Oracle, Sun Labs Form Health Sciences Institute

Oracle and its Sun Labs unit are launching the Oracle Health Sciences Institute to participate in research on IT systems and advanced health care.

Oracle and its Sun Microsystems Laboratories unit have announced the formation of the Oracle Health Sciences Institute to research IT systems that aid health care and advance personalized medicine.

"IT innovation is essential to accelerating the discovery, development and delivery of next-generation treatments, therapies and health care service innovations," Neil de Crescenzo, senior vice president and general manager of Oracle Health Sciences, said in a statement. "Oracle created the Oracle Health Sciences Institute, in partnership with Sun Labs, to advance this objective."

OHSI will research predictive algorithm applications to enhance patient safety and improve the ability of physicians to make effective medical decisions at the point of care, according to Oracle.

Other areas where the OHSI will focus include artificial intelligence, semantic technology, genetic research and data mining.

"By combining Oracle and Sun Labs' scientific talent and resources with collaborators worldwide, OHSI is uniquely positioned to help design IT innovations that will aid in improving patient care around the world," de Crescenzo wrote.

Oracle purchased Sun Microsystems on Jan. 27, and Sun's former CEO, Jonathan Schwartz, has since formed a health care IT venture of his own, called Picture of Health.

Sun Labs remains active under Oracle's ownership with projects such as expanding the Java platform and developing large-scale storage.

Oracle's introduction of the OHSI comes a week after a number of health-care related announcements at the Oracle OpenWorld conference, the company's greenest event to date.

On Sept. 21, Oracle announced the creation of its Health Management Platform to allow health care providers and payers to build applications to manage their operations. The platform lets businesses manage patient flow, referrals, enrollment, medications and electronic medical records.

"Oracle Health Management Platform combines Oracle's technology and services offerings to reduce costs while advancing provider and payer efforts to implement accountable care infrastructures and improve patient interactions, collaboration and outcomes," Marc Perlman, global vice president for health care and life sciences for Oracle Healthcare, said in a statement.

As a component of its Health Management Platform, on Sept. 21 Oracle also launched a security offering called Oracle Security Governor for Healthcare to enable health care organizations to perform auditing and detect fraud.

At Oracle OpenWorld the company also rolled out its Agile Product Lifecycle Management 9.3.1 application, which pharmaceutical companies can use to for their entire drug-management process. According to Oracle, the software's analytics engine allows companies to reduce costs at each development phase.