We know Optum Labs is there to make money, selling slots to drug, device companies and others to have the “use” of mining imagetheir data.  So far all we have had of any significance reported is the same thing Kaiser reported from their registry information on hip and knee replacements.  A big part of how Optum makes their money is selling data and access to data.  What’s really interesting is that the same type of data mining operation was set up at the FDA and it in turn gets very little press, the agency that approves the drugs and devices that are allowed to be sold in the US.

Boston Scientific is also a research member here and pretty much what we have seen there is the closing of a few California locations and manufacturing moved from the US to Costa Rica for stents. 

Boston Scientific Joins Optum (United Healthcare) Labs - Research for the Good With Profits Built In For Those Providing Medical Records And Data…

Here’s a bit from the archives on the FDA data mining effort at the link below.  So, this kind of tells me there’s more to this than just research for better drugs, care, and devices, it’s all about money and what gets spent on our healthcare. 

FDA Sentinel and “Mini”Sentinel Data Base Is Growing and Becoming A Very Useful Tool

Speaking of the FDA, United/Optum also owns a consulting firm that helps drug and device companies get their products approved by the FDA and there’ some trial information mixed in there too.  There’s also the ChinaGate United Subsidiary in China that works to get more Chinese drugs and devices distributed within and outside of China as well. 

United Healthcare (Optum) Owns A Consulting Firm for FDA Drug and Device Approvals, Clinical Trials–CanReg - Subsidiary Watch

Anything out of Mayo on their use of the Labs with ground breaking research....so far nothing…but they make money letting the Labs use patient electronic medical records.  It’s kind of strange that HHS is not even supportive of their own FDA efforts with the Sentinel Data Base, right?  Again this goes to show the long time relationship and a bit of cronyism with HHS and United Healthcare as well.  If you poke around a bit more than you might read about our current head of the DOJ, Loretta Lynch, she used to represent United Healthcare with anti-trust suits, so you can just about figure she’s do nothing with insurance carriers when it comes to anti-trust, or at least this company.  Of course we all may or may not know by now that Secretary Burwell was a former Chief of Staff for Bob Rubin that was one of the big three that turned the US economy on it’s ear with abandoning Glass Steagall and furthering the allowance of derivatives in the stock markets.  If you want more background on all of that, visit the “Killer Algorithms” page where there are some videos from people smarter than me that will give you the history and explain the fact. 

Optum Labs Add Four Additional Data Miners To the Collaboration Looking for Data…
UnitedHealthGroup and AARP Get Cozier, AARP Still Gets Paid for Marketing Use of AARP Name As AARP Becomes an Optum Labs Data Selling Promoter Amidst Doctor Complaints Received Relative To United Firing of 5500 MDs–Subsidiary Watch

Not too long ago as well Mayo decided to outsource their revenue cycling to Optum 360 as well, so more money for United there.  I read a few of the job reviews from folks about how they were fired from the hospital and re-hired by Optum 360 to work in this area and most seemed to be really disappointed in the loss of benefits 360 provided versus the benefits they previously enjoyed when employed directly from the hospital.   image

Mayo Clinic is the Latest to Outsource Revenue Cycling to Optum 360, A United Healthcare/Dignity Health Company Pursuing Hospital Contracts All Over the US For Profit…
United Healthcare Adding Yet One More Subsidiary to the Very Large Number of Subs They Already Own/Operate-Optum and Dignity Healthcare (A System Wide Cerner EHR Client) Form New Venture Called Optum 360–Subsidiary Watch

The subsidiary game along with mergers and acquisitions as well it getting so bizarre that people insured by Cigna probably have no clue that their new pharmacy benefit manager is United Healthcare via the Catamaran PBM acquisition. 

If You Are Insured by Cigna, Guess What You Have a New Pharmacy Benefit Manager Named United Healthcare

We truly have some folks in top places in government that seem to live way too virtual and forget about the real world half the time.  You can see it all the time on Twitter with posts of selfies and other such nutty stuff.  I knew when Obama and Biden jumped in to posting selfies, we lost them to virtual world values and chances were slim of either coming back.  Look at Secretary Burwell and all the selfies she posts, looks a bit lost, especially the selfie with a bicycle helmet on a few days after John Kerry fell of his bike in France.  What’s wrong with these people?  They just create noise and now think being a member of this big Optum data base is going to save the world or the US?  It’s crazy that HHS and CMS don’t even support their own efforts of the FDA under current government structures?  Optum supports and pay for a bicycling team so is this where all the bicycle focus comes from, to where all at the White House think they need to talk about their bicycle habits? 

