Industry News: Volume 10, Issue 21


Solutions from Around the World: Tackling Loneliness and Social Isolation During COVID-19

By Melinda K. Abrams, Reginald D. Williams II, Roosa Tikkanen, Tanya Shah, and Matt Pantell – As Americans heed the advice of public health and government officials to remain physically distanced from neighbors, friends, and relatives to fight the coronavirus, another epidemic is exacerbated — social isolation. This can result in loneliness, and the negative consequences can be severe: an increased risk of heart disease, depression, dementia, and even death.

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CDC Calls for Universal Hepatitis C Screening to Halt Advanced Liver Disease & Liver Cancer: Echosens Emphasizes Vigilance, Supports Hepatitis Awareness Month

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WALTHAM, Mass.—May 5, 2020—Echosens, a high-technology company offering the FibroScan family of products, urges increased vigilance around liver health duringMay 2020 Hepatitis Awareness Month and calls attention to the millions of Americans from all walks of life who are living with the most common causes of viral hepatitis: hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV). The need for point-of-care examinations, monitoring and ongoing assessment of liver fat and stiffness as provided by FibroScan is critical to identifying individuals who are asymptomatic and undiagnosed for liver damage.

“With the CDC calling for universal hepatitis C screening at least once in the lifetime of all individuals 18 and older, as well as testing pregnant women once during each pregnancy, it is incumbent upon providers, payers and public health partners to strengthen their efforts to shed light on this hidden epidemic,” says Lynn Seim, MSN, RN, executive vice president and chief operating officer, American Liver Foundation. “Together, we are raising awareness of viral hepatitis and the serious liver health consequences resulting from undiagnosed and untreated disease. We encourage priority populations to get tested, underscore the importance of vaccination for hepatitis B, support testing for hepatitis B and C, and emphasize the availability of effective care and curative treatment.”

New data from the CDC reveal that the annual rates of hepatitis C infection tripled between 2009-2018, and was highest among those in their 20s and 30s. In 2018, millennials and baby boomers made up more than two-thirds of all infected individuals. Those in their 20s experienced a 300% increase in HCV rates since 2009, while those in their 30s saw a 400% spike in cases. At the same time, only about 61% of HCV-positive individuals between 2015-2018 knew that they were infected.

Stephen Harrison, M.D.,gastroenterologist, hepatologist and medical director, Pinnacle Clinical Research, states, “While there’s no data to suggest that these younger patients will experience a more rapid progression of liver disease, it’s important to understand their baseline liver health. Utilizing quantitative tools like FibroScan supports our understanding of disease progression in the broader population affected by HCV.”

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) affects 1:3 Americans. Studies show that liver disease accounts for approximately two million deaths per year worldwide and, with the growing epidemic of obesity and Type 2 diabetes mellitus, the burden of NAFLD is expected to proliferate. Moreover, NAFLD poses an increasing risk to Americans living with hepatitis B. Recent data suggest that as people age, a great number of these patients are presenting with advancing liver disease, the result of co-morbid conditions complicating care.

Jon Gingrich, CEO, Echosens North America, explains, “These data reinforce the need to monitor liver health in people living with viral hepatitis. While there are effective cures for hepatitis C infection, they don’t cure liver disease.”

One study on how NAFLD impacts patients treated and cured for hepatitis C infection found that NAFLD identified in patients prior to treatment persisted after curing their HCV infection. Among those with NAFLD before treatment, 6.25% still had significant liver scarring after their HCV infection was cured.

“With the high prevalence of NAFLD among the baby-boomer population, we believe that FibroScan can be an important assessment and monitoring tool for those living with viral hepatitis, as well as those cured of the virus,” continues Gingrich. “FibroScan is non-invasive technology that quickly provides a quantitative assessment of liver fat and stiffness at the point of care before NAFLD becomes symptomatic.”

About Echosens

Echosens, the developer of FibroScan®, is an innovative high-technology company offering a full range of products and services supporting physicians in their assessment and management of patients with chronic liver diseases. FibroScan is supported by over 2,500 peer-reviewed publications and examinations are covered by Medicare, Medicaid and many insurance plans. For more information, please visit and follow us on Twitter (@echosensNA).

