ABL Healthcare Member News & Industry Trendletter * April 7, 2020

>>> Eliott Jones is Co-Founder and CEO of Biospectal SA, a diagnostic biosensing company using optical technologies in IoT and edge computing. Starting with blood pressure and hypertension management, the company is on a mission to make medical grade biosensing accessible, actionable, and meaningful through connected smart devices. Biospectal has developed instant, ubiquitous, and accurate blood pressure monitoring and management simply by placing your finger on the camera of your smartphone. Biospectal's cuffless optical blood pressure solution was awarded MassChallenge Switzerland's 2018 Gold Prize from a field of 1,000 applicants and many talented cohort participants. Eliott has led Biospectal SA since 2017, and is also currently President + Creative Director of Inflektiv, since 2013, an experience strategy and design consultancy with services encompassing strategic planning and execution for digital products, design methods-driven ideation and innovation process, and user-centered research. Eliott's career background includes being VP of UX Innovation at Rambus; Senior Director of Product Design at RingCentral; Senior Director, Design at Yahoo!; Director of Marketing at DreamFactory Software; Senior Manager, Web Channel Marketing, at Intuit; and President of Jones Digital Media. Eliott has joined the Silicon Valley Round Table.

>>> Arpit Khemka is Co-Founder and CEO of SimpleTherapy, a digital healthcare platform that combines physical therapy with artificial intelligence to create a musculoskeletal (MSK) pain recovery program that can be used at home for a fraction of the cost. SimpleTherapy works with health plans and employers of all sizes to provide head-to-toe pain recovery and prevention, accessible 24/7, with no copays and without the need for expensive equipment. SimpleTherapy has 20,000+ users across the world, of which 72% report a significant reduction in pain. Its solution has been validated by three national payers and was shown to decrease the MSK spend by 18% in just year one. Further, SimpleTherapy's solution has a significant impact on opioid usage, getting 39% of opioid dependents completely off of opioids in year one. By Implementing SimpleTherapy, organizations realize a 3:1 ROI. Arpit has been in technology his entire career, most of which have been spent building AI- and algorithm-driven decision-making systems for public and private sector companies. He co-founded SimpleTherapy with two surgeons in 2011, and has served as its CEO since 2017. Previously, he was Senior Consultant and Lead Systems Architect at CGI, in New York, where he digitized the incarceration process for the NYC Department of Corrections Jail Management System and resolved critical issues impeding the Massachusetts Health Exchange. Arpit has also joined the Silicon Valley Round Table.

    In April, ABL will hold its Round Tables via ZOOM to ensure Social Distancing for our Members. See your Round Table invitation for participation instructions.

  • 4/08 - San Francisco Round Table
  • 4/14 - Silicon Valley Round Table
  • 4/16 - East Bay/Oakland Round Table
  • 4/17 - Los Angeles Round Table
  • 5/06 - Orange County Round Table
  • Explore Membership in ABL's Executive Round Tables >>>

5 "New Normal" Things I Hope Won't Change When the "Old Normal" Returns

by Mimi Grant

There are already several silver linings of the "new norm" that I hope won't change when the "old norm" returns. To summarize, they are:
- Generosity on a Grand Scale;
- Generosity on a Human Scale;
- Breaking the Tape That Binds;
- Tighter Family Connections; and
- Expanded Ways of Working Together. CLICK HERE TO READ THE REST OF MY BLOG, where I provide some examples of these "silver linings."
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Click on Headlines to Read Articles
Andy Leeka Named Chief Executive Director of COVID Emergency Response Hospital in Downtown L.A.

Andy Leeka has been appointed Chief Executive Director of the COVID Emergency Response Hospital, located in the L.A. Convention Center in downtown Los Angeles. Andy says this is a critical preparedness strategy to decompress acute care hospitals during the expected surge of COVID-19 patients in the weeks ahead. He shared last week that 250 beds had been arranged in the South Hall with personal supplies. (Andy Leeka, Los Angeles)

Axene Health Partners Captures MDs' & Actuaries' Perspectives Regarding Coronavirus

