A Weed DNA Test, Interoperability and a Hack: Our Top 5 Stories

The week’s health-tech news that you can’t miss.

With another week on the frontlines of healthcare’s digital transformation in the books, it’s time to look back on the stories that most resonated with our audience. There was a lot of news to choose from: direct-to-consumer (DTC) genetic testing, interoperability and data breaches all dominated headlines. And Healthcare Analytics News™ readers went for a bit of everything.

>> LISTEN: Why We Need to Discuss Gene Editing and Ethics

At the end of each week, we dive into our analytics dashboard to examine which articles performed the best online. Then we post them in one convenient place so that busy healthcare leaders need not waste any time looking for the most important insights. The result is this article — consider it your ticket to some of the best content we have to offer.

Do you think our readers didn’t click the right story? Or perhaps we missed the true angle? Reach out to us on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. We’re always happy to talk stories and big ideas, and we’re always looking for new story ideas from the audience.

Now, to the good stuff.

1. Considering Medical Cannabis? There’s a DNA Test for That

Although the DTC genetic-testing industry broke big privacy news this past week, it was a story about a green startup that topped our list. Endocanna Health released its DTC cannabis test, the first of its kind, to great interest from the genetics and marijuana communities alike. The gist: This analysis is supposed to examine a consumer’s DNA and understand how they are likely to react to cannabis. But the product is part of a bigger picture — the marriage of the rapidly expanding marijuana and DTC genetic-testing fields.

2. Interoperability Is the Key to Lower Healthcare Costs and Better Patient Outcomes. But How Do We Get There?

Again, the healthcare industry saw bigger interoperability news the other day, but it was this column that most gripped our readers. Bob Fuller of Clarity Insights takes a rosy view of the benefits that interoperability will bring and a realistic view of the challenge in reaching that state of seamless connectivity. His takeaway: It’s time to invest — and invest intelligently.

3. Another Major Healthcare Hack: 1.4M Patients’ Records Compromised

There was no bigger cybersecurity story last week than this one. In fact, this appears to be the largest data breach of the year. It was also the second such lapse at UnityPoint Health. But what does it mean for the health system and healthcare at large?

4. The American Medical Association’s Silicon Valley Experiment

Health2047 is something of an enigma. It hopes to disrupt healthcare despite its decidedly establishment roots. While that makes the organization all the more interesting, its work thus far provides the basis for a real story. Read to learn more about why healthcare disruption might just come from within.

5. In the Digital World, Health Insurance Cards Remain Analog

In a world where seemingly everything is going digital, one thing remains stubbornly analog: health insurance cards. This feature details how much is at stake in terms of privacy and why payers have yet to embrace the same technology that allows us to flash our smartphones to enter the ballpark or concert hall.

“The problem is that there’s a lot of lip service in the market,” one source said. “Insurance companies want to act as if they’re innovative and they’re supporting care, but there’s been very little proof of it.”

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