Healthcare Technology Magazine News

AMD Global Telemedicine Announces the Expansion of School-Based Telemedicine Programs Across 14 States

AMD Global Telemedicine Inc. (AMD), the world’s leading supplier of clinical Telemedicine Encounter Management Solutions (TEMS) TM, announces the expansion of their school-based telemedicine programs across 14 states within the Continental US.

The telemedicine technology is implemented by community health clinics to improve children’s access to quality healthcare and provide primary care services in school clinics. School-based clinics that have adopted AMD’s telemedicine technology represent the following states: Alabama, California, Colorado, Florida, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia. AMD reports a 250% increase in the number of states using their technology for school-based applications, over the last 18 months.

“Telemedicine technology has allowed us to provide children with easy access to inexpensive healthcare services in an environment conducive to the least disruption possible for them as well as their parents,” commented Sal Saldivar, Chief Information Officer at La Maestra Community Health Centers.

“A single telemedicine system can be deployed seamlessly without requiring additional technical support from the school IT department, and more importantly – AMD’s telemedicine products are easy for our staff to understand and use,” added Saldivar.

“Over the past four years, we have witnessed the tremendous change in how schools are embracing telemedicine technology. What was once considered an IT project by the school system is now a community health program,” commented Dan McCafferty, Vice President, Global Sales and Corporate Development, AMD Global Telemedicine. “We are excited our telemedicine technology is having such an impact on the future of our children,” added McCafferty. AMD Global Telemedicine showcased their telemedicine solutions at the School-Based Health Care convention this week, June 30-July 2 in Seattle, Washington.

Secure Mobile Communication Market in Healthcare Industry

This Frost & Sullivan market insight presents an overview of the secure mobile communication solutions used in the United States healthcare facilities. It highlights the key success factors for secure mobile communication solution providers, and provides strategic recommendations for hospitals that want to implement a secure mobile communication solution.

The base year of this market insight is 2013 and the forecast period ranges from 2014 to 2018.

Introduction and Overview

This Frost & Sullivan market insight presents an overview of the secure mobile communication solutions used in the US healthcare facilities. It highlights the key success factors for secure mobile communication solution providers, and provides strategic recommendations for hospitals that want to implement a secure mobile communication solution. Throughout this insight, "secure mobile communication solution" implies a smartphone-based mobile communication solution that allows secure voice, text, images, and video-based communication between staff members in the hospital, and can also support information exchange between hospital IT systems and smartphones.

Secure Mobile Communication in Healthcare

Most of the organizations in the United States support some form of managed mobility deployments. Popular enterprise mobile applications in the United States include: - Company operations and productivity applications – including file-sync and share, CRM apps such as, and expense reporting applications such as Concur) - Communication and collaboration applications – including WebEx, and ShareFile - Enterprise messaging applications – including enterprise "social networks", and chat programs.

However, much of the healthcare industry still conducts business by using older systems – including pagers and paper-based written records. Using inefficient systems and processes for care coordination and other important functions in hospitals can negatively impact patient safety, delay patient care and result in operational inefficiencies. There is a clear need for advanced data management and communication systems that can address existing communication challenges in hospitals. Today's mobile computing platforms present a powerful set of technical capabilities that, if leveraged properly, can help improve the efficiency of day-to-day operations of literally any type of organization. Realizing this, many hospitals have already implemented secure mobile communication solutions for mission-critical communication requirements. Changes in Federal Healthcare regulation/guidelines that incentivize healthcare facilities to deliver improved patient care, facilitate better patient data sharing, and focus on improving the patient satisfaction levels are also helping drive a shift towards open, extensible, interoperable, and "mobile-compatible" digital platforms in the United States.

Secure Mobile Communication—Telecommunication Trends

A smaller form factor, remote device management capabilities, and secure voice and data communication abilities of smartphones provide the essential ingredients for supporting a wide range of use cases in hospitals – including care coordination, physician alerts, and patient engagement. This is not to say that personal smartphones can simply be brought into hospitals and used "as is"; a significant amount of customization, integration, and security enhancements are still required to make smartphones work in hospital environments. This is where secure mobile communication solution providers come in. Secure mobile communication solution providers use on-premise or cloud-based platforms to deliver a customized (and secure) voice and/or data communication service that can help hospitals improve clinical workflow, and ultimately deliver better patient care at a lower cost.

