SOURCE: Medsphere

October 07, 2009 08:00 ET

Medsphere Guarantees Meaningful Use for Hospitals That Implement OpenVista Electronic Health Record in 2009

Open Source Health IT Leader Enables Hospitals to Maximize Federal Stimulus Funding Through Rapid and Affordable Open Source EHR Implementation

CARLSBAD, CA--(Marketwire - October 7, 2009) - Medsphere Systems Corporation, the leading provider of open source healthcare IT solutions, today announced that hospitals that sign a contract before December 31, 2009 to implement the OpenVista open source electronic health record (EHR) are guaranteed to achieve full implementation and meet federal meaningful use standards by January 31, 2011. Meeting this deadline for EHR implementation makes participating hospitals eligible to collect maximum federal EHR funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

Medsphere is putting the equivalent of one-third of its subscription revenue at risk to ensure hospitals have a comprehensive EHR solution that improves patient care and enables the greatest possible federal financial support. Under the ARRA legislation, eligible hospitals that implement and meaningfully use an EHR by the 2011 deadline will receive millions of federal dollars through increased Medicare reimbursements between 2011 and 2014. The incentives become penalties for hospitals that have not implemented an EHR by 2015.

Beauregard Memorial Hospital, a 60-bed, acute care and community hospital in Deridder, Louisiana, is on track to fully and meaningfully deploy OpenVista by June 2010 and become eligible for financial incentives as outlined by ARRA. Beauregard Memorial Hospital demonstrates that rural and community hospitals that are prohibited by cost from adopting proprietary EHR solutions can afford to fully implement an open source system.

"As a small, rural hospital, it is in our best interest to take full advantage of the financial incentives offered by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act," said Ted Badger, FACHE, CEO of Beauregard Memorial Hospital, which is currently implementing Medsphere's OpenVista EHR system. "With strong commitment from our healthcare providers and Medsphere's support, we are excited to offer our patients high-quality healthcare supported by OpenVista."

Lutheran Medical Center (Brooklyn, NY) is currently implementing OpenVista and expects to increase revenues, decrease costs, and achieve meaningful use by June 2010.

"Medsphere is an innovator in delivering new levels of efficiency in patient care and safety through electronic records. We are thrilled to join Medsphere in its national push to expand EHRs to all hospitals," said Wendy Z. Goldstein, president and CEO of Lutheran Healthcare. "As one of many mid size hospitals in the U.S., we are excited to demonstrate how a hospital of our size can afford to fully implement and meaningfully use an electronic health record system."

Medsphere's business model, use of open source technology, and commitment to enabling meaningful use establish a shared responsibility for quality healthcare between clinical and IT support providers.

"How much of a stake does your current or prospective health IT provider have in your success?" asked Mike Doyle, president and CEO of Medsphere. "As an open source EHR provider, Medsphere is invested in the success of our customers. Our subscription-based pricing model and our ability to enable meaningful use and the realization of full government financial incentives create a true partnership with hospitals. This approach has been sorely lacking in the traditional health IT marketplace."

Comprehensive clinical health IT adoption by U.S. medical facilities remains low (roughly 1.5 percent according to the New England Journal of Medicine) largely due to the prohibitive costs associated with implementing an EHR. Many hospitals have avoided these barriers by implementing commercialized open source versions of the highly-acclaimed VistA system developed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, for example, spent roughly $9 million to fully implement OpenVista at all state-owned healthcare facilities over five years. By comparison, West Virginia University Hospitals recently announced a $90 million contract for implementation of a proprietary EHR.

About Medsphere and OpenVista

As a disruptive force in healthcare information technology, Medsphere is revolutionizing the industry by delivering commercially supported open source software based on the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs' proven VistA EHR. The product of 20-plus years of development and more than $8 billion invested, VistA enabled the transformation of the VA into the nation's most efficient and clinically effective healthcare organization. Currently VistA contains roughly 2.1 billion clinical documents, 2.76 billion orders, and 1.51 billion images. As the commercialized version of VistA, Medsphere's OpenVista is a portfolio of products and professional services for hospitals, clinics and integrated delivery networks. OpenVista is currently used by over 20,000 individuals, including 2,500 physicians and contains hundreds of thousands of medical records. Medsphere addresses healthcare's capital constraints through an innovative business model:

--  A unique subscription-based pricing model minimizes upfront costs.
--  The Healthcare Open Source Ecosystem and portal
    coordinate a unique grassroots community of customers/subscribers, partners
    and developers driving OpenVista innovation and providing a parallel
    development and support structure.
--  Medsphere's experienced team of healthcare technology professionals
    and unique suite of implementation tools deliver a fluid transition to a
    comprehensive healthcare information technology solution.

Founded in 2002, Medsphere is backed financially by Azure Capital Partners, Thomas Weisel Venture Partners and EPIC Ventures (formerly the Wasatch Venture Fund). Medsphere clients include Midland Memorial Hospital, Midland, Texas; West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (WV DHHR); Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County, Rock Springs, Wyoming; Lutheran Medical Center, Brooklyn, New York; Silver Hill Hospital, New Canaan, Connecticut; Blue Mountain Hospital, Blanding, Utah; Beauregard Memorial Hospital, Deridder, Louisiana; and the federal government's Indian Health Service. For more information, visit and

Contact Information

  • Contacts:

    Medsphere Systems
    Rick Jung
    Chief Operating Officer
    (760) 692-3742 office
    Email Contact

    Lily Eng and Thea Lavin
    Schwartz Communications for Medsphere
    (415) 512-0770
    Email Contact