McKesson: Partner, portal and packaged services

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McKesson Corp. announced its acquisition of Physician Micro Systems Inc., a leading provider of integrated software for EHRs, medical billing and appointment scheduling, at HIMSS07 in New Orleans last week. The company also unveiled the New Horizon Nursing Portal and a new set of interactive services designed to help providers manage the growth of consumer-directed healthcare.

The acquisition of Practice Partner, along with the recently acquired Per-Se Technologies Inc., supports McKesson’s commitment to provide a complete solution, from software, billing and collection services to supplies and connectivity, to physician practices of all sizes. The Horizon Nursing Portal follows on the heels of the Horizon Physician Portal which is used more than 3.7 million times a month—a significant portion of which is by nurses. The new portal serves as a command center, giving nurses access to the information most relevant to them including clinical and medication histories, flowsheets, images and results as well as charting, medication administration and order management. Nurses can use review tools to better manage the complexity of patient care.

The new set of interactive services features financial clearance and financial settlement services designed to improve patient interaction with their healthcare providers while helping hospitals reduce the complexity and costs associated with the growing volume of consumer health payments. The services let patients see out-of-pocket estimates online to better understand their financial obligations. The Horizon Patient Kiosk lets patients self check-in electronically. In the home, Patient Compass creates the ability for providers to offer patients a convenient online business office. Bills from the health system’s physician and hospital systems are consolidated and turned into consumer-friendly communication. The package is designed to set the stage to reduce the cost of recouping consumer payments, estimated to cost up to three times as much for every dollar that it costs to collect insurance payments, the company said.