15 recent moves from health IT companies

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From launching product features to forming new partnerships to executing business plans, here's the latest roundup of stories about health IT companies, including Cerner, Google, and Amazon.

  1. A month after filing a notice to complete an estimated 651 layoffs this year, Ascension Technologies, the IT subsidiary of St. Louis-based Ascension, eliminated 92 remote IT jobs in Indiana.

  2. Amid a string of new hires, Verily, the healthcare and life sciences sister company of Google, named former FDA Deputy Commissioner Amy Abernethy, MD, PhD, as the head of its clinical research business.

  3. Amazon will roll out a new feature for its health-tracking device, Halo, that taps into the user's smartphone camera to scan their body movements and recommend exercises to improve mobility and posture.

  4. Cerner plans to launch a new hybrid work model this fall that will let employees choose between working at the Kansas City, Mo.-based company's headquarters or from a remote location.

  5. Cerner will eliminate 500 positions across its global workforce. The company said it plans to bring on 2,600 new workers by the end of 2021.

  6. Apple announced a slew of new health features for its iPhone, Apple Watch and Health Records app, including the ability to share health information with loved ones or a provider. Cerner, Meditech, Athenahealth and DrChrono have teamed up with Apple in support of the health data sharing feature, which is slated to become available this fall.

  7. Epic maintains 31 percent of the hospital EHR market and 42 percent of hospital beds, according to a recent KLAS report. The report found Cerner maintains 25 percent of the hospital EHR market and 27 percent of hospital beds.

  8. Amazon's HealthLake can now offer patient outcome predictions, like mortality, based on stored data.

  9. Google, Boston Children's Hospital and Ariadne Labs launched an interactive, data-driven vaccine equity planning tool to help officials locate "vaccine deserts," or places with limited access to COVID-19 vaccines.

  10. The Department of Veterans Affairs selected AT&T to modernize its data communications platforms to support digital capabilities across the VA's 1,255 healthcare facilities.

  11. Salesforce rolled out new artificial intelligence tools for its healthcare cloud platform to help providers better manage patient engagement and scheduling.

  12. Cerner and Washington, D.C.-based Children's National Hospital are launching a digital health innovation accelerator as part of the organizations' pediatric health IT institute.

  13. Google's vice president of health, David Feinberg, MD, said he doesn't feel the pressure to turn a profit from the tech giant's latest health ventures. He said the pressure comes from bringing the health products to a global scale.

  14. Cleveland Clinic, IBM, Aetna and Anthem partnered to form a blockchain health firm, called Avaneer Health.

  15. Health information management company Ciox Health and real-world health data company Datavant signed a $7 billion merger agreement. The combined entity, which will be named Datavant, will comprise more than 15,000 clinics, 2,000 hospitals, 120 health plans, 100 health data analytics companies, 75 government agencies, 70 academic institutions and nonprofits and 30 life science companies.

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