A small, ingestible device inspired by leopard tortoises injects insulin into the stomach and reduced blood glucose levels in pigs to nearly the same extent as a conventional insulin shot, researchers reported in Science. More animal studies are underway, and scientists hope the device could eventually be used to deliver other drugs that now must be injected.
A combination of diabetes drug metformin and BCL-2 protein inhibitor venetoclax, a leukemia drug, killed breast cancer cells in lab cultures and donated tissue, and the regimen prevented tumor formation in mice, according to research published in Nature Communications. The combination targets activity associated with the MYC gene, which is overexpressed in more than 40% of breast cancers, and treatment was associated with significantly longer survival in mice.
A new bill introduced by Sens. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., and John Thune, R-S.D., would create an exchange program between government and industry to bolster cybersecurity across the US. The Cyber Security Exchange Act would provide government workers the opportunity to learn new skills in the private sector while giving business cybersecurity experts the opportunity to work in federal government, enabling government and industry to present a more united front on cybersecurity.
The CMS and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT have proposed requiring health insurers participating in government programs to give patients "immediate electronic access to medical claims and other health information electronically by 2020," HHS said. The proposed rules also call for use of open data-sharing technology to make the transfer of EHR data easier, and it includes measures meant to discourage data blocking and encourage "electronic notifications when a patient is admitted, discharged or transferred" from hospitals.
CHIME and Intermountain Healthcare have opened the Intermountain and CHIME Innovation Center in Murray, Utah. "CHIME Innovation will be an educational resource for CHIME members and others in our community, and also a catalyst for advancing promising technologies and impactful innovation," said CHIME Board of Trustees Chairman and Rush University Medical Center CIO Shafiq Rab.
The health care sector saw a 473% increase in email fraud attacks between the first quarter and the fourth quarter of 2017, with organizations suffering 96 attacks per quarter on average, according to an analysis released by Proofpoint. Researchers analyzed more than 160 billion emails sent across 150 countries between 2017 and 2019 and found that 33% of the attacks against the sector were from AOL, Comcast.net, Gmail, Inbox.Iv or RR.com, and almost all of the firms were the target of one or more email attacks that originated from their own domain.
Microsoft Azure now provides its users greater interoperability between health care information systems with the launch of an API for the Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources standard. Microsoft also has updated its Microsoft Teams platform with a secure communications hub for health care teams and launched a bot service that allows for the creation of health care-oriented chatbots and virtual assistants.
Cottage Health, a health system in Santa Barbara, Calif., will pay $3 million and implement a corrective action plan as part of its settlement with the HHS Office for Civil Rights for an alleged HIPAA violation. The agreement stems from two data breach incidents in December 2013 and December 2015 that led to the unintentional exposure of the electronic protected health information of more than 62,500 people.
Two-thirds of clinicians, clinical leaders and executives say data and analytics help improve care, but many organizations fall short on creating, storing and learning from data, a survey found. "Amazon, Apple, Google, and Microsoft -- all with expertise in data aggregation and interpretation -- are intensely looking at how they can leverage their data and apply their analytics capabilities to improve health outcomes, notes NEJM Catalyst Clinical Editor Namita Seth Mohta, adding that "it is encouraging that they are partnering with health care providers."
More incidences of aggression and violence against healthcare workers have prompted The Joint Commission, an accreditation organization, to issue an advisory on de-escalating potentially dangerous situations involving patients. The "Quick Safety" bulletin offers advice on communication techniques and urges healthcare systems to provide more training on de-escalation and intervention.