IBM to buy Merge Healthcare in $1B deal

IBM Corp said it would buy medical image company Merge Healthcare Inc. in a $1 billion deal and combine it with its newly-formed health analytics unit, which is powered by its famous Watson supercomputer.
IBM plans t

Sourced through Scoop.it from: www.thehindu.com

IBM Corp said it would buy medical image company Merge Healthcare Inc. in a $1 billion deal and combine it with its newly-formed health analytics unit, which is powered by its famous Watson supercomputer.   IBM plans to combine data and images from Merge Healthcare’s medical imaging management platform with Watson’s cloud-based healthcare computing system.  The system analyses high volumes of data, understands complex questions posed in natural language and proposes evidence-based answers.

The deal will help physicians and researchers collate and analyse data such as patient’s medical and family history, data on others with similar symptoms and clinical research, trials and outcomes.

“Imaging is central to effective diagnosis and treatment…but it is increasingly important to share these images between providers to deliver high quality, cost-effective care,” Dougherty and Co. analyst Brooks O’Neil wrote in a note.  –  IBM has been expanding aggressively in the healthcare IT sector. The Merge deal is the company’s third major health-related acquisition since launching the Watson Health unit in April.

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