Inovalon Clients Outperform Market for CMS Star Ratings for the Seventh Year in a Row

The Inovalon ONE® Platform Supports Meaningful Quality Outcomes Improvements and Value Delivery

BOWIE, Md., Nov. 02, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Inovalon (Nasdaq: INOV), a leading provider of cloud-based platforms empowering data-driven healthcare, today announced that clients utilizing Inovalon’s quality improvement solution suite outperformed the entire Medicare Advantage market for the seventh year in a row, realizing a positive increase of nearly 4% on a year-over-year basis in their Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) 2021 Star Ratings.

Inovalon’s clinical quality data aggregation, advanced analytics, integrated outreach, and data visualization toolsets provide health plans with targeted patient-level insights to improve quality of care and member health outcomes. Able to integrate, aggregate, and analyze the growing volume of healthcare datasets at high speed to support improvements in clinical quality outcomes measures, the Inovalon ONE® Platform delivers the nation’s most widely used healthcare quality data analysis and improvement platform, with more than 76% of U.S. reported lives running through the Inovalon Platform in 2020.

These results reflect data released by CMS on October 9, 2020, pertaining to all Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug Plans, which revealed that on a year-over-year basis, Star Rating scores decreased by 2.17% for the average Medicare Advantage health plan on an enrollment-weighted basis. These results also reflect adjustments CMS made to minimize the impact of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, allowing plans to use the higher of their 2020 or 2021 CMS Star Ratings for approximately 50% of the measures. Despite the overall market decreasing by 2.17%, clients leveraging Inovalon’s quality improvement suite realized an average increase of 3.72% in their 2021 Star Ratings. The achievement of higher Star Ratings reflects the great work of Inovalon’s health plan clients and the ability of the Inovalon ONE® Platform to rapidly deliver actionable analytical insights, empowering superior care delivery by health plans to their millions of members, and create positive, measurable economic performance impact.

“Over the past year, the challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic combined with the rapid changes to how and where care is delivered have accelerated the need to rely upon a technology platform capable of addressing patient-specific gaps in care within the Medicare Advantage population,” said Kris Volrath, Vice President at Inovalon. “We are pleased to support and empower the continued strong performance of our clients, reflecting their adoption of industry-leading technologies and data-driven insights to achieve meaningful impact during an unprecedented year.”

About the CMS Star Ratings Program

The national Star Ratings performance program, instituted by CMS, measures and reports on a wide range of clinical and quality outcomes pertaining to members and health plans across the United States. The quality measures addressed are utilized by federal and state programs to determine quality scoring and associated incentives and penalties for such programs as CMS’ Medicare Advantage Five-Star Quality Rating System, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Quality Ratings System (QRS) for Affordable Care Act (ACA) plans, and state-based Managed Medicaid measurement programs. Inovalon’s solutions support these programs, as

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Illinois sets record for coronavirus cases for third day in a row

Illinois continues to shatter records for new known coronavirus cases, setting another high mark for the third day in a row.

State public health officials on Saturday reported 7,899 new COVID-19 cases, eclipsing Friday’s single-day record of 6,943 cases. On Thursday, the state reported 6,363 cases, which set a record at the time.

Along with the record number of new cases, state health officials announced 46 more fatalities on Saturday bringing the statewide death toll to 9,757 since the pandemic began.

The high number of cases comes as Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike urged people to make “pandemic-guided decisions” and to avoid in-person gatherings on Halloween weekend.

Ten of 11 Illinois regions are now operating under tighter restrictions under Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s reopening plan, including a ban on indoor dining and bar service, as the coronavirus continues its statewide resurgence.

A chunk of east-central Illinois that includes Champaign-Urbana and Decatur is the latest to join the list after its seven-day rolling positivity rate on coronavirus tests hit 8.6% on Tuesday, exceeding the state-established threshold of 8% for the third straight day and triggering the reopening rollback. The restrictions also include a 25-person limit on gatherings, down from 50.

The return of restrictions has proved controversial, with some restaurants vowing to continue indoor dining. Pritzker ordered closures for indoor dining last week in DuPage, Kane, Will and Kankakee counties. A similar restriction took effect in suburban Cook County on Wednesday and in Chicago on Friday. Lake and McHenry counties are to follow Saturday.

The state has reported 410,300 confirmed infections since the pandemic began. The seven-day statewide positivity rate, covering Oct. 24-30, — is 7.5%.

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1 in 12 no longer speaking to friend because of a COVID row

The study found around a quarter of people had had an argument with a friend or family member about their attitude towards the pandemic. (Getty)
The study found around a quarter of people had had an argument with a friend or family member about their attitude towards the pandemic. (Getty)

Over half of Brits say they’ve felt angry about another person’s behaviour in relation to the pandemic and 1 in 12 have stopped speaking to someone due to an argument about COVID-19, a study has found.

The study by King’s College London found 53% of people had felt angry with others they knew because of their behaviour in relation to the coronavirus pandemic.

