Microsoft Corp.’s Health Solutions Group and Mayo Clinic Health Solutions are to partner to jointly develop tools that will empower people to manage their health.

The two companies say they will work to develop technology “to help bridge the gaps in the healthcare system, to facilitate closer patient-to-physician connections, and to allow patients and consumers to better manage their health and wellness information”.

The organizations hope to announce further details of the project before the end of 2008.

As a result of the Mayo Clinic brand-name, one of the most trusted and recognised in the US healthcare system, is likely to feature on Microsoft’s consumer health sites.

“We are committed to finding new technology solutions that put the patient and consumer in control,” said Dr. Brooks Edwards, chief medical officer, Mayo Clinic Health Solutions. “Our work with Microsoft is an exciting opportunity to create tools that empower the patient to be in the very center of their own healthcare environment.”

“Consumers demand and deserve tools that make their lives easier, facilitate communication, and help them take action to manage their health,” said Peter Neupert, corporate vice president, Microsoft Health Solutions Group.

“Building on the Microsoft HealthVault platform, our groups are committed to providing individuals with solutions that are dynamic, secure and focused on the needs of the user, in order to effectively improve health and well-being.”