About Lisa Suennen
Yes, it’s me
Most Popular Posts
- From Russia With Love
- The Secret to Lower Healthcare Costs: Dying Faster
- You Say You Want a Healthcare Revolution
- We Are the 51%!
- Singing a New Tune: Redefining Innovation in the Medical Device World
- Rap Genius: Healthcare to a Hip Hop Beat?
- When “Cloud-based” Means Technology, Not Heaven: Report from AARP Health Innovation@50+
- A Tale of Two Doctor Visits
- Your CEO May Be A Man, But Your Healthcare Customer is a Woman
- Healthcare IT BINGO!
- I’m On A Boat! The Rising Fleet of Incubators
- Employers and Health Innovation: Will They Go Long or Advance One Yard at a Time?
- Give ‘Em That Old Razzle Dazzle
- Never Let Anyone Make You a Carrot
- What’s Done Cannot Be Undone
- The Star Thrower, or How Healthcare Looks to Consumers
- Medical Technology and Kubler-Ross’ Five Stages of Grief
- There Is No “I” in Team, But There Is In “Win”
- A Soda A Day Keeps Your Lifespan Away
- Investor Comedy Relief: The Missed Investment Opportunity
- Psilos Releases Annual Healthcare Outlook Report: A Golden Age in Healthcare Investing
- Discounts on Two Upcoming Conferences for Venture Valkyrie Readers
- Digital Health: The Cat’s Meow
- School Daze
- Showcase Your Start-up at the AARP Health Innovation@50+ Event-Viva Las Vegas
- Biotech and Genetics
- Consumer Engagement
- Diagnostics and Screening
- Digital Health
- General Business Issues
- Girls Rule!
- Health and Wellness
- Healthcare Information Technology
- Healthcare Policy
- Healthcare private equity
- Healthcare Reform
- Healthcare Venture Capital
- Healthy Eating
- Medical Comedy Relief
- Medical Devices
- Medical Marketing and MediA
- Patient Safety
- Preventive Health
- Private Equity
- Random Thoughts of the Day
- Real Science
- Venture Capital
- Women in Venture Capital & Private Equity
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Monthly Archives: January 2011
Imagine you are sick, really sick. You need a liver transplant. Here are your choices:
- Hang on as long as you can hoping a healthy liver shows up before it’s too late; or,
- If you just can’t wait, you might be able to get one from Keith Richards (slightly used, if you know what I mean).
Well, apparently if you live in the United Kingdom, this is exactly the kind of thing you might hear as you sit by the door waiting for an organ transplant. Because of a nationwide shortage of “healthy” transplantable organs, the UK has begun using what they themselves have termed “marginal organs.” Public relations alert: hasn’t anyone told these people that they need a better moniker? Marginal organs? That’s like calling sushi “raw dead fish.” Come on people: marketing!
But I digress….
According to the BBC News:
…marginal organs are deemed to be of higher risk, but still considered safe, and their use is controlled by national guidelines set out by the NHS Blood and Transplant Service. Ten years ago, 13% of all transplants used marginal organs; now that figure has increased to more … (read the rest)
President Obama got two big laughs in his State of the Union speech this week.
One came as the result of his description of the federal bureaucracy through the eyes of a salmon. He described how different departments have oversight responsibility for salmon in different conditions, specifically stating, “the Interior Department is in charge of salmon while they’re in fresh water, but the Commerce Department handles them in when they’re in saltwater. And I hear it gets even more complicated once they’re smoked.”
No doubt that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacoo and Firearms gets that last one, right? Have you ever tried to smoke a salmon? Very hard to stuff it in a pipe.
Obama’s second laugh, albeit short-lived, was when he said he had heard “rumors” that some in the roomful of Congresspeople had “concerns” about the his healthcare reform law. Nothing like extreme understatement to make a point. Saying that these guys have “concerns” about the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) is like saying Sarah Palin occasionally welcomes publicity.
Obama didn’t speak long about health reform, but he made his message clear: happy to refine it, … (read the rest)
A few weeks ago, Judge Henry Hudson of Virginia ruled that the PPACA health reform law (oft-referred to as Obamacare) was unconstitutional because there was a provision that forced people to buy insurance. Commenting on his ruling, Judge Hudson was quoted as saying that using the Commerce clause to justify the requirement that everyone purchase health insurance was like giving Congress “boundless” authority to force Americans “to buy an automobile, to join a gym, to eat asparagus.”
What many policy-makers have figured out, however, is that while you may not be able to force consumers to buy asparagus if they don’t want it, there is a potentially equally effective approach that may have the same result: make it hard or impossible for consumers to buy something they do want: junk food. Welcome to this installment of Dragnet: Food Police Edition–the story you are about to see is true; the calories have been changed to protect the innocent. Anything you eat may be used against you.
The people at IBF asked me to let you know that they are hosting the 13th Annual Corporate Venturing & Innovation Partnering Conference, which takes place Feb 16th-18th in Newport Beach, CA. I will be on a panel on February 17th at 10 am entitled Collaborative Innovation Approaches In Healthcare alongside some great speakers, including:
Joseph B. Volpe
Merck Global Health Innovation Group
James Lewis, MD
Senior Technology Analyst, Innovation and Advanced Technology
Bell Mason Group
We follow two great keynote speakers: Aneesh Chopra, U.S. Chief Technology Officer and Associate Director for Technology in the White House Office of Science and Technology and Bill Taranto, Managing Director, Global Health Innovation Fund, LLC Executive Director, Global Health Innovation Group, Merck Global Health Innovation Group.
