Could India-Based Wipro GE Healthcare Compete in the U.S. EMR/LIS Market?
Posted Jan 04 2010 12:00am
I recently received an email from Birlamedsoft, a vendor of an on-line LIS located in India, promoting the sale of its software to U.S. clients. Below is an excerpt from that message:
Birlamedisoft....,the Healthcare software Development Company, has pleasure to launch completely web based Online Diagnostics Centre/Laboratory Management Software today. We are No 1. Company in India providing LIMS/LIS software, having sold more than 10,500 LIS/LIMS software in the market. In today’s diagnostics world, online software is the only software for managing diagnostics centre /laboratories efficiently. There are many benefits of the online LIS software, some of them are given below.
Can create any types of reports in Hematology, Biochemistry, Histopathology with pictures, Serology and any other tests in pathology.
Can create any types of reports in Radiology Ultra-sound, X-ray, CT scan, MRI, Color Doppler and any other tests in radiology.
Can create any other tests like ECG, TMT, Stress Test, and many more!!!
All reporting is done online. You can do Lab reporting, Billing, Accounting, Inventory.
You can open many numbers of branches and collection centers.
You can operate software from any where, any time, 24*7 in real time using Internet.
This email piqued my curiosity about whether an Indian vendor of an on-line LIS could gain any traction in the U.S. market, particularly for physician office labs (POLs) and small hospital labs. I contacted an executive of a large U.S, lab software company and put this same question to him. He thought that a company like Birlamedsoft would have little chance competing with established U.S.-based incumbents like Orchard Software for the small lab business. Secondly, he asserted that switching clients from their current LIS vendor would require the conversion of their databases, which is both technically challenging and labor-intensive. However, my source also suggested that one Indian healthcare software company that might be successful in the U.S. market would be Wipro, which has now merged with GE Healthcare in India. Below is an excerpt from that announcement (see: Wipro GE Healthcare a single entity):
Wipro GE Healthcare, a joint venture between Wipro and GE's healthcare business, ...announced that all the standalone units and plants of GE Healthcare in India would be integrated into a single entity and it will be called as Wipro GE Healthcare. This amalgamation will simplify the structure through consolidation of GE Healthcare's life sciences and medical diagnostics business units and X-Ray manufacturing plants. Both Wipro and GE said that the planned move would help in effective management, resource mobilization and accelerating the development for GE Healthcare, the $17 b healthcare business of General Electric (GE), through Wipro GE Healthcare's large sharing network.
I will do another note on this same topic later, but an interesting entry point for a company like Wipro GE Healthcare into the U.S. healthcare software market could be inbound and outbound medical tourism. The notion of reverse or inbound medical tourism is partly embedded in the goals of the so-called destination programs that are being established in U.S. major medical centers (see: "Destination Programs" at Large Medical Centers).