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Loblaw to buy health care tech company

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BRAMPTON, Ontario — Lob­law Cos. plans to purchase QHR, a health technology company and provider of Canada’s leading electronic medical records (EMR) platform, in a $170 million deal.

QHR is slated to operate as a business within the retailer’s Shoppers Drug Mart (SDM) division. QHR is expected to retain its current management team, working as part of Loblaw’s pharmacy and health care group. Plans call for QHR to remain based in Kelowna, British Columbia.

QHR supports 7,700 health care providers, accounting for about 20% of EMR technology use across Canada, according to Loblaw. QHR will continue to develop its EMR platform and interoperability as well as expand patient care and practice management solutions.

“The future of health care is digital, and this strategic investment will make us a better partner to patients and providers,” Jeff Leger, executive vice president of pharmacy and health care for Loblaw and SDM, said in a statement. “QHR brings complementary talent and technology to our organization, providing opportunities to establish new business partnerships and drive improved care coordination for ­Canadians.”

Loblaw has agreed to acquire all of QHR’s outstanding common stock for $3.10 per share in cash. QHR’s board of directors has unanimously approved the agreement. The transaction requires court clearance and the approval of at least two-thirds of shareholders’ votes at a special meeting to be held in ­October.

The two companies expect the transaction to close in the fourth quarter.

QHR enables secure medical records management for clinical environments and provides telehealth solutions, including secure video and messaging, as well as tools for clinic management, such as scheduling, billing and patient management.

“Our focus remains great service and the continued delivery of innovative technology that connects health care providers and their patients,” stated QHR president and chief executive officer Mike Checkley. “We are excited to join Shoppers Drug Mart, and we see the acquisition as a great vote of confidence for our team, our technology solutions, and the thousands of physicians and business partners that rely on our products daily.”


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