Merge Healthcare and AIM Specialty Health Join Forces to Support a Technology-Driven Approach to Medical Imaging Prior Authorization

CHICAGO, Nov. 24, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Merge Healthcare, an IBM Company, has entered into an agreement with AIM Specialty Health (AIM) that intends to automate and streamline the process providers undertake to obtain imaging study prior authorizations from payers. The agreement will benefit both providers and payers using Radiology Benefits Management (RBM) programs administered by AIM as well as Merge customers, including imaging centers and hospitals using Merge’s iConnect® Network Services (iCNS). iCNS is a comprehensive technology-based solution which electronically routes imaging study orders, manages incoming prior authorizations and communicates medical imaging results among healthcare professionals in a HIPAA-compliant manner.

Some physician practices and medical imaging providers continue to navigate multiple online portals to input the patient eligibility and clinical data required by multiple payers. This new partnership intends to ease the administrative effort, providing access to the AIM solution platform directly from within the iCNS environment. Medical imaging providers will be able to manage incoming orders, payer prior authorization and results delivery from a comprehensive technology platform.

“iConnect Network Services technology platform helps payers and providers transform the prior authorization process from manual and time consuming to automated and streamlined,” said Justin Dearborn, chief executive officer of Merge. “With this agreement, Merge’s iConnect Network Services now includes more than 42 million insured individuals currently served by our partners’ payer clients.”

Starting in early 2016, the integrated Merge and AIM solution will be available, increasing RBM program access to the prior authorization process administered by AIM on behalf of participating health plans. Additionally, providers at imaging centers can securely submit clinical appropriateness review requests directly from their iCNS interface, simplifying and improving coordination among healthcare management systems. Because iCNS is vendor neutral, even imaging providers not already using other Merge solutions may benefit from this collaboration.

“Our mission is to make healthcare more appropriate, safe and affordable,” said Brandon Cady, president and CEO of AIM Specialty Health. “Our collaboration with Merge is intended to significantly help both providers and payers by consolidating and connecting critical aspects of the current prior authorization process in a ‘one stop shop’ platform while offering providers a convenient way to access AIM’s programs.”

About AIM Specialty Health

AIM Specialty Health is focused on driving more appropriate, safe and affordable care through the healthcare system. For more than 42 million members covered across 50 states, D.C. and US territories, AIM targets the quality and cost of clinical services including radiology, cardiology, oncology, specialty drugs, sleep medicine and musculoskeletal. As a national leader in specialty benefits management, AIM helps health plans, providers and employers focus on the value of health decisions with an integrated suite of solutions combining clinical excellence, technology and superior customer service. AIM is a wholly owned subsidiary of Anthem, Inc. For more information visit,

About Merge Healthcare

Merge, an IBM Company, is a leading provider of innovative enterprise imaging, interoperability and clinical systems that seek to advance healthcare. Merge’s enterprise and cloud-based technologies for image intensive specialties provide access using a standard internet browser or mobile device. Merge also provides clinical trials software with end-to-end study support in a single platform and other intelligent health data and analytics solutions. With solutions that have been used by providers for more than 25 years, Merge is helping to reduce costs and improve efficiencies, which enhances the quality of healthcare worldwide. For more information, visit and follow us on Twitter @MergeHealthcare.

Cautionary Notice Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

The matters discussed in this news release may include forward-looking statements, which could involve a number of risks and uncertainties. When used in this press release, the words “will,” “believes,” “intends,” “anticipates,” “expects” and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. Actual results could differ materially from those expressed in, or implied by, such forward-looking statements. Except as expressly required by the federal securities laws, the Company undertakes no obligation to update such factors or to publicly announce the results of any of the forward-looking statements.

Contact: Michael R. Klozotsky Vice President, Corporate Marketing 312.946.2535

Source:Merge Healthcare