ONC launches test method pilot; Two products complete Healtheway HIE testing;

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> Healtheway, the nonprofit public/private collaborative that supports eHealth exchange, has validated the first two products to successfully complete eHealth exchange product testing, Healthcare Informatics reports. Medicity's network v7 product and Informatic Corporation of America's CareAlign 3.0 have both now been validated. Proper testing reduces the cost of health information exchange by catching errors and reduces the need to deploy patches. Article

> The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT has launched a new Open Test Method Development Pilot program to enable providers to develop test methods and contribute their expertise to make the test methods streamlined or more user friendly. The pilot will be limited to two 2014 edition certification criteria. The development of the two test methods is expected to be completed by Oct. 31. Website

Health Finance News

> Retired hospital CEOs often stay with the institution in a well-paid emeritus position, the New York Times reports. That was apparently the case with Herbert Pardes, M.D., who retired as CEO of New York-Presbyterian Hospital in 2011. In 2012, he still received a pay package worth $5.6 million, which included more than $2 million in deferred compensation. Article

> Despite a nationwide slowdown on healthcare spending, a new study by healthcare economics consulting firm Dobson DaVanzo shows that consumers now spend more on healthcare through higher out-of-pocket expenses and premium costs. The Federation of American Hospitals commissioned the report, which examined the national spending slowdown occurring in tandem with a structural change in health insurance benefit design. Article

Health Insurance News

> Cost challenges under healthcare reform have caused major U.S. health insurers to jump onto the medical tourism trend. Some uninsured or underinsured Americans already travel overseas for bargain priced elective procedures and treatments. Now UnitedHealth Group, WellPoint and Humana are looking to curb expenses by encouraging their members to receive medical tourism procedures abroad through cross-border plans. Article

> Government investigators have been able to purchase health plans and obtain federal subsidies using fake applications. Undercover Government Accountability Office investigators attempted to enroll a dozen fictitious applicants in health plans by phone or using inaccurate Social Security numbers. Out of the dozen, only one fake application was denied subsidized coverage, while the remaining 11 enrolled successfully. Article

And Finally... Sometimes it's good that social media isn't private. Article