MedTech I.Q.

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Colleagues,

As reported in the New York Times ... the technology industry is pursuing the opportunity in digital health records as never before. Although most of the government money will not start flowing until next year, the companies hoping to get their share include technology giants like General Electric, I.B.M. and the big telecommunications company, Verizon. Also in the hunt are smaller health technology specialists like Athenahealth, eClinicalWorks and Practice Fusion.

... Dell, the personal computer maker, plans to join the scramble in earnest, announcing its plan to form a partnership with hospital groups around the country to offer electronic health records — hardware, software, consulting services and financing — to their affiliated physicians. Dell, like the other players, sees the big opportunity as being in offices with 10 doctors or fewer, where three-fourths of the nation’s physicians practice medicine...

... What is needed, experts agree, are new models of delivery and easier-to-use technology to reduce the expense and technical headaches. The proposed offerings are typically bets on the new Internet-based service model, known as cloud computing, in which much of the computing firepower and data reside in remote data centers, which doctors, nurses and staff would use via the Web browsers on their personal computers...

... G.E. is an established supplier of electronic health records that work as traditional personal computer software. The company ... has recently done a lot of prototype work on how to make the shift to digital records easier and less costly for small practices. Early next year, G.E. will offer a data-center hosted version of its electronic health records, delivered over the Internet ...

... EClinicalWorks has added four data centers in the last year, bringing the total to 10, for hosting electronic health records as a service over the Internet. The company offers its records both as conventional PC software and as a Web service...

... At Athenahealth, a supplier of online billing services and health records ... plans to announce a marketing drive and technical assistance program later this month to accelerate the adoption of its digital records...

... Practice Fusion, a start-up offering Web-based patient records free to physicians, is supported by online advertising...

... I.B.M., whose health business is geared to big medical groups, is planning a move. The company does not make electronic health record software, and so would work with partners... and is going to be delivering a cloud-based service into this space...

... Verizon started a health care unit this summer, which now has a staff of 500. The company plans to work with many health technology partners to offer electronic health records over the Internet in several months ...

Read on at: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/10/technology/10records.html?pagewan...

ENJOY!

CC

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