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Report: HIE Market is Changing, Consolidating

July 17, 2012
by Gabriel Perna
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A new report from the Framingham, Mass.-based IDC Health Insights looked at the evolution of the health information exchange (HIE) market, concluding the market’s focus is shifting. The study, IDC MarketScape: U.S. Health Information Exchange Platform Solutions 2012 Vendor Assessment, says the shift has gone from connecting the ecosystem to exchange data and qualify for meaningful use incentives, to turning data into "actionable information" that enables emerging accountable care or collaborative care initiatives.

This, according to the report, has led to additional market consolidation among HIE vendors. Since the last IDC report, seven HIE vendors have been acquired or merged and new, nontraditional players have entered the market including payers and telecommunication companies.

"The IT requirements for health information organizations and evolving care delivery and reimbursement models are too extensive for any one vendor to satisfy," Lynne Dubrack, program director for Connected Health IT Strategies at IDC Health Insights, said in a statement. "To address the business and technical requirements of accountable care, in addition to providing core HIE technologies, vendors are responding by developing, partnering, or acquiring analytics, collaborative care, and patient engagement technologies."

The reportevaluated 16 vendors that offer a platform solution for HIEs including AT&T, AxSys Technology, Caradigm, Carefx, Certify Data Systems, Covisint, dbMotion, IBM, Infor, InterSystems Corp., Medicity, OptumInsight, Oracle, Orion Health, RelayHealth, and Verizon.

According to the report, platform-as-a-service is set to play an important role in delivering HIE capabilities as vendors look to create an ecosystem of strategic partnerships. Platforms will evolve over time to meet the needs of customers and partners in the ecosystem, often through self development. In contrast, the report says, packaged solutions are designed to meet a very specific set of requirements.

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