Ambulatory software vendor Greenway Medical Technologies has acquired patient relationship management vendor PeopleLYNK to help physician practices enhance the enhancement and retainment of those they serve.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Greenway is a major vendor of electronic health records and practice management software following its $644 million acquisition last year by Vitera Healthcare Solutions. Vitera sells the Intergy practice management and electronic health records software and continues to support the Medical Manager practice management software. Greenway sells the PrimeSUITE practice management/electronic health records software housed on a single database. Both companies now operate under the Greenway name.

PeopleLYNK’s software enables providers to engage patients to ensure they keep appointments and follow-up with them after the appointments. Here’s an explanation on the vendor’s Web page:

“A patient calls to schedule an appointment. Within minutes of scheduling the appointment the patient will receive a real-time confirmation via text and can add that appointment to their smartphone calendar. Since this patient is new, you have created a ‘lynk’ to send an email a few days later with information about the practice, physician, how to find the practice’s page on Facebook, and what to expect at their first appointment.

“Two days before the patient’s appointment, PeopleLYNK sends a reminder via text and voice and driving directions via email. You ordered some lab work for your patient. Once you’ve reviewed the results and marked them normal, the patient will receive a text letting them know the results are normal. The next day, the patient is sent an email thanking them for choosing your practice.”

The acquisition will help Greenway better aid customers in meeting Stage 2 electronic health records meaningful use criteria for patient engagement and improve population health management, according to the vendor. Greenway has integrated the PeopleLYNK software to its PrimeSUITE products and over time will make the integration available to users of the Vitera software.

In a recent report on customer satisfaction with ambulatory software from vendor research firm KLAS Enterprises, Greenway’s PrimeSUITE scored high while Vitera users were among those most unhappy.

Greenway is active in at least two major industry interoperability initiatives. The organization in October 2013 was the first pure ambulatory vendor to join Healtheway, which 10 founding stakeholders launched in June to operationally support the eHelath Exchange, formerly the Nationwide Health Information Network. The networked started as a federal government effort and now is a public-private initiative.

Greenway also is a member of the CommonWell Health Alliance, formed by vendors in early 2013 to cooperate on systems interoperability issues. The alliance now has launched initial services in four regions in Chicago, North Carolina and South Carolina. Participating providers, all with disparate EHRs, are using a patient identity matching process the alliance developed and patients will have the option to control access to their data through an opt-in process. Lessons learned will inform how to extend the program elsewhere.

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