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People on the Move: Emtelligent Adds PhD, Surgical Notes Names New CTO, and More


In the healthcare and health tech industries, companies are constantly jockeying to add the sharpest talent.

In the healthcare and health tech industries, companies are constantly jockeying to add the sharpest talent they can get their hands on. So far this week, quite a few noteworthy hires have happened. Here’s a few that have caught our eye.

Jinho Choi, PhD, Joins Emtelligent

Emtelligent, a natural language processing (NLP) company that claims to be the first to apply the technology in medicine, announced today that it had added Jinho Choi, PhD, to its team. The company aims to leverage NLP to mine information from electronic medical records.

Choi, a faculty member at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, brings over 15 years of NLP experience to the firm. He’ll work directly on the EmtelliPro medical record processing platform with company CTO Anoop Sarkar, PhD, and CEO Tim O’Connell, MD. Emtelligent claims the platform can process up to a million records per day.

O’Connell said in a statement that he believes his company has “a path to near-perfect accuracy” in NLP and that “Jinho's involvement will help us expedite that process."

Choi added that “by leveraging techniques in machine learning and natural language processing, we will be able to make the latest medical advances available to everyone, anywhere at anytime.”

Nathan Hess Named Chief Technology Officer at Surgical Notes

Nathan Hess, the former senior director of information technology operational excellence for DaVita Rx, will now serve as Chief Technology Officer of Surgical Notes. The company also specializes in revenue cycle management, transcription, and billing technologies.

"The company is well known and well respected in the ASC industry,” Hess said in a statement, adding that it creates “solutions that help its clients achieve the Triple Aim of improving the patient experience, improving population health, and reducing the overall cost of care."

The new hire will oversee “all technology-related functions for Surgical Notes,” according to the statement.

In business since 1997, Surgical Notes is used by over 20,000 providers. Prior to joining the company, Hess also held numerous infrastructure and healthcare positions at Dell and had a brief stint with insurance company AIG.

CEO Out at Blue Cross Minnesota, in at VSP Global

In a pair of press releases issued simultaneously yesterday, payer Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota announced the departure of its CEO while vision benefits company VSP Global announced the arrival of their next one.

Michael J. Guyette will leave Blue Cross after 5 years on the job, where he’ll be succeeded by interim CEO Kathleen Blatz. He’ll take over at VSP from its interim CEO Rob Lynch.

Lynch cited Guyette’s experience, knowledge of the industry, and “commitment to [VSP’s] culture and values” as main motivators for his hiring.

The departure from Blue Cross does not appear acrimonious. Its current board chair Rita Heise thanked Guyette for his “successful leadership” over the years, saying that “During a time of unprecedented change, Mike was able to grow our overall membership and successfully navigate Blue Cross through many complexities and transformations.”

At VSP, the new CEO will take over a “more vertically integrated company” that includes a nonprofit vision benefits arm with over 85 million global customers.

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