Regarding the COVID-19 crisis, Axene Health Partners (AHP) has written several articles capturing the perspectives of MDs and some of the leading actuaries in the healthcare field. They include: Healthcare Contingency Reserves: Expanding Beyond Financial Resources to include Physical Resources; Pandemic Reserves; Coronavirus: A Case for Care Management; and more. View all of Axene's current and future coronavirus-related articles on its Inspire blog. (John Price, Bay Area)

Blue Shield of California Offers Digital Hospital Triage Tool

Blue Shield of California is offering its network hospitals a new digital tool - the COVID-19 Screener and Emergency Response Assistant (COVID-19 SERA), which patients can access via Internet-connected smartphone, tablet, or computer on a participating hospital's website. It can be customized for each health system's emergency response plan, and is updated in real-time with latest guidelines from the CDC and WHO. Patients will answer a few basic questions, and based on their reply, would be directed to the appropriate medical settings for their health situation. The COVID-19 SERA service can be implemented on a hospital's website within 48 hours. (Greg Buchert, MD, Orange County)

CareAcademy Presenting COVID-19 Roundtables for Home Care Agencies

On April 10 at 10 a.m. Pacific, and every Friday until the COVID-19 pandemic subsides, Care Academy will hold a live online COVID-19 roundtable for home care agency owners and their caregivers, featuring legal, medical, and business people, and moderated by CEO Helen Adeosun. Replays of these sessions (including several already held) are available here.
Also, Care Academy is providing a free COVID-19 Certification Class that prepares direct care workers to perform critical frontline work. (Helen Adeosun, Los Angeles)

Choice in Aging Debuts Facebook Live Series

Choice in Aging (CiA) has launched a weekly Facebook Live series, hosted by CEO Debbie Toth, on Wednesdays at 1 p.m., to discuss changes, happenings, and resources available right now. Watch the April 1 session: Redefining Our Model During COVID-19. And watch future sessions at facebook.com/ChoiceinAging.
CiA shares that they are "still open and operational, though in a way that prevents [virus] spread and still meets needs. . . providing support telephonically, electronically, on porches (delivery services), and in homes (where medically necessary). . . ensuring that the frail adults and elders we serve have what they need to remain living safely." (Debbie Toth, Bay Area)

Cigna Announces Numerous Actions to Enable COVID-19 Treatment

Recent announcements from Cigna include waiving customer cost-sharing and co-payments for COVID-19 treatment through May 31, 2020, as well as deploying hundreds of on-staff clinicians to join the team of healthcare professionals at telehealth company MDLIVE, to provide virtual healthcare in addition to Cigna's onsite care. Cigna is also partnering with Buoy Health, an artificial intelligence-powered navigation platform, to provide a free, web-based interactive triage tool that assesses COVID-19 risk, available at myCigna.com and myCigna mobile apps.
Meanwhile, Cigna has waived prior authorizations for the transfer of its non-COVID-19 customers from acute inpatient hospitals to in-network LTACHs. These latest measures are an expansion of Cigna's previous efforts to protect customers, providers, and communities against COVID-19; those actions are listed here. (Chris De Rosa, Orange County)

Covered California Analyzes Pandemic's Cost to Millions of Americans with Employer or Individual Insurance Coverage

Covered California has released the first national projection of healthcare costs due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Its analysis estimates the projected costs for 170 million Americans in the commercial market - which includes individual, small- and large-group markets - for testing, treatment, and care specifically related to COVID-19 ranges from a low of $34 billion to $251+ billion in the first year of the pandemic. Read CoveredCA's release. (Kathy Keeshen, JD, Bay Area)

El Camino & Conversa Scale Partnership Improving Respiratory Care Coordination

Following a successful pilot, El Camino Health's nationally renowned pulmonary health department is offering Conversa Health's personalized virtual health assistant technology to patients as 2 BREATHE Chat. 2 BREATHE enables patients with COPD, asthma, and other respiratory illnesses to be monitored remotely by their care team. 2 BREATHE Chat regularly "checks in" with patients to collect meaningful health data in real-time. In the pilot, patient readmissions were significantly reduced and when patients were readmitted, issues were caught much earlier than usual, therefore improving overall patient outcomes. (Cecile Currier, Silicon Valley)

