US Markets – October 17, 2017

Healthcare Economy and Policy Highlights


  • President Trump signs an executive order that will cease payments to insurers, delivering what Commonwealth Fund calls as one-two punches to the ACA. The first punch will in due course of time allow insurers to sell products that do not adequately cover ACA’s consumer protection; the second punch, with immediate effect, will stop payments to insurers (CNN; Common Wealth Fund)
  • President Trump appoints Eric Hargan, as acting Department of Health and Human Services Secretary. Hargan has previously served on President Donald Trump's HHS transition team (Reuters)
  • The U.S. House of Representatives has approved the Internet of Medical Things Resilience Partnership Act. The prime objective of this act is to establish a public-private stakeholder partnership to develop a better cybersecurity framework for medical devices (HIPAA Journal)
  • The bill for reauthorization of funds for Children’s Health Insurance Program is stalled in the house of law makers as lawmakers mull over how to pay for it (Fierce Healthcare)
  • ONC announces Secure API Server Showdown Challenge that invites health IT stakeholders to build secure servers based on Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources, framework (Becker’s Hospital Review)
  • The National Institutes of Health (NIH) partnered with eleven biopharmaceutical companies, for a period of 5 years, to expedite the development of cancer cures with the help of immunotherapy strategies (Healthcare IT News)

Market Updates

  • Whistleblower Joe Rannazzisi reveals how drug distributors pumped opioids into U.S. communities and how industry lobbyists and Congress derailed the DEA's efforts to stop it (CBS News)
  • ONC announces Secure API Server Showdown Challenge that invites health IT stakeholders to build secure servers based on Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources, framework (Becker’s Hospital Review)
  • HIMSS releases a Call to Action and guiding principles focused on achieving nationwide, ubiquitous, secure electronic exchange of health information (HIMSS)
  • According to Rock Health, the first venture fund dedicated to digital health, digital health funding has broken the prior historic annual high of $4.6B in 2015. Q3 funding came in at $1.2B, bringing the YTD total to $4.7 billion in Q3 2017 (Rock Health)

Product Offering

  • Google launches “Searching For Health”, a tool that can track the spread of diseases and illnesses compared to the rate at which they are searched for within its search engines (Healthcare Global)

Appointments/Leadership Changes

  • Michael Howell appointed as the new Chief Clinical Strategist for the Google Brain Team, at Google Research. He was the Chief Quality Officer of University of Chicago Medicine and Director of the Center for Healthcare Delivery Science and Innovation (Becker’s Hospital Review)

Partnerships/Collaborations/Agreements and Deals

  • Amazon Web Services (AWS) has been selected by GE as “the preferred cloud provider". GE uses several cloud applications of AWS for number of businesses including GE Healthcare (Yahoo)
  • Microsoft and Amazon join forces to take on Google in spreading artificial intelligence to cloud computing (Business Insider)
  • Optum will provide 24/7 nurse and primary care manager telehealth access to Military Health System beneficiaries starting March 2018. The Government Accountability Office recently affirmed the five-year, $200 million contract that was awarded by the Defence Health Agency in May 2017 (Optum)

Top Competitors

Top Competitors (Oncology/Genomics)

Leadership Changes

  • Mark Kokes, BlackBerry's patent strategy head, exits and joins NantWorks (NantHealth is one of the companies of NantWorks ecosystem). He is the second senior executive who left BlackBerry and joined NantWorks after Ron Louks (former president for devices and emerging solutions in BlackBerry), who joined NantHealth as chief operating officer in May 2017 (Reuters)

Top Competitors (VBC)


  • Optum secures a contract worth £979,855 from the government to provide back office services for the eight clinical commissioning groups operating in Kent and Medway, over four years (Kent Online)

Appointments/Leadership Changes

  • Accenture appoints Iliana Oris Valiente as Global Blockchain Innovation Lead. Earlier, she was the blockchain strategy leader at Deloitte, Canada. She is also the founder of ColliderX (Accenture)
  • Accenture appoints Nikki Mendonça as President of Intelligent Marketing Operation. She joins Accenture from OMD Worldwide, an Omnicom company (Accenture)


  • Allscripts completes the acquisition of McKesson’s health system IT business - Enterprise Information Solutions business (Allscripts)

Product Offerings/Developments

  • Accenture helps Dai-ichi Life enhance its Kenko Dai-ichi (Health First) app, which promotes healthy lifestyle choices and enables users to monitor their well-being (Accenture)

Top Competitors (Imaging)

Organizational Changes/ Announcements

  • Restructuring started in Agfa-Gevaert (Belgian-German multinational corporation - part of Agfa). The firm will represent a part of its Healthcare IT activities; mainly software solutions for hospitals and medical imaging systems, in a separate structure within the group. Initially, the restructuring activities will be done in Latin America and the Middle East (Knack Data News)
  • Toshiba Medical Systems Corporation announces to change its company name to Canon Medical Systems Corporation on January 4, 2018 (Toshiba)

Partnerships/Collaborations/Agreements and Deals

  • A partnership agreement has been signed between Royal Philips (a global leader in health technology) and Siloam Hospitals (Indonesia's largest healthcare group) for maintenance and operational services for all of Philips’ healthcare technologies installed in Siloam’s 21 locations across Indonesia. The partnership aims at ensuring the high quality of healthcare services that Siloam provides to its patients (Phillips)

Top Competitors (Government)

  • Names not specified.

Top Competitors (Life Sciences)

Partnerships/Collaborations/Agreements and Deals

  • Accenture collaborates with Veeva Systems, a leader in cloud-based software for the global life sciences industry, to advance regulatory information management for the life sciences industry (Accenture)