IBF has generously offered my readers a discount, which you can get by registering at www.corporateventuringconference.com and use discount code VALCV to receive $300 off the general registration rate.
Hope to see you there!
I am still recovering from last week’s 29th Annual JP Morgan Healthcare Conference (“JPM”). For those of you who did not spend last week at JPM, you can creatively visualize the experience: just imagine being crammed into a 4 square block area of San Francisco with every single person who ever uttered the words “health care” and “money” in the same sentence. In fact, most of the people I know don’t even go to the conference itself, but use the week to meet with a myriad of companies, bankers, institutional investors, VCs, private equity people and related persons who they might not otherwise get to see in person.
In some ways, JPM is like 5 straight days of speed-dating–you meet with new people every half hour or hour for days on end, followed by a myriad of cocktail parties and dinners. Instead of running between tables you dash between hotel lobbies, Starbucks, Rulli and John’s Grill. The only problem with the speed-dating analogy is that while there are legions of gray-suited men, there are hardly any women.
Nearly 9000 people officially register for JPM and probably at least two … (read the rest)
Two of my most frequently read blog posts have been those I wrote about the telemonitoring robot called Autom and the “mentally ill” stuffed animals called Paraplush. When I saw one of my faithful readers and colleagues, Dorothy Pavloff from California Technology Ventures, the other day, she handed me a flyer for what can best be described as the electronic offspring of Autom and Paraplush, the PARO Robot. I knew I had my next post the minute I saw it.
PARO, according to its flyer, is “an advanced interactive robot which provides psychological and social effects to human beings through physical interaction.” Allow me to translate: we’re talking stuffed baby seal toy that responds to touch, light, movement and sound. In fact, PARO “learns” to engage with its owner, responding to its name and sort of cuddling/purring/squeaking when stroked. I particularly like how their marketing pamphlet notes that “if you hit it, PARO remembers its previous action and tries not to do that action.” Good thing, because it would be a serious bummer if you hit it and it took a swing back at you.
The idea behind … (read the rest)
Recently PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC) put out a report that included their top health industry issues of 2011. The list includes these six items:
- #1: Booming business in health information technology
- #2: Gearing up to redefine health insurance: From MLRs to insurance exchanges
- #3: ACOs: Is this the next big thing or not?
- #4: Nowhere else to cost shift: Consumers could continue to reduce utilization
- #5: M&A: Deals will bond the familiar and unfamiliar as organizations look to fill strategic gaps
- #6: Follow-me healthcare: Patients look to health organizations that are always on
While they are all interesting issues with a lot of implications, the one that makes my head spin is number 3: ACO’s.
ACO, which stands for Accountable Care Organization, is one of those healthcare policy wonk terms that is about to go mainstream, in large part because of their prominent role in the PPACA (national health reform law). The federal government, and especially the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has put this concept front and center as the great white hope to reform its healthcare delivery programs.
The idea behind ACOs is that physician groups, hospitals and … (read the rest)
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If you’re a man and you have fingers, I have some good news and some bad news. Recent studies have shown that if your index finger is shorter than your ring finger, you are at a significantly higher risk for prostate cancer. That’s the bad news. The good news is that you are more likely to be proficient at traditionally male sports, such as football, according to similar studies. All this time you have been out there waving your “We’re Number One!” giant foam hand and all the while not realizing its potential cosmic significance.
But wait, finger length as a predictor of disease or physical capability? Bizarre but true, according to a November 2010 study published in the British Journal of Cancer and, oddly, the myriad of finger-focused research articles that came before it. According to a summary story on this research:
Researchers studied the ratio between the 2nd and 4th finger of the right hand in 1,524 prostate-cancer patients and 3,044 healthy people over 15 years. Men with longer index fingers were 33% less likely to develop prostate cancer, and men under 60 had an 87% lower risk. … (read the rest)
The song Auld Lang Syne is traditionally sung at the stroke of midnight each New Years Eve; however, in Scotland, where Auld Lang Syne originates, it is also sung on Burns Night, January 25th, to celebrate the life of the song’s author and famous poet Robert Burns. The words ‘Auld Lang Syne’ literally translates from old Scottish dialect meaning ‘Old Long Ago’ and is about love and friendship in times past. For me, it conjured up reminiscences of venture deals past….
Old Venture Deals (sung to the tune of Auld Lang Syne)
Should old valuations be forgot?
Just give me a sign.
Should old stock options be repriced,
And new plan be designed?
Old venture deals, my friend, old venture deals,
We’ll pay for old mistakes we made,
In old venture deals!
But surely you’ll buy your share and surely I’ll buy mine!
And we’ll get some new investors yet,
Before the cash deadline.
Old venture deals, my friend, old venture deals,
We’ll pay for old mistakes we made,
In old venture deals!
We too have learned how hard it is to make incentives align;
But we’ve come … (read the rest)