IBM Closes Acquisition of Phytel

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The FINANCIAL — IBM on May 4 announced it has completed the acquisition of Phytel, one of the leading providers of integrated population health management software based in Dallas, Texas. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Phytel is one of the leaders in physician-led population health management software that develops and sells cloud-based services that improve long term health outcomes by helping healthcare providers and care teams coordinate care and engage patients to positively influence population health. Phytel also enables providers to meet the new healthcare quality requirements and reimbursement models by delivering proven quality care to patients based on evidence of what works best, according to IBM.

“The acquisition of Phytel supports our goal to advance the quality and effectiveness of personal healthcare by enabling secure access to individualized insights and a more complete picture of the many factors that can affect people’s health,” said Mike Rhodin, senior vice president, IBM Watson.

The acquisition bolsters IBM’s efforts to apply advanced analytics and cognitive computing to help primary care providers, large hospital systems and physician networks improve healthcare quality. Phytel will become part of IBM’s new Watson Health unit.

The software works with healthcare providers’ current electronic health record technology to reduce unnecessary hospital readmissions and automates population health management, to help improve patient outreach and engagement. Because it is cloud-based, providers are not constrained with technology issues and can focus on outcomes. The software has delivered proven results for Phytel clients while improving patient care using a rapid deployment methodology.

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IBM Watson: Pioneering a New Era of Computing

Watson is the first commercially available cognitive computing capability representing a new era in computing. The system, delivered through the cloud, analyzes high volumes of data, understands complex questions posed in natural language, and proposes evidence-based answers. Watson continuously learns, gaining in value and knowledge over time, from previous interactions.

In January 2014, IBM launched the IBM Watson unit, a business dedicated to developing and commercializing cloud-delivered cognitive computing technologies. The move signified a strategic shift by IBM to deliver a new class of software, services and apps that improves by learning, and discovers insights from massive amounts of Big Data.  As part of the unit, the company has increased the number and diversity of cognitive computing services delivered to its partners, adding new beta Watson services in February 2015, and scalable deep learning APIs with the acquisition of AlchemyAPI in March 2015.

In April 2015, the company continued to build on its strengths in cognitive computing, analytics, security and cloud with the launch of IBM Watson Health and the Watson Health Cloud platform.  The new unit will help improve the ability of doctors, researchers and insurers to innovate by surfacing new insights from the massive amount of personal health data being created daily.  The Watson Health Cloud allows this information to be anonymized, shared and combined with a dynamic and constantly growing aggregated view of clinical, research and social health data. 


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