Meharry, Icahn School team to fight racism, bias

Friday, August 6, 2021, Vol. 45, No. 32

Meharry Medical College and the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City have entered into an agreement that will address racism and bias in the basic sciences and introduce greater diversity and inclusion.

The partnership is part of a broader initiative by Icahn Mount Sinai to collaborate with historically Black medical schools, colleges, and universities in a comprehensive, institutional approach.

The affiliation between the institutions will instill a mutually beneficial exchange of knowledge and training that could include a joint graduate or educational medical education program, research activities by students and faculties, and administrative guidelines allowing students to study at each institution.

Meharry Medical College is the oldest of the only four historically Black medical schools in the United States, where there are approximately 150 medical schools.

One goal of the affiliation is to address the critical shortage of Black physicians and scientists across the country. The Association of American Medical Colleges has consistently pointed to this shortage, and extensive reports have described the barriers that minority doctors and researchers face, including a failure among academic medical centers to mentor underrepresented minority faculty.

VUMC ranks No. 20 in Best Hospital rankings

Vanderbilt University Medical Center has been listed No. 20 as among the nation’s top hospitals in U.S. News & World Report’s 2021-22 Best Hospital rankings and ratings.

The latest edition added seven new Procedures and Conditions ratings, diversifying the portfolio to 17 services in all. The new ratings – covering heart attack, stroke, pneumonia, diabetes, kidney failure, hip fracture and back surgery (spinal fusion) – emphasize the importance of targeted research and care that provides patients and their doctors with data-driven decision support.

For the sixth consecutive year, the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. claimed the No. 1 spot on the Best Hospitals Honor Roll. The Honor Roll is a distinction awarded to hospitals ranked in the top 20 nationally for delivering exceptional treatment across multiple areas of care.

Bridgestone acquires mobility software firm

Bridgestone and Sumeru Equity Partners, Danlaw, Inc. and other shareholders have reached an agreement for Bridgestone to purchase Azuga Holdings, Inc. and the Azuga fleet management platform for $391 million.

The acquisition will accelerate Bridgestone’s efforts to develop and deploy sustainable mobility solutions as a central pillar of the company’s advanced mobility strategy. The transaction has been approved by each company’s board of directors and is expected to close by the end of the third quarter.

Founded in 2012, Azuga is a technology company that has developed a sophisticated fleet management platform with GPS tracking, video telematics, driver behavior management and accident reduction solutions for insurers. These solutions create value for fleets and insurers through improved safety on the road, as well as reduced fuel consumption and wear and tear on vehicles.

With more than 6,000 fleet business customers in North America, Azuga broadly supports organizations across industries including commercial fleets, insurance companies and government agencies. Azuga will maintain its headquarters in Silicon Valley.

The acquisition of Azuga continues Bridgestone’s evolution toward becoming a sustainable solutions company and builds on Bridgestone’s recently announced investment in autonomous long-haul trucking company Kodiak Robotics.

Metro launches its redesigned

After three years of planning, Metro Nashville has launched a new and improved website. The new site was created from feedback gathered from both internal and external sources including 760 public survey responses, 200+ businesses and neighborhood groups, four separate focus groups, and interviews with 27 Metro departments. has been redesigned to be more mobile user-friendly and features the 12 most popular services (based on site analytics) on the homepage including register for new alarm permits, pay water bill online and register to vote. Users can click to a page that lists all the services on the site for quick and easy access.

The new search engine will also provide legislation content, hub Nashville resources, and the Metro Property Assessor’s website. More search locations may be added in the future.

More information on the new website can be viewed in this presentation to the Metro Council Personnel Committee:

Belmont sets record with fall enrollment

Belmont is welcoming a record 8,750 students this fall, a 17.2% increased compared to its fall 2020 enrollment.

The Class of 2025 represents Belmont’s most diverse entering cohort in history with 21.3 percent of incoming students from historically underrepresented groups, the school reports. In addition, Belmont continues to be among the top destinations for transfer students with more than 500 transfers from 40 states committed to join the campus this fall.