They found the number was even higher among people who used social media to get most of their information about the pandemic (69%), people who viewed the virus as a risk to themselves (62%), and people who find coronavirus stressful (67%).

Dr James Rubin who took part in the study said: “Covid-19 has caused – or revealed – tension within the population. As restrictions were eased, more people were out and about, making it is easier to see who was sticking to the rules and who was not.”

The numbers become even starker when only friends and family are considered.

Around a quarter of people said they had had arguments with friends or family about how to behave during the pandemic.

This almost doubled when the respondent got a lot of their information from social media.

Watch: Coronavirus: The second wave forecast came true – but we don’t know if lockdowns will work

Read more: COVID vaccine in ‘last mile’ of development and ‘could be rolled out before Christmas’

Dr Louise Smith, senior research associate at King’s Colleg London said: “People who rely on social media for information about the pandemic, as well as those who believe a conspiracy theory about face masks, were more likely to have reported anger or having been involved in confrontations with others.

“This highlights the importance of combatting misinformation on coronavirus and making sure that information published from all sources about coronavirus and protective measures is reliable.”

Money worries also led to increased arguments, with 42% saying they’d fallen out with a family member and also had financial issues.

The study also found 8% of people had stopped talking to a friend or family because of a disagreement about the pandemic.

Those who got their information primarily from social media platforms like WhattsApp, Twitter, YouTube, or Facebook were four times more likely to no longer be on speaking terms with someone close after an argument around the pandemic.

Read more: Government insists national lockdown is wrong approach

The study also found nearly one in five people (18%) have confronted someone for not staying a sufficient distance away from others or for being in too large a group.

Just over one in 20 (6%) reported having been confronted themselves for not wearing a face mask, and one in 20 (5%) say they’ve been reported to the authorities for failing to do so.

Conversely, one in 12 people (8%) say they’ve confronted someone for not wearing

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Row Breaks Out Over WHO Trial Casting Doubt on Remdesivir as COVID-19 Drug | Top News

By John Miller and Stephanie Nebehay

ZURICH/GENEVA (Reuters) – A row broke out on Friday over a World Health Organization (WHO) clinical trial which concluded that the anti-viral drug remdesivir has little or no impact on a patient’s chances of surviving COVID-19.

Gilead Sciences Inc., the U.S. company that developed the drug, said the findings appeared inconsistent with evidence from other studies validating the clinical benefit of remdesivir, which was used to treat U.S. President Donald Trump’s coronavirus infection.

“We are concerned the data from this open-label global trial has not undergone the rigorous review required to allow for constructive scientific discussion,” Gilead said.

But Richard Peto, an independent statistician hired by the WHO to scrutinize the results of its Solidarity trial, dismissed Gilead’s criticism.

“It’s a reliable result, don’t let anybody tell you otherwise, because they’ll try to,” Peto told reporters. “This is real world evidence.”

The results of the trial, announced by the WHO on Thursday, dealt a blow to one of the few drugs being used to treat people with COVID-19.

The U.N. health agency said remdesivir appeared to have little or no effect on keeping people alive or on the length of hospital stays among patients with the respiratory disease.

Its trial was conducted on 11,266 adult patients in over 30 countries and its findings may shift the focus of treatments away from antivirals such as remdesivir to new monoclonal antibodies which the WHO has said could be added to its studies.

In addition to remdesivir, Trump received Regeneron’s experimental monoclonal antibody infection. But another U.S. company, Eli Lilly and Co, said on Tuesday a trial of its own COVID-19 antibody treatment had been paused over safety concerns.

Gilead, which quickly repurposed what it had developed as an Ebola drug when the COVID-19 pandemic began, said that other, smaller remdesivir trials showed the treatment cut COVID-19 recovery time by five days and helped reduce the risk of death in some patients who were getting oxygen.

Peto, an Oxford University professor emeritus, said the smaller trial’s perceived benefit in keeping people alive could have been mere “chance”.

“And you’ve got to randomise in large numbers,” Peto said. “There isn’t sufficient emphasis based on the need for large numbers if you want really reliable results.”

For the remdesivir arm of the WHO’s Solidarity trial, 2,743 patients were given remdesivir, compared to 2,708 in the control group. Gilead’s study had 1,062 participants.

“The real disappointment is that remdesivir has also failed in a larger number of cases and in the ‘real world setting’,” Clemens Wendtner, Chief Physician of Infectiology and Tropical Medicine at Munich’s Schwabing Clinic, said.

“A major clinical breakthrough looks different and warns us that the battle against COVID-19 is far from won.”

The WHO’s trial also found that other medicines repurposed since the pandemic began — malaria drug hydroxychloroquine, anti-HIV drug combination lopinavir/ritonavir and interferon — offered little or no benefit to COVID-19 patients.

The hydroxychloroquine and anti-HIV studies were abandoned earlier this year, and interferon

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