mPacts (Atlanta) reported that it has entered into a strategic business partnership with Allscripts (Chicago). mPacts will assist Allscripts' clients with the implementation of the company's electronic health records (EHR), taking advantage of new federal incentives.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, signed into law Feb. 17, provides $19 billion to help healthcare organizations adopt health information technologies. The majority of the funding will go toward supporting adoption of EHR. The incentives allow physicians that adopt and use a certified EHR between $44,000 and $64,000 over a five-year period.

The partnership between mPacts and Allscripts will offer experience and efficiency to physician practices all over the Southeast.

"We are excited to partner with mPacts to help their physician clients provide even better quality care for their patients in a more cost-effective manner," said Vern Davenport, president of Allscripts Professional Solutions Group. "Coupled with the new financial incentives from the federal government to use a certified EHR, physicians are motivated now more than ever to step onto the electronic healthcare highway."

"The addition of the Allscripts EHR technology will increase operational efficiency for practitioners, ultimately resulting in efficient practice management, faster provision of enhanced services to patients and overall profitability," said Sheryl Cherico, president and COO of mPacts. "I'm thrilled that Allscripts has agreed to partner with us to bring their life-saving technology to our physician clients."

Eclipsys (Atlanta) reported that Lahey Clinic (Burlington, Massachusetts) has signed a strategic agreement to implement a wide-range of Eclipsys Sunrise Enterprise clinical solutions to create an enterprise-wide electronic medical record (EMR).

The EMR project involves Lahey Clinic's two acute care medical centers and will establish an interoperable platform to leverage a prior investment in an ambulatory EMR solution for Lahey's outpatient settings.

By implementing an integrated inpatient-ambulatory EMR, Lahey Clinic will create a seamless flow of patient information across facilities to support continuity of care and enhanced clinical decision making in the physician office, clinic and hospital care settings.

"We sought a partner that could provide superior clinical solutions, clinical content, and a shared vision for interoperability," said Sandy Kurtz, MD, chief operating officer, Lahey Clinic. "Eclipsys demonstrated to us that they would be the best partner to collaborate with us in utilizing technology to support high quality and safe patient care across our campus, as well as enhancing our institution's acclaimed high acuity service areas. In addition, Eclipsys' willingness and technical capability to leverage existing Lahey technology solutions was attractive to us. We look forward to a successful implementation and fully taking advantage of this opportunity for significant clinical and operational benefits."

Lahey Clinic will implement Eclipsys' Sunrise Acute Care, Sunrise Pharmacy and Knowledge-Based Charting solutions to establish an EMR with clinical decision support.

The Eclipsys computerized physician order entry solution (CPOE) will be deployed in a staged rollout. Eclipsys leads the industry in CPOE adoption.

The Lahey Clinic EMR decision coincides with the recently enacted American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, which is designed to offer incentives to hospitals and providers for "Meaningful Use of an Electronic Health Record" to lower the costs and complexity associated with the nation's healthcare system. An implementation timeline has been developed to support Lahey Clinic in meeting the stimulus package qualification/payment deadlines.

In other agreements/contracts news:

• iMedica (Dallas) has become a member benefit partner of Colorado Medical Society (CMS; Denver), the state's largest physician-based association representing more than 7,000 members. The relationship comes on the heels of the $19 billion in upcoming federal stimulus funds for health information technology, as well as a national commitment to provide everyone in the U.S. with an electronic health record (EHR) by 2014. The partnership also reinforces Colorado's priority to support the sharing of electronic health information across organizations.

As part of the agreement, CMS member physicians will receive preferred pricing on all iMedica products, as well as the opportunity to participate in live educational seminars designed to highlight the benefits, efficiencies and improved functionality that an EHR and practice management (PM) solution can bring to a medical practice.

iMedica also reported a technology partnership with Imagetek (Grimes, Iowa) to strengthen the capture of paper-based documents and ease the transition to the paperless physician practice.

The companies have created a solution that provides clinicians with easy and reliable access to patient records, including legacy paper documents, through the Inofile interface. Hosted within the Fujitsu fi-6010N iScanner, Inofile's touch-and-go feature allows clinicians to automatically scan and store documents in the correct location within iMedica's Patient Relationship Manager, a single-application electronic medical record and practice management solution.

• Icor Partners (Arlington, Virginia) said it has been awarded a contract by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Office for Enterprise Development to provide Information Resource Management and Integrated Program Planning support.

Under the contract, Icor will continue to provide cross program integration, integrated program planning and program executive office support to further the objective of transforming service to veterans through sustaining and modernizing the VA information technology.

• QuadraMed (Reston, Virginia) said that Fremont-Rideout Health Group (FRHG; Yuba City, California) chose QuadraMed Revenue Cycle and Quantim Health Information Management solutions to streamline its revenue collection process, improve clinical workflow, and leverage business intelligence and real-time reporting to help maximize operational efficiencies. FRHG will begin deployment of the QuadraMed Revenue Cycle and Quantim solution suites this month and plans to go live in July 2010.

• McKesson (Alpharetta, Georgia) recently signed a three-year agreement with VHA (Irving, Texas) in which VHA has selected the McKesson Performance Analytics product as its preferred enterprise business intelligence solution. This contract also offers preferential pricing for VHA members, including discounts for more than 1,400 not-for-profit hospitals and 23,000 non-acute care organizations.

The McKesson Performance Analytics software provides hospitals and health systems with a financial decision support system that integrates and transforms data from the clinical care process to measure organizational performance.

• SumTotal Systems (Mountain View, California) reported a partnership with Integrated HR Solutions (IHRS; Chicago) to integrate its healthcare-specific job and competency library into its Healthcare Solution Set for the Talent Development Suite. The Healthcare Solution Set for SumTotal Talent Development Suite is uniquely designed to help hospitals not only address the ever-present regulatory requirements, but also address the workforce issues they face in today's competitive marketplace through content, streamlined workflows, and integrated functionality.

• Aspyra (Calabasas, California) has entered into a non-exclusive letter of agreement with South Plains Biomedical Services (SPBS; Lubbock, Texas), allowing SPBS to represent and resell Aspyra's laboratory and radiology information systems and picture archive communications systems to new and existing SPBS customers. The 12-month letter of agreement became effective Feb. 3.

• Citizant (Chantilly, Washington) has been awarded a blanket purchase agreement (BPA) by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for information sharing and collaboration services. The BPA, effective Feb. 18, covers a one-year period with no annual ceiling.

According to the terms of the BPA, NIH can access a complete catalog of services needed to facilitate greater knowledge sharing, expedite the translation of research results into knowledge, make high-quality information publicly available, and improve mission effectiveness.

• Universal Health Services (UHS; Austin, Texas) said that the company will enter into a long-term agreement with Opus Healthcare Solutions (Austin, Texas) to roll out OpusMobility, a web-based smart phone application to deliver access of patient clinical data in a secure fashion to physicians, across their entire enterprise of acute care hospitals. The long-term contract also includes a commitment by UHS to extend their service level agreement with Opus Healthcare for continued support, ongoing enhancements, and rollout of the OpusClinicalSuite across their organization's healthcare facilities. The application enables physicians to continue monitoring their patients' health outside of the hospital using secure WiFi and cell phone networks.

• Analytix On Demand (Austin, Texas) and Pervasive Software (Irvine, California) are joining forces to deliver a business intelligence solution for the healthcare industry. Designed expressly for healthcare providers, large physician groups, hospitals, health plans and other healthcare organizations, the solution will provide a comprehensive, real-time view of business performance across clinical, financial and operational aspects of healthcare management.

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