Some key telecommunication trends that are driving smartphone adoption in hospitals include: 

Bring-your-own-device (BYOD): Mobile has transformed the way business is done today. An increasing number of US businesses are deploying mobile software applications for use by their workers. A similar trend is starting to appear in the healthcare vertical as well, where the physician and the nursing staff are increasingly demanding access to work-related IT applications on their personal mobile devices. As a result, hospitals are exploring ways to provide their workforce with secure mobile access on their personal mobile devices.

Increased device capabilities: The current generation of smartphones support advanced data protection mechanisms including device and application-level virtual private networks (VPNs), and support for digital certificates. These technologies can be used to comply with the strict data privacy requirements of hospitals.

Multiple data connectivity options: Solution providers can leverage messaging, email, and other IP-based data channels for deploying secure mobile communication solutions. This helps to mobilize multiple types of clinical data sets in a format most suited for the recipient device.

Availability of robust and secure on-premise and cloud services: On-premise deployments are popular in hospitals. However, cloud-based platforms have made strong inroads in this industry and their adoption is expected to increase in the next 5 years. Research indicates that it is not only the size of the organization that decides if an organization chooses an on-premise or a cloud-based platform. Factors such as ease of implementation, total cost of ownership (TCO) and return on investment (ROI), and product capabilities play an important role in this decision. Therefore, product capabilities, and cost of implementation and total cost of ownership are important considerations as well.

Secure Mobile Communication—Demand Drivers

The key demand drivers for smartphone adoption in hospitals include:

Need for addressing communication inefficiencies: By allowing information to be pushed to the responsible or designated staff member in the hospital, smartphones can address many of the existing communication challenges in the US hospitals. For example, workers in a hospital don't have to spend time on unproductive activities (such as walking down the hospital hallways to get in touch with the attending physician). They can use a smartphone solution to call or send a message to the physician in charge. Similarly, critical lab results could be sent via secure messages to the on-call physician, who can then respond appropriately. A simple use case such as being able to communicate with designated staff members quickly can collectively save hundreds of thousands of minutes for a single, large hospital every year. This speaks volumes about the potential of secure mobile communication solutions.

Federal mandates: Federal directives encourage hospitals to adopt advanced IT systems and technologies for improving the care experience. For instance, the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Records (EHR) Incentive Programs provide financial incentives for the "meaningful use" of certified EHR technology. As stated on the federal government website,, to receive an EHR incentive payment, eligible providers must prove that they are "meaningfully using" their certified EHR technology by meeting certain measurement thresholds that range from recording patient information as structured data, to exchanging summary care records. These developments have led to an increased adoption of digital healthcare IT platforms. An open, extensible architecture of these healthcare platforms presents new opportunities to integrate with mobile systems. In other words, mobile has emerged as a natural extension of the new generation of healthcare systems and IT platforms that are in various stages of implementation in the US healthcare facilities.

Emergence of performance-based and success-linked models in healthcare: The emergence of the Accountable Care Organization (ACO) model makes it important to ensure quality, appropriateness and efficiency of healthcare provided to patients across the full continuum of care. Numerous studies have identified communication inefficiencies, and lack of proper data sharing as the major hurdles in offering a truly customer or patient-centric service delivery model. The healthcare industry is already moving in the right direction by adopting EMRs, and other standards-based data records management platforms—all of which can be integrated with smartphones. A shift to a mobile-centric communication framework is expected to take some time as many of these complicated back-end systems cannot be simply "screen scraped" for mobile rendering.

Read the complete report, click here.

The Promise of Integrated Healthcare: Health Information Systems

Given increasing healthcare consumerism and demand for round-the-clock healthcare delivery, hospitals and providers must upgrade their healthcare IT infrastructure to accommodate patient and provider needs.

This briefing will investigate the changing technology landscape in hospitals globally and will specifically focus on how hospitals in North America and Europe are adopting health information systems (HIS).

