ChannelHealth teams with HealthStream and MD Consult to strengthen medical content Web offerings

Burlington 19 October 1999ChannelHealth, a subsidiary of IDX Systems Corporation, has expanded its Internet offerings through partnerships with HealthStream Inc. and MD Consult. These newly established alliances will allow physicians to access continuing medical education courses and peer-reviewed medical information as well as practice management and clinical tools directly from their desktops on ChannelHealth's Physician Channel. ChannelHealth was organised this year to provide Internet services to physicians and patients which focus on the local and personal nature of health care.


The Physician Channel provides the tools to incorporate the Internet into the daily practice of medicine. According to Pamela Pure, Chief Operating Officer for ChannelHealth, these partners' services will provide significant added value to the ChannelHealth offerings. Busy physicians will no longer have to manually track their Continuing Medical Education (CME) credits or launch into various sites for research information. Along with the workflow and productivity tools in the Physician Homebase, HealthStream and MD Consult services now will be incorporated into one easy-to-access desktop, as stated by Mrs. Pure, who expects that the Physician Channel will positively impact both the quality and efficiency of the practice of medicine.

MD Consult provides on-line access to more than 135 leading, peer-reviewed publications produced by over fifty medical publishers and societies. If they access MD Consult services through the Physician Channel, users will have at their disposal more than 35 medical reference books, full text articles from nearly 50 medical journals and clinics, more than 600 practice guidelines, nearly 3000 patient education handouts, and daily physician summaries of important articles and announcements. Dr. Douglas Gentile, practising physician and Director of Business Development for ChannelHealth, stated that the integration of the MD Consult content with the Physician Homebase will provide "point in time" access to the latest clinical research. This unique, workflow-driven approach will enable a physician to review relevant clinical content while interacting with the patient in the exam room.

It is crucial that physicians are educated on the latest developments in the medical industry, but many simply do not have the time to analyse the wide array of medical journals and publications, said Jerry Freeland, President of MD Consult. According to his belief, the partnership between MD Consult and ChannelHealth will create a comprehensive tool for physicians to use at the point of care, allowing them to access the latest clinical research and news all from one location. When medical research material is presented in the context of specific patient cases, both partners are truly in a position to enhance the efficiency as well as quality of care delivered worldwide.

In turn, HealthStream constitutes a leading provider of on-line continuing education for health care professionals and maintains one of the Internet's largest libraries of continuing education for medical professionals, with a distribution network providing access to more than 400 health Web sites, 2000 hospitals and clinics, and 400.000 medical professionals. The critical nature of health care delivery and the rapidly expanding base of knowledge and technology demand that the health care personnel keeps abreast of the latest discoveries, techniques and equipment.

HealthStream will offer ChannelHealth customers the opportunity to build customised training programmes which best fit their needs by choosing specific components from different content sources, said Dr. Gentile, who also announced that the HealthStream partnership will provide many of the prestigious ChannelHealth customers with tools to load their course material into an on-line Internet-based CME repository. This new education material will be broadly distributed to all HealthStream users. Robert A. Frist Jr., HealthStream's chief executive officer, added that while continuing education is critical to maintain high standards of practice, physicians are pressed for time, now more than ever. Therefore, with ChannelHealth's access to a large percentage of practising physicians in the United States and HealthStream's focus on on-line continuing education, he expects this alliance to become a powerful combination.

ChannelHealth brings Internet services to physicians and patients, as well as connectivity and e-commerce tools required to optimize the physician-patient experience and support efficient health care delivery. ChannelHealth's parent company, IDX Systems Corporation, is the company of choice at over 1650 customer sites, serving 118.000 physicians throughout the nation. Founded in 1969, IDX Systems Corporation provides complete health care information solutions for integrated delivery networks including group practices, MSOs, health plans, and hospitals.

HealthStream, a company with offices in Nashville, Tennessee, and Boston, Massachusetts, is positioning itself to be a leading provider of on-line health care education. Its On-line University offers health care providers a complete system to deliver and manage health care education over both the Internet and corporate intranets. HealthStream collaborates with leading health care providers, health Web sites, pharmaceutical and medical device companies, medical publishers, academic medical centres, and insurance companies to provide on-line health care education.

Based in Saint Louis, MD Consult LLC was created to provide trusted on-line clinical information for physicians. This company is a joint venture of the world's three leading English language medical publishers, which are W.B. Saunders, a division of Harcourt Brace & Company; Lippincott/ Williams & Wilkins, a division of Wolters Kluwer United States; and Mosby Inc., also a division of Harcourt Brace & Company.

Leslie Versweyveld

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