Humana, Microsoft Forge Partnership; Aveanna Teams Up with Netsmart

Humana, Microsoft announce partnership

Humana Inc. (NYSE: HUM) and Microsoft Corp. (NYSE: MSFT) have partnered to develop predictive solutions and intelligent automation for the care teams of the insurer’s members.

One of the specific goals of the partnership is to address health for aging populations and their care teams.

The news marks the first step in what will be a seven-year partnership between the two companies, they said in a press release.

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Through the partnership, care teams will have access to real-time information via a cloud platform. Microsoft technologies will also allow Humana to utilize natural-language understanding and speech recognition for the administrative and clinical sides of its business.

Humana will also be able to aggregate data on Microsoft Azure, allowing for a broader view of its members’ health history and easier access to their health records.

“Achieving our goal to provide better care experiences and improve our members’ health requires strong partnerships that allow us to be smarter, safer and faster in delivering care,” Heather Cox, chief of digital health and analytics at Humana, said in the release.

Additionally, as part of a larger innovation strategy, Humana will use Microsoft Azure and Azure AI to develop on-demand and virtual medical services.

“With an estimated 10,000 people joining the Medicare system daily, we have a tremendous opportunity to address the growing demands on the health care system by improving health outcomes and lowering costs,” said Dr. Greg Moore, corporate vice president of health technology and alliances at Microsoft, said the release.

Aveanna teams up with Netsmart

Aveanna Healthcare has teamed up with health information technology company Netsmart in what will be a 10-year partnership between the two companies.

Pediatric home health giant Aveanna — based in Atlanta — is backed by Bain Capital Private Equity and has more than 200 locations in 23 states.

Overland Park, Kansas-based Netsmart designs and builds electronic health records, health information exchanges, analytics tools and telehealth solutions. The company serves more than 600,000 users across more than 30,000 health care organizations.

As part of the deal, Aveanna clinicians and staff will utilize myUnity, Netsmart’s electronic health record solution, which will give them access to more than 90,000 organizations across health care.

“We were looking for an opportunity to connect with an IT partner with whom we could truly collaborate to optimize and configure solutions to meet goals that are specific to our organization’s needs today and in the future,” Aveanna Healthcare CEO Tony Strange said in a statement. “As we look forward, we envision an opportunity to positively influence and advance the home health industry in both efficiency and quality clinical care.”

Additionally, Aveanna will implement Netsmart’s data and analytics tools and have access to Netsmart’s learning management system, myLearningPointe.

Last month, Netsmart hit a major milestone when it set a new internal record for the number of secure health data transactions achieved in a month at 100 million transactions.

Twistle raises $16M

Seattle-based startup Twistle recently closed a $16 million Series A funding round.

Health Enterprise Partners (HEP) and MemorialCare Health System’s MemorialCare Innovation Fund (MCIF) led the round, VentureBeat reported.

Twistle’s HIPAA compliant health care communication platform helps clinicians track and ensure patient adherence.

Twistle has earmarked the new funds for its customer-acquisition efforts, particularly in the provider and life sciences arena, according to VentureBeat.

“If we want to deliver great care and bend the cost curve in this country, we cannot continue following the status quo,” Twistle CEO Kulmeet Singh told VentureBeat. “We have to use automation to increase the effectiveness of our care teams and find better ways to motivate patients to take ownership of their own health.”

In total, the company has raised $19.8 million.

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