HIE market heats up with state grants, looming EMR deadline

With federal stimulus money--about $546 million funneled into state grants promoting health information exchange projects--illuminating the way, healthcare software vendors are evaluating their offerings to see how EMRs and health information exchanges can work together to create a true marketplace and business advantage.

Connecting EMRs through HIEs, which should help facilitate access to and retrieval of timely clinical data on patients, can cut back dramatically on expenses. A single-clinician practice, for example, could waste thousands of dollars a year dealing with referrals, consults, radiology and other orders alone. Integrating exchanges to be more than storage devices for clinical information could be a great step toward productivity and profit improvement across healthcare.

In this market, business advantage may mean acquisition. Lawson Software, for example, recently announced a $160 million deal to acquire Healthvision, a Dallas-based company providing integration and application technology and related services to hospitals and large healthcare organizations. MEDecision, a vendor of payer-centric care management technology, also plans to expand its HIE strategy this spring by unveiling new products related to its acquisition last year of HxTechnologies, a provider of HIE services.

The HIE market is heating up, according to Scott Storrer, MEDecision CEO. "We're adding over a 100 employees to support that growth," he says in an interview with Information Week.

To learn more:
- read this InformationWeek article