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CVS, Merlo top Institutional Investor’s exec team rankings

BY David Salazar

NEW YORK — Institutional Investor recently released its annual ranking of the corporate leaders as seen from investment professionals — the 2016 All-America Executive Team. Near the top of the list was CVS Health and its CEO Larry Merlo. 
 
The outlet gives an overview of CVS Health’s performance in its category, citing the company’s decision to stop selling tobacco products, its interest in acquisitions — especially in the case of its $12.7 billion takeover of Omnicare and the pending acquisition of all of Target’s pharmacy operations. 
 
To see more from the rankings, which includes UnitedHealth Group, Deere & Co. and Discover Financial services, click here
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REACH Health looks at 5 telemedicine trends for 2016

BY DSN STAFF

ATLANTA — Telemedicine is one of the fastest growing areas of health care, and as 2016 approaches, REACH Health has released its list of five trends in telemedicine technology that will be important in the coming year. 
 
“Telemedicine has evolved dramatically over the past few years, and providers have come to realize the profound ways in which it can improve patient care,” REACH Health CEO Steve McGraw said. “With this evolution has also come the increasing sophistication of telemedicine practitioners. Doctors, nurses and administrators now desire easier integration, clinical adaptability and configurability, support for multiple specialties on a single comprehensive platform, and robust data collection and analytics.”
 
One of the trends that the company predicts is that proprietary hardware and networks will become start to become obsolete. With providers focusing on flexible and affordable solutions to allow them to choose the most appropriate clinical use for telemedicine technology, emerging networks like WebRTC and low-cost cameras will start to become the norm. 
 
Additionally, as healthcare systems begin to seek out solutions that can provide multiple lines of service across various delivery models, providers will start to look for a single software platform to suit their telemedicine needs. 
 
REACH Health’s third trend relates to how physicians engage their patients. As 2016 wears on, telemedicine apps will become more adaptable and allow doctors the ability to control how information is displayed and used, all within the provider organization’s treatment protocols. 
 
Finally, the company predicts that data will become even more important within telemedicine. To have a program that thrives, providers will need to compile usage, financial and clinical data that can be examined to identify trends in the program. 
 
“Provider expectations of telemedicine technologies are shifting rapidly,” McGraw said. “With increasing focus on patient engagement and improved outcomes, providers are consistently seeking telemedicine solutions that do much more than simply enable consultations, but truly enhance clinical effectiveness and overall program management.”
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higi, Validic team on remote monitoring, wellness efforts

BY David Salazar

CHICAGO — Validic and higi on Wednesday announced a new partnership that will see the two working together to deliver more divers, actionable health data to healthcare organizations that can be used to improve outcomes and improve treatments. 
 
With the collaboration, Validic’s Clients — from payers to providers and wellness companies — will be able to see real-time biometric data from those among higi’s nearly 30 million users who provide authorization. They will also be able to engage patients using higi stations. The move will expand higi’s reach and distribution to Validic’s client population, which numbers 160 million in 47 countries.
 
“We are excited to expand the digital health ecosystem with higi,” Ryan Beckland, CEO and co-founder of Validic, said. “higi, like Validic, believes that access to actionable health information can not only motivate patient behavior, but can also empower healthcare organizations to deliver a higher quality of care to improve health outcomes.” 
 
Under the partnership, health systems and hospitals could benefit by developing more efficiently designed clinical improvement programs that would allow lower-risk patients to send statistics through their local higi station rather than an in-home monitoring device. The free higi check-ins — which also allow patient to track their statistics — would allow hospitals and health systems to monitor more people with a minimal cost increase, the companies said. 
 
“We believe all healthcare organizations will be using biometric health data, like the data provided by higi, as the means to quickly and cost-effectively identify at-risk populations to improve treatments and outcomes for their patients. higi is perfectly positioned to partner with a digital health leader like Validic in this effort so healthcare organizations can provide better care because they will now have a more complete understanding of their consumers to provide even more personalized treatments,” higi CEO Jeff Bennett said.
 
On Dec. 9, higi will discuss the partnership in a webinar as part of Validic’s Digital Health Leadership Series. 
 
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