CardioNet, a wireless health services provider in Pennsylvania, agreed to pay $2.5 million to HHS to settle a HIPAA violation after it reported in January 2012 that a laptop containing 1,391 patients' data was stolen from an employee's vehicle. An HHS investigation found the provider did not have adequate risk analysis and management processes and had not implemented its HIPAA Security Rule procedures and policies, which were in draft form.
An unencrypted laptop that was not password-protected was stolen from a Lifespan employee's car on Feb. 25, possibly compromising the personal information of about 20,000 patients, including their names, medical record numbers, prescriptions and demographic information. Lifespan notified the affected individuals and said there was no evidence the data were accessed or used.
Congress should ensure that the ONC receives adequate funding to fulfill its obligations under the 21st Century Cures Act, according to a letter sent by AHIMA CEO Lynne Thomas Gordon to Sens. Patty Murray, D-Wash., and Roy Blunt, R-Mo. The letter further states that failure to provide sufficient funding to the ONC "will undermine a major tenet of the Cures Act."
The CMS will accept formal comments on proposed changes to the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs until June 13. These changes include revising the EHR reporting period from the full calendar year to any continuous 90-day period, implementing a policy that would not allow payment adjustments for eligible providers who conduct most of their professional services in ambulatory surgery centers, and adding a Medicare payment adjustment for eligible hospitals and professionals who cannot comply with meaningful-use requirements because of decertified technology.
Health CIOs can determine how their organizations may benefit from artificial intelligence by identifying their desired foundational AI component, choosing the appropriate AI framework, evaluating the AI technology stack and engaging with AI companies that would provide their required capabilities, writes health care and business executive Peter Nichol. "Attaining knowledge of the AI landscape and AI capabilities will drive more informed decisions, resulting in offering better services to consumers," Nichol writes.
The Department of Veterans Affairs has started converting older, inactive paper health records to EHRs in an effort to reduce the amount of office space used for the storage of physical patient health information and to reorganize claims processes. "It will give claims processors nationwide the ability to instantly access millions of inactive claim records when needed" by cutting delays due to digital conversion and paper record shipping, said VA Office of Business Process Integration Director Bradley Houston.
Researchers from IBM used a combination of visual analytics technology, deep learning and convolutional neural networks to assess the presence and severity of diabetic retinopathy. The technology was able to classify the disease severity with 86% accuracy in just 20 seconds and, according to Joanna Batstone, vice president and lab director at the IBM Research center in Australia, it "could potentially give patients an indication of their risk of the disease on the spot."
SERMO surveyed 3,086 physicians from 26 countries and found that 46% have witnessed an EMR/EHR outage or malfunction that endangered a patient's health or safety. Fifty-five percent of physicians in the US said they experienced such an incident, followed by 46% -- the global average -- in Canada and the UK and 39% in France.
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