March, 2020

Waking Up a Health Consumer in the COVID-19 Era

Health Populi

With President Trump’s somber speech from the Oval Office last night, we wake up on 12th March 2020 to a ban on most travel from Europe to the U.S., recommendations for hygiene, and call to come together in America.

IT deficits are eating hospital profits. CEOs need to wake up.

KevinMD

I work for a hospital network with the world's slowest computers. I timed it: Last shift, it took me fifteen minutes to log on. The first computer obtained didn't function at all. It had been worked on the day before by information technology services (IT).

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Doctor with coronavirus turns to Twitter with his experience

Mobi Health News

As COVID-19 continues to spread across the US, healthcare providers and industry experts take to Twitter to dispel myths.

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Clocktree System Status Updates

Clocktree

Due to the dramatic increase in demand for telehealth services, Clocktree’s system has experienced times of overload, making some services very slow or unavailable. We will post current updates here, letting everyone know the current status. Thanks for your patience through this time, and please know we are doing everything we can to make things go smoothly for you and your clients: Wednesday 3/25, 6am PST: System functional, no reported issues.

Leveraging Automated Telehealth During a Capacity Crisis

As the healthcare system faces unprecedented challenges during the COVID-19 crisis, it’s more important than ever to make the most of clinical resources. Automation holds the key to drastically increasing clinical capacity and flattening the curve.

FDA steps on the gas for digital health

Morning eHealth

Latest stimulus bill offers plenty for digital health — Telehealth in the states

More Trending

Consumers’ Embrace of Digital Health Tech Stalls, and Privacy Concerns Prevail – Accenture’s 2020 Research

Health Populi

Millions of dollars and developers’ time have been invested in conceiving and making digital health tools.

Telehealth: Get ready for big changes in health care

KevinMD

The year 2020 might bear witness to a significant shift in control of health care from the providers, insurers, and the government to actual health care consumers.

How the world of health and tech is looking at the coronavirus outbreak

Mobi Health News

The crisis is opening up new opportunities for health and tech, but it is also bringing new challenges.

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Clocktree System Overload

Clocktree

We are experiencing severe overload of our system, but doing everything we can to remedy this. We hope to be back to normal operation soon. Our engineers are working around the clock to try to handle the increased volume but we don’t have an ETA on when this will be fully resolved. We are so sorry for the convenience this is causing during this crucial time, and thank you for your patience

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Primary Care Is Dead. Long Live Primary Care!

The primary care system is failing patients and providers. Capacity shortages have led to long wait times and physician burnout. To fix the system, we must find innovative ways to boost capacity and meet patient-consumers’ shifting expectations.

