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Industry Perspectives

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Maverick Health Intelligence: Only What Matters on Health Information Policy (article)

September 03, 2020

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has at least one friend, and no, it is not Mark Zuckerberg -- her name is Alice. On a webinar to explain the eHealth Initiative and Center for Democracy & Technology’s Draft Consumer Privacy Framework for Health Data, eHI’s VP and Senior Counsel Alice Leiter announced that the new framework is an effort to “help out the FTC” so the agency is not overwhelmed by having to police every element of health data that is not regulated by HIPAA. The purpose is to propose a comprehensive consumer health data protection scheme, like GDPR or CCPA, and to complement or go further than other self-regulatory codes of conduct (CARIN Alliance, FTC Best Practices for Mobile Health App Developers, Network Advertising Initiative). The draft tries hard to define the ever-elusive concept of “consumer health data” and proposes specific protections and natural exceptions (i.e., research, to prevent death or injury). With Robert Wood Johnson Foundation funds, this was a serious effort with serious experts contributing serious time -- even the Better Business Bureau is being considered as a possible home for the new membership entity that vets, enrolls, and monitors its members. Maybe take a look at the draft and comment by September 25, 2020 -- just email FTC’s BFF at alice@ehidc.org. Alice may be the best friend the FTC has had in a long time.

Draft Guidelines Introduced to Protect Consumer Data on mHealth Platforms (mHealth Intelligence Article)

September 03, 2020

Draft Guidelines Introduced to Protect Consumer Data on mHealth Platforms

The Draft Consumer Privacy Framework for Health Data aims to set standards for the collection, use and protection of health data on smartwatches, fitness bands, mHealth apps and other consumer-facing technology.

CDT, eHI Unveil Draft Consumer Health Data Privacy Framework (Article, Health IT Security)

September 03, 2020

CDT, eHI Unveil Draft Consumer Health Data Privacy Framework

Drafted in collaboration with providers, tech giants, and advocacy groups, the consumer health data privacy framework provides standards for health data not protected by HIPAA regulations.

The 2020 Virtual Care Report: Navigating Patient Care in a Post-COVID World

August 20, 2020

In order to learn about the economic impact of COVID-19, how perceptions of telehealth have changed and how it will be used post- COVID-19, Updox surveyed more than 650 physicians1 and more than 1,200 consumers.2 Their responses underscore the need to continue investing in virtual care solutions across the entire patient experience and ensuring reimbursement follows suit. Read on to learn what the data says about the state of virtual care post-COVID, and what the industry needs to do to ensure long-term payment reform.

How Technology Has Changed the Role of Nursing

August 13, 2020

As healthcare technology evolves, nurses serve on the front lines of applying the latest advancements to serve their patients with increasing efficiency and effectiveness. In fact, by 2017, more than 95% of all hospitals in the U.S. had adopted certified electronic medical record (EMR) systems.

Technology continues to shift the nursing field in many ways, with the pace of change expected to increase with time. Read on to find information on how this will take shape, whether nurses can expect to be replaced by technology, and recent trends and advancements in healthcare.

Insights from Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Payers: Addressing Social Determinants of Health and Advancing Health Equity

August 10, 2020

This report outlines several key findings, which were developed after convening pharmaceutical manufacturers, health plans, community based SDOH programs, patient advocacy organizations, and other experts. Merck and Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc. participated and provided financial support for development of the report. Findings addressed in the report include:

  • Using COVID-19 as a catalyst for change
  • The role of data in advancing health equity
  • A shared SDOH framework
  • Tools for putting SDOH into action
  • Using data to understand health while addressing social risk
  • Appropriate use of SDOH
  • SDOH and health literacy
  • Positive benefits of SDOH

“The pandemic has revealed dramatic disparities in testing, care, treatment and health outcomes across minority populations” said Jen Covich Bordenick, Chief Executive Officer of eHI. “It was encouraging to learn about the different partnerships that pharmaceutical manufacturers and payers are leveraging to tackle the issues.”

