Five healthcare organizations join Missouri HIE; Nuance to acquire Quantim;

> Five healthcare organizations joined Missouri Health Connection's new health information exchange this week, MHC has announced. Among the organizations joining are BJC Healthcare, a 13-hospital system in St. Louis; Chesterfield, Mo.-based Mercy, which boasts 31 acute-care hospitals and spans four states; and SSM Health Care, also based in St. Louis, comprised of 17 hospitals. Announcement

> Burlington, Mass.-based Nuance Communications announced this week that it will acquire Quantim, Reston, Va.-based QuadraMed's health information management branch. Nuance expects the deal will boost its efforts to help clients make the transition from ICD-9 to ICD-10, which has a deadline of Oct. 1, 2014. Announcement (.pdf)

> In a recent post to the Health IT Buzz blog, Matt Kendall, director of the Office of Provider Adoption Support at the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT, and Leila Samy, ONC's rural health IT coordinator, issue a challenge for 1,000 critical access and small rural hospitals to become Meaningful Use compliant by 2014.  Kendall and Samy write that ONC will provide up to $30 million for regional extension centers to assist in getting such facilities on board with the initiative. Post

And Finally… What, no trip to the chocolate factory? Article