EMERGIS INC.
TSX : EME

December 07, 2006 08:30 ET

Emergis Signs Agreement with Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care to Manage Processing of Drug Benefit Program Claims

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Dec. 7, 2006) - Emergis Inc.(TSX:EME) today announced that it has signed an agreement with the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-term Care (MOHLTC) to manage the ministry's Health Network System, which processes drug claims under the Ontario Drug Benefit (ODB) program. Under this five-year, multi-million dollar agreement, approximately 99 million ODB claims will be evaluated and paid annually at Emergis' state-of-the-art data facilities in Ontario.

"We are extremely pleased that Emergis has been chosen to manage the largest, real-time online transaction processing system in the Ontario government," said Francois Cote, President and Chief Executive Officer at Emergis. "This award is a further confirmation of the company's core competencies in claims processing and its leadership role in Canada providing these health services and solutions to government agencies and private insurance companies. It is also a major step forward in our strategy to become the provider of choice for the government health market."

In addition to managing the Health Network System, Emergis will provide dedicated staff to support the system and, as requested by the MOHLTC, enhance the system to meet the changing needs of the ODB program.

The Health Network System provides computerized claim adjudication and pharmacy payment, and various batch and administrative support applications, to the ODB program. Pharmacies submit ODB claims electronically and the HNS validates eligibility, provides drug utilization review information messages, authorizes payment and calculates the government share of eligible prescription costs. By the end of 2006, over 2,800 pharmacies and 183 hospitals will be connected to the HNS and more than 130 MOHLTC users will have access to the system. The system adjudicates about 99 million online real-time transactions per year from the approximately 2.2 million Ontarians enrolled in the ODB program. Operating 24 hours per day, 365 days per year, the HNS adjudicates over 53,000 claims per hour at its busiest periods.

The ODB program is administered by the MOHLTC with a mandate to provide leadership in achieving optimal pharmaceutical services for the improvement of the health status of Ontarians. The ODB program provides coverage to Ontario residents with Ontario Health Cards who are among the following groups: senior citizens, those who receive social assistance, reside in homes for special care and long-term care facilities, receive professional home care services or are registrants to the Trillium Drug Program.

About Emergis

Emergis is an IT leader in Canada that focuses on the health and financial services sectors. It develops and manages solutions that automate transactions and the exchange of information to increase the process efficiency and quality of service of its clients. Emergis has expertise in electronic health-related claims processing, health record systems, pharmacy management solutions, cash management and loan document processing and registration. In Canada, Emergis and its subsidiaries deliver solutions to the main insurance companies, top financial institutions, government agencies, hospitals, large corporations, real estate lawyers and notaries and approximately 40% of all pharmacies. It also provides solutions to the world's leading payment association. The Company's shares (TSX:EME) are included in the S&P/TSX Composite Index.

Certain information in this news release, in various filings with Canadian regulators, in reports to shareholders and in other communications, is forward-looking within the meaning of certain securities laws, and is subject to important risks, uncertainties and assumptions. This forward-looking information includes, among others, information with respect to the Company's objectives and the strategies to achieve those objectives, as well as information with respect to the Company's beliefs, plans, expectations, anticipations, estimates and intentions. The words "may", "could", "should", "would", "suspect", "outlook", "believe", "anticipate", "estimate", "expect", "intend", "plan", "target" and similar words and expressions are used to identify forward-looking information. The forward-looking information in this news release describes the Company's expectations as of December 7, 2006.

The results or events predicted in such forward-looking information may differ materially from actual results or events. Material factors which could cause actual results or events to differ materially from a conclusion, forecast or projection in such forward-looking information include, among others: general economic factors, adverse industry events, the adoption rate of the Company's solutions by customers and by related electronic trading communities, the non-renewal of major contracts which expire in the near term, complexities and the timing of signing government contracts, customers developing internally the capability to perform the services which the Company performs on their behalf, the Company's response to its industry's rapid rate of change, competition, pricing pressures, fluctuations in its operating results, its ability to make and integrate acquisitions, failures or material changes in its strategic relationships, exposure under contract indemnities, defects in software or failures in the processing of transactions, security or privacy breaches, the Company's ability to attract and retain key personnel, its ability to protect its intellectual property, intellectual property infringement claims, and industry and government regulation.

Emergis cautions that the foregoing list of material factors is not exhaustive. When relying on the Company's forward-looking information to make decisions, investors and others should carefully consider the foregoing factors and other uncertainties and potential events. In making the forward-looking information contained in this news release, the Company does not assume any significant acquisitions, dispositions or one-time items. It does assume, however, the renewal of certain customer contracts. Every year, Emergis has major customer contracts that it needs to renew. Some of these may represent slightly more than 10% of its annual revenue. In addition, the Company also assumes the signature of contracts in new markets in the public health sector. In this regard, Emergis is pursuing large opportunities that present a very long and complex sales cycle, which substantially affect the Company's forecasting abilities. The Company has made certain assumptions regarding the timing of the realization of these opportunities which it thinks is reasonable but which may not be achieved. Furthermore, the pursuit of these larger opportunities does not ensure a linear progression of the Company's revenue and earnings, since they may involve significant up-front fees followed by reduced ongoing payments. The Company has assumed a certain progression, which may not be realized. It has also assumed that the material factors referred to in the previous paragraph will not result in such forward-looking information to differ materially from actual results or events. However, the list of these factors is not exhaustive and is subject to change and there can be no assurance that such assumptions will reflect the actual outcome of such items or factors. For additional information with respect to certain of these and other factors, refer to the risks and uncertainties section of the MD&A in the Company's 2005 Annual Report and to its 2005 Annual Information Form (risks and uncertainties) filed with Canadian regulators.

THE FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION CONTAINED IN THIS NEWS RELEASE REPRESENTS THE EXPECTATIONS OF EMERGIS AS OF DECEMBER 7, 2006 AND, ACCORDINGLY, IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE AFTER SUCH DATE. HOWEVER, EMERGIS EXPRESSLY DISCLAIMS ANY INTENTION OR OBLIGATION TO UPDATE OR REVISE ANY FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION, WHETHER AS A RESULT OF NEW INFORMATION, FUTURE EVENTS OR OTHERWISE, EXCEPT AS REQUIRED BY APPLICABLE LAW.

Contact Information

  • Emergis
    John Gutpell
    450-928-6856