Attend this webinar to discover:

Information technology systems in hospitals; Drivers and restraints of HIS; A technology and adoption roadmap of HIS; As this presentation will discuss emerging trends and opportunities for the information technology providers globally, it will benefit hospitals, healthcare providers, insurance companies and payers, IT and Information Technology Enabled Service (ITES) players, telecom providers as well as applications developers and Software as a Service (SaaS) providers.

"The need for greater efficiency in healthcare delivery and the emergence of integrated healthcare systems offer tremendous collaboration opportunities between healthcare and information communication technology industries," said Frost & Sullivan Technical Insights Research Analyst Bhargav Rajan.

"Healthcare delivery in the U.S. is in the midst of a huge upheaval, brought about by legislative and regulatory changes. While some of these changes greatly benefit the adoption of IT platforms in hospitals, other changes mandate greater regulatory compliance and usage guidelines. As with any other market, there are conflicting industry and market forces at play that will keep HIS adoption from being fully realized in the short term."


To attend the briefing, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. your full name, job title, company name, company telephone number, company email address and website, city, state and country. 

CT Imaging Systems Increase In Size, Weight Allowance And Power To Cater For Growing Waistline Of Patient Population

A recent evaluation1 into imaging systems has revealed a significant increase in the design and capacity of CT scanners provided to NHS and private hospitals over the past 15 years to accommodate the rise in obesity.

This is in line with recent figures published by Public Health England2 citing that 64% of people in England are now overweight or obese.

When an individual categorised as ‘obese’ is referred to hospital for a scan, key considerations for clinicians include: will the system hold the person’s weight, will they fit in the bore and is there sufficient power to penetrate the patient?

The internal evaluation, looking at a range of CT scanners from Siemens Healthcare over the past two decades, has found that the weight allowance of imaging tables has increased by 88%. Additionally, X ray generator power, which contributes to scanners providing a good quality image despite the patient’s size, has increased by 380% and the bore size, where the patient lies, has increased by a total of 10cm.

“The number of bariatric patients being referred for CT scans has more than doubled in the last 25 years and this is predicted to continue rising,” states Russell Lodge, CT Business Manager at Siemens Healthcare. “We have witnessed a growing need and demand for obesity provision from hospital imaging departments across the country to ensure patients of all sizes can gain access to the treatment they need. It is essential that manufacturers respond from a design and innovation perspective to ensure that systems hold more weight, include a bigger bore and penetrate larger body mass.”

Table weight allowance – on the rise

Being able to hold a person’s weight without causing damage to the scanner or risking injury to the patient is an increasingly important consideration for clinicians. Table weight allowances have almost doubled from 160KG in earlier scanners on the market around ten years ago up to the availability of 300KG allowances in systems today.

Generator power – on the rise

The X ray generator power rating of a CT scanner is an important factor in ensuring good image quality; therefore if there is not enough power when it comes to larger patients, a diagnostic image may not be gained. Power has increased significantly from around 50KW 10 years ago, with the most advanced CT scanners now up to 2 x 120KW, making it ideal for rapid volume coverage with obese patients.

Bore size – on the rise

In previous generation diagnostic systems, the bore, where the patient enters the imaging system, would generally be 70cm. Recently this has expanded up to 80cm. This is good news in response to a rising waist size in UK adults which sees an average of 40% of adults with a raised waistline in 2012 compared to an average of 24% in 19933.

1. Evaluation undertaken by Siemens Healthcare into the historical and current statistics of CT imaging systems 2. Public Health England, 4th February 2014, 3. Public Health England - Obesity statistics

Philips To Expand Technology Platforms For Near Patient Diagnostic Testing With Acquisition Of Unisensor

Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG; AEX: PHIA) today announced that it has signed an agreement to acquire Unisensor, an innovator in the field of optical analysis of fluids for diagnostic applications in health care, as well as other industries.

