Pharos innovations gets three patents; MeHI announces $3.1M in grants for interoperability;

News From Around the Web

> Pharos Innovations, a patient engagement and care monitoring solutions provider, has been granted three patents from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for its Tel-Assurance® patient monitoring system. Tel-Assurance "monitors and helps alter patient behavior toward a healthier state by enabling better patient self-care," Pharos announced today. The patented system monitors patient self-care status each day, tracks prescription refills, assures follow-up appointments are set and kept, assesses in-home care needs, identifies high-risk clinical issues known to drive hospitalizations, and ultimately aims to lower hospital readmissions. Pharos Website 

> The Massachusetts eHealth Institute (MeHI) at the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative today announced nearly $1.3 million in grants to fund projects that advance the interoperability of electronic health records with the Commonwealth's health information exchange, called the Mass HIway, according to an announcement from Aprima. "These grantees are helping healthcare practitioners across Massachusetts improve the delivery of high-quality, cost-effective healthcare through access to the Mass HIway," said Pamela Goldberg, CEO of the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, in the announcement. "These are leading Health IT companies, some of them located here in the Commonwealth, and their expertise will help hospitals and small healthcare vendors better exchange information, thereby improving the quality of care for Massachusettscitizens." Announcement

Health Payer News

> It's not only the federally-run health insurance exchanges that are facing snags and technical glitches in their attempt to open for enrollment on Oct. 1. State-based exchanges are facing a slew of problems too, with the online marketplace in Washington, D.C., handling the biggest setback so far. The exchange, called the DC Health Link, is delaying two key functions--calculating consumers' eligibility for Medicaid and calculating the size of any federal subsidies that consumers can receive. Article

> Despite a consumer outreach campaign educating the public about the health insurance exchanges, uninsured Californians still don't know how the government can help them address healthcare costs, according to a new survey released only days before the exchanges launch. The survey, conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation, found 74 percent of people eligible for federal subsidies don't know or don't think they will qualify for the benefits. And among the respondents eligible for California's Medicaid program, barely more than 50 percent know they can sign up for it. Article

Medical Imaging News

> Despite the omnipresence of picture archiving and communication systems in today's radiology environment, radiologists remain dissatisfied with the efficiency of PACS software, according to a research study by the American College of Radiology's Image Metric imaging contract research organization. In the study, published online in the Journal of the American College of Radiology, University of Virginia School of Medicine professor of radiology Bruce Hillman, M.D. and colleagues surveyed five radiologists from different subspecialties and determined that each found their workstations hampered efficiency by not being very intuitive. Article

And Finally... Why doesn't the panda cam count as an essential employee? Article

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