CMS Chasing Wild Virtual Horses-A Big Distraction on the Hope of Finding Some “Algo Fairies” By Giving Entrepreneurs Access to Medicare Claims and Other Data…Marketing & Astro Turfing “The Sebelius Syndrome”..

Look who’s running CMS?  We have Andy Slavitt, the former Goldman banker and United Healthcare executive that everyone sued over his crooked algorithms?  I have a few former CMS folks that have taken time to fill me on on quite a bit of history with both HHS and CMS and this is not good with one company having such a huge monopoly.  The link below will tell you more about Mr. Slavitt, who President Obama has nominated to run CMS.  If you have paid attention to the news in the last few days, he seems very much distracted with social networking comments and just not in touch at all.  Seriously why does the President of the US need a personal Facebook page?  I see an addiction here perhaps and virtual and real world values being confused. 

Another United Healthcare (Ingenix) Lawsuit Settling Over 9 Million-Short Paying Ambulatory Surgery Centers-Current CMS Director and One Time Goldman Sachs Banker, Andy Slavitt was CEO of Ingenix for Years…

Here’s another option from the Optum Bank with Health Savings Accounts…be aware as when you hit the magic number of $2100 in savings, on comes the marketing to get you to place some or all of that money in mutual funds instead of using it for healthcare when you need it. 

United Healthcare Owns a Bank-Optum Bank That Will Collect Your HSA Money, Give You a MasterCard to Empty It Out-Which Enables Even More Data Mining and Selling Transactions About You

You also have United/Optum poking around in the medical records arena too and this archives article tells you a bit more and for goodness sakes the ONC portion of HHS hired a former United Healthcare lawyer to investigate and write policy on privacy…good luck there as so far there’s been nothing but a paycheck handed out to this individual. 

United Healthcare (Optum Insight Subsidiary) Wants To Be Your Allscripts, Epic And GE Centricity EHR Consulting Service Starting With Implementation And Beyond

So again cronyism and one big healthcare insurer that’s become too big to fail it appears here.  Just recently Vermont voted on universal healthcare and guess what, if it has been successful, Optum was right at the door wanting a contract to manage it.  Colorado should be aware of this potential when they take their vote on the same topic. 

There’s absolutely little or no benefit for us as consumers with this partnership at all, other than just more ways to algorithmically play God and deny access to services or other benefits we may need for our care.  Again, this looks really bad doing this and not even being in full support of their own FDA agency with the Sentinel Program.  It’s all about making money, selling more data. 

We need to index and license all data sellers in the US as this is getting out of hand and the data in many areas has become flawed, profiles created about us are flawed..but the cash registers keep on putting money in the banks.  BD 

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--OptumLabs, the collaborative health care research and innovation center co-founded by Optum and Mayo Clinic, announced that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has joined the collaborative as a research partner.

“We are grateful to have HHS as a new partner and welcome its active engagement as we focus on new initiatives that can directly translate to improvements in patient care.”

Agencies under HHS’s purview will now have the opportunity to develop and lead innovative health care research using OptumLabs’ big data resources, which link de-identified medical claims and clinical data to provide holistic views of populations and patient care.

“As HHS and its affiliates seek opportunities to improve the health, safety and well-being of all Americans, we believe that partnering with private-sector organizations such as OptumLabs will help accelerate the discovery of new health care models and practices,” said Susannah Fox, chief technology officer of HHS. “We are eager to collaborate with OptumLabs and its partners on a variety of initiatives that harness the power of health data to improve patient care and outcomes.”

The first research project to be conducted through this arrangement is with senior scientists at the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), the lead federal agency charged with improving the safety and quality of America’s health care system. The agency will compare and contrast health care trends identified in its Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) with those identified in real-world administrative health care claims records for the commercially insured population in OptumLabs’ databases, with the goal of increasing the value of MEPS to researchers exploring health care costs. MEPS collects data on the health services that Americans use, the cost of these services and how they are paid for.

HHS and its agencies also will work with OptumLabs on other projects, including research related to population health and the economics of health care – such as identifying whether disparities exist and can be measured in health care delivery at the national and local levels. All research is performed using de-identified outcomes-based data that can help answer questions about improvements in health care quality and delivery.

“Government is a key stakeholder in health care, and through this partnership now has a seat at the table of our collaborative community at OptumLabs,” said Paul Bleicher, M.D., Ph.D., CEO of OptumLabs. “We are grateful to have HHS as a new partner and welcome its active engagement as we focus on new initiatives that can directly translate to improvements in patient care.”

OptumLabs, with one of the largest de-identified patient databases in health care, is the first open, collaborative research and innovation center designed to accelerate health care innovation, leading to improved patient care and patient value. More than 100 research projects are currently underway or in development, and members of OptumLabs and its partner organizations have published more than 20 articles in leading health research journals.



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