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Microsoft Pri0

Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times technology reporter Matt Day.

February 13, 2012 at 9:08 AM

Microsoft-GE healthcare joint venture to be called Caradigm

The joint-venture healthcare IT business that Microsoft and GE announced late last year will be called Caradigm, the two companies said today.

Caradigm is expected to launch in the first half of 2012, pending regulatory approval. Its CEO will be Michael Simpson, currently vice president and general manager at GE Healthcare IT. Its chief medical officer and senior VP of product strategy will be Dr. Brandon Savage, currently chief medical officer of GE Healthcare IT

Board members will include executives from both Microsoft — including Kirill Tatarinov, president of Microsoft’s Business Solutions Division, and Amy Hood, corporate vice president and CFO of Microsoft Business Division — and GE.

The intent of the joint venture is to combine Microsoft’s strengths in developing large-scale data platforms with GE Healthcare’s expertise in building health-care applications. The idea is to create systems that would allow health-care organizations to better track individual patients, as well as to take advantage of the ability to bring together, and make sense of, large amounts of data. The hope is also to deliver better care at lower costs.

Caradigm will be based near Microsoft’s Redmond campus and is expected to employ about 750 people.

The Microsoft products that will become part of the new joint venture are:

  • Amalga, a platform that allows health-care organizations to pull data from the hundreds of different systems a typical hospital uses and amalgamate them into a common database. Amalga is designed to make it easier for caregivers to get information about a single patient across multiple systems and to look at information across a group of patients so they can think about how best to provide care to that group.
  • Vergence, which allows caregivers to log in to different systems in the context of a single patient. For instance, a radiologist who wants to see what drugs her patient takes may need to log off one system and log on to another to find that out. Vergence is designed to allow caregivers to go from one system to another without logging in and out.
  • expreSSO, a smaller version of Vergence, which allows caregivers to move a single log on between applications but not necessarily between the same patient.

The GE products that will become part of the new joint venture are:

  • eHealth, a health-information exchange that connects multiple systems across a community. A patient with diabetes, for instance, might have a primary-care doctor who’s part of one practice group and an endocrinologist who’s part of another. EHealth could connect those two systems, allowing the doctors to create a shared care plan across a team of providers.
  • Qualibria, which allows caregivers to obtain and share best practices and build them into an organization’s workflow. Qualibria is being developed in conjunction with the Mayo Clinic and Salt Lake City-based Intermountain Healthcare.

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