Ingenix's voracious appetite for acquisitions is fueled in part by federal subsidies for electronic health-record systems under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
Ingenix: A stimulated appetite for acquisitions
In two of its three deals announced in the last month, Ingenix, an Eden Prairie, Minn.-based division of insurer UnitedHealth Group, has pointed to the stimulus law as a driving factor.
Ingenix's most recent deal is a definitive agreement to acquire Axolotl Corp., San Jose, Calif., which provides health information exchange services. Terms of the deal are not being disclosed, according to Ingenix spokesman Kyle Christensen. The stimulus act provides $783 million in near-term direct funding for the implementation of statewide and regional health information exchanges, in addition to the $36.5 billion it provides in incentives for hospitals and physicians to make meaningful use of EHRs, Ingenix noted in its news release announcing the deal.
Axolotl, founded in 1995, will retain its management team. Its products will be the first health information exchange service offering from Ingenix, which has been consulting on health information exchanges, Christensen said. Axolotl's products are used by 20 regional health information organizations and four statewide health information exchanges.
In July, Ingenix announced another deal that takes aim at stimulus funding when it said it would acquire Picis, which develops clinical health IT systems for emergency, surgery and intensive-care departments and hospital financial information systems. In particular, a rule change issued last month by the CMS allows physician orders made in emergency rooms to count toward the stimulus act's subsidy requirements, which should boost sales for Picis, Ingenix said at the time.
Ingenix followed up the Picis announcement last week with the news that it would acquire Newtown Square, Pa.-based Executive Health Resources, a provider of software and services that help hospitals with physician medical management and compliance. Hospitals are required to perform compliance reviews on services rendered to patients on governmental health plans to ensure the services were medically necessary.
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