Elemeno's Digital App Utilized by UCSF & Sonoma Valley Emergency Departments

In Keeping Patients and Frontline Medical Staff Safe in SF Bay Area, Elemeno Health describes how Sonoma Valley Hospital recently went live with Elemeno's digital app in less than 12 hours, following UCSF's lead. ED staff are using the Elemeno app to quickly access coronavirus information on: screening safely and preventing the spread of infection; managing patients with potential COVID-19 infections; quickly reporting suspected cases to health agencies; protective gear requirements; how-to videos (eg, how to put on and take off protective gear); how to protect other patients and staff and alleviate anxiety; shared UCSF COVID-19 practices; selected CDC and regional resources; and more.
Meanwhile, ZDoggMD recently interviewed Elemeno CEO Arup Roy-Burman, MD, about "preparing our caregivers for COVID-19." (Arup Roy-Burman, MD, Bay Area)

Elevate Addiction Services Takes Program Virtual & Opens Outpatient Program in South Tahoe

Due to the social distancing and shelter-in-place requirements in effect throughout most of the U.S., Elevate Addiction Services is currently offering its outpatient programs virtually. Meanwhile, Elevate recently opened another new outpatient program in South Lake Tahoe, in recognition that not everyone is able to dedicate the time to participate in a long-term, inpatient treatment program. Elevate's new program includes individualized educational curricula from its copyrighted residential track and offers flexible scheduling. (Dan Manson, Silicon Valley)

Health Coach Institute Provides Coronavirus Support & Resources

Health Coach Institute (HCI) is offering a free two-part "Overcoming Fear & Anxiety" Coaching Masterclass: Part 1 and Part 2, where you'll learn 10 techniques for turning fear and anxiety into empowerment and action.
Also, HCI's Coronavirus Support and Resource Guide provides links to live daily coaching, centering affirmations, coaching resources, boosting immunity, working from home, mindset and mental resilience, adopting health habits, stress/anxiety management, staying active, mindfulness/meditation, eating nutritiously, all things parenting, self care, and more. (Eric Neuner, Bay Area)

Inglewood Imaging Center Continues Services & CEO Recommends Business Banker for "Covid Capital"

Inglewood Imaging Center (IIC) remains open, with a full slate of radiology, including PET/CT, MRI, CT, and X-ray. Given the current pandemic, there are some internal changes, including: Comprehensive staff safety (gloves, masks, extra screening, etc.); no intake of Covid-symptom patients; deep cleaning equipment after each exam; "quarantining" of on-site radiologist; isolating cancer patients for added safety on PET/CT exams; only Echo Ultrasounds and some screening mammograms will be scheduled for a later date.
Meanwhile, IIC CEO Brad Schmidt recommends John Han of First Citizens Bank's (FCB) "COVID-19-related banking programs," including programs that could potentially lead to a refinance, skip or bridge loans for "Covid Capital." John and his team have specialized in serving the medical and healthcare community for decades (including IIC). John Han's contact information. (Brad Schmidt, Los Angeles)

King & Spalding to Host Webinar on Security & COVID-19 + Addresses Company Boards

On April 8, at 9 a.m. Pacific, King & Spalding (K&S) will present a webinar - Be Prepared: COVID-19 Security Incidents are Coming - which will brief companies on the latest cyber-based threats affiliated with the COVID-19 crisis, pressing cyber incident response issues, and provide best practices to prepare for, monitor, detect, and respond to data security incidents during this unique time.
And, K&S published a client alert - Goals for Boards in the COVID-19 Era - which provides suggestions for public company directors to consider to help their companies navigate this moment.
Meanwhile, Partner Marcia Augsburger recently participated in a K&S webinar - Impact of CMS's Section 1135 Waiver on Hospital Operations and Reimbursement During the Coronavirus Pandemic - which is available to replay by clicking the title. (Marcia Augsburger, JD, Bay Area, & Travis Jackson, JD)

KMD Architects Participates in Increased Inpatient Capacity at UCSF Mount Zion

KMD Architects shared that it "is humbled to have played a role in assisting UCSF to reopen the Mt. Zion Campus and create additional inpatient and critical care capacity." UCSF Health recently announced that it is preparing to open 46 inpatient acute care beds and seven ICU beds at its Mount Zion medical campus to help meet the anticipated surge in demand across the health system due to COVID-19. The effort to activate these additional beds is well underway, including preparing the building, procuring equipment, and preparing staffing and workflows, with a target activation date of May 1. (Rob Matthew, Bay Area)