About the American Liver Foundation

Founded in 1976, the American Liver Foundation (ALF) is the nation’s largest patient advocacy organization for people with liver disease. ALF reaches more than 3 million individuals each year with health information, education and support services via its national office, 17 U.S. divisions and an active online presence. Recognized as a trusted voice for liver disease patients, ALF also operates a national toll-free helpline (800-GO-LIVER), educates patients, policymakers and the public, and provides grants to early-career researchers to help find a cure for all liver diseases. ALF is celebrating more than 40 years of turning patients into survivors. For more information about ALF, please visit

AscellaHealth Partners with Leaf Health to Present Educational Webinar Series: “From Evolution to Revolution” Defines Role of PBM in New Specialty Pharmacy Care Model

BERWYN, Pa.—May 5, 2020—AscellaHealth, a national specialty pharmacy benefit manager (SPBM™) serving commercial, Medicare and Medicaid segments, is collaborating with Leaf Health, a national consulting firm dedicated to supporting the mid-market with prescription drug program strategies, to present the 2020 Webinar Series “From Evolution to Revolution: How the Rise of Specialty Pharmacy Drove a New PBM Model.” Designed to engage and inform TPAs, brokers, employers and employer coalitions, benefit managers and IDN/hospital systems, this webinar series features highly recognized specialty pharmacy opinion leaders, including chief medical officers, large TPA executives, employer coalitions and key health market experts in pharmacy benefits, and is expected to generate dialogue and deliver continued added value for partners and clients.

“While much has been published and presented about specialty pharmacy models, few of these discussions consider and articulate the role of specialty pharmacy benefit managers and advisors,” says Dea Belazi, president and CEO, AscellaHealth. “We intend to fill this void, and our partnership with Leaf Health will proactively identify and disseminate additional data and insights on key issues that are critical to specialty pharmacy stakeholders.”

Below is information about each episode of the webinar series, which features multiple presentations by industry thought leaders and influencers. Webinars will be recorded for access during the 90-day period following live presentations. Registrants who attend at least two of the sessions will receive a formal “Insights” document which captures presentation highlights and significant industry updates.

Save the dates as registration for these webinars will be available shortly:

Episode 1: “Specialty Market Trends and the Market Place Realities for Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs), June 25, 1:00 p.m. ET (60 min.), will explore specialty drugs as the greater percentage of drug spend, limited distribution drugs (LDDs) leading to greater emphasis on network management, cost of products, quality of service and clinical programs.

Episode 2: “Evolution of the PBM Business Model for Specialty Medical Rx,” Aug. 27, 1:00 p.m. ET (60 min.), will examine new solutions of a streamlined PBM model that uses data analytics to improve adherence, patient outcomes and manage the total cost of the claim.

Episode 3: “Revolution: Leading Approaches to Transform Healthcare in Specialty Medical Rx Management,” Nov. 12, 1:00 p.m. ET (60 min.), will look at the promotion of biosimilar adoption, interrogating treatment adjustments from a patient-centered perspective and actively communicating with the complete specialty Rx chain, including providers, specialty pharmacies, employers, hospital systems and payers, for better results.

A webinar implementation team spearheaded by AscellaHealth includes Ocozzio and CPR Strategic Marketing Communications (CPR), both strategic advisory services and products companies whose core purpose is to create innovative solutions to complex healthcare problems through marketing resources and other public resource solutions.

About AscellaHealth
AscellaHealth, a national specialty pharmacy benefit manager (SPBM™), serving commercial, Medicare and Medicaid segments, offers high quality prescription drug benefit management services. Complemented by other customizable services, such as carved-out specialty pharmacy services and cost-savings programs, AscellaHealth provides a unique, proprietary service portfolio. Visit

About Leaf Health
Leaf Health is a national consulting firm dedicated to supporting the mid-market with prescription drug program strategies. We support our partners with guiding on the latest in Rx funding alternatives, discounts and rebate programs available in the market for both the traditional pharmacy and medical benefit. Our focus is to introduce innovative strategies that allow our customers to grow by offering unique pharmacy program products and solutions to their customers or employees. Our team of experts apply their expertise in the context of client business situation and typically return a 20:1 ROI.