The Unisensor technology and team will strengthen Philips’ innovation capabilities in the field of patient sample analysis such as blood testing for applications in oncology therapy monitoring. These innovations aim to enhance patient triage and treatment at the point-of-care (i.e. near the patient), thereby helping to improve patient care at a lower cost. Upon closing of the transaction, which is expected in the third quarter of 2014 and subject to certain closing conditions, Unisensor, headquartered in Allerød, Denmark, will become part of Philips’ Healthcare Incubator within Philips Innovation, Group & Services. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

“Philips’ Healthcare Incubator has already produced promising early-stage businesses in the area of near-patient testing and monitoring for the hospital and the home,” said Perry van Rijsingen, General Manager for Philips Healthcare Incubator. “The acquisition of Unisensor will expand our technology platforms for miniaturized, mobile diagnostic solutions and support our ambition to become a leader in this new growth market for Philips.”

Unisensor was founded in 1997 and is a privately held company with approximately 35 employees. Unisensor’s current product line includes oCelloScope, an analytical instrument that is, amongst other applications, used within cancer cell studies on a research application basis. The company has partnerships with leading companies in animal health and water analysis, which Philips intends to continue.

Hopkinton Home Care Launches New In-home Health Services

Hopkinton Home Care is proud to announce new in-home health care services for the Hopkinton, MA and Metro West areas.

Hopkinton Home Care provides peace of mind for your loved ones, the care you want and the service you deserve. Hopkinton Home Care believes that nothing is more important than caring for your family with compassion and helping your loved ones thrive.

"When you contact us, you will notice that we want to answer your questions and respond to any concerns that you may have," added Bill Marr, Owner and Expert for Home Care Services. "Only after we learn what you need, can we let you know how we can meet those needs."

With baby boomers reaching retirement and an increasing life expectancy, there is no doubt most prefer to stay in their homes. At times, everyone needs a little help and Hopkinton Home Care is there to help you thrive. This isn't just limited to baby boomers - if you're on bed rest, have a broken bone or simply need a little help, Hopkinton Home Care offers many services with affordable, custom rates.

National Home Health Leaders Commend U.S. Congressmen Greg Walden and Tom Price for Introducing Medicare Legislation to Improve Access to and the Quality of Home Healthcare

The Partnership for Quality Home Healthcare – a leading coalition of skilled home healthcare providers dedicated to improving the integrity, quality, and efficiency of home health for our nation's seniors – today applauded the introduction of new Medicare legislation that would replace across-the-board rebasing cuts with targeted reform that improves the quality of home healthcare services.

The Securing Access Via Excellence (SAVE) Medicare Home Health Act – introduced today by Representative Greg Walden (R-OR) and Representative Tom Price (R-GA) – offers an alternative to the 14 percent, four-year rebasing cuts instituted by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on January 1. The SAVE Medicare Home Health Act would repeal the rebasing cuts, which CMS has projected will force "approximately 40 percent" of all home health providers to suffer net loss.

In their place, the SAVE Medicare Home Health Act utilizes hospital readmission reform to achieve savings by improving care for Medicare beneficiaries and reducing avoidable spending. The new legislation is essential to safeguarding access to home healthcare services for seniors across the U.S. According to an Avalere Health analysis, CMS' projection that "approximately 40 percent" of providers will suffer net loss as a result of the rebasing cuts could put more than 1.3 million seniors and 465,000 home health jobs at risk. Further, Avalere determined that the seniors who would be impacted are among the most vulnerable in the Medicare program, since they are older, poorer, sicker and more likely to be disabled and of an ethnic or racial minority than all other Medicare beneficiaries combined. In addition, Avalere found that home health beneficiaries, the professional caregivers who serve them, and the family members who support them are disproportionately comprised of women.

"We applaud Congressmen Walden and Price for taking this very important step to securing seniors' access to the high-quality, cost-reducing home healthcare that they prefer," said Eric Berger, CEO of the Partnership for Quality Home Healthcare. "By repealing the rebasing cuts beginning January 1, 2015, this legislation will help millions of seniors, family members, and professional caregivers."

Central to the legislation is a Value-Based Purchasing (VBP) Program, which is modeled after the reform recently enacted for skilled nursing facilities (SNFs). The SAVE Medicare Home Health Act's VBP program would reduce hospital readmissions by establishing incentives that reward positive outcomes. In this manner, the bill would enable millions of seniors to remain in their homes, rather than return to institutional settings, and would achieve significant savings for the Medicare program.

