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Practice Transformation

The healthcare industry could be the next big opportunity for AI (Artificial Intelligence). One forecast has spending jumping from $2.1 billion to $36.1 billion by 2025. Several experts weigh in on potential trends: transition of medicine from reactive to proactive care; consumer access to health information via electronica medical records and wearables; harnessing AI-driven data to predict and avoid adverse events; and more. (Forbes)
Walmart is launching a program—Featured Providers—that directs employees to high-quality local doctors. Patients will have to pay more if they choose to see a provider not on the recommended list. It goes live Jan. 1. To identify the physicians, Walmart partnered with Embold Health, which synthesizes a large amount of data from public and private insurance programs to create reports on individual physicians in eight specialties: primary care, cardiology, gastroenterology, endocrinology, obstetrics, oncology, orthopedics and pulmonology. (Healthcare Dive)

Evidence & Innovation

Precision medicine could someday improve heart failure care by identifying high-risk patients and personalizing heart failure therapies, according to a scientific statement from the American Heart Association. The statement covers genomics, pharmacogenomics, epigenomics, proteomics, metabolomics and microbiomics, providing a comprehensive overview of the current state of these “omics” as they relate to the development and progression of heart failure. It also considers the current and potential applications for precision medicine with respect to prevention, diagnosis and therapy. (HealthIT AnalyticsCirculation: Genomic and Precision Medicine)
Up to 30% of lymph node operations on patients with breast cancer could be avoided, according to research published in Clinical Cancer Research and BMC Cancer. A prediction model identified 6% to 7% more women with healthy lymph nodes than other models, researchers found. “The results indicate that we may be a step closer to more personalized surgical treatment by using the prediction models as a decision support tool,” said Lisa Rydén, MD, PhD, professor of surgery at Lund University in Sweden. (Clinical Cancer Research)

Policy Solutions

China’s dominance in the production of generic drugs threatens U.S. medical security, according to a commentary by Holly Strom and Kenneth Schell, both past presidents of the California State Pharmacy Board. Ranitidine is just the latest in a string of generic prescription drug safety contaminations in recent years. A 2008 contamination of heparin led to the deaths of 149 Americans and serious injuries to many hundreds more. “What’s responsible for the repeated drug safety lapses? The offshoring of the American drug supply to China and, to a lesser extent, India during the past couple of decades.” (US News)
President Donald Trump signed an executive order last week that aims to advance value-based care and improve Medicare by giving seniors access to more innovative, affordable plan options. The order, Protecting and Improving Medicare for our Nation’s Seniors, directs HHS to propose regulations and implement administrative actions that encourage Medicare Advantage plans, in particular, to offer innovative plan designs and benefits including telehealth services and supplemental benefits not available in the traditional fee-for-service Medicare program. It also directs the agency to create a new payment model that adjusts Medicare Advantage supplemental benefits to allow seniors to more directly share in any cost savings. (Modern HealthcareExecutive Order)
Check out our next webinar! Interoperability Forecast: Opportunities & Solutions for Comprehensive Medication Management 
October 29 at 1 p.m. eastern
This webinar will provide a view of developments in health IT through the lens of our ability to provide a single view of patient care that is necessary to enable a person-centered approach to medication use to ensure appropriate use of medications and gene therapies. Among the topics we’ll cover are:
  • The current regulatory landscape;
  • How those in the ecosystem have been leveraging technology to support transformation to an integrated, person-centered approach;
  • The ability for consumers and their authorized caregivers to gain digital access to their health information; and
  • What we should be looking for in the short and long term as it relates to the broader adoption of those data standards, IT and AI systems needed to integrate medical, pharmacy and other critical patient information for team members at the point-of-care.
Presented by:
  • Deb Gage, MBA, President and CEO at Medecision, GTMRx Institute Board Member
  • Ryan Howells, M.H.A., PMP, Principal at Leavitt Partners, Lead at the CARIN Alliance
  • Lisa Bari, MBA, MPH, Consultant, former Health IT and Interoperability lead at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) Innovation Center
In case you missed it: Focus On Communications
In five short months, the GTMRx Institute is already 500 members strong! And we are growing every day. We are off to a fast start—producing timely, relevant content and resources through the GTMRx Learning Network and convening workgroups to develop a Blueprint for Change to optimize medication use for all patients.
Our first member communication which included updates on our initiatives and progress went out on September 27 and again on October 14. If you missed the first Focus on Communications update, make sure to look out for the next one. Only signing members will receive the links to access these updates. If you’re not yet a signing member, now’s the perfect time to join. It’s simple and free to join, and we hope you’ll help us spread the word with others in your network who want to be part of the movement to get the medications right, the first time!
Correction to last week’s news brief
In one of the news brief featured stories last week, research on which our recent webinar “Core tenets to implement CMM in primary care: Getting the medications right” was erroneously attributed to AACP. While some affiliates of AACP did conduct the research, it was funded by ACCP.
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