Microsoft and Data General Announce Strategic Alliance to Help Health-Care Customers Create Integrated Systems Using Microsoft ActiveX for Healthcare

Redmond, Wash., July 19, 1998 — Microsoft Corp. and Data General Corp. today announced a strategic alliance designed to give health-care organizations the tools they need to create efficient, integrated systems using disparate applications from many different software companies. These solutions, using Microsoft ActiveX for Healthcare, will allow health-care organizations to protect their current technology investments while giving them the flexibility to employ new technologies that can improve patient care and lower their overall costs.

“With ActiveX for Healthcare, Microsoft and Data General are delivering the enabling technology that will support a truly integrated health-care information system,” said Michael Worhach, vice president of Data General’s healthcare division. “Health-care providers now will have the technology support that will allow them to focus on their primary mission, delivering the best medical care for their patients.”

At the heart of this new strategy is the plan by Microsoft and Data General to establish a network of Healthcare Competency Centers, where software engineers from both companies will work closely with independent software vendors (ISVs) to address the integration needs of health-care organizations. At the new centers, ISVs will be able to develop and test ActiveX-compliant health-care applications running on Data General’s family of enterprise AviiON servers using the Microsoft Windows NT operating system and BackOffice platform. The ISVs will be able to demonstrate the interoperability of their applications to health-care customers, and customers will be able to test the Plug-and-Play capability of the new applications with their current system before they spend any money. The first Healthcare Competency Centers are scheduled to open at Data General’s Boston-area facilities in July 1998.

One of the biggest challenges facing health-care organizations today is the need to create integrated systems using a variety of applications from many different software companies. As the health-care industry continues to consolidate through mergers and acquisitions, CIOs must find a way to bring together the disparate systems and diverse facilities of these newly formed enterprises. At the same time, health-care providers must be able to choose the best new technologies for improving patient care, employing medical research and cutting costs.

ActiveX for Healthcare-compliant solutions, which use Microsoft technologies based on the Microsoft component object model (COM), are designed to provide true Plug-and-Play interoperability so that health-care organizations can select the best applications from any source to include as part of their integrated system. This eliminates the limitations and risks of relying on a single vendor, preserves and protects an organization’s current investment in technology while reducing duplication, and enables powerful new solutions.

“This alliance will empower developers to reduce costs, respond more quickly to changing customer needs, and count on maximum uptime from their ActiveX for Healthcare installations,” said John D. Carpenter, Jr., worldwide health-care industry manager at Microsoft. “Disparate systems are a major issue in the health-care industry. ActiveX for Healthcare is a powerful, enterprise object technology designed to achieve interoperability so customers can take advantage of COM and Windows NT Server while maintaining their investments in existing applications and systems.”

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