Telehealth and coronavirus

Morning eHealth

Tech company call — HITAC on deck

Technology can help diagnose, contain COVID-19 – within limits

Healthcare IT News - Telehealth

Digital tools such as telehealth, remote patient monitoring, data analytics and even consumer-facing AI-based chatbots could play a key role in containing the outbreak of COVID-19 and help people who think they've been exposed to the novel coronavirus – but experts warn that such tools are not a cure-all. For example, AI-based algorithms could be most helpful in providing information about patients who have already been diagnosed with COVID-19 or who are suspected of being infected. Monitoring these patients remotely with clinical-grade sensors and collecting data on numerous physiological signals could improve clinical decision-making for providers, and the process can also help them learn more about the disease so they can better treat it. The learning from the AI-based algorithms could then be combined with other information such as laboratory and imaging tests to create a composite mechanism that could help clinicians understand the disease better, and ultimately lead to better detection or prediction of the early signs of infection. Kuldeep Singh Rajput, CEO of Biofourmis, a Boston-based specialist in digital therapeutics, told Healthcare IT News that there are clinical-grade wearables now available that can monitor patients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 who are under quarantine, whether it's in a home or healthcare setting. The wearable biosensors capture multiple physiology signs. And when combined with advanced analytics, Rajput says there is a "huge opportunity" to detect physiology changes indicative of clinical deterioration that require medical intervention. "While there's still much the medical community does not know about COVID-19, there are known signs and symptoms such as fever, increased respiration and shortness of breath," he explained. "Physiological signals such as temperature, respiration rate and heart rate can be measured by wearables while a patient is in quarantine to detect worsening conditions and impending issues." Dr. Saif Abed, director of cybersecurity advisory services at AbedGraham, explained that any platform that allows the general public to self-screen, virtually seek clinical guidance, be triaged or receive support during self-isolation/quarantine is going to be beneficial, not just in terms of diagnosis, but also in terms of containment as a preventative measure for public health. "Containing something as transmissible as COVID-19 means we shouldn't be flocking to a family physician or emergency room at the slightest symptom, because that can exacerbate spread, so remote monitoring could be powerful," said Abed. He noted that during a public health crisis, the more high-quality data that is available, the better organizations will be at forecasting and planning for multiple scenarios based on their likelihood. "The right platform processing datasets at volume, speed and with sophistication could significantly impact our ability to take more precise measures for containment," he said. Abed pointed to AI-based technologies like chatbots, saying they could be effective for triaging and guiding that general public for self-isolation. "It will not be 100 percent accurate, as not every person will be classically symptomatic when they used a bot and might simply be an atypical case," he noted. "However, the goal at a public health level is to minimize spread so chatbots could be useful to guide human behavior and be an efficient resource when a health system is short on staff to take calls." Rajput agreed chatbots can have some advantages. For example, they can engage people and provide education about their disease or ask them to take certain precautions. "This type of automated engagement can support the interactions patients have with their clinicians, but its value does not come close to other AI-based tools such as AI-driven analytics combined with a clinical-grade wearable for remote monitoring," he noted. Dr. Jay Anders, chief medical officer of Medicomp Systems, a provider of physician-driven point-of care solutions that fix EHRs, said with the outbreak of COVID-19, quick identification and accurate diagnosis of the condition is critical to help prevent the spread of the virus. "Our clinical knowledge base team is constantly monitoring new and existing diagnoses, guidelines and terminologies to ensure our clinical data engine is up to date and accurate," Anders explained. "As new diseases or illnesses are identified, we enter the clinical guidelines into our database, along with any clinically-relevant terminologies, symptoms and information." However, Anders noted that preventing the further spread of COVID-19 requires more than entering in the terminologies and diagnosis protocols into a clinical database. "The quick identification of the virus is critical, and the best way to get clinical guidelines and terminologies in front of a physician is to provide them at the point of care," he said. When treating a symptomatic patient, physicians should be presented with a clinically relevant diagnosis when documenting the chart note, because when armed with the most current information at the point of care, physicians can make accurate and timely diagnoses. He said the greatest challenge of compiling and distributing clinical information is that existing EHRs are inundated with too much data that is neither structured nor accessible. "When time is of the essence – which it currently is with the coronavirus outbreak – physicians do not have time to search through screens upon screens of data to find the information they need," Anders noted. He explained that clinicians need data that is compiled, stored, and distributed in a structured, clinically relevant format, which not only allows for quicker identification of presenting symptoms, but also makes it easier to interpret and share with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other physicians. "To slow the spread of COVID-19, clinicians need tools that help them to quickly and accurately identify potentially infected patients, and efficiently and effectively share critical disease information," he said. Nathan Eddy is a healthcare and technology freelancer based in Berlin. Email the writer: nathaneddy@gmail.com. Twitter: @dropdeaded209. Healthcare IT News is a HIMSS Media publication.

Lockdown Economics for U.S. Health Consumers

Health Populi

The hashtag #StayHome was ushered onto Twitter by 15 U.S. national healthcare leaders in a USA Today editorial yesterday. The op-ed co-authors included Dr. Eric Topol, Dr. Leana Wen, Dr. Zeke Emanuel, Dr. Jordan Shlain, Dr. Vivek Murthy, Andy Slavitt, and other key healthcare opinion leaders.

Hypoglycemia Unawareness: Why It Occurs and What to Do About It

Insulin Nation

For a newly diagnosed type 1 diabetic, there is nothing scarier than having your blood sugar bottom out. One minute you’re fine, the next you’re sitting in a pool of your own sweat trembling and struggling to put a coherent thought together.

Big Idea: Primary Care Automation

Healthcare automation that gives primary care providers more time with their patients—and less on screens—can improve care for patients, increase satisfaction for providers, and deliver positive bottom-line results for system leaders. Download this guide to learn how to optimize automation and keep the patient-provider relationship at the heart of the healthcare experience.

