As it continues its work toward building a state-run health insurance exchange, members of the Tennessee Insurance Exchange Planning Initiative will this month meet with representatives from other states that are evaluating or implementing exchanges.
From the group's email update yesterday:
One meeting will focus on Utah’s existing insurance exchange and its approach to implementing systems and technology, while the second is a broader gathering of federal and state officials to discuss a large agenda of policy challenges related to exchanges. We are bringing a long list of policy questions and technical concerns to each meeting, and we will share with you any news and updates that we receive.
Eleven years after HealthStream's initial public offering, the company's stock has returned to its $9 per share IPO level. This morning, following a strong Q1 earnings report, the company's shares (Ticker: HSTM) rocketed up 15 percent, hitting a first-hour high of $9.53.
HealthStream, which provides education and research services to hospitals and health care providers across the country, conducted its IPO in April of 2000, at the tail end of the tech bubble. The company's shares briefly hit a high of $10.13 that month, before plummeting when the bubble burst — hitting a low of 75 cents before the end of that year.
Seattle-based Washington Publishing Company announced this week that it is opening an office in Brentwood for its health care consulting practice, WPC Services.
“We decided to launch WPC Services in greater Nashville because of the location’s high concentration of health care companies and close proximity to a top-notch talent pool," said Andrew Fitzpatrick, chief executive officer at WPC. " The area is the hub of innovative health care services and technology. Its easy accessibility makes it a very attractive and convenient location for employees, clients and new business outreach in nearby states.”
Curiously, we wrote about the company's entry into the Nashville market in 2008...
Our friends at Nashville Medical News touched base recently with Stephen Hau, who relocated his Shareable Ink venture here from Boston last year. He's jazzed about the broad level of institutional support for area entrepreneurs and tells us he recently launched a partnership with Dallas-based T-System, which works to automate the information collected at 1,700 hospitals' emergency departments.
Hau also shares his thoughts on one of the most pressing topics of Middle Tennessee's tech scene, our talent pool. Echoing a point many others have made, he says quality is not the issue.
“We’ve built an impressive team in Nashville with top-notch, local talent. On the technology front, there are strong candidates in Nashville, but they are few and far between. While I’m not worried about finding the next five strong engineers, sourcing the next 50 will be a challenge. Tod Fetherling of the Nashville Technology Council is a wonderful resource, and Professor Kenneth Galloway, dean of Engineering at Vanderbilt, has been helpful too. Nashville needs more engineering talent, and I hope creating meaningful jobs at ‘cool’ software companies can help.”
The integration — designed to eliminate duplicate costs and inefficiencies related to running two public companies — comes after MedQuist finished integrating the operations of acquired Spheris into its business, which it said will result in about $1 million in termination costs in Q1 from layoffs and a $1.5 million charge for future lease payments on the company's former Mt. Lauren, N.J., headquarters and data center in Virginia.
That's right, MedQuist is now officially part of the family tree and based in Cool Springs' Carothers Building:
Mr. Masanotti noted, "MedQuist Holdings is now headquartered in the Nashville area which is close to several of our key hospital clients who are integral to the ongoing initiatives underway in the healthcare industry."
For the full release, which includes some additional details about integration costs, click here.
Ambitious health IT company iPractice Group says it needs to hire 30 people for its local operations in the coming months. Among the types of employees the company — which has had recent run-ins with securities regulators in other states — says it needs are network engineers, systems administrators, server engineers and various sales, training and customer service roles.
Nashville's Healthcare Management Systems said today that two of its hospitals in Kentucky have been awarded incentive payments for using its electronic health record system. Rockcastle Regional Hospital received nearly $630,000 and Breckinridge Memorial Hospital received about $194,000 in stimulus funds made available under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for hospitals that meet "meaningful use" requirements for EHR systems.
“We’re extremely pleased to see these community hospitals moving forward successfully,” said Tom Stephenson, president and chief executive officer of HMS. “They are improving healthcare delivery and are among the first to receive the incentive payments that became available this year. HMS is proud to help Breckinridge and Rockcastle achieve adoption of these tools and qualify for stimulus funding.”
HMS currently serves more than 680 community hospitals and healthcare organizations nationwide.