Final negotiations underway for $6.8 million e-health deal

IBA Health Group subsidiary, iSoft, has been named preferred supplier for a $4.6 million patient administration system and $2.2 million pharmacy system for the Tasmanian government.

The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) is in final negotiations with the vendor to ink a five year contract following the completion of an implementation planning study.

iSoft's i.Patient Manager (i.PM) PAS will provide the foundation for an electronic patient record system, which the government plans to have in place in the next 10 years.

The platform will integrate patient information across all of Tasmania's public hospitals including the Royal Hobart, Launceston General, and North West Regional Acute Hospitals.

Moreover, the $2.2 million pharmacy clinical and dispensing system is also a five year contract with the implementation planning study due for completion in April, 2008.

The system will provide a single state-wide repository of information on patient medications enabling the DHHS to build common patient medication profiles and apply common business rules.

Based on iSoft's i.Pharmacy solution, it will provide decision-making support to prevent medication errors through Web-based information.

It also caters for public hospital dispensing of Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) prescriptions and reimbursements online integrated with dispensing, manufacturing and enterprise inventory management.

Future plans include full electronic prescribing and electronic administration.

i.Pharmacy is already installed at 218 sites throughout Australia.

DHHS Tasmania's chief information officer, Max Gentle, said iSoft was selected for its proven ability to implement comprehensive state-wide patient administration and pharmacy management systems.

"This includes a clear understanding of key business processes, healthcare delivery, and how information will support our future aspirations," he said.

"These systems will be the cornerstone of our strategy for the implementation of full electronic patient records."

Gary Cohen, executive chairman CEO of the IBA Health Group said these contracts consolidate the vendor's position as the key supplier of health information technology to all the major Australian state governments and lays the foundation for iSoft to participate in national e-health initiatives.

Copyright © 2008 IDG Communications, Inc.

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