 

Early Impact Of CMS Expansion Of Medicare Telehealth During COVID-19

July 16, 2020

 

By Seema Verma, Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)

During the Coronavirus pandemic, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has taken unprecedented action to expand telehealth for Medicare beneficiaries. Since people were advised to stay at home to reduce risk of exposure of COVID-19, there was an urgency to increase access to telehealth services to help people who need routine care and allow beneficiaries to remain in their homes.  Early CMS data have shown telehealth to be an effective way for people to access health care safely during the COVID-19 pandemic, whether it’s getting a prescription refilled, managing chronic conditions, or obtaining mental health counseling. 

With these transformative changes unleashed over the last several months, it’s hard to imagine merely reverting to the way things were before. As the country re-opens, CMS is reviewing the flexibilities the administration has introduced and their early impact on Medicare beneficiaries to inform whether these changes should be made a permanent part of the Medicare program.

Telehealth in Times of Crisis & Calm

July 10, 2020

Healthcare practices face significant challenges when it comes to keeping their brick and mortar businesses alive in the face of evolving safety requirements and consumer expectations. NextGen Healthcare examines why telehealth is so vital to a practice's survival and future growth, how providers & patients can embrace virtual visits and why a virtual visit solution that's integrated with your EHR and PM is critical to maintain workflow continuity.

COVID-19 Federal Policy Workgroup CONCLUDES Meeting - Report Forthcoming

July 09, 2020

In late April, eHI launched a special workgroup to help craft a report with a set of recommendations to fully leverage health IT and digital health to fight COVID-19 and future public health challenges.

Over the past two months, eHI members have dialed in to hear presentations from guest speakers and discuss critical issue areas including: telehealth and remote patient monitoring; artificial intelligence and machine learning; access to broadband; health information exchange; and public health surveillance.

While eHI staff is busy drafting a report made up of the consensus recommendations from our eHI member participants, you can find short summaries and recordings of every meeting below and keep an eye on your inbox for updates on the release of our workgroup report. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Catherine Pugh.

 

Telehealth and Remote Patient Monitoring

On April 27th, eHI Assistant Vice President of Policy Catherine Pugh provided an overview of the temporary federal telehealth policy changes that were enacted at the beginning of the COVID-19 public health emergency and discussed recommendations for making some of these changes permanent. Robert Jarrin with the Omega Concern presented on how remote patient monitoring (RPM) tools were being used during COVID-19 and Medicare reimbursement policy related to RPM.

Find a recording of the workgroup meeting here.

Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning

On May 11th, Eileen Koski from IBM T.J. Watson Research Center joined the workgroup to present on how IBM was using artificial intelligence (AI) to support COVID-19 data modeling and insights through their Deep Search service, drug candidate exploration, and Functional Genetics Platform tools. The workgroup then discussed how federal policy can support and strengthen these tools to fight disease.

 

Find a recording of the workgroup meeting here.

Broadband Access

On May 26th, Brad Wolters, Director of Federal Government Relations with eHI member Marshfield Clinic presented to the workgroup on the challenges their health system – with locations in rural Wisconsin – have faced in using technology to continue to deliver care to patients during stay-at-home periods and when facilities were closed for non-essential services. Because of a lack of high-speed broadband in many areas they service, the use of audio-only telehealth was crucial for Marshfield.

Find a recording of the workgroup meeting here.

Health Information Exchange

On June 8th, Jaime Bland, CEO of eHI member Nebraska Health Information Initiative (NEHII) discussed how they’ve helped support the response to COVID-19 in their state by supporting lab results reporting and hospital status/availability. The workgroup then discussed policy issues such as increasing HIE funding and better coordination between federal agencies with jurisdiction over lab reporting requirements.

Find a recording of the workgroup meeting here.

Public Health Surveillance

Finally, on June 22nd, Dr. Scott McNabb from Emory University presented to the workgroup on modernizing our country’s public health surveillance system. The workgroup discussed steps that could be taken to move from the current disease-specific and siloed system to an integrated surveillance system.

Find a recording of the workgroup meeting here.