VHA, an Irving, Texas-based healthcare alliance, and Eclipsys Corp., a Delray Beach, Fla.-based healthcare information services vendor, formed a new company late last week, which combines their Internet-based products and services.
Eclipsys was in the final stages of producing a new line of clinical products to be delivered through World Wide Web sites called portals. VHA already has a private Web-based network and a portal to deliver clinical, operations and knowledge-management tools and services.
The Internet market and advances in technology are growing so rapidly in healthcare that not-for-profit VHA needed the capital resources to develop new tools and services more rapidly and compete with for-profit competitors, said VHA spokesman Barry Pound.
As part of a public company, the Internet technology unit of VHA will have more opportunities to attract and align with other partners that want an equity stake, he said.
Companies providing specific types of information, services or Internet expertise are making deals left and right with competitors such as Healtheon/WebMD and CareInsite, which are forming portals of comprehensive information and services for providers and consumers.
VHA began going head to head with those portal companies when it launched PhysicianLink Online last spring (May 31, p. 34).
General Atlantic Partners, a Greenwich, Conn.-based private equity firm, is providing an initial $20 million investment in the new company, called Healthvision.
Eclipsys took the Healthvision nameplate from a clinical information systems company it acquired in January and merged into its main product line for hospitals and physician offices.
The public company gains access to Web systems and services of VHA that have been available exclusively to the alliance's 1,800 member healthcare organizations, Pound said. Healthvision will provide its products and services at a lower price to VHA members, he said.