IBM buys master data management business

IBM Corp. is strengthening its health care portfolio with its purchase of Chicago-based Initiate Systems.

IBM Corp. will increase its footprint in the health information technology space with the purchase of Initiate Systems Inc. The financial terms were not disclosed.

Initiate provides master data management software solutions for information sharing among health care and government organizations. Its clients include the Alberta Ministry of Health and Wellness, Calgary Health Region and the North Dakota Department of Health and Human Services.

For North Dakota, Initiate helped create a single view of each individual served through the state’s Medicaid and child welfare services. Previously, the data was dispersed throughout numerous programs.

“Bringing together data from separate systems managed by hospitals, doctors' offices and payers is a daunting task. Initiate has helped clients meet this challenge at more than 2,400 health care sites, over 40 health information exchanges and multiple government health systems around the world,” IBM officials said in news release Feb. 3.

Initiate Systems, based in Chicago, is privately held and is reported to have more than 300 employees.

Headquartered in Armonk, N.Y., IBM ranks No. 18 on Washington Technology’s 2009 Top 100 list of of the largest federal prime contractors.