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IBM Watson Health’s stumble and possible fall

...up for sale. Smaller, nimbler companies have taken over cloud computing and data analytics with AI and machine learning solutions that broke problems down into manageable chunks and business niches. What’s recoverable from Watson? Basic, crunchy AI. Watson does natural language processing very well, as well as or better than Amazon, Google, and Microsoft. Watson Assistant is used by payers like Anthem to automate customer inquiries. Hardly a moonshot or even clinical decision support. For business, Watson applications automate basic tasks in ‘dishwashing’ areas such as accounting, payments, technology operations, marketing, and customer service. The bottom line is not good... Continue Reading

Saturday summer morning fun: treat yourself (or your boss) to a Dead Startup Toy

...poster or mug, but you can’t get a Theranos mini MiniLab to put on your shelf as a memento mori. Or a toy Jibo [TTA 18 July 2014] to remind you to not go up against Google and Amazon. There’s also CoolestCooler, a Kickstarted cooler/speaker/blender that never delivered the goods but burned through $14 million, Juicero, an $400 IoT juicer that laid waste to $120 million in one year, and One Laptop Per Child, a Nick Negroponte-headed $100 laptop full of clunkiness that didn’t make it past the Seven Year Itch of Reality. (The last two are sold out) Have... Continue Reading

Tunstall under fire in Swedish court on appeal of Adda procurement exclusion

...translated from Swedish to English via Google Translate): Certain municipalities received compensation from Tunstall, which the company has refused to disclose nor what the agreements look like, other than they were based on a template. Municipalities also refused to send Adda copies of the agreements, citing confidentiality. In Sweden, municipalities can negotiate agreements on their own with suppliers, but if they choose to work under the framework agreement, the municipalities create their own detailed contracts using the framework as a basis. Adda apparently received copies of agreements that included ‘silence’ (presumably non-disclosure or confidentiality) clauses. According to Adda, this violates... Continue Reading

News and deal roundup: Zus Health’s $34M ‘back-end in a box’, Bright Health’s IPO, Lyra Health’s $200M done, Valo Health’s $2.8B SPAC; UK’s Alcuris, Clarity Informatics, GTX test; Google’s health blues, Facebook’s smartwatch

...is a clinical trial tool that evaluates the effectiveness of certain interventions and was designed to run on a specially designed smartwatch to capture information in vivo. The rejection was based on an estimation that the VME would have limited ability to capture the full picture of a patient’s capacities and/or meaningful change in patient function. Google Health has spun off staff in health initiative groups into those areas. Of the 700 counted under Google Health, 570 remain. Staff working on health sensors and personal health records as well as some business development leaders have been relocated under Fitbit. Another... Continue Reading

News and deal roundup: OneMedical’s $2.1 bn for Iora, CareDx buys Transplant Hero, Mount Sinai’s Elementa Labs; UK news–NHSX/Babylon, Doro-Everon, Tunstall

West Coast-based concierge medical provider One Medical goes ‘mass’ with Iora. One Medical, best known for serving the affluent well through a membership fee, direct pay, commercial insurance, and sponsored contracts with large employers like Google for primary care, announced plans to acquire Boston-based Iora Health. Iora’s primary care providers serve a different market, with primarily Medicare patients moved into full-risk value-based models such as Medicare Advantage plans and practices in shared savings arrangements such as Direct Contracting. The investor presentation here discloses the all-stock purchase with 26 percent of ownership going to current Iora shareholders. Iora for now will... Continue Reading

Tunstall excluded from Sweden’s framework agreements for municipal alarm and technology procurement

...the new security alarms four-year framework agreement. The decisions are based on their investigation, concluding that Tunstall “violated the previous framework agreement in several respects”. “Our decision to exclude Tunstall from future framework agreements is based on our assessment that the company cannot live up to our high demands as a framework agreement supplier.” (Google translation) Adda’s notice on Tunstall exclusion The reasons why date back to October and multiple incidents in alarm responses. Adda’s investigation, which wrapped in late April, cited failures such as long response times in alarm response. SVT Nyheter used more dramatic language. “Thousands of old... Continue Reading

Amwell debuts new telehealth platform, Converge; previews Carepoint for hospital care into the home

...to host apps and services such as Google Cloud, Tyto Care, virtual second opinions from the Cleveland Clinic, and the Biobeat wearable wrist and chest monitors. What may be even more interesting for Amwell’s future is a TV-based initiative that can bring hospital care into the home. At the same conference, Amwell previewed Home TV Carepoint. Developed in partnership with Solaborate, the software uses advanced AI. Information on Carepoint was limited to a few lines buried in the body of the release, indicating a ‘stealth mode’, but the potential is that it could open up a new market with health... Continue Reading

‘Most Reputable’ healthcare technology companies ranked

RepTrak has a mission–quantifying reputation, brand, and ESG (environmental, social, and corporate governance) performance for their clients. Their product is software and algorithms that monitor real-time perception data for companies to increase reputation intelligence. A way to market themselves is to issue a Top 100 list (PDF link) of top-scoring companies primarily in mass-market and luxury brands, plus automotive, retail, financial, media and entertainment, and technology companies. Becker’s Health IT picked out health tech-related companies as follows: Bosch (#4) Microsoft (#10) Philips (#13) Google (#15) 3M (#20) Apple (#46) Hewlett Packard Enterprise (#49) IBM (#54) Salesforce (#89) Amazon (#92) These... Continue Reading

Google’s Care Studio patient record search tool to pilot at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

...(BAA) to ensure that both parties meet patient privacy obligations required under HIPAA. BIDMC patient data will be stored and maintained in a protected environment, isolated from other Google customers.” (Editor’s emphasis) The BAA was inked in 2018. Without referring to it, it addresses the controversy surrounding Google’s Project Nightingale and Ascension Health, a major privacy kerfuffle pre-COVID that broke in early November 2019. From the TTA article, edited: “Google’s BAA allowed them apparently to access in the initial phase at least 10 million identified health records which were transmitted to Google without patient or physician consent or knowledge, including... Continue Reading

Comings and goings: Babylon Health, Seniorlink, Hinge Health

At Babylon Health, the US-based C-suite is now larger with the additions of Paul-Henri Ferrand, briefly of financial platform Brex and previously Google Cloud, as Chief Business Officer, Stacy Saal of Amazon as Chief Operating Officer, and Steve Davis from Expedia Group as Chief Technology Officer. Mr. Ferrand will lead business development, sales, marketing, and customer success efforts; Ms. Saal operational initiatives and goals; and Mr. Davis technology and data. They will concentrate on US growth plans plus refining and leveraging Babylon 360. Babylon release Seniorlink, a Boston-based provider of professional coaching, emotional and financial support services for caregivers through... Continue Reading