Allscripts closes McKesson deal amid optimism from providers

Business executives shaking hands
Hospitals are confident McKesson's EHR platform will improve under Allscripts' ownership. (Getty/Martin Barraud)

Allscripts has finalized its purchase of McKesson’s health IT portfolio amid a surge of optimism from healthcare providers that the acquisition will be a net benefit.

The $185 million deal announced in August transfers McKesson’s Paragon EHR system to Allscripts. The company plans to “invest in and continue to offer” Paragon to the small hospital market, while maintaining its existing EHR platform, Sunrise, at large health systems.

The acquisition doubles Allscripts' current hospital client base, according to an announcement.

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“It’s critical that healthcare organizations deliver the best care possible, and we expect this transaction will enable Allscripts to offer the most comprehensive, high-performing health information technology and solutions, which will help clinicians achieve our shared mission,” Allscripts CEO Paul M. Black said in the announcement.

McKesson clients are welcoming the change. According to a Black Book survey, 96% of board members and executive financial leaders at healthcare organizations that used Paragon were “confidently optimistic” that the acquisition would improve client processes and technologies. The vast majority of respondents, including 100% of board members and 92% of financial leadership, were also receptive to replacing Paragon with Sunrise.

"Nearly every Paragon client facility responding is focusing on acquiring other long delayed software initiatives because of previous EHR investments including revenue cycle management, analytics and population health tools and these will remain their primary strategic IT initiatives for 2018-2019, not EHR replacement," Doug Brown, managing partner of Black Book, said in a release. "Hospital boards and executives are clearly hopeful the Allscripts acquisition will benefit their organizational processes and relieve their looming Paragon concerns."