Federal Government Study Shows EHR Interoperability at All Time High as 55% of Hospitals Report Robust Data Exchange

But information blocking remains a barrier to complete information exchange, creating ongoing issues for clinical laboratories and pathology groups Interoperability of electronic health records (EHRs) remains one the biggest challenges for clinical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups that must interface with the EHRs of their physician clients to enable electronic transmission of medical laboratory orders and test results. Laboratory professionals will be pleased to know the most recent...

AHA Expresses Opposition to Merger between UnitedHealth Group’s OptumInsight and Change Healthcare, DOJ Agrees to Look into the $13B Deal

Clinical laboratory information would be part of a “massive” transfer of data that may affect medical decision-making ‘to the detriment of consumers and healthcare providers’ the AHA stated in a letter to the DOJ In yet another example of healthcare market concentration and consolidation where the big get bigger—sometimes at the expense of patients, physicians, and clinical laboratories—UnitedHealth Group (NYSE:UNH) announced in January the agreement that would enable it to acquire and merge...

OIG Report Indicates Fraudulent Upcoding at Hospitals is More Prevalent than Expected, Recommends More CMS Oversight and Auditing of Medicare Spending

Oddly, as upcoding severity levels have risen, reported higher-severity inpatient hospital stays have dropped, OIG reported Medicare upcoding fraud is a growing problem for the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Now, a report from the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) suggests that the practice is increasingly occurring for high-severity inpatient hospital stays that account for the most expensive part of US healthcare....

Critical Shortages of Supplies and Qualified Personnel During the COVID-19 Pandemic is Taking a Toll on the Nation’s Clinical Laboratories says CAP

As demand for SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus testing increases, leaders of the College of American Pathologists meet online to brainstorm possible solutions to the crisis In September, the College of American Pathologists (CAP) began its series of “virtual media briefings” given by leading pathologists and physicians at the forefront of COVID-19 testing which are designed to “offer insights and straight talk” on the crisis confronting today’s clinical laboratories. During the third virtual meeting on...

Reporter Who Broke Theranos Scandal Maintains Disgraced Clinical Laboratory Testing Company Could Have Returned Funds to Defrauded Investors Instead of Fighting Lawsuits

Former CEO Elizabeth Holmes now awaits March 9 court date on federal fraud charges that include reporting false medical laboratory test results on some patients Clinical laboratory leaders have watched with keen interest the federal criminal proceedings against disgraced Theranos founder and former CEO Elizabeth Holmes, whose blood-testing company lost nearly $1 billion of investors’ money before dissolving in 2018. In a recent CNBC interview, John Carreyrou, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ)...

FDA Authorizes First At-Home COVID-19 Antigen Tests, but Roadblocks Remain for “Fast-and-Frequent” Antigen Testing

Developers of medical laboratory tests had high hopes that cheap saliva-based tests would compete with at-home OTC tests that use nasal swabs, but skepticism among scientists continues Reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) technology has become the standard for clinical laboratory diagnostic testing used to detect the presence of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. However, to enable more widespread testing, some public health experts have called for deployment of cheap, rapid,...