"Incentivizing home healthcare agencies to deliver high-quality care to beneficiaries and reduce hospital readmission rates represents a positive and proven approach to achieving savings without disrupting patient care," said Mr. Berger. "With 3.5 million seniors currently depending on skilled home healthcare, policy solutions such as this are vital to preserving and improving these essential services."

The SAVE Medicare Home Health Act is also designed to be budget neutral, as the HHS Secretary would ensure VBP savings are sufficient to offsetting the repeal of the current rebasing cuts. Proponents of the bill point out, however, that because home health agencies will be incentivized to help patients remain in their homes rather than be readmitted for costly hospital stays, even greater savings are likely.

"The SAVE Medicare Home Health Act is a sustainable and patient-centered approach to achieving Medicare savings," said Mr. Berger. "We are thankful to the many lawmakers who are working so diligently to protect seniors' access to skilled home healthcare services, and we look forward to working with them in the months ahead to see that this important reform proposal becomes law."

Additional cosponsors of the SAVE Medicare Home Health Act, introduced today in the U.S. House of Representatives, include Representatives Charles Boustany (LA-3), Sean Duffy (WI-7), Renee Ellmers (NC-2), Sam Graves (MO-6), Tom Latham (IA-3), David McKinley (WV-1), Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-5), Erik Paulsen (MN-3) and Glenn Thompson (PA-5).

Maxim Healthcare Services Announces New Vice President of Human Resources

Maxim Healthcare Services, Inc., an established provider of home healthcare, medical staffing, and wellness services, has appointed Bart Kelly as its new vice president of human resources.

Maxim Healthcare Services In his newly appointed role, Kelly will lead the direction of human resources strategies focused on fulfilling Maxim's mission to be the employer, the provider, and the partner of choice in the healthcare services industry. Kelly will direct initiatives regarding enhancing employee experiences, strengthening performance management, and improving recruitment and retention.

"We are extremely excited to have Bart on our team. He is a leader who shares our passion for creating positive experiences for our employees, caregivers, patients, and customers," said Chief Executive Officer Brad Bennett. "I am confident his experience developing strong teams and infrastructures will be a strategic contributor to our long-term growth and success."

Kelly brings to Maxim more than 23 years of strategic professional experience, having served at several leading staffing, human resources, and financial organizations. His senior leadership history includes running enterprise-wide operational and financial initiatives, managing human resources and financial teams, and building and improving key stakeholder relationships.

Prior to joining Maxim, Kelly served as the director of financial operations at Aerotek, Allegis Group Inc.'s largest operating company. While there, he was instrumental in managing programs to increase employee diversity and retention and improve organizational knowledge through a structured professional mentorship program.

Prior to Aerotek, Kelly served in senior leadership roles for HFS Benefits, the Mather Companies, and T. Rowe Price. Kelly received his MBA and Bachelor of Business Administration degrees from Loyola University. He lives in the Baltimore, Maryland, area with his wife and two children.

Point-Of-Care Diagnostic Market by Products, End Users, Over the Counter & Prescription Based - Global Forecast to 2018

The global POC diagnostics market is estimated to grow at a lower CAGR in developed countries; however, it is expected to witness high growth in emerging countries such as China, India, and Brazil.

Factors such as rising prevalence of lifestyle and infectious diseases, increasing usage of home-based POC devices, technological advancements, and decreasing number of technicians in the central labs are propelling the growth of the POC diagnostics market. However, factors such as lack of alignment with definitive central lab methods, reluctance to change existing treatment practices and the recall of leading glucose monitoring devices are restraining the growth of this market.

In this report, the global POC diagnostics market has been segmented on the basis of category (infectious diseases testing kits, glucose monitoring kits, cardiac markers, pregnancy and fertility testing kits, and others) and end users (patient professional monitoring kits and patient self-monitoring kits). The glucose monitoring kits market held the largest share—53.7%—of the global POC diagnostics market in 2013, followed by the infectious diseases testing kits market.

Factors such as rising global prevalence of diabetes, technological advancements in self-monitoring of blood glucose, and the growing patient awareness toward POC testing are stimulating the growth of the glucose monitoring kits market.

