News 3/2/11


Speech recognition vendor Nuance, of Dragon Naturally Speaking fame, announces a hosted solution called the Nuance Healthcare Development Platform. The cloud-based platform does speech recognition and has Clinical Language Understanding (CLU) technology, which can take speech and convert it to structured data for entry into an EMR. The new hosted solution is marketed as an easily integrated voice recognition platform for application developers using the Nuance Healthcare Developer Program.


Trinity Health (MI) chooses MEDSEEK as its patient portal and will use the portal as the key to improving patient experience. The release describes two phases to the rollout, first with basic PHR access and second with secure messaging and smart phone access. It’s a pretty big win for MEDSEEK as Trinity has over 450 facilities.

A new study from Canada finds that using Google to search for information about meds results in better sources if the search is performed in the US vs. Canada. I was unaware that the NIH and Google had partnered last year so that the top results in the US guide users to the National Library of Medicine web site. By contrast, searches for meds in Canada result in links to drug maker pages and Wikipedia.


The McKesson Foundation announces the six grant recipients of its Mobilizing For Health Initiative. The grants were designed to explore the use of mobile technology in the management of diabetes. All six of the projects will be completed within one year and all target populations served by community clinics.

Ascom gets FDA clearance for its ClinicalConneX system to be used to deliver remote monitoring alerts and data to clinicians. The system is wireless and geared towards the hospital setting.


Anesthesia Business Consultants (ABC) partners with enterprise mobile developer Mobile Epiphany to develop a suite of solutions they are calling F1RSTTouch Fast Solutions. The mobile app is designed to streamline tasks for providers.

A new round of USDA telemedicine grants are announced by Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. The grants provide support to providers to deliver care to rural areas. The awards are up to $500K and applications are due April 25.


Northrop Grumman releases a mobile app, VA-214, to allow veterans to access medical records stored in VA MyHealtheVet. The app is being called a mobile blue button and runs on Apple and Android devices.

The American Academy of Dermatology and American Telemedicine Association are seeking to have teledermatology covered under Medicare Part B. To me, telederm seems like a no-brainer for telemed because the tech required is cheap and the remote evaluations are reliable. Also, good luck finding a rural dermatologist.


Telcom giant Avaya showcases three healthcare-focused products at HIMSS: 1) Avaya Mobile Device Checkout 3.0, which is a LAN-enabled clinical communication platform; 2) Avaya Patient Follow-up targeted at reducing re-admits; and 3) Avaya Flare Experience for clinician-to-clinician interaction.

HP partners with Parental Health so that HP can sell its devices loaded with Parental’s MISTY product. MISTY is a system for monitoring seniors either living at home or in assisted living facilities.

A survey finds that 25% of patients suffering from chronic diseases seek support online from those suffering from similar conditions, while only 15% without chronic diseases seek similar help. This is a finding that seems intuitive, but I guess having data to quantify and back it up helps.

Travis Good is in his final year of an MD/MBA program and is involved with multiple health IT startups

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