Michael Gorton, Founding CEO of Teladoc, Named Consulting President of MediOrbis Specialty Telemedicine Company

Gorton to lead corporate growth and expansion

CLEVELAND—April 28, 2020—MediOrbis, a multi-specialty telemedicine and telehealth company with a first-of-its-kind integrated specialty and chronic disease management (CDM) program, today announced that Michael Gorton, MS, JD, a serial entrepreneur, company builder and recognized pioneer of telemedicine who led telehealth giant Teladoc to literally create an industry, has been named consulting president. Gorton brought to reality his vision for telehealth to answer patient needs for rapid and improved access to high quality, affordable care and will now bring his experience and expertise to build MediOrbis as an undisputed leader in specialty telemedicine and telehealth.

Download the latest MediOrbis white paper co-authored by Gorton here.

“With both government and private sectors now endorsing the power of telehealth to effectively address ongoing medical challenges, we are entering a new era of growth for the industry,” says Gorton, a strategic visionary who has also impacted the telecommunications, music, aerospace, education and healthcare industries. “I look forward to leading and expanding this incredible MediOrbis platform of specialty telemedicine solutions, which combines AI-powered software with a network of the world’s most outstanding specialty physicians to deliver expert telemedicine services in virtually any field of medicine, clinical care or diagnostics. During the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and into the future, MediOrbis is a critical platform for helping patients and physicians optimize individual health.”

During Gorton’s tenure at Teladoc, the company reached two million members delivering physician/patient consults. As a founder of Back to Space, Michael applied his business expertise, scientific education and training to the STEM education and media sector—a strong voice and proponent of inspired change.

He served as a partner of the Texas Acceleration Group (TAG), formed to assist startup companies, and was a founder of Palo Duro Records. He was also a founder of Internet Global which delivered the first DSL network and one of the first VOIP networks. Prior to this, he worked as a project engineer at Dallas Power & Light dealing with power plants, distribution and integration of renewable energy into the grid.

Jonathan Wiesen, M.D., founder and chief medical officer, MediOrbis, and pulmonary specialist with advanced training in critical care and medical ethics, says, “MediOrbis is extremely fortunate and proud to attract a leader with the credentials, experience and business acumen of Michael Gorton. We are confident that he will provide the knowledge and expertise required for further expansion. We look forward to serving more people with the high-quality telemedicine service they deserve and can afford.”

Gorton studied Engineering and Physics at the University of Texas, earned a B.S. in Engineering from Texas Tech, an M.S. in Physics from the University of Texas at Dallas, and a Juris Doctorate from Texas A&M.

“MediOrbis offers expanded care platforms to address gaps in care in conjunction with other technology, ranging from wireless devices and wearables to mHealth-enabled electronic healthcare record (EHR) platforms,” says Wiesen. “Offering worldwide capabilities, chronic disease management and a network of medical experts with broad and diverse experience, MediOrbis is positioned to not only battle COVID-19 with expert telemedicine services, but also provide telehealth care for the long-term.”

About MediOrbis

MediOrbis is a multi-specialty telemedicine and telehealth company that is shattering the barriers of traditional medicine and extending the reach of specialized clinical care and chronic disease management to its global customer base. Recognized for efficiency and cost-effectiveness to meet the needs of providers, payers and healthcare systems, MediOrbis combines AI-powered software with a network of the world’s most outstanding specialty physicians to deliver expert telemedicine services in virtually any field of medicine, clinical care or diagnostics. Visit:

NeuroOne Medical Technologies Corp. Appoints Vanessa Tolosa to Scientific Advisory Board: Leading Researcher in Neurotech to Guide Further Development of Thin-film Electrodes

