A total of 17,634 patients at Metropolitan Urology Group in Wisconsin may have had their information exposed when two of the provider's servers were infected by ransomware on Nov. 28. The incident may have exposed patient information including names, account numbers, procedure codes, provider identification numbers and dates of services, as well as a handful of Social Security numbers, according to a statement from the provider.
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A Tripwire survey revealed that 96% of IT security professionals expect an increase in industrial internet of things cybersecurity attacks this year as health care and other industries continue adding connected devices to their infrastructures. Meanwhile, the health care sector experienced a 320% increase in cybersecurity attacks from 2015 to 2016, and the rate of cyberattacks is likely to continue to grow this year, according to a Redspin report.
The Medical Group Management Association sent a letter to the CMS citing the agency's failure to notify physicians about eligibility requirements for the 2017 Merit-Based Incentive Payment System. The guidance should have been sent in December, and the lack of notification about exemptions and other information related to data reporting is "generating considerable frustration and confusion," according to the letter.
The CMS has updated its electronic clinical quality measure specifications for eligible professionals for the 2017 reporting period and released an advance notice about what providers can expect on the upcoming changes for the 2018 reporting period. Each of the eCQM standards were based on the six priorities of the National Quality Strategy, including patient safety, effective clinical care, and person and caregiver-centered experience and outcomes.
Epic and Acumen Physician Solutions will develop Acumen 2.0, an upgraded EHR system for nephrologists. The next-generation EHR aims to improve care coordination, data sharing and interoperability among nephrology practices using the platform.
A Texas A&M University medical student is conducting a study to determine how hand-held ultrasounds can help paramedics. Four teams in Texas are participating, and the paramedics say the tablet-size ultrasound machine helps them assess heart and lung function and place IVs, enabling them to provide faster, potentially lifesaving treatment.
A global collaborative agreement has been announced by Siemens Healthineers and HeartFlow to create a solution that will aid in the diagnosis and management of patients with suspected coronary artery disease. The deal, which will initially concentrate on the US, seeks to combine CT scanners from Siemens with HeartFlow's FFRct Analysis fractional flow reserve software to provide actionable information that facilitates decision-making for optimal treatment strategies.
Italian researchers are developing a "plug-and-play" exoskeleton to augment wheelchairs that users can don by themselves. The modular system, which has electric motors at each knee and hip, can be separated for ease of transportation and is designed to help those with spinal cord injuries become more independent, according to the Rehab Technologies team led by Lorenzo De Michieli.