IBM plans to acquire medical image management provider Merge Healthcare for $1 billion in a move to further help physicians diagnose and treat patients.
IBM plans to integrate Merge Healthcare’s medical image processing platform into the Watson image analytics and cognitive system, IBM said Thursday.
“Healthcare will be one of IBM's biggest growth areas over the next 10 years, which is why we are making a major investment to drive industry transformation and to facilitate a higher quality of care,” said John Kelly, senior vice president of IBM Research and Solutions Portfolio.
IBM intends for the Merge purchase to assist in clinical trial processes, help health workers identify diagnosis for patients and consolidate patient engagement in accordance with guidelines.
The acquisition is awaiting regulatory review and Merge shareholder approval, and is scheduled to complete in late 2015.