Deals, Deployments, and Short News -- Nov. 18, 2008

By Allison Proffitt, Digital HealthCare & Productivity staff

November 18, 2008 | Health Evolution Partners has announced today an expansion of the Health Evolution Partners Growth Fund investing team. “Our investment team covers the key sectors, stages and geographies of the health care industry,” said David Brailer, chairman. “They have lived the challenges and opportunities faced by growing health care companies and understand what they need to do to navigate the current environment. I have asked this team to be relentlessly focused on building the next wave of leading health care brands.” The members of the Health Evolution Partners Growth Fund team include: Adam Grossman, Principal; Braden Kelly, Senior Advisor; Brian Kirkbride, Vice President; Christopher McFadden, Managing Director; Ian McKelvie, Senior Associate; Carter Paine, Senior Associate; and William Winkenwerder, Jr. Senior Advisor, formerly Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs, in the U.S. Department of Defense.

The Certification Commission for Healthcare Information Technology (CCHIT) has announced the newly certified Inpatient (hospital-based) and Emergency Department electronic health record (EHR) products, as well as a special Enterprise EHR certification for vendors that provide comprehensive Ambulatory, Inpatient, and Emergency Department EHRs that are interoperable. The new CCHIT Certified 08 Inpatient EHR product is EpicCare Clinical Inpatient System, by Epic Systems Corporation. CCHIT Certified 08 Emergency Department EHR products are ASAP Emergency Department Information System, by Epic Systems Corporation; EmergisoftED, by Emergisoft Corporation; and Wellsoft, by Wellsoft Corporation. CCHIT 08 Enterprise certification has been awarded to EpicCare Enterprise Clinical System, by Epic Systems Corporation.  

Aetna has appointed Lonny Reisman as Chief Medical Officer.  Reisman is the CEO and co-founder of ActiveHealth Management, now an Aetna subsidiary.  He will join Aetna's management executive committee. Reisman replaces Troyen A. Brennan, M.D, who is leaving Aetna for a new role at CVS Caremark. Reisman has served as ActiveHealth Management's CEO and as a director of that company since October 1998.  The CareEngine System is ActiveHealth's patented clinical decision support technology. The CareEngine continuously gathers the medical, pharmacy and laboratory claims data for patients and compares it against the latest findings in evidence-based literature.  The results are provided on a priority basis to physicians and their patients to help them better manage care.

Southcentral Foundation of Anchorage has engaged Avatar International to deploy a comprehensive patient satisfaction evaluation and service delivery optimization program. Southcentral Foundation is an Alaska Native-owned health care organization serving approximately 55,000 Alaska Native and American Indian people living in Anchorage, the Mat-Su Valley and 55 rural villages in the Anchorage Service Unit. Avatar will utilize its Intelligent Surveys to evaluate the entire patient journey, recognizing that high standards of care are only achieved when viewed holistically.  Some specific examples that go beyond the traditional care delivery model include satisfaction with Southcentral Foundation in areas such as access to and timeliness of care and cultural respectfulness in the delivery of care.  Customer feedback will be sought regarding inpatient and outpatient medical care, including urgent care, as well as dental, behavioral health and Elder care.  Avatar and Southcentral Foundation will utilize results to develop a targeted patient experience enhancement program and work collaboratively on its deployment.

Microsoft Corp. has announced that Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont (BCBSVT) has saved nearly a half-million dollars with a Microsoft partner compensation management system. Implemented to overhaul incentive compensation and agent management capabilities, Computer Solutions & Software International’s (CSSI) VUE Compensation Management, a Microsoft .NET Framework-based application, has also enabled BCBSVT to decouple broker commissions from insurance premiums, reduce manual interventions by 97 percent and go paperless with broker commission statements.

A new report suggests that over 2 million low-income Medicare beneficiaries may once again face a disruption to their prescription drug coverage as skyrocketing premium costs and a dramatic reduction in plans available will require them to switch to new Medicare Part D plans to avoid new costs next year. Changes to the 2009 Medicare Part D plans will force low income beneficiaries to switch to new plans or face premiums that they cannot afford and/or limit access to the medicines prescribed by their doctors, according to a report released by the National Senior Citizens Law Center (NSCLC). Open enrollment for selecting a new plan starts November 15th and runs until December 31st; new plans will take effect on January 1st, 2009. The new NSCLC report recommends a number of changes to the Medicare Part D system that would reduce annual disruption to low income beneficiaries, including: establishing a Medicare-administered Part D plan to provide Part D enrollees the same options and choices they have in other parts of the Medicare program; and changing the way that plans eligible for the Low Income Subsidy are identified in order to reduce the annual changes to eligible plans. For a copy of the full NSCLC report, go to

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