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    Industry News Update 4/15/22

    April 2022 | Mike Murphy, Director of Business and Industry Analytics

    Industry Trends

    This week's highlights:  Imprivata announced that it has completed the acquisition of SecureLink, the leader in critical access management, Walmart Health will open five new locations in Florida, & the nation's life expectancy dropped for a second year in a row last year. 

     

    Regulatory, Legislative, and Legal News

    • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky announced plans Monday to revamp the agency, hiring a senior federal health official outside of the Atlanta-based agency to conduct a one-month review to “kick off an evaluation of CDC’s structure, systems, and processes.
    • Starting Tuesday, April 5th, the HHS will no longer adjudicate claims submitted for vaccine administration due to a lack of funds, according to the Health Resources & Services Administration.
    • The Biden administration proposed a rule aimed at fixing the so-called "family glitch" in the ACA to allow more families to qualify for subsidized coverage through the health insurance marketplace.
    • The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services will phase out pandemic-related temporary waivers to nursing home regulations, the agency announced Thursday.
    • Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed legislation last week that reforms the prior authorization process in Michigan. The Health Can't Wait Act shortens the time payers have to consider prior authorization requests before they are considered granted.
     

    Financial and Investment News

    • The emerging field of “Explainable AI,” or XAI, has spurred big investment in Silicon Valley as startups and cloud giants compete to make opaque software more understandable and has stoked discussion among regulators who want to ensure automated decision-making is done fairly and transparently.
    • Imprivata announced that it has completed the acquisition of SecureLink, the leader in critical access management.
    • Diligent Robotics, developer of the Moxi robot that performs delivery tasks for healthcare teams, raises $30 million in a Series B funding round.
     

    New Products and Services

    • Walmart Health will open five new locations in Florida, as the retailer continues to scale its "one-stop-shop" vision for healthcare offerings. Walmart is opening two clinics in Jacksonville, two in Orlando and one in Tampa in the coming months, the company said Tuesday.
    • SailPoint Technologies unveiled two new SailPoint Identity Security Cloud product suites designed to provide customers with next-generation identity security capabilities. These suites set a new standard for identity security, embracing an autonomous, intelligent approach to protecting modern enterprises.
    • GE Healthcare has landed FDA pre-market approval for software that allows anesthesia providers to set targets for the end-tidal oxygen and anesthetic agents and reduces greenhouse gas emissions during surgery. The company is planning to launch the software in the U.S. in the coming months.
     

    Privacy and Security

    • A state audit discovered that the Connecticut Health Insurance Exchange, known as Access Health CT,  failed to report 44 data breaches to the auditors of public accounts and the state comptroller between July 2017 and March 2021. Although Access Health CT reported the 44 breaches to HHS as required by the HIPAA Breach Notification Rule, it failed to comply with state-level breach notification requirements.
    • Erik Littlejohn, CEO of CloudWave, stressed the importance of immutable back-ups to defend against ransomware in a recent interview with Healthcare IT News. Littlejohn also noted that more and more insurers are requiring that capability.
    • Ransomware attacks are causing unprecedented crises at small and rural hospitals. Federal databases detail a number of small providers caught up in the sweep of attacks targeting the health care system.
     

    Other News

    • The nation's life expectancy dropped for a second year in a row last year, according to a new analysis, falling to 76.6 years, the lowest in at least 25 years.
    • Unionized nurses at Stanford hospitals in California voted in favor of authorizing a strike, meaning more than 4,500 nurses could walk off the job in a bid for better staffing, wages and mental health measures in new contracts.
    • The Niagara Falls Public Library in New York will use a $29,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health to install two private booths patrons can use for telemedicine consults.
    • Iowa’s rural areas are seeing emergency services volunteers retire without enough new ones to replace them. Nationwide, emergency medical services are seeing high rates of turnover for emergency service technicians and paramedics, with an average of 20 to 30 percent leaving annually

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