LigoLab Launches Interface & Workflow Support for High-Volume COVID-19 Testing in Clinical Labs Nationwide

LigoLab Information System is providing fully integrated and automated LIS support for client laboratories in California, Washington, and New York that are using FDA-approved instruments to perform high-volume COVID-19 tests. LigoLab LIS & RCM Operating Platform has successfully integrated with instruments from Roche, Thermo Fisher Scientific, QIAGEN, Bio-Rad, and Hologic. LigoLab completed its system enhancements and validation for COVID-19 testing just days after the FDA started approving the instruments, and has already deployed the solution in multiple high-volume labs. CEO Suren Avunjian said LigoLab will deploy its LIS capabilities at no cost for any laboratory that will perform the COVID-19 test to help increase turn-around times and patient safety.
Additionally, patients will soon be able to order the COVID-19 test online through a LigoLab partnership with TestDirectly, a digital health company that specializes in direct-to-consumer clinical testing. Meanwhile, Suren has been invited to join a coalition called StaySafe, fighting COVID-19 on a national scale. (Suren Avunjian, Los Angeles)

MedWand Files for Emergency Use Authorization (EUA); Highlighted in USA Today

MedWand Solutions was highlighted in USA Today's recent article - Coronavirus: The role of tech from telemedicine to Star Trek-like devices, which reports that the MedWand device, just slightly larger than a computer mouse, contains 10 medical-grade diagnostic tools and a powerful HD camera, all allowing a physician to examine a patient virtually, no matter where they are in the world. It can listen to the heart and lungs, measure respiratory rates and blood oxygen levels, take a temperature, scan skin, and even peer at tonsils. All of this information gets sent in real time to the doctor who watches, listens, and interacts through a secure video portal on their computer. MedWand's FDA EUA would allow them to get these devices into the right hands, right away. Meanwhile, the MedWand team is assembling "quarantine kits" that include the MedWand in its antimicrobial casing, along with UV sanitizers, glucometers, and blood pressure kits. (Bob Rose, Orange County Healthcare)

Nelson Hardiman on COVID-19 Impact on Contracts, Privacy and Reliability of Data

Partner Harry Nelson of Nelson Hardiman (NH) was recently interviewed on Gurvey's Law to discuss HIPAA and privacy issues during COVID-19. From the interview: Kerri Kasem: What do you think in this case, with COVID-19 and somebody saying, "I don't want to tell anybody." Harry Nelson: A week and a half ago, CMS, the branch of the government responsible for enforcing HIPAA, basically announced a waiver and said to every healthcare provider in the country: "We are NOT enforcing any penalties whatsoever for violating HIPAA as long as you are acting in 'good faith'." . . .This is a historic event, where literally the federal government has said, "Doctors, you are relieved from HIPAA liability."
Meanwhile, NH published a client alert: Maximize Your Cashflow During COVID-19: Four Things You Can Do Right Now. (Harry Nelson, JD, Los Angeles)

OneLegacy Issues Guidelines for Organ, Eye & Tissue Donation in Response to Coronavirus

OneLegacy has shared that CMS recently issued a guideline that identifies transplantation as a "Tier 3, High Acuity Surgery, Do Not Postpone" procedure. Continuing this lifesaving work has required modifications to practices to prevent contagion and to ensure the health and safety of recipients, family members, and healthcare staff. CEO Tom Mone says that these changes will continue to evolve, but currently include:
>> Any donor or patient with confirmed COVID-19 is not a candidate for donation.
>> All potential organ donors are being tested for the virus via the nasal swab PCR testing technique.
>> The travel history of all potential donors is evaluated to identify those who may be at higher risk of exposure. This information is included in the organ offer information provided to transplant teams who determine whether to accept an organ for transplant. Advice from a Transplant Infectious Disease physician is recommended on a case-by-case basis. (Tom Mone, Los Angeles)

RE Pharmacy Mitigates Virus Exposure Through Early Diversion and Infusion Therapy

