This week's highlights: Appriss acquires patient event notification vendor PatientPing for $500 million, MEDITECH adds vaccine eligibility checking to the self-scheduling component of its patient portal, and the FBI and CISA warn that attacks employing the Trickbot malware continue.
• The FDA has changed its rules so that some companies can sell at-home COVID tests without having to first test them on asymptomatic people. The move is designed to boost widespread consumer testing as well as efforts for returning to work and school.
• The CMS has reversed a Trump-era policy that would have allowed Medicare Part D plans to cover fewer drugs under a new payment model.
• The CMS released a notice March 17th walking back four telehealth service codes that the agency said were inadvertently included on its final list because of technical errors.
• A cost-cutting change in Medicare policy will reduce payments to hospitals for some surgical procedures and increase costs for patients, designed to lower surgery costs by creating more competition between hospitals and independent ambulatory surgical centers.
• Happify Health, a platform for mental health and disease management programs, brought in $73 million in funding as part of a new Series D and other "related financing," with Deerfield Management Company heading the investments.
• Harmonize Health, which offers remote patient monitoring, chronic care management, and outcomes tracking for elderly and high-risk patients, raises $10 million in a Series A funding round.
• Appriss, known in healthcare for its prescription drug monitoring program interface capabilities, acquires patient event notification vendor PatientPing in a $500 million deal.
• MEDITECH adds vaccine eligibility checking to the self-scheduling component of its patient portal.
• MEDITECH works with Code, Dryrain Technologies, and ACS MediHealth to develop a mobile barcode scanning app that is compatible with its Expanse EHR.
• Paymerang announced a new strategic business partnership with Prelude Software, and now has a direct connection to Prelude’s PayPilot payment processing module making it easy to for MEDITECH Expanse hospital clients to choose and use Paymerang for its disbursement.
• Roche has launched a new COVID-19 test to help researchers monitor emerging variants and track mutations in the coronavirus’s genome that may make the disease more contagious or more deadly.
• Email security company Mimecast said it completed its forensic investigation into the impact of the SolarWinds supply chain attack and revealed that the threat actor managed to steal some source code.
• The FBI and CISA warn in a joint advisory that attacks employing the TrickBot malware continue, leveraging phishing emails as the initial infection vector.
• NIST has shared a mobile device privacy and security guide for enterprise BYOD policies.
• A review of the 100 largest U.S. hospitals by bed count finds that two-thirds are not in compliance with CMS’s price transparency rule, either by failing to post the files at all or not including payer-specific negotiated rates.
• The Wall Street Journal found that hundreds of hospitals have embedded code in their websites that prevents search engines from displaying pages with their price lists. The newspaper examined more than 3,100 sites. The previously confidential information must be disclosed under a new federal rule.
• People over 65 who have recovered from COVID-19 have a 50-50 chance of a second attack within six months of their first illness, a new study has found. The odds are much better for younger, healthier people, but still not a sure thing, according to the Danish study.
• Researchers at the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden reported that men who have survived a heart attack could prolong their life by taking PDE5 inhibitors such as Viagra. In fact, the more often they use it, the lower their risk of another attack.
• SailPoint released the findings from a survey of 262 security and IT managers/directors that explored why large, well-resourced enterprises are continuing to be compromised.
• Howard Messing, CEO of MEDITECH, will be a panelist on the CHIME21 Spring Forum Opening Keynote Panel, “Future Vision for Health and Care: What’s Coming Over the Horizon.” He will be joined by Judy Faulkner founder and CEO of Epic and Brent Schafer, CEO and Chairman of Cerner.
• The ONC issued two new Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on information blocking. One addresses existing contracts and the other discusses delay as interference.
• Navin, Haffty & Associates published its March newsletter, discussing the market momentum MEDITECH has achieved with its Expanse platform, the benefits of cloud hosting, and client project updates.