It's another example of just how mainstream IT companies are moving into health care with offerings that do much more than health care specialists have been able to do before, just as growth within the industry accelerates
Covering all areas of medical technology, and the public policies under which they're paid for. From networked systems and electronic medical records to gadgets, breakthroughs, and research.
What the company seems to be building is a software suite that will help it see, and reduce, the real costs of using hospitals.
Ingenix, a consultant to doctors and hospitals, bought Picis, whose software focuses on "high-acuity" areas of the hospital space -- places like emergency rooms, surgical suites, and intensive care recovery rooms.
Meaningful use is already fattening the bottom lines of companies like Allscripts-Misys, where profit for the last quarter was up 17%.
The agency's hope is that the subsidy will encourage new services and ultimately cut the cost of care in rural areas. The money would help subsidize creation of public and non-profit broadband networks serving rural communities.
What is becoming clear is that the stick, which many thought would only come out with the end of the meaningful use stimulus, is coming out right now.
History shows that when a vertical becomes mainstream the computing majors dominate.
IBM's own press release on this emphasizes that this is research, but the company has also launched a SmarterPlanet Healthcare Web site focused on such areas as the medical home and personalized medicine.
Just as with the obesity epidemic, you can expect an Alzheimer's gold rush, as new therapies are passed by the FDA and a fading baby boom generation begs for anything claiming to offer relief.
The health IT's claim it can transform the delivery of health care through technology is about to be put to the test.