PHARMACY

Insource Healthcare Solutions to use telehealth systems from Polycom

BY Alaric DeArment

SAN JOSE, Calif. – Insource Healthcare Solutions is adding wall-mounted and cart-mounted video systems at the hospitals it operates in upstate New York and Pennsylvania in order to allow for telehealth services and cut costs.

Polycom said Insource would install its HDX 8000 video systems, which stream video to remote physicians who have corresponding software on their computers and tablets, enabling them to observe, interact with and diagnose patients.

"With the Affordable Care Act providing medical coverage to millions of Americans who were previously uninsured, the traditional healthcare system will be hard-pressed to meet the needs of everyone, which is why our model is proving to be so successful," Insource CEO Mark Celmer said. "We eliminate the need to wait weeks to see specialists by collaborating via video with experts all over the world. Telemedicine also allows our network of primary care and urgent care providers to see anyone at any time without traveling. This lets doctors dramatically increase their productivity, saving insurance providers and patients thousands of dollars on medical procedures."

 

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PHARMACY

Mylan sales down due to currency exchange rates

BY Alaric DeArment

PITTSBURGH — Mylan experienced a slight dip in sales in its third quarter, due primarily to fluctuating currency values, the generic drug maker said Thursday.

The Pittsburgh-based company said sales were essentially flat when excluding the effects of currency values, which resulted in $1.77 billion in sales, compared with $1.8 billion in third quarter 2012. For the first nine months of the year, sales were $5.1 billion, compared with $5.07 billion during the first nine months of 2012. Profits for the quarter were $159.4 million, compared with $212.09 million last year. Under a plan authorized by Mylan’s board, the company plans to repurchase up to $500 million worth of stock.

"Mylan’s third quarter performance continued to demonstrate the momentum and stability of our core business and our ability to leverage the strength and diversity of our global platform," Mylan CEO Heather Bresch said. "Coming off an exceptional year in 2012 for both Mylan and our industry, we delivered double-digit constant currency growth in our Asia Pacific and [Mylan Specialty] businesses and saw continued strength in Europe."

 

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Study finds opportunities for mobile health apps to engage patients

BY Alaric DeArment

PARSIPPANY, N.J. — The "vast majority" of available mobile apps focused on health and wellness have limited functionality or evidence of value in advancing healthcare provision and outcomes, according to a new report by IMS Health.

The report, "Patient Apps for Improved Healthcare: From Novelty to Mainstream," by the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics, found that most efforts in app development have been focused on such aspects of overall wellness as diet and exercise, but don’t address the needs of patients with multiple chronic conditions and who are older than 65 years.

IMS researchers surveyed the more than 43,000 health-related apps in the Apple App Store, but found that only 16,275 were directly related to patient health and treatment.

"The movement toward digital therapeutics is clear," IMS Institute executive director Murray Aitken said. "Mobile health apps have the potential to drive a disruptive shift in patient engagement and healthcare delivery. Harnessing the power of apps has become a focal point of innovation, yet barriers remain to their broad and systematic use by providers and patients."

The study found that more than 90% of the apps reviewed scored less than 40 out of 100 possible points for functionality, based on 25 screening factors. Use of the apps is also limited: More than half of the apps have been downloaded fewer than 500 times, and five apps account for 15% of all downloads in the healthcare category.

 

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