Imprivata Buys HT Systems for $19M for Vein-Identifying Device

Xconomy Boston — 

After spending 13 years providing security and authorization software for doctors, Imprivata has made its first acquisition and is adding a patient identification tool to its product line.

Imprivata (NYSE: IMPR) is paying $19.1 million upfront to purchase HT Systems, a Tampa, FL-based maker of a device that can scan the veins in a person’s palms, which helps hospitals and clinics retrieve a patient’s medical records after identifying him or her. Imprivata will pay as much as $6.9 million in the future if the device retains a certain level of clients and hits sales goals.

For Lexington, MA-based Imprivata, which went public last year, it was a natural extension to add a patient identification system to its existing tools, which are meant to manage hospital and clinics’ access to IT systems and electronic medical records, according to Imprivata CEO Omar Hussain.

“One of the biggest challenges in healthcare as you talk about the interoperability of patient information is, OK, how do I know the right patient is getting it,” Hussain said. “Patient identification is a critical part of the next wave and evolution in technology and healthcare.”

Founded in 2002, Imprivata originally built its systems to lessen the burden of repeatedly entering the same password to gain access to records. The company has since added security options such as finger biometric scanners, a HIPAA-compliant healthcare communication and messaging system, and two-factor authentication for prescribing controlled substances electronically, Hussain said.

HT Systems has 65 healthcare systems as customers, and 25 of those are also customers of Imprivata, he said. HT Systems uses infrared light to scan veins in the palm below the skin, identifying hundreds of nodes that are unique to an individual in order to prevent things like duplicate medical records and overlays, as well as to guard against identity theft and insurance fraud, Hussain said.

Imprivata found HT Systems’ device attractive because it was already developed, refined, and already had customers, he said.

“They had the technology and they had the inroads,” Hussain said. “It was our opportunity to partner with them and enhance that.”

Imprivata reported $97 million of revenue in 2014 with a net loss of $16.7 million, according to a regulatory filing. The company is scheduled to report its first quarter 2015 results next week.

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