Sunquest Information Systems, a major vendor of laboratory information systems to 1,700 labs, will be getting more firepower for its product line via an acquisition.

Its parent company, Roper Technologies, is acquiring European lab vendor CliniSys Group Ltd. and U.S. integration firm Atlas Medical. The buys follow earlier acquisitions this year when Roper bought laboratory middleware vendor Data Innovations and financial analytics firm Strata Decision Technology.

CliniSys is not in the U.S. market but it will help Roper grow it market share in Europe. The real boon in the U.S., says Sunquest President Matthew Hawkins, is additional connectivity and expertise that Atlas Medical will bring to his company.

Atlas’ business is mostly in the U.S., connecting labs to hospital and health system information systems, physician offices and electronic health records, and Atlas and Sunquest already share several clients, Hawkins says.

Sunquest can offer its integration services or Atlas’ services if they are more appropriate. “Care is moving outside the hospital,” Hawkins notes. “Atlas will significantly expand our capability to get to physician offices and other facilities.” And that’s important because Sunquest already has clients wanting help to connect to physicians and other providers such as skilled nursing facilities.

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Atlas also will aid Sunquest in working with large electronic health records vendors who don’t have a connectivity solution for affiliated physician practices. That, Hawkins says, will enable providers to get more access to lab orders and capture more diagnostic information. Atlas also has software to enable practices to assign a master patient index number and match it with a health system master patient index to verify patient identity.

Another benefit: Atlas also has good decision support ordering software, Hawkins says. “Diagnostic excellence starts with ordering the right test at the right time in the right location and to report results accurately.” This will help reduce over-ordering of tests which occurs 20 percent of the time, as well as under-ordering, which is a test that should get ordered but isn’t.

In totality, “These buys help us in the long-term to make healthcare better and smarter,” Hawkins says. In five to 10 years, he sees a possibility that Sunquest and its partner companies could create perhaps the world’s largest reference lab to share access to information across the globe, such as best practice cancer treatments.

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