Another summer is upon us, which means another Healthcare Informatics 100 list, a compilation of the top health IT companies based on HIT revenues from the most recent fiscal year, has been released. This year was no different than previous ones— this project is intense as ever.
Due to a later Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) conference this year, we released the list in July, rather than May, but it was still a grueling three months of surveying, data management, conference calls, math, writing, promoting, research, and decision-making. As in past years, we got significant help from two market research and analysis companies: Porter Research (Atlanta) and ST Advisors, LLC (San Francisco). For more about these organizations, and how they specifically helped with the methodology, click here.
Now onto the list, where we have a new top HIT revenue company, the Eden Prairie, Minn.-based Optum, which checked in with a health IT revenue of $5,227,000,000, the highest number ever for an HCI 100 vendor. Last year, Optum ranked #12 on the list with reported revenue of $1.18 billion. What caused the huge jump? Well for one, Optum, a consulting and analytics division of the country's largest health insurer, UnitedHealth Group, certainly benefitted from a major change we made for this year’s submission form. That change is that on top of including provider-based revenue, that they have historically listed, vendors also were able to include health IT revenue derived in the payer, health information management, employer, and vendor-to-vendor markets as well.
What’s more, in September 2014, Optum announced that it was moving into the physician group space, having acquired the Irving, Tx.-based MedSynergies, Inc., which provides physician practice management, revenue management, physician referral management and other business services to physician groups aligned with large health systems. Then, in October, Optum agreed to buy the Waltham, Mass.-based Alere Health, a division of the larger Alere company which provides care management software, primarily to payers, for $600 million in cash. In a January 2015 press release on its 2014 earnings results, UnitedHealth Group said that Optum’s exceptional revenue growth, margin expansion and earnings advancements were the main highlights of the year.
Other nuggets from this year’s list include:
- Familiar names at the top: Following Optum at #1 were Cerner at $3.4 billion ($2.9 billion last year); McKesson at $3.1 billion ($3.4 billion last year); and Dell at $2.9 billion ($2.89 billion last year).GE Healthcare, Philips, Cognizant, Epic Systems and Siemens also remained in the top 10. Particularly interesting of note is McKesson, which dropped in revenue after ranking #1 last year.
- Higher revenues all around: Undoubtedly, opening up the survey to the payer, health information management, employer, and vendor-to-vendor markets increased the revenue numbers across the board. Bottoming out last year’s list was Health Data Specialists with reported revenue of $35,800,000. This year’s bottom company on the list was Surgical Information Systems, with an industry analysts’ estimate of $55,230,000
- Risers and fallers: The biggest jumps amongst vendors who were on both the 2014 and 2015 lists were made by: Wipro Technologies (60th to 22nd); Imprivata (85th to 71st); and Optum (12th to 1st). The farthest drops down the list were from: T System (64th to 89th); MedAssets (17th to 31st); CTG (61st to 76th); QuadraMed Corp. (69th to 83rd); Vocera (63rd to 75th); and The SSI Group (83rd to 95th). Make no mistake, some companies are very happy to be moving up...