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn.—April 28, 2020—NeuroOne Medical Technologies Corporation (OTCQB: NMTC; NeuroOne), a medical technology company focused on improving surgical care options and outcomes for patients suffering from neurological disorders, announces today the appointment of Vanessa Tolosa to its Scientific Advisory Board. Tolosa, one of the founding members of Neuralink Corp., a company started by Elon Musk to build a complete Brain-Machine Interface, brings specialized expertise that the company believes will help expedite its further development of thin-film electrodes that provide long-term stimulation for treatment of neurological applications, such as epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, failed back surgery syndrome and other neurological applications that may benefit from high-density thin film electrode technology.

“We are pleased to have such a distinguished, highly regarded scientific leader and pioneer as Vanessa on our advisory board,” says Dave Rosa, president and CEO, NeuroOne. “Vanessa has over 10 years of specialized experience developing implantable neural devices. She shares our passion in transitioning these technologies from the bench top and bringing them to patients who are in desperate need. Her exceptional experience in this field will contribute greatly to NeuroOne’s vision, goals and future direction.”

Most recently at Neuralink, Tolosa worked to develop a Brain Machine Interface for medical use and beyond. As director of neural interfaces, she directed the design, prototyping, development and testing of technologies related to implantable microelectrodes, electronics micro-assembly and hermetic packaging. Previously, at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories (LLNL), Tolosa led all implantable neurotechnology efforts, including high-density electrode technology.

Among her credits, Tolosa won the 2019 Gold Electrode Researcher of the Year Award from Neurotech Reports, the 2015 LLNL Early-Mid Career Researcher Award and the 2015 DARPA Riser Award. She holds eight issued patents with five pending applications in this field. Tolosa earned a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Florida and a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Tolosa states, “NeuroOne is bringing unique thin-film electrodes to the marketplace, and I look forward to helping them refine their implantable neural technology that addresses chronic treatments, as well as making enhancements to its FDA-cleared Evo cortical electrode line.”

About NeuroOne

NeuroOne Medical Technologies Corporation is a developmental stage company committed to providing minimally invasive and hi-definition solutions for EEG recording, brain stimulation and ablation solutions for patients suffering from epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, essential tremors and other related neurological disorders that may improve patient outcomes and reduce procedural costs. Visit

Forward Looking Statements

This press release may include forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Except for statements of historical fact, any information contained in this presentation may be a forward‐looking statement that reflects the Company’s current views about future events and are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause our actual results, levels of activity, performance or achievements to be materially different from the information expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. In some cases, you can identify forward‐looking statements by the words “may,” “might,” “will,” “could,” “would,” “should,” “expect,” “intend,” “plan,” “objective,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “predict,” “project,” “potential,” “target,” “seek,” “contemplate,” “continue” and “ongoing,” or the negative of these terms, or other comparable terminology intended to identify statements about the future. Forward‐looking statements may include statements regarding the Company’s regulatory submissions, potential regulatory approval, commercialization of the technology, business strategy, market size, potential growth opportunities, plans for product applications and product development, future operations, future efficiencies, and other financial and operating information. Although the Company believes that we have a reasonable basis for each forward-looking statement, we caution you that these statements are based on a combination of facts and factors currently known by us and our expectations of the future, about which we cannot be certain. Our actual future results may be materially different from what we expect due to factors largely outside our control, including our ability to raise additional funds, uncertainties inherent in the development process of our technology, changes in regulatory requirements or decisions of regulatory authorities, the size and growth potential of the markets for our technology, our ability to serve those markets, the rate and degree of market acceptance of our products, clinical trial patient enrollment, the results of clinical trials, future competition, the actions of third-party clinical research organizations, suppliers and manufacturers, our ability to protect our intellectual property rights and other risks, uncertainties and assumptions, including those described under the heading “Risk Factors” in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These forward‐looking statements speak only as of the date of this press release and the Company undertakes no obligation to revise or update any forward‐looking statements for any reason, even if new information becomes available in the future.

“Caution: Federal law restricts this device to sale by or on the order of a physician”

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