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Microsoft and Allscripts Make Deal for Doctors

While most physicians have pagers or traditional answering services to keep them connected while in the office or at home, as a group, they have been slow to adopt new technology tools such as standard hand-held wireless devices. Today's deal between healthcare tech provider Allscripts and Microsoft Corporation (Nasdaq: MSFT) hopes to change the status quo and increase the adoption of technology tools used by physicians.

The agreement between Allscripts Healthcare Solutions (Nasdaq: MDRX) and Microsoft announced today merges Allscripts' TouchWorks, a suite of clinical productivity applications, based on Microsoft's tech platforms (.NET Enterprise Servers, including Windows 2000 Server and SQL Server 2000), with Microsoft's marketing resources to accelerate the sale and deployment of the TouchWorks product suite.

Microsoft will provide an undisclosed amount of funding to Allscripts as well as provide it with access to "advanced technology."

"We are very pleased to announce this relationship with Microsoft as it clearly validates our strategy for increasing the adoption of technology tools by physicians," said Allscripts' CEO, Glen Tullman. "Together, we will be able to raise the penetration and use of our Microsoft-based TouchWorks solution, enabling thousands of physicians across the country to use a standard hand-held wireless device for all their needs."

TouchWorks modules use handheld or desktop workstation devices to automate prescribing, charge capture, documentation, orders and results, patient education, and structured notes; all with a comprehensive tasking tool that helps to organize a physician's workflow.

"Allscripts brings a deep understanding of physicians' needs, a proven suite of mobile applications in use by physicians today, as well as expertise with handheld PocketPC technology," said Davide Vigano, general manager, Healthcare & Public Sector Enterprise Solutions Group, Microsoft. "By combining these strengths with the flexibility and reliability of Microsoft [technology], we aim to accelerate the adoption of these solutions among physicians worldwide and help them improve the level of care they provide."