Healthcare Technology Featured Article

March 10, 2012

TMCnet Healthcare Week in Review

Common thinking: you hear a heartbeat, someone’s alive. Most women, like me, will never forget going to hear the baby’s heartbeat for the first time when they’re pregnant, and just hearing silence. But doctors have found, according to a story by Mike Wehner at Tecca, that you don’t actually need a heartbeat to keep you alive. That is, if you have an artificial heart. New artificial heart technology continuously “circulates blood flow, but leaves out the familiar thump,” Wehner writes.

Some experts feel health plans are what will drive the success of health information exchanges (HIEs). HIEs won’t be able to be set up everywhere, as the health reform law stipulates that payers must get involved,” Gary Austin, principal and co-founder of TranzformHealth, a Las Vegas-based healthcare consultancy, told Jennifer Prestigiacomo.

But HIEs are certainly first and foremost in the new world of healthcare. In an interview conducted by David Brailer, M.D., former coordinator of health IT, in the March issue of Health Journal, Farzad Mostashari, M.D. says they are up and coming and ready for prime time.

Long known for its computers and software, IBM is now taking big steps in the healthcare industry. Today, the company announced it has formed a new Watson Healthcare Advisory Board of medical experts in primary care, oncology, biomedical informatics and medical innovation to help doctors and healthcare professionals improve diagnosis and treatment in chronic disease and oncology, according to a company press release. The goal, the press release says, is to provide IBM with “insights on healthcare issues that could be positively impacted by Watson technology adoption.”

The risks today for the safety and privacy of healthcare information are many. Whether it’s someone hacking into a hospital database, or, as has been happening all too often, a careless employee leaving unprotected data behind, healthcare organizations everywhere have to be concerned about the increasing insecurity of their data.

Today four expert groups came together to release a report, The Financial Impact of Breached Protected Health Information: A Business Case for Enhanced PHI Security, that giveshealth care organizations a new way to evaluate the “at risk” value of protected health information (PHI)” and how to show healthcare organizations five ways to “make a business case for appropriate investments to better protect PHI,” according to a press release posted at

Clickatell, a mobile messaging provider, today announced that Truth On Call selected its messaging solution to poll physicians about industry devices or drugs on behalf of manufacturers, according to a company press release. Clickatell’s solution will provide “global short messaging service (SMS) delivery, 24/7 live support, short code provisioning and easy-to-use APIs” to deliver its mobile polling service to healthcare providers, according to the press release.

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