Alpharetta health data company Ciox in $7 billion merger

FILE - In this Friday, May 28, 2021 file photo, a healthcare worker prepares a dose of the Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine during a vaccination session for medical staff who work at private clinics in Caracas, Venezuela.(AP Photo/Matias Delacroix, file)
FILE - In this Friday, May 28, 2021 file photo, a healthcare worker prepares a dose of the Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine during a vaccination session for medical staff who work at private clinics in Caracas, Venezuela.(AP Photo/Matias Delacroix, file)

Credit: Matias Delacroix

Credit: Matias Delacroix

Alpharetta-based Ciox Health has agreed to a $7 billion merger that its chief executive said could lead to improved flow of digital health care records.

Ciox will combine with San Francisco-based Datavant, the companies announced Wednesday. The deal is expected to close by the end of September, pending regulatory approval.

Ciox has about 1,000 employees in metro Atlanta and all will remain with the company, said spokeswoman Deborah Hsieh.

Ciox manages a platform for exchanging digital health care data. Datavant makes software that removes personal information from health care files, a necessary step to comply with