Medicare’s Latest Reason to Not Reimburse You


Beginning October 1, 2012, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) entered a program which required them to reduce payments to Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS) hospitals with excessive readmissions. The goal was to promote lasting care for patients before sending them home and to end the “revolving door” of readmissions. A very honorable goal, but maybe not the only one. Continue reading “Medicare’s Latest Reason to Not Reimburse You” »

The First Standalone Telehealth Bill, Spearheaded by Bipartisan Teamwork

house-floor-800x400In the coming days the Senate will be voting on S.2873, or more commonly known as the ECHO (“Expanding Capacity for Health Outcomes”) Act sponsored by Sen. Orrin Hatch [R-UT] and Sen. Brian Schatz [D-HI]. If passed, this bill would require HHS (Health and Human Services) and HRSA (Health Resources and Services Administration) to study technology-enabled collaborative learning and capacity building models. In other words, they have to study the uses and capabilities of Telehealth technologies and determine its ability to improve patient care and provider education.

Why is this important? Continue reading “The First Standalone Telehealth Bill, Spearheaded by Bipartisan Teamwork” »

Donald Trump Just Got Elected President. What Does This Mean for Telehealth?


There’s a lot of uncertainty going around about what the results of this election mean for the nation; healthcare being a major focus. While it’s difficult to determine what will happen with healthcare overall, you can be assured that Telehealth will always be a growing and relevant part of our lives.

Continue reading “Donald Trump Just Got Elected President. What Does This Mean for Telehealth?” »

Were you considering using WebRTC? Here’s why you shouldn’t.

Waiting for WebRTC, in the style of Waiting for Godot

WebRTC vs. Native apps; The former just isn’t ready.
WebRTC is built on a great and ambitious concept: browser-based, Real-Time Communications (RTC) that is free for any developer to implement. Google released WebRTC as an open source project in 2011 and in the years since, it has attracted contributors and private businesses that have developed on that foundation. Yet five years later, it’s still often referred to as being “in its infancy”, and has yet to be fully supported across all major browsers. Check it out here: Continue reading “Were you considering using WebRTC? Here’s why you shouldn’t.” »

The 4 Standards for HIPAA’s Physical Safeguards

HIPAA’s definition on Physical Safeguards: “Administrative actions, and policies and procedures, to manage the selection, development, implementation, and maintenance of security measures to protect electronic protected health information and to manage the conduct of the covered entity’s workforce in relation to the protection of that information.”

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SecureVideo Launches First Responder, A Specialized HIPAA-Compliant Videoconferencing Solution

As the industry leader in HIPAA-compliant videoconferencing, SecureVideo is excited to introduce a groundbreaking new service offering; First Responder was designed specifically to meet the needs of EMTs, police, and other first responders as they often find themselves in the field, presented with a situation that could benefit from a consult or a second opinion. This new system makes that second opinion available at any time and from anywhere via mobile device with a 4G network.
“EMTs, police, firefighters, and the like, they’re well trained to handle any situation, but sometimes there’s reason to call for help,” said Tom Farris, Chief Clinical Officer at SecureVideo. “We’ve talked with first responders all over the country, and one thing we hear a lot is that. They wish there was a way to get advanced medical or mental health advice in the field. That’s why we developed First Responder, and we’re excited to see it in action.”
While SecureVideo’s First Responder solution is dedicated to making on demand sessions as easily accessible as possible, it can also be used to schedule upcoming meetings for any date or time.

How does it work?
Wherever the system has been implemented, First Responders are able to send direct requests through the touch of a button to specialized medical or mental health professionals. They can either select the button for a specific remote provider or click the button for a group queue with multiple providers. With this, they can also attach a note specifying any details or comments that may be helpful to the situation. Immediately thereafter the provider(s) will see the request, respond and then real-time relevant advice is available to the First Responder — all in a matter of moments.
The First Responder platform is always on, providing continuous connection between a First Responder and medical or mental health advisors. Potential subscribers can rest assured that all clients’ Protected Health Information (PHI) will be safeguarded to HIPAA Technical Standards, which are guaranteed upon signing of a contractual agreement.
Click here to learn more about First Responder from SecureVideo

About SecureVideo was founded in 2012 by a team of behavioral health and technology experts in the San Francisco Bay Area; they recognized a unique need for a videoconference system that could be quickly implemented and adapted to the workflows of any medical environment — hospitals, networks, clinics, individuals and more; a system that would allow existing medical organizations to offer telehealth services. It was evident that technology could now support this “do-it-yourself” approach, but the workflows needed to be designed correctly and it needed to be supported as a service, not just technology. SecureVideo was formed to meet this need, to support medical professionals as they harness technology to transform healthcare. To learn more, visit

When NetBIOS over TCP/IP Name Resolution Stops Working

NetBIOS over TCP/IP, also known as NBT, is a bad idea whose time never should have come. We all know we shouldn’t use it, or WINS for that matter; we should just use DNS everywhere. And we also know that we shouldn’t eat a lot of bacon. But if someone has a plate of bacon ready for me at the bottom of the stairs every morning, I will eat some of that bacon, every morning. And so it is for NetBIOS: in a few cases, such as when connecting to a particular VPN, I will eat the bacon of technology and just let NetBIOS resolve the host names on the remote network.

For the last 15 years, this has generally worked well. And why not? NetBIOS is grossly inefficient–firing broadcasts of all kinds around the entire LAN (and if on a VPN, the remote network) to find out who is who and what is what–but that’s like using a tennis racket to hit a ping pong ball: you’ll hit the ball, every time.

Yesterday, NetBIOS name resolution just stopped working for me. I had put my Windows 7 workstation onto the network of a large corporate customer, and noticed I could no longer reach remote VPN machines using their NetBIOS names. That’s OK, I thought, when I get back onto my home network, all will be well. But all wasn’t well, even on my home network.

After quite a bit of googling, trial, and failure, most of it involving running various nbtstat commands on my adapters or net view commands, I found that ipconfig /all showed a working computer to have a Node Type of “Hybrid“, and my failing workstation to have a Node Type of “Peer-Peer“.

To set the Node Type to “Hybrid”, I had to edit the registry as described here, using these steps:

1) Run the registry editor and open this key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Netbt\Parameters
2) Delete the DhcpNodeType value if it’s present.
3) If the NodeType value isn’t present, create it using type: DWORD.
4) Set NodeType to 8 (Hybrid).

Then I disabled and re-enabled my network adapter, and voila! I could once again use NetBIOS, both on my LAN and to reach remote hosts over VPN. Now that’s some good bacon!