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Zoya Khan

THCB Gang: Episode 9

Episode 9 of “The THCB Gang” was live-streamed on Wednesday (instead of our normal Thursday slot) on May 13th at 1pm PT- 4pm ET! Watch it below! Next week we’ll be back to Thursday

Joining me were health “IT” girl Jessica DaMassa (@jessdamassa), health futurist Ian Morrison (@seccurve), health economist Jane Sarasohn-Kahn (@healthythinker), patient safety expert Michael Millenson (MLMillenson), and MD & hospital system exec Rajesh Aggarwal (@docaggarwal). The conversation looked at the likelihod of big picture change, Medicare Advantage expansion, whether the move to remote care is real and sustainable, and at one point got us to war with China!

If you’d rather listen, the “audio only” version is preserved as a weekly podcast available on our iTunes & Spotify channels from Thursday onwards— Matthew Holt

Health in 2 Point 00, Episode 122 | Livongo Q1 Earnings, LetsGetChecked, Vida Health, and Medable

Today on Episode 122 of Health in 2 Point 00, Jess asks me about LetsGetChecked raising $71M for at-home testing, Vida Health raising $25M for virtual chronic-conditions-management programs, Medable securing $25M for clinical trials, and Livongo publishing their Q1 earnings report (and their stock rising 10% days before the report was released!). I am excited to see their CFO, Lee Shapiro, go on a buying spree in the space nowMatthew Holt

THCB Spotlights: David Smith, Medicaid Transformation Project at Avia

By ZOYA KHAN

Matthew Holt talks to David Smith who is working on the Medicaid Transformation Project at Avia, which is looking at how hospitals & health plans can improve health outcomes and in turn, lose less money on Medicaid programs. David talks about the tremendous amount of capital being poured into Medicaid, and how the problem is only getting worse. So the focus of the project is trying to reduce healthcare delivery organizations’ spend on these services. At Avia, they are trying to take the best of model science and the best of digital capabilities to help create more efficient care models for their clients as well as reduce costs.

Zoya Khan is the Editor-in-Chief of THCB and a Strategy Manager at SMACK.health

THCB Gang: Episode 8 LIVE 1PM PT/4PM ET, 5/7

Episode 8 of “The THCB Gang” was live-streamed on Thursday, May 7th at 1pm PT- 4pm ET! You can see it below.

Joining me were our regulars: patient advocate Grace Cordovano (@GraceCordovano), data privacy lawyer Deven McGraw (@HealthPrivacy), policy expert Vince Kuraitis (@VinceKuraitis), radiologist Saurabh Jha (@RogueRad) (who snuck in late), and writer Kim Bellard (@Kimbbellard). We had a great conversation including a lot of detail around access to patient records, and some fun about infectious disease epidemiologists behaving badly! If you’d rather listen, the “audio only” version is preserved as a weekly podcast available on our iTunes & Spotify channels from Friday— Matthew Holt

THCB Spotlights: Stan Kachnowski, Director of the Digital Health Program at Columbia Business School

By ZOYA KHAN

Stan Kachnowski, Director of the Digital Health Program at Columbia Business School, joins Matthew to talk about the Virtual Executive Education in Digital Health Strategy Program they have coming up from May 12-14th. The program is built around health care executives understanding and implementing digital health strategies at their organizations almost immediately after the course. For 3 days, attendees will participate in workshops, lectures, and discussions which will help them identify the key players in health tech along with which methodologies will work at their specific organizations. Matthew will also be a guest lecturer for the program where he will speak about his “Flipping the Stack” model for health technology’s future.

For more information, visit:

https://www8.gsb.columbia.edu/execed/program-pages/details/2489/DHS

Or email Stan at swk16@gsb.columbia.edu

Zoya Khan is the Editor-in-Chief of THCB & a Strategy Manager at SMACK.health

COVID-19: Physicians in Shackles

By ANISH KOKA, MD

A number of politically tinged narratives have divided physicians during the pandemic. It would be unfortunate if politics obscured the major problem brought into stark relief by the pandemic: a system that marginalizes physicians and strips them of agency.

In practices big and small, hospital-employed or private practice, nursing homes or hospitals, there are serious issues raising their heads for doctors and their patients.

No masks for you

When I walked into my office Thursday, March 12th, I assembled the office staff for the first time to talk about COVID.  The prior weekend had been awash with scenes of mayhem in Italy, and I had come away with the dawning realization that my wishful thinking on the virus from Wuhan skipping us was dead wrong.  The US focus had been on travel from China and other Far East hotspots.  There was no such limitation on travel from Europe.  The virus had clearly seeded Italy and possibly other parts of Europe heavily, and now the US was faced with the very real possibility that there was significant community spread that had occurred from travelers from Europe and Italy over the last month. I had assumed that seeing no cases in our hospitals and ICUs by early March meant the virus had been contained in China.  That was clearly not the case.

