DiSanzo out at Watson Health, Halamka in at Cynerio, and more digital health hires and departures

Plus, One Drop hires former Roche business leader; Clarify, FundamentalVR, and League add new executives.
By Jonah Comstock
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Deborah DiSanzo has stepped down as the head of IBM Watson Health, STAT News reports. Official details around the reasons for the move are scarce, but STAT notes that the division has had some issues of late, including outside criticisms of the program's effectiveness and problems integrating the recent acquisitions. 

DiSanzo will move to the strategy team at IBM Cognitive Solutions. John Kelly, senior vice president for Cognitive Solutions and IBM Research, will step into the role in an acting capacity, according to STAT.

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Medical device and healthcare Internet of Things security company Cynerio has brought on Dr. John Halamka in an advisory capacity. Halamka, Harvard's International Healthcare Innovation Professor and CIO at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, is also a blogger and a staple of health IT thought leadership. 

“I am excited to join Cynerio at such an exciting stage of their journey," Halamka said in a statement. "As Harvard’s International Healthcare Innovation Professor, I travel the world and I see that medical device security is a worldwide issue, because connected devices are vulnerable. It’s a worldwide issue because cybersecurity in hospitals is not sophisticated enough. There is a building sense of urgency to plug the holes you have and especially in hospitals’ IV pumps, EKG machines and X-ray machines, which you don’t even think about as computers, but these days pretty much every medical device has network connectivity and needs to be secured.”

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AI-enabled healthcare insights company Clarify Health Solutions, fresh off a $57 million funding round, has hired Kara Dennis, former managing director of mobile health at Medidata Solutions. Dennis will lead the company's new business division in the role of senior vice president and general management of life sciences.

"I am thrilled to join Clarify Health to build solutions for capturing and surfacing real world evidence across siloed stakeholders,” Dennis said in a statement. “For many years, I have been excited about how we can apply data to impact patient care in a positive and holistic way; the Clarify platform is a powerhouse for providing the life sciences industry with insights that could transform current approaches to personalized medicine and clinical trials.”

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Diabetes-focused digital health company One Drop has tapped Brian Kemper as vice president of integrated care. Kemper comes to One Drop directly from the diabetes division at Roche, where he served as international business leader. There, he supervised Roche's deals with Dexcom, mySugr and Alere Health.

"Brian Kemper brings more than 20 years of progressive accomplishments in digital health, medical devices and technology," One Drop CEO Jeff Dachis said in a statement. "Kemper's extensive experience driving market access for large-scale healthcare solutions perfectly positions him to lead One Drop's expanded go-to-market effort to give users the option of accessing premium virtual integrated diabetes, diabetes prevention and weight loss, and hypertension programs through their employer, insurance company or healthcare provider."

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FundamentalVR, a London-based company using VR for medical training, has brought on two new executives: Peter Rainger, who will fill the role of chief learning officer, and Peter Cooke, the company's new client sales executive. 

Rainger will lead the company's education strategy. He previously served as head of medical education at surgical simulator maker Touch Surgery. Cooke, who has sales experience in the world of orthopedics, will be focusing on engaging with hospitals in the US.

“Starting with the top minds in medicine and some of the most advanced VR and haptic programmers, we introduced Fundamental Surgery, a solution that can be deployed anywhere to allow surgeons to affordably learn and hone their skills over and over again in a safe and controlled environment,” Richard Vincent, founder and CEO, said in a statement. “Now with Peter Rainger and Peter Cooke, we can expand our efforts to work directly with hospitals, higher education and research institutions to provide them with safe, affordable and authentic simulations that help facilitate better patient outcomes.”

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Digital health benefits platform League has announced the hire of Kim Tabac as chief people officer. Tabac most recently served as chief talent officer at Deloitte Canada where she gained a reputation for helping improve diversity and inclusion at corporations. 

"I have been a big fan of the League brand and technology platform for several years," Tabac said in a statement. "Wellbeing is an issue that is more relevant than ever to employees, in a talent marketplace that is more competitive than it has ever been. I am excited to be part of the team that helps employees to take back control of their health benefits, and helps employers to deliver a compelling and differentiated value proposition."