Health integration technology specialist Bridge Forward has announced partnerships with clinical system suppliers IMS Maxims and FileTek UK, distributor of the Meditech system.

The two deals build on the approximately 2,000 installed health sites in the UK using Bridge Forward technology. These include 200 hospitals, more than 1,000 GPs in Scotland and large numbers of private healthcare providers.

BridgeForward will partner with Ireland’s IMS Maxims Plc to provide full data interoperability across acute, community and mental healths sectors.

Paul Cooper, UK general manager of IMS Maxims, said: “We joined forces with BridgeForward to deliver on our commitment to offer an affordable, controllable and lower risk, step-by-step approach to building patient records at all levels.”

IMS will use the integration technology supplied to interface its products with customers’ legacy systems. Bridge Forward will become IMS Maxims’ standard integration platform, but will not formally join the 3C Healthcare Partnership alliance of suppliers.

This is an alliance of seven UK and Irish healthcare software vendors and implementers that was formed earlier this year to provide NHS trusts with a one-stop shop for best of breed clinical solutions. IMS Maxims is behind the alliance.

“With BridgeForward’s ClearSpan Server providing the interface technology with IMS Maxims, we can ensure that our browser-based clinical solutions can function in conjunction with any healthcare organisation’s legacy systems,” said Cooper.

John Moriarty, chief executive of Bridge Forward told E-Health Insider: “Our goal is to be partnered, bundled in or embedded in with any number of products.” He added: “We don’t compete with any of our partners on any other products, we just specialise in integration.”

Moriarty said that because of this focus Bridge Forward “is one of the most mentioned companies on the ASCC (Additional Supply Capability and Capacity) catalogue.”

A separate agreement with FileTek UK will see BridgeForward provide added integartion technology and services to current and future Meditech users in the NHS and private sector.

BridgeForward has a long history of providing integration technology to Meditech customers in the US and UK health sectors, and the new deal builds on this.

“We joined forces with BridgeForward to meet the growing demand for proven, cost-effective interoperability between Meditech systems and ancillary applications – for both application and data migration,” said Charlie Blackburn, CEO of FileTek UK.

Blackburn added: “BridgeForward has a long history of working in close partnership with Meditech and its complimentary integration technology has been used by hundreds of Meditech customers in both the UK and the US.”

BridgeForward develops and markets application integration products for healthcare and other sectors. Its main products are ClearSpan Server and Edge4 technologies.

The company was founded by the team behind MicroScript corporation, which developed e-Biz 2000, one of the most widely used integration engines in healthcare.

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