The fastest-growing segment—cardiac-markers market—is projected to grow at a CAGR of 15.3% from 2013 to 2018. This growth is mainly attributed to the increasing number of cardiac patients and the demand of immediate diagnosis of the diseases.

Major players such as Roche (Switzerland), Abbott Laboratories, Inc. (U.S.), Siemens AG (Germany), Beckman Coulter, Inc. (U.S.), and Alere Inc. (U.S.) are adopting several growth strategies such as new product launches, partnerships, agreements, collaborations, joint ventures, and mergers and acquisition in order to keep pace with the evolving industry trends.

Geographically, North America commands the largest share of the global POC diagnostics market in 2013, followed by Asia-Pacific.

A number of factors such as increase in waiver of CLIA for certain point of care diagnostic tests, fostering FDA approvals for various immunoassay techniques, easy access to POC tests through diagnostic service providers, and presence of major leading companies are driving the growth of the POC diagnostics market in North America. However, the economic slowdown and unfavorable reimbursement scenario for tests due to government budget constraints the growth of the POC diagnostics market in this region.

The Asia-Pacific region is poised to grow at the highest CAGR in the next five years. Factors such as huge patient population base, large number of R&D activities, and growing focus of both international and domestic players on the Asia-Pacific POC diagnostics market are propelling the growth of the dialysis market in the Asia-Pacific region.

The global POC diagnostics market is highly competitive with a large number of global as well as local market players. As of 2012, the global POC diagnostics market excluding the blood glucose monitoring kits market was dominated by Roche (Switzerland), Alere Inc. (U.S.), Siemens AG (Germany), and Beckman Coulter, Inc. (U.S.), which together accounted for ~72% of the market.

New product launches and partnerships/agreements/collaborations/joint ventures are the major strategies adopted by most market players to achieve growth in the POC diagnostics market.

North American Healthcare Cloud Computing Market-Forecast to 2018

Research and Markets has announced the addition of the "North American Healthcare Cloud Computing Market by Applications, Deployment, Service, Pricing & End Users - Forecast to 2018" report to their offering.

The significance of cloud computing is expected to increase in the healthcare industry. The healthcare industry is facing increasing pressure to lower the costs associated with providing healthcare; adopt new systems that support electronic medical records (EMR); and share data in a quick and secure manner with other healthcare providers and government agencies. The need to reduce costs in the healthcare industry ecosystem is a key factor that is increasing the adoption of cloud computing.

Moreover, cloud computing can help healthcare organizations to share information stored across disparate information systems in real time and enable the IT staff to attend to more critical tasks, which results in an increase in productivity and cost-efficiency. The cloud-based Clinical Information Systems softwares market is the fastest growing segment in the North American Healthcare cloud computing market, by application. The rapid growth of this market can be attributed to factors such as federal pressure to convert all paper-based records into digital forms, increasing healthcare costs, and increased awareness about the benefits of cloud computing.

However, information such patient records, medical imaging data, and prescription records are to be kept confidential. Thus, the security concern over the transfer of such information on cloud is hindering the adoption of cloud computing in the healthcare sector. In the CIS market, the EMR market is expected to grow at the highest CAGR. The high growth of this segment is attributed to the implementation of the HITECH Act, which has outlined the plans for the adoption of electronic health records.

The North American healthcare cloud computing market has witnessed the highest deployment of applications on private clouds. A private cloud provides a dedicate network and infrastructure which is exclusive to one client. This increases the security of data being transferred on the cloud, which is the prime requirement in the healthcare industry.

The SaaS application accounted for the largest share of the North American healthcare cloud computing market, by services. However, the market for IaaS is growing at a higher rate, owing to the increasing need to fill the gap between existing and required infrastructure without incurring significant expenses.

The cloud computing market is highly fragmented, with none of the players accounting for a significant share of the market. The companies in this market focus on growth strategies such as client acquisitions; agreements, partnerships, collaborations, and alliances; new product launches; acquisitions; and others (fund raising, event participation, marketing and promotion, expansion, and educational promotion) to increase their customer base.

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