As healthcare facilities become increasingly occupied with patients during this coronavirus pandemic, the probability of virus transmission has also increased - patient to patient and to doctors and other healthcare professionals. In order to combat this phenomenon in hospitals and urgent cares, RE Pharmacy has introduced their Patient Early Diversion Program to help offload the responsibility and vulnerability placed upon the healthcare professionals. This program transitions patients from potentially hazardous facilities to an RE Pharmacy Infusion Center or the comfort and privacy of their home. Under the care and guidance of nursing professionals, these settings remain as safe as possible. Additionally, doctors and nurses are able to monitor the treatment of their patients remotely through the use of RE Pharmacy's HIPAA-compliant telemedicine solutions. (Tom Leffler, Orange County)

SAVI Group Reports on New Medical Coding Released for COVID-19

In New Medical Coding Released for COVID-19, SAVI Group reports that CMS has created a secondary Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (HCPCS) code, that can be used by clinical laboratories to bill for testing and diagnostics related to the outbreak of COVID-19 and hopefully keep track of new cases. The new HCPCS code (U0001) is used specifically for CDC testing labs to test patients for SARS-COV-2. CMS also introduced another HCPCS billing code (Uooo2) that makes it possible for laboratories to bill for non-CDC laboratory tests for SARS-CoV-2/2019-nCoV (COVID-19). This code may be used for tests developed by these additional laboratories when submitting claims to Medicare or health insurers. By creating these specific codes, CMS hopes to encourage testing and improve tracking. (Sumit Mahendru, Orange County)

Wipfli Can Provide Assistance with Paycheck Protection Program Loans

Wipfli announced that its experienced team can quickly determine your eligibility for a loan under the Paycheck Protection Program, which authorizes up to $349 billion in forgivable loans for small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. If you meet the requirements, Wipfli can complete the loan application on your behalf as an authorized agent, with fees paid by the Small Business Administration. More information.
Meanwhile, recent articles, insights, and webinars from Wipfli include:
>> Telehealth, HIPAA and COVID-19: What you need to know (Read it here)
>> COVID-19 financial guide for hospitals (Access it here)
>> Managing change through crisis: Introducing the Unanticipated Change Response guide (Watch webinar replay)
(Jeff Johnson and Steve Rousso, Bay Area; Tony Taddey, L.A.; Larry Blitz, Silicon Valley)

Alegre Care Suggests Easy Meditation Practices for Seniors & Caregivers

In Easy Meditation Practices for Caregivers and Seniors, Alegre Care shares that a regular meditation practice can lessen depression and anxiety, reduce stress, increase immune function, decrease pain, and boost overall well-being. For seniors and caregivers, meditation is a natural way to complement healthcare treatments for a variety of illnesses, and its benefits can be experienced from just ten minutes of practice a day. Alegre Care then describes five types of meditation: concentrative; mindfulness; positive affirmations; physical; and gratitude journal. (Charles Symes, Bay Area)

Alvaka Networks' Upcoming Webinar to Address Remote Workers & Security

On April 14, Alvaka Networks will present a webinar - The Shift to Remote Worker Access & Its Security Implications - from 10:30-11:30 a.m. Pacific. Alvaka's technology experts will discuss the importance of having the flexibility to allow for remote access and the implications that this has on physical and cyber security. It will cover: What options exist; how it affects your budget; implementation and management; risk mitigation and security; and more. (Oli Thordarson, Orange County)

Home Safety Services Unveils Falls Prevention Service Transport Vans

Recently, Home Safety Services rolled out their new "falls prevention service transport vans," fully equipped with all of the necessary items to prevent falls and modify homes, including grab bars, ramps, railings, toileting and bathing safety items, along with a highly trained and courteous service technician.
Also, VGM Live at Home recently spotlighted Home Safety Services in an article that describes how the company built a complex ramp system for a client who had become a quadriplegic following a devastating bicycle accident. Home Safety Services was able to complete the project from assessment to discharge in less than two weeks and at half the cost of the lowest-priced alternative solution. (Martin Simenc, Silicon Valley)

PreludeDx Debuts New Response Type Biosignature Data

Prelude Corporation (PreludeDx) presented information at the 37th Annual Miami Breast Cancer Conference on the development and validation of a Response TypeTM biosignature that identifies women at high biological risk (by DCISionRT) of breast cancer recurrence who may not be adequately treated with the current standard of breast-conserving surgery and radiation therapy and in whom intensified treatment strategies may be warranted. Prelude's proprietary tests stratify risk of recurrence of ductal carcinoma in situ or progression to invasive breast cancer by assessing tumor biology for an individual patient. (Dan Forche, Orange County)

