Electronic Health Records (EHR) software has come under heavy scrutiny following a $155 million fraud settlement by eClinicalWorks that came after allegations that the company circumvented software certification requirements. The case highlights an IT issue that could have a significant impact on patient care: “interoperability,” or in layperson’s terms, it just doesn’t play nice with other systems. When that is the case, the information flow between providers can become disrupted or incomplete. The problem seems hard to understand, says Dr. Julia Adler-Milstein, from the University of Michigan : “When our banks talk to each other seamlessly and online ads show us things we’ve already been shopping for, it is hard to understand why hospitals and doctors’ offices still depend on their fax machines.”
Looks like they had a backup plan after all. After a long period of market speculation and substantial FTC scrutiny of the proposed deal, Walgreens Boots Alliance announced this week that it has scrapped the Rite Aid merger and will instead attempt to purchase nearly half of the Rite Aid stores at a price tag of $5.18 billion. The deal also leaves regional chain Fred’s, who had planned to buy nearly 1,000 Rite Aid stores, out in the cold. Fred’s stock price plummeted.