Allscripts, whose strategic partners include HP and Microsoft, has just announced a new link with US-based clinical directory Medem which it hopes will help the rollout of e-health services such as e-prescribing nationwide.

Medem, which was founded in 1999, provides secure online communications and integrated web-services to patients and family physicians, and is available online in 90,000 surgeries across the US. It helps doctors generate revenue by allowing online consultation and reducing liability.

Allscripts, which has obtained an equity stake in Medem, hopes to focus on expanding the services already offered by Medem to e-prescribing and electronic health records.

“Allscripts’ products and resources will help us to increase the breadth of services to physicians and their patients,” said Ed Fotsch, CEO of Medem. “Our partnership with Allscripts will help Medem expand services to our current clients and increase our reach to more physicians and patients."

Allscripts are intending to update the service in a number of ways, primarily by integrating its TouchWorks electronic health record technology into the system so two-way patient messaging and consultation can become more easily available, but also by marketing its e-prescribing software to Medem’s 90,000 users.

Joseph M Heyman, MD of the American Medical Association, welcomed the move. “Electronic communication and information technology are becoming increasingly important in today’s healthcare environment. The AMA is pleased that Allscripts Healthcare Solutions is partnering with Medem to provide physicians and healthcare professionals with needed services in these areas."

Glen Tullman, CEO Allscripts Healthcare Solutions, said: “As the premier physician practice-patient communications network on the Internet, and with the backing of the AMA and associated medical societies, Medem is a highly regarded partner that has taken a leading role in the formation of e-health services connecting physicians and their patients."

The deal consists of an exchange of $2m of promissory notes between both organisations. Allscripts is also purchasing a 3% equity stake in Medem.