Satellite Healthcare & CVS Kidney Care Enter Strategic Relationship

CVS Kidney Care, a CVS Health company, and Satellite Healthcare have announced a strategic relationship and collaboration to provide comprehensive kidney care, and to expand awareness of and access to transplantation and in-home dialysis - initially in Los Angeles and Austin, Texas. "We have known for many years that more frequent, longer dialysis improves patient outcomes. Realistically this can only be done in the home. Our relationship with Satellite Healthcare will help us make this option a reality for more patients," said Alan Lotvin, M.D., Executive Vice President CVS Health and President of CVS Caremark. Together, the two companies will focus on increasing transplantation and the use of home therapies and will engage patients, payors, and physicians in these efforts. (Jim Glafkides, Silicon Valley, & Chris Selecky, Orange County)

Servicon Systems Praised by LAC+USC CEO

Stacey Wong of Servicon Systems, Inc. was pleased to share the recent kudos for Servicon and its employees from LAC+USC CEO Jorge Orozco, when he said: "I want to give a special thank you to our custodial/EVS Staff. They are on the frontlines every day making sure that we are all safe. I want to thank you and let you know that we really appreciate all of your work every single day. Thank you so much for your dedication!" (Stacey Wong, Los Angeles)

SimpleTherapy Offers Free, Unlimited Access to Digital Musculoskeletal Program

As social distancing has become the current norm, people with a musculoskeletal (MSK) disorder may find that access to in-person physical therapy is challenging and, in many cases, not possible. As such, SimpleTherapy has taken action to ensure that everyone has access to quality, evidence-based exercise therapy regimens to manage their MSK condition from the comfort of their home. Through July 1, 2020, SimpleTherapy is providing unlimited access to their digital musculoskeletal program for your employees at no cost and without any obligation. More information. (Arpit Khemka, Silicon Valley)

Cornerstone Providing Free Online Learning Platform Regarding Coronavirus

Cornerstone has launched Cornerstone Cares, a free online public learning platform where users can access best practices training, information, and resources relative to the COVID-19 crisis and working from home. (Adam Miller, West Los Angeles Technology)

DarioHealth Digital Diabetes Management System is Now Available at Albertsons

DarioHealth Corp. has launched its digital therapeutics solution for managing chronic diseases such as diabetes and hypertension on Albertsons Marketplace, an online shopping venue. Albertsons Companies is one of the largest retailers in the U.S., with 2,000+ grocery stores, including Albertsons, Safeway, Vons, and more. Through 1,700+ in-store pharmacies across the country, Albertsons services millions of patients each year. (Rick Anderson, West Los Angeles Technology)

Eckert & Ziegler Producing Lutetium-177 & Funding Development of Lymphoma Treatment

Eckert & Ziegler (EZ) has developed a new technology for the production of carrier-free lutetium-177, a highly demanded substance in many new cancer drugs. Following the successful validation of the production process, commercial production has now begun and the first batches of material have been delivered. And, EZ will financially support the clinical development of two proprietary new radiopharmaceuticals for the diagnosis and treatment of malignant lymphomas. (Frank Yeager, Monrovia Technology)

PeopleG2 Selling COVID-19 Rapid Test Kits & Presenting Leadership Webinar

PeopleG2 is now able to sell COVID-19 Rapid Test kits. CEO Chris Dyer says: "These tests (using a small amount of blood) are to be self-administered. These are the same tests that South Korea used in large scale to test their population. We have them to sell, but quantities are still limited, as we are only able to sell them by the box ($625 for a box of 25). Each kit has everything needed to administer the test, and get results in minutes. Here is where they can buy them on my site."
Meanwhile, on April 15, at 11 a.m., PeopleG2 will present a webinar - Effective Communication and Listening - Don't Let COVID-19 Ruin Leadership - where Chris will help attendees honestly assess their own listening habits, and provide actionable ways to improve. Chris will demonstrate how easy it is to go from listening to reply, to listening to understand - a transformation that's linked to higher employee engagement, trust, organizational effectiveness, and profits. (Chris Dyer, Monrovia Technology)

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