New services, acquisitions and contracts are among recent announcements from health information technology vendors:

* Physician software vendor eClinicalWorks has launched an outsourced revenue cycle management service, joining such rivals as athenahealth and NextGen, among others. The company charges 2.9 percent of monthly collected revenue for the service, which includes electronic health records, practice management and patient portal software, training, support and maintenance, and dashboards and other reporting tools. The vendor touts a first-pass acceptance rate of 98 percent, meaning more claims are quickly getting through the clearinghouse and forwarded to insurers.

* Online health education content vendor HealthStream has acquired provider enrollment and credentialing vendor Sy.Med Development Inc., as it continues to expand its talent management product line. Nashville-based HealthStream in July spent $4.3 million to buy Decision Critical Inc., which sells a suite of talent management software. Now, it has paid about $8 million in cash and stock for Brentwood, Tenn.-based Sy.Med’s Web-hosted software that includes centralized credentialing in a single database with prepared forms and expiration alerts, among other features.

* TRICARE, the insurer for the U.S. Military Health System, will expand its use of secure messaging software to support medical home programs from RelayHealth under a new contract with federal contractor Four Points Technology. More than 90 provider sites now use the software and the contract will expand to about 40 more, mostly primary care sites serving the Army, Navy and Air Force.

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