Open Health News (OHN) Weekly Summary - 12/1/2013

December 1, 2013 - The following is a brief listing of some of the hot news items, selected news clips, feature stories, and blogs posted on Open Health News (OHNews) over the past week that we believe will be of interest to our readers across the U.S. and around the world. We've also included links to some upcoming open source and health IT conferences and events.

Some of the key themes dominating the news this week involved:

  • A focus on the 'Open' Education & Training revolution that is well underway.
  • A look back over 2013 - OHNews Readers Most Viewed News Stories
  • Latest updates on the rollout of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the national Health Insurance Exchanges (HIX) on;
  • Ongoing news about a wide range of innovative 'Open Health' activity and solutions from across the U.S. and around the world.

Roger Maduro
Publisher & Managing Editor, Open Health News


OHN News, Features & Blog Posts

Selected News Clips

Brief Abstracts of Selected News Stories


Rise Of The Corporate MOOC

Michael Fitzgerald | InformationWeek | November 27, 2013

For corporations, massive open online courses, or MOOCs, matter because they might become a major source of technical talent and training. No matter if 140,000 out of 150,000 students in an online programming class drop out -- there are still 10,000 people being trained, a substantial potential resource in a world desperate for technical talent.   Read More »

The 'Open' Education & Training Revolution Continues

First came free and 'open' source software. Then along came 'Open Access', 'Open' Data, 'Open' Standards, 'Open' IT Architecture, 'Open' Hardware, 'Open' Communities, 'Open' Government, 'Open' Education, and …  The 'Open' Movement continues to spread disrupting almost every industry.  The 'Open' Revolution is a rapidly spreading 21st century global phenomenon.   Read More »

Penn Research Study on Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs)

A new study, published last week by University of Pennsylvania researchers in the journal Nature, shows that students who have taken Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC) on Coursera are highly educated and career-oriented. In addition to being well-educated, the students who enrolled also tend to be young, male and employed. About 44% of all students surveyed said they had made the decision to sign up in order to gain specific skills to do their job better.   Read More »

"European Directory of Health Apps" re-launched as

The first edition of the web site, the "European Directory of Health Apps", was launched back in October, 2012, at the European Health Forum 2012. The Directory contained information on hundreds of smartphone health apps capable of helping patients self manage their medical conditions. The site was recently re-launched as an online international website called   Read More »

What does the future hold for Healthcare and Health IT – From 2015 thru 2030 and Beyond

One of the best ways to try and come up with some reasonably sound predictions about the future of healthcare and health information technology (IT) over the next several decades, is to do a little 'crowd sourcing' – tapping into a wide range of individuals, groups, and sources of information on the web to see what they have to say.   Read More »

Open Health News (OHNews) – Most Popular News Stories in 2013

Open Health News (OHNews) opened for business back in January 2011. Over the past three years, the OHNews web site has grown exponentially. We have now have had over 140,000 unique readers visit OHNews and have had over 7 million hits on our site – and the numbers continue to grow.   Read More »

AMIA 2013: Presentation on Genomics and Precision Medicine

By 2020, availability and use of genomic information will contribute to revolutionizing how consumers will make better choices about their personal health.  This became apparent to me and others in the audience during demonstrations at the recent AMIA 2013 Symposium, on how genomics is increasing sharing...   Read More »

Pitt Unlocks Trove Of Public Health Data To Help Fight Deadly Contagious Diseases

Editor | RedOrbit | November 29, 2013

In an unprecedented windfall for public access to health data, University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health researchers have collected and digitized all weekly surveillance reports for reportable diseases in the United States going back more than 125 years.   Read More »

New data shows Affordable Care Act (ACA) helped Seniors save $8.9 billion on prescription drugs nationwide

Press Release | CMS News | November 26, 2013

Seniors and people with disabilities with Medicare prescription drug plan coverage saved $8.9 billion to date on their prescription drugs thanks to the Affordable Care Act, according to new data released today by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).   Read More »

FDA Tells Google-Backed 23andMe to Halt DNA Test Service

Anna Edney | Bloomberg News | November 25, 2013

23andMe Inc., the Google Inc.-backed DNA analysis company co-founded by Anne Wojcicki, was told by U.S. regulators to halt sales of its main product because it’s being sold without “marketing clearance or approval.”   Read More »

US And UK Share Health Data Via Cloud

Anthony Brino | Healthcare IT News | November 15, 2013

About half a century after epidemiology studies in Massachusetts and the United Kingdom helped build the world’s understanding of cardiovascular disease and health risks, public health and population data is being opened up by the U.S. and joining international datasets.   Read More »

VA Pushing For Services Via Mobile Devices

Andy Medici | Federal Times | November 13, 2013

Health care management at the Veterans Affairs Department will eventually be going mobile, according to a key official.   Read More »

VA, DoD Climb The Stairs To Interoperability Together

Michael O'Connell | Federal News Radio | November 14, 2013

Leaders in the healthcare community are thinking of ways they can use data to improve the quality of health care. The departments of Veterans Affairs and Defense have joined forces to create VistA Evolution, a system that allows the exchange of electronic health records information between the two.   Read More »

Two Bills Aim To Expedite Benefits For Veterans

Susan D. Hall | FierceEMR | November 12, 2013

Citing frustration that veterans in New York wait on average 400 days for the start of benefits, Senator Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) is pushing two bills to speed things up.   Read More »

Turning Paywalls into Opportunity: The Open Access Button has Arrived

Heather Joseph | Open Access News | November 26, 2013

The Open Access Button, brainchild of undergraduate medical students David Carroll and Joseph McArthur, was designed to tackle the frustration shared by millions of individuals who search for research articles online, only to have their progress slowed – and often halted – by paywall pages requesting payment in exchange for viewing the article.   Read More »

Genetic Link to Skin Cancer Found in Medical Records

Susan Young | MIT Technology Review | November 24, 2013

Researchers uncover new ties between genetics and skin cancer by mining patients’ medical records.    Read More »

Tension and Flaws Before Health Website Crash

Eric Lipton, Ian Austen, and Sharon LaFraniere | The New York Times | November 22, 2013

On a sultry day in late August, a dozen staff members of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services gathered at the agency’s Baltimore headquarters with managers from the major contractors building to review numerous problems with President’s Obama’s online health insurance initiative. The mood was grim.   Read More »

Health-care Web site’s lead contractor employs executives from troubled IT company

Jerry Markon and Alice Crites | The Washington Post | November 15, 2013

The lead contractor on the dysfunctional Web site for the Affordable Care Act is filled with executives from a company that mishandled at least 20 other government IT projects, including a flawed effort to automate retirement benefits for millions of federal workers, documents and interviews show.   Read More »

Weekly: Typhoon Yolanda Relief, Hackathons And Software Releases

Angela Oduor | Ushahidi | November 15, 2013

This week, we recognise the efforts of the team at Volontaires internationaux en soutien aux opérations virtuelles (VISOV), who are crowdsourcing images of destruction and aid deployment in the wake of the Typhoon Yolanda in Philippines. This deployment, much like all other efforts being ran out there, will go a long way in helping to alleviate the suffering of the Filipino people. Read More »