioners both inside and outside of WELL's own omni-channel patient services offerings. As such, WELL owns and operates Canada's largest network of outpatient medical clinics serving primary and specialized healthcare services and is the provider of a leading multinational, multi-disciplinary telehealth offering. WELL is publicly traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol "WELL" and is part of the TSX Composite Index. The Company also trades on the OTCQX Markets under the symbol "WHTCF".

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Spotlight

With an estimated 8,500 new cases of skin cancer diagnosed in the U.S. every day, it is important that you not only protect yourself from the sun’s UV rays, but also regularly check your skin for anything out of the ordinary. While freckles and moles are often harmless, it is important to perform regular self-exams and follow the ABCDEs (asymmetry, border, color, diameter, evolution) to determine if a mark could be something more serious.

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