How digital health can help reduce anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic

Mobi Health News

Online mental health support is increasingly important as communities face lockdown and social distancing measures

CDC recommends telehealth in case of coronavirus outbreak

Clocktree

The Centers for Disease Control has released helpful steps for Americans to take to prepare for a possible outbreak of the novel coronavirus. One of these steps is to make sure you have a plan to manage your family’s healthcare online. Now is a good time to access your Clocktree account and make sure you know how to contact your healthcare professionals online, should the need arise.

National emergency declaration boosts telehealth

Morning eHealth

More details on Google’s coronavirus site — A call for health data donations

COVID-19: ATA, HIMSS, others want waivers for Medicare telehealth restrictions

Healthcare IT News - Telehealth

As the novel coronavirus continues to spread, taxing the resources of U.S. health systems as they stretch to manage the probability of more COVID-19 patients, the American Telemedicine Association and other healthcare organizations are calling on Congress to help. WHY IT MATTERS.

Virtual Front Door or Brick Wall? Care Pathways in Healthcare

Are you offering your patients a virtual front door or a brick wall? Today, 85% of healthcare visits start online. If your patients don’t have a way to access care virtually, you’re losing them to Dr. Google. Clear care pathways that start online ensure your patients get the best care they need while staying loyal to you.

Shaky Trust in the Age of the Coronavirus – Who Do Americans Trust for COVID-19 Facts?

Health Populi

One in two Americans trust the Centers for Disease Control for the facts on the coronavirus pandemic, and 43% trust the World Health Organization.

Telehealth, HIPAA compliance and innovation tracking

Aging in Place Technology Watch

The coronavirus pandemic has prompted instant behavior and tech changes. And not just about hand washing and social distancing. For the past two days, it’s apparent that the seemingly forever slow growth of telehealth adoption has entered a new, “When can I have that? Yesterday?” phase.

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EverlyWell, Nurx to release at-home COVID-19 test kits within a week

Mobi Health News

This news comes amid the shortage of testing kits in the U.S.

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Will ViaCyte’s Encaptra Cell Delivery System ‘Cure’ Type 1 Diabetes?

Insulin Nation

When you were diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, you were probably told that a cure was “just around the corner.” And that “corner” likely came and went years or decades ago.

Convenience Care Is Here, and It's Eating Your Lunch

Patients want high-quality care that is accessible and affordable. If they can’t get it from you, direct-to-consumer healthcare services make it easy for them to get it somewhere else. Give them the ability to consume your services just like they consume everything else in their lives: on their phones or computers, quickly, and where it’s convenient for them.

Health providers desperate for PPE take to Twitter

Morning eHealth

HHS' expected licensing reg appears to be a letter to states — Privacy, telehealth measures in Phase 3 sail through Senate

OCR will ease restrictions on telehealth tech during COVID-19

Healthcare IT News - Telehealth

The HHS Office for Civil Rights announced on Tuesday that during the coronavirus pandemic it will use discretion when enforcing HIPAA-compliance for telehealth communications tools. WHY IT MATTERS.

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How Coronavirus Is Re-Shaping Consumer Behavior, From the Amusement Park to the Voting Booth

Health Populi

The coronavirus has shaken U.S. consumer confidence, both in terms of financial markets and personal health risks.

Five new technologies from the 2020 Market Overview

Aging in Place Technology Watch

echnology for older adults has become mainstream. The 2020 Market Overview of Technology for Aging is now online. This 2020 version reflects the growing market interest in the boomer-senior demographic and its position in the Longevity Economy.

Stop Creating Disloyal Patients

90 percent of patients feel no obligation to stay with a healthcare system that doesn’t offer digital tools. What can you do in the face of such a sobering statistic? Patient-facing telehealth options that allow patients to get virtually instantaneous care privately, securely, and from anywhere can keep your patients from seeking care from the easiest, nearest, and cheapest provider.

How telemedicine is being used on the frontlines of the coronavirus crisis

Mobi Health News

Yesterday MassChallenge hosted a summit on innovation in the age of the coronavirus crisis, and panelists discussed how providers are implementing new digital programs into their toolbox.

Coronavirus and T1D: What You Need to Know and How to Prepare

Insulin Nation

As news continues to grow concerning the spread of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, it can be hard not to worry about your own safety. This is especially true if you are a person living with type 1 diabetes and are already at an increased risk for health problems and infection.

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Employers balance coronavirus disclosure with privacy

Morning eHealth

Telehealth groups ask for more leeway — Coronavirus stresses antiquated health IT