Catalonian Healthcare Chooses IBM for 20 Million Euro Transformation Project

Institut Catala de la Salut and IBM to Improve the Quality of Healthcare for Citizens at 8 Hospitals in the Catalonia Region

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BARCELONA, SPAIN - 03 Jul 2006: The Institut Català de la Salut (ICS) has entered into a 20 million euro, 4-year agreement with IBM to transform and modernise the healthcare information systems at 8 Catalonian hospitals. IBM consultants will provide industry expertise to create and implement new systems, improving the quality of health services offered to citizens of the region.

ICS is the major provider of health services in Catalonia. With more than 35.000 professionals, it represents 80% of primary healthcare in Catalonia and 30% of hospital healthcare. The agreement with IBM calls for a new design of all the steps needed to offer clinical treatment to a patient and is core to the transformation of the region's entire healthcare system.

IBM is also working in the design and implementation of a new management model for all financial and economic management processes as well as the supply chain and logistics. IBM business consultants will also be creating a new model for Human Resources processes aimed at improving staff efficiency, as well as a new system for patient and clinic management.

The aim is to transform the entire system, simplifying processes for both healthcare workers and management. This means that patients will benefit from an agile service involving less administrative tasks and red tape. It makes for easier access to doctors and more precise diagnoses.

One of the key elements of the project is an electronic history of each patient, available to medical staff in each hospital. This solution includes vital details including previous ailments and medical test results through to allergy data. For patients, this means shorter waiting times for treatment, a single medical file with consolidated, up-to-date information and ensured confidentiality in a secure information system.

Medical staff will benefit from having immediate and easy access to each patient's medical history along with all X-rays and scanner images and be able to provide a more precise diagnosis, with the correct drugs available as required. The project extends to the administration of the hospitals with improved payroll and banking management and an upgraded shift scheduling system.

"Innovation today is about applying the latest technology and thinking to solve complex problems. In health care, there are a range of issues where innovation can play an important, transformational role," says José María Joana, IBM Global Business Services for Spain, Portugal, Greece, Israel and Turkey. "This project positions ICS as one of the leaders in the health care sector, and we look forward to working with ICS to improve the quality of health care services for the citizens of Catalonia."

This agreement follows a contract signed by IBM with ICS in 2005 for the transformation of their financial and procurement processes and the new project demonstrates IBM's leadership position in the healthcare industry.

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