Digital health news briefs for 5/9/2018

By Jonah Comstock
04:19 pm
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Slavitt's new gig. Former CMS Administrator Andy Slavitt is heading up Town Hall Ventures, a new healthcare investing group that officially launched yesterday. Slavitt will be joined by Trevor Price, founder of Oxeon Holdings, a retained executive search and investment firm; and David Whelan, who managed Oxeon's previous firm Oxeon Ventures. The firm already has several investments including Cityblock Health, Somatus, Welbe Health, and Aetion. 

“As a nation we have significant healthcare infrastructure serving healthy populations while lower-income communities go underserved, leading to vastly poorer health outcomes,” Slavitt said in a statement. “We are at the beginning of a wave of innovation serving Medicare and Medicaid populations. Town Hall is being formed to help lead this massive and necessary shift. The answers are not always traditional; they involve investments in underlying systemic issues as well as innovative approaches that improve people’s health and well-being.”

Smart bike broadens market reach. Connected exercise bike company Peloton is expanding its operations outside of the United States, with sales opening soon in the UK and Canada, Engadget reports. Remote fitness classes are part of the company's offering, so the expansion of the service into the UK will also involve opening a local office in London to stream fitness classes on the UK's time zone. 

Device shows promise for head trauma assessment. Bethesda, Maryland-based BrainScope, which makes mobile, non-invasive devices that help medical professionals assess traumatic brain injury, has released a pair of whitepapers showing new efficacy data. One study, conducted by physicians at two urgent care centers, showed that Brainscope One had the potential to reduce unnecessary emergency department referrals by up to 75 percent. The other, from Washington University ED doctors, showed the technology's potential to reduce the use of unnecessary head CT scans in the ED by one-third. Both studies used retrospective data.

Nomad, not just for nurses. Nomad Health, a New York company that makes a platform for job-seekers and employers in the healthcare space, has expanded its platform to include full-time doctor positions. Hitherto, the company has focused on locum tenens, travel nursing, and telehealth jobs. Nomad will charge hospitals a flat $10,000 fee for doctor placements. Nomad uses digital tools to connect doctors and nurses looking for work to healthcare companies looking to hire them — filling the role that is traditionally handled by a staffing agency, but at a lower price point.

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