The American Medical Association will combine the platform of its online physician portal, Amagine, with that of AT&T Healthcare Community Online in a deal that would have AT&T owning and operating the combined product. No financial terms were disclosed.
AT&T to acquire AMA's online physician portal
AT&T will lead further development of the platform, though the AMA “will remain actively engaged” in collaborating on business strategies and expanding availability of health IT for physicians, according to a joint AMA-AT&T news release.
In the release it's stated that “AT&T will own and operate the combined platform as AT&T Healthcare Community Online,” but Randall Porter, assistant vice president of AT&T Business Solutions' AT&T ForHealth, preferred to call the arrangement—which will have the Amagine platform “migrating” to AT&T's—a “strategic alliance” rather than an acquisition.
Both Amagine and Healthcare Community Online operate on platforms powered by Covisint, a Detroit-based subsidiary of Compuware Corp.
“This will make the tools they were already enjoying more robust,” said AMA Chair-elect Dr. Steven Stack, who added that Amagine has 6,000 registered users with electronic prescribing and patient registries being the most-used tools in its portfolio.
Porter predicted that physicians will make use of AT&T's care-management applications, data analytics and population management tools.
According to its 2010 annual report, the AMA spent $7.5 million in 2009 developing Amagine and another $8.5 million in 2010. It was noted in the report that “In 2011, AMA expects this new venture to be fully operational, but as this is a new venture, it is not expected to be profitable for several years.”
In a 2010 interview, Robert Musacchio, AMA senior vice president of business services, said Amagine was expected to be a revenue generator for the AMA. “Yes, it will be a business line for the American Medical Association,” Musacchio said then. “However, the reason why we got into this is really about engagement and wanting to provide physicians with some help.”
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