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HHS Issues Guidance on Disclosing Health Information During Crisis Situations

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Civil Rights (OCR) released new guidance on when and how healthcare providers can share a patient’s health information with family members, friends, and legal personal representatives when that patient may be in crisis and incapacitated, such as during an opioid overdose.

CMS Guidance Offers Clarity on MACRA Data Blocking Component

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released new guidance on the information blocking portion of MIPS (the Merit-based Incentive Payment System).

CMS Administrator Verma Announces “Meaningful Measures” Initiative

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Seema Verma announced the agency’s efforts to streamline quality measures and reduce regulatory burden with a new approach to quality measurement called “Meaningful Measures.”

North Texas ERs Seek Identities of Online Reviewers

Two North Texas freestanding emergency room operators are asking Google to reveal the identities of nearly two dozen reviewers who rated them poorly online. They believe the reviews were probably posted by a third party “to defame and disparage” their businesses.

Partners to Bring Patient-Generated Data to EHR, Care Plans

Partners HealthCare is working on an effort to provide its clinicians and researchers with access to patient-generated health data from over 420 consumer and clinical health devices.

Survey: Many Healthcare Organizations Still Sluggish with Move to Value-Based Care

Three in 10 healthcare executive respondents said in a recent survey that they have entered into one or more value-based care arrangements.

Incomplete Data Plays Role in Patient Safety Concerns, Survey Finds

Patient safety is still a top concern for physician and nurse leaders in the U.S., and incomplete data is linked closely with this worry, according to a recent survey from Philips.

Media Reports: GE Explores Divesting Its Healthcare IT Business

According to multiple media reports, sources have reported that General Electric Co. (GE) is exploring selling off its transportation business and all or parts of its healthcare information technology business.

FirstHealth Reports Network Impacted by New WannaCry Malware

FirstHealth of the Carolinas announced that it shut down its computer network last week after a threat from a new version of the WannaCry malware virus, and the system is continuing to operate on standard downtime procedures.

Reports: CVS Health Makes Bid to Purchase Aetna for $66B

CVS Health is reportedly in talks to purchase Aetna, a deal that would be the largest ever in the health insurance industry if it goes through.

Health IT Now Calls for Trump, Congress to Take More Steps to Fight Opioid Crisis

Health IT Now, a broad-based coalition of patient groups, provider organizations, employers and payers supporting health information technology to improve patient outcomes, called for both the Trump Administration and Congress to use “every tool at their disposal to fight the opioid crisis.”

Specialty Societies to MedPAC: MIPS Should Stay Put

The Alliance of Specialty Medicine has said it opposes the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission’s (MedPAC’s) recent suggestion to repeal MIPS (the Merit-based Incentive Payment System) in its current form.

Pennsylvania Offers Program to Help Health Systems Integrate EHRs with PDMP

The Pennsylvania Department of Health is integrating the state’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) into health systems’ electronic health records (EHRs) and pharmacy systems, backed by $3.8 million in federal grants.

HHS will Host Opioid Symposium and Code-a-Thon

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Office of the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) will host an Opioid Symposium and Code-a-Thon Dec. 6 and 7 to promote and employ innovative ways to leverage technology and data to address the nationwide opioid epidemic.

Survey: Health System CEOs Weigh in on Preparing for Value-Based Care

Hospital CEOs say the transition to value-based care is happening at a slower rate than expected, but health system CEOs continue to prepare for that transition, according to the Deloitte Center for Health Solution’s 2017 Survey of U.S. Health System CEOs.