Our testing apparatus had also largely been limited in the US to symptomatic patients who had been to high-risk countries.  If Europe was seeded, this meant we had not been screening nearly enough people.  When I heard the first few cases pop up in my county, it was clear the jig was up.  It was pandemic panic mode time.  There was a chance that there were thousands of cases in the community we didn’t know about and that we were weeks away from the die-off happening in hospitals in China and Italy.  So what I told the staff the morning of March 12th was that we needed to start acting now as if there was significant spread of COVID in the community.  This meant canceling clinic visits for all but urgent patients, wearing masks, trying to buy masks, attention to hand hygiene, cleaning rooms between patients, screening everyone for flu-like symptoms before coming to the office, and moving to a skeleton staff in the office.  I left the office that day wearing a mask as I headed to the ER.

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THCB Gang: Episode 7

Episode 7 of “The THCB Gang” was live-streamed on Thursday, April 30th at 1pm PT- 4pm ET! You can see it below. If you’d rather listen, the “audio only” version is preserved as a weekly podcast available on our iTunes & Spotify channels.

Joining me were regulars futurist Ian Morrison (@seccurve), patient advocate Grace Cordovano (@GraceCordovano), quality expert Michael Millenson (@MLMillenson), with guests Raj Aggarwal (@docaggarwal) head of innovation at Jefferson Health System, and our very own health tech “IT girl” Jessica DaMassa (@jessdamassa) from WTF Health. We had a great conversation about the present and future of care delivery and finance. — Matthew Holt

THCB Gang: Episode 6, LIVE 1PM PT/4PM ET, 4/23

Episode 6 of “The THCB Gang” was live-streamed on Thursday, April 23 at 1pm PT- 4pm ET! 4-6 semi-regular guests drawn from THCB authors and other assorted old friends of mine will shoot the sh*t about health care business, politics, practice, and tech. It’s available below and is preserved as a weekly podcast available on our iTunes & Spotify channels.

Our lineup included: Saurabh Jha (@roguerad), Ian Morrison (@seccurve), Kim Bellard (@kimbbellard), Grace Cordovano (@GraceCordovano),Vince Kuraitis (@VinceKuraitis), Brian Klepper (@bklepper1), and a special guest – Alexandra Drane (@adrane, founder of Eliza, Queen of the Unmentionables, CEO of ArchAngels and sometimes Walmart cashier). Lots of great conversation especially around palliative care, patient experience, the real prevalence of COVID-19 and much more.

And if you want to contact Alex about caregiving, here is her Youtube Channel or please email her. — Matthew Holt

The THCB Gang: Episode 5

Episode 5 of “The THCB Gang” was live-streamed Thursday, April 16 at 1pm PT- 4pm ET! 4-6 semi-regular guests drawn from THCB authors and other assorted old friends of mine will shoot the sh*t about health care business, politics, practice, and tech. It tries to be fun but serious and informative! If you miss it, it will also be preserved as a weekly podcast available on our iTunes & Spotify channels.

Deven McGraw (@healthprivacy), Kim Bellard (@kimbbellard), Grace Cordovano (@gracecordovano), Michael Millenson (@MLMillenson), and Dave deBronkhart (@ePatientDave) all discussed the recent news surrounding COVID-19, and their guesses on how it will impact the landscape of health care; from policy to practice — Matthew Holt

The COVID Pandemic: WHO Dunnit?

By ANISH KOKA, MD

COVID is here. A little strand of RNA that used to live in bats has a new host.  And that strand is clearly not the flu.  New York is overrun, with more than half of the nation’s new cases per day, and refrigerated 18-wheelers parked outside hospitals serve as makeshift morgues.  Detroit, New Orleans, Miami, and Philadelphia await an inevitable surge of their own with bated breath.  America’s health care workers are scrambling to hold the line against a deluge of sick patients arriving hourly at a rate that’s hard to fathom. 

I pause here to attest to the heroic response of the medical community and the countless more working to support them. At the time of this writing, despite 368,000 confirmed cases in the United States, 11,000 deaths have been reported.  A horrid number, but still a far cry from Italy with 130,000 cases, and 16,523 deaths, and Spain with 14,000 deaths amidst 140,000 cases.  Italy and Spain may be a few weeks ahead of the United States, but at the moment, Italy and Spain have case fatality rates (12.5%, 10%) that are multiples of the United States (2.5%). If this rate does stand, it will be a testament to the tenacity of medical workers toiling under extenuating circumstances.

With the scale of the tragedy now obvious, the take from some very smart people is that the people who should have been paying attention were asleep at the wheel.  The easy target is the bombastic New York real estate developer and current President of the United States who repeatedly assured raucous campaign crowds and the nation that the virus was under control before it wasn’t. 

The charge is made that the President ignored warnings and painted a rosy picture of an unfolding crisis in a short-sighted attempt to preserve the economy and a beloved stock market.  He may be guilty of the latter charge, but the real question relates to ignored warnings.  Where were the warnings? Who was sounding the alarm that was ultimately ignored?

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