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Top stories summarized by our editors
6/30/2020

Email-based phishing attacks are rising again, Proofpoint researchers report, after several years in which remote ports, public-facing servers and other enterprise weak spots were the primary focus of ransomware distributors. Avaddon, a fresh ransomware, this month was distributed in more than 1 million emails in a single week, mostly aimed at US organizations.

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ZDNet
6/30/2020

UnityPoint Health agreed to pay as much as $7,000 to each patient affected by two data breaches in 2018 that compromised addresses, medical information, names and, in some cases, financial information. The first breach affected 16,400 people, the second affected 1.4 million, and both were the result of phishing attempts.

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UnityPoint Health
6/30/2020

House lawmakers voted 234-179 to pass legislation that would expand the Affordable Care Act several days after the Trump administration filed a legal brief asking the Supreme Court to strike down the health care law. The bill, which is not expected to advance in the Republican-controlled Senate, would expand eligibility for health insurance subsidies, increase federal funding for Medicaid expansion and permit HHS to negotiate lower drug prices to fund the changes, among other provisions.

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Supreme Court, Senate
6/30/2020

The ICD-10-CM or ICD-10-PCS Index/Tabular, the Official Coding and Reporting Guidelines for ICD-10-CM/PCS, and the American Hospital Association's Coding Clinic are go-to resources in determining whether and how to code a new procedure or diagnosis, writes AHIMA-approved trainer Laurie Johnson. Facility guidelines may be useful in the absence of official coding guidance, and guidelines should address which procedures are hard-coded and which should be coded by health information managers, she writes.

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ICD10Monitor
6/30/2020

The Los Angeles Network for Enhanced Services linked up with California's statewide prescription drug monitoring program database, known as the Controlled Substance Utilization Review and Evaluation System. Participants in the nonprofit health information exchange will have access to the PDMP without having to toggle between different interfaces, says LANES CEO Ali Modaressi.

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EHR Intelligence
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LANES
6/30/2020

Several health system and hospital CIOs said their organizations will need more advanced tools and technologies in the next six months to further expand remote work and telehealth services as the COVID-19 pandemic persists. Mayo Clinic CIO Criss Ross said next-generation virtual collaboration tools will help the organization respond to rising patient expectations, while Yale New Haven Health CIO Lisa Stump said her health system will need "more agility and flexibility" as well as digital tools and technology that improve patient safety and efficiency.

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Yale
6/29/2020

A policy statement and technical report from the American Academy of Pediatrics says EHRs should have the capacity to capture a child's growth, immunizations, reaching developmental milestones, achievement of life and academic skills, and any chronic medical or social conditions. Moreover, the AAP says EHRs should have functionality allowing shared family and social documentation, the integration of patient and family-generated information, and the inclusion of information from schools.

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AAP News
6/29/2020

Symptoms of COVID-19 have persisted for months in some people, including some whose symptoms were relatively mild, and health care providers are trying to find out why and how to help. Pulmonologist Jessica Dine noticed the phenomenon using the daily check-in app COVID Watch and has begun studying it, and neurologist Mitchell Miglis and his colleagues are setting up a patient registry for long-term tracking.

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NBC News
6/29/2020

The CMS and the HHS Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT extended deadlines for complying with data access and interoperability rules, but they have not issued new rules, leaving questions of enforcement open. "Given the absence of follow-on rulemaking to date by the secretary, we are concerned as to how OIG will handle complaints of information blocking by providers until such subsequent rulemaking is completed," AHIMA wrote.

6/29/2020

An analysis of data from the Department of Veterans Affairs National Center for Patient Safety identified mismanagement of EHR inbox notifications and an overreliance on EHRs for communication as the primary cause of health IT-related outpatient diagnostic delays. Failure to gather key diagnostic information, technical problems, inadequate information in electronic orders and ambiguous responsibility for test result follow-up contributed to delays, researchers reported in JAMA Network Open.