Belmont’s newest students begin moving into campus housing August 19 with the first day of classes set for Wednesday, August 25.

Customer service center comes to Goodlettsville

A Fidelitone customer service center opened recently in Goodlettsville.

The new center centralizes and expands customer service operations for a nationwide client base, integrating seamlessly into last mile scheduling and delivery operations, within the service parameters and SOPs defined by each client for its customers.

Backed by robust technologies, the call center experts have full visibility into every step of the customer experience and delivery steps, including full integration with Fidelitone’s self-scheduling and tracking technologies for putting customers in control of last mile deliveries.

Fidelitone provides order fulfillment and specialized warehousing services in the Nashville area, with facilities in Lebanon, Cookeville and Goodlettsville, employing more than 100 people in its local operations. Last mile delivery operations will be expanding in Goodlettsville in the fourth quarter of 2021. Employment opportunities in areas such as warehouse, dispatch, scheduling, and customer service positions are opening quickly as the teams continue to grow, the company reports.

Sustainability Report lauds Cumberland

Nashville-based Cumberland Pharmaceuticals Inc., a specialty pharmaceutical company, has released its 2020 Sustainability Report, which details the company’s activities pertaining to environmental, social and governance matters.

The report states that in 2020 Cumberland provided nearly 2.5 million patient doses of its products, safely disposed of over 4,000 pounds of expired and damaged products and had no product recalls.

The company also had no product listings on the FDA’s MedWatch Safety Alerts for Human Medical Products, no products identified in the FDA Adverse Event Reporting System and no clinical trials terminated due to failure to practice good clinical standards.

Additionally, the report highlights the biopharmaceutical company’s investment in its employees through its continuing education programs, employee development initiatives and employee awards. Cumberland’s workforce is 46% women – and 18% of its employees are minorities.

Nashville’s CS3 bought by Reedy Industries

Reedy Industries, a commercial and industrial HVAC, plumbing and building controls services company, has acquired CS3, a mechanical, HVAC, and building controls solutions provider with offices in Memphis and Nashville.

With this acquisition, Reedy Industries expands their services footprint in the southeastern U.S., maintaining focus on meeting the needs of customers in the commercial, industrial, health care, education, government and senior living market segments.

CS3 began serving the southeast region in 1985. The company combines industry-leading building automation and controls technologies with conventional mechanical and HVAC services in meeting the needs of commercial and industrial clients in Tennessee, Arkansas and Mississippi.

CS3 is a full-service provider of smart building technologies; mechanical services including piping, sheet metal, and plumbing for construction and renovation projects; energy efficiency and sustainability solutions; and preventive maintenance and 24/7 emergency services.

CS3 is the 15th acquisition for Reedy Industries since 2019.

Envision rolls out AI radiology software

Nashville’s Envision Healthcare, a national medical group, has announced that its radiologists are successfully leveraging artificial intelligence to enhance clinical evaluations and the delivery of high-quality, patient-centered care.

The newly implemented AI software assists radiologists with disease detection, case prioritization and diagnosis, and has been optimized to detect three common and consequential medical emergencies: intracranial hemorrhages, pulmonary embolisms and cervical spine fractures.

This technology is being rolled out to radiologists using Envision’s exclusive platform. AI software provides additional support in analyzing medical images and notifies radiologists of suspected findings to assist them in prioritizing time-sensitive conditions, such as a stroke or perforated bowel.

Using AI to help enhance diagnostic accuracy and prioritize acute cases, patients can receive more timely treatment based on their condition and acuity level.

Envision cares for 32 million patients every year, with its team of 800 radiologists conducting more than 10 million reads a year. Envision is uniquely positioned to improve the health of communities across the country.

Nashville company launches Doc360°

Nashville-based careNext, a health care company, has introduced Doc360°, a health care provider grading system with over 1.1 million care practitioners that will serve as consumers’ “single source of truth” to help them find providers who meet their individual needs.

Implementing a novel approach to grading doctors, Doc360° develops provider scores by sourcing and aggregating physician ratings from multiple web sources. It then combines these ratings with data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), weighting the data using a proprietary algorithm to create a provider “grade.”