Microsoft pitches Google Health users, developers on moving to HealthVault

Microsoft pitches Google Health users, developers on moving to HealthVault

Summary: With Google phasing out its Google Health electronic-records service, Microsoft is wooing Google Health users and developers to move their data and applications over to Microsoft's HealthVault alternative.

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I've had a number of readers ask me whether Microsoft will follow Google in dropping its electronic-health records technology. It looks like the answer is no -- especially given Microsoft's attempt to woo soon-to-be-disenfranchised Google Health users and developers.

Microsoft is attempting to make it easier for Google Health users and developers to move their data and applications over to Microsoft's HealthVault alternative, using the Direct Project messaging protocols established by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT.

In a July 18 press release, Microsoft officials explained how Google Health users can move their information to Microsoft's platform. From that release:

"A Google Health account holder who wants to transfer his or her personal health information to HealthVault can start by selecting the “Send profile to another service” option on the Download menu in Google Health. Google Health will then send his or her Google Health profile directly to HealthVault as an encrypted message using the Direct Project messaging protocols. Users will receive confirmation in Google Health that their profile was sent, and then an email explaining how to create a HealthVault account and complete the data transfer. Complete instructions for using this method, as well as an alternative manual method, can be found here."

The pitch to developers (from the same press release):

"Third-party organizations that have developed Google Health applications also are invited to migrate their solutions to the HealthVault platform. Documentation, reference materials and a Software Development Kit are available at the HealthVault Developer Center on the Microsoft Developer Network, http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/healthvault, and the business development team at hvbd@microsoft.com is available to answer developers’ questions."

Google officials said last month that the company is “retiring” Google Health as of January 1, 2012, with data stored in its medical-record system available for download through January 1, 2013. Data not removed from Google Health by January 1, 2013, will be permanently deleted, Google execs said. Google officials said that its Health offering didn't catch on as the company expected.

Microsoft is continuing to invest in its cloud-based electronic-medical-record offering, known as HealthVault, which it launched in 2009. It also is holding onto its various health-focused software investments, including its Amalga integration and analysis products. Earlier this year, Microsoft moved its Health Solutions business unit into the same unit as its Dynamics CRM and Dynamics ERP products. The Health unit has its own sales force and partner channel (at least for the time being).

Update: Microsoft Corporate Vice President Peter Neupert posted a blog entry today reiterating that Microsoft is in the electronic-health records/health IT space for the long haul.

Topics: IT Employment, CXO, Google, Health, Legal, Microsoft

About

Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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12 comments
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  • not in a million year

    people should already know that M$ 'healt vault' is bad for your health and bank account.
    Check for some FOSS certified provider instead!
    No 'vault' just freedom!
    Linux Geek
    • Microsoft pitches Google Health users, developers on moving to HealthVault

      @Linux Geek You can't even spell properly. Enroll yourself in some learning activity. Will help you in your future endeavors !!
      When are you opening up your health records for all of us ? Since you are such a big proponent of openness you should set an example by publishing your health records !!!

      Break the 'vault' !! Be a open man !!
      1773
      • It's not his fault

        @1773
        he learned at a school that used FOSS - so of course he wasn't going to get a top notch education.

        (A garbage in, garbage out kind of thing :) )
        William Pharaoh
      • RE: Microsoft pitches Google Health users, developers on moving to HealthVault

        @William Pharaoh
        LoL. :D.
        +1.
        Ram U
      • RE: Microsoft pitches Google Health users, developers on moving to HealthVault

        @1773 - LOL Nice!
        ItsTheBottomLine
    • Linux Geek with no credibility

      @Linux Geek The minute you start bad mouthing MS, is the minute you are ignored. Anyway, personal health and the words 'open source' just don't seem or sound attractive. Persons would be hesitant to use anything with health and open in it.

      You say, no vault 'just freedom'. So an HIV patient should have their personal health records accessible by anyone, considering that persons with the disease are still heavily stigmatized in the work place.
      Mr. Dee
      • RE: Microsoft pitches Google Health users, developers on moving to HealthVault

        @Mr. Dee
        So you feel that it is imperative to be beholden to one company with all the words data? What would happen if Microsoft could access all the data? They would use that to take over the world. I can see Steve Ballmer standing at a podium telling the world ?All of your data is belonging to us! To gain access to your data, you have to pay a monthly access fee (to be determined by us)"
        Rick_K
      • I did not say that hypocrite

        @Rick_K<br>What I was against is this outright out protest against Microsoft for providing an option. Google is no longer providing the service, Microsoft has stepped up to the plate and providing stranded users an option. Linux Geek would prefer no one use anything it seems. <br><br>I notice you didn't even bother to call out Linux Geek bias though. Here is a refresher:<br><br>"people should already know that M$ 'healt vault' is bad for your health and bank account.<br>Check for some FOSS certified provider instead!<br>No 'vault' just freedom!"<br><br>- Linux Geek<br><br>Just a reminder, nothing in life is free, so all you Richard Stallman bots should really stop with your BS!
        Mr. Dee
    • RE: Microsoft pitches Google Health users, developers on moving to HealthVault

      @Linux Geek Don't worry McDonalds won't cover it anyway - back to the fry station dude.
      ItsTheBottomLine
    • RE: Microsoft pitches Google Health users, developers on moving to HealthVault

      lol @Linux Geek
      You must be very very frustrated, have no social life, just bash everything that is Microsoft without even knowing what you are talking about!
      Article after article after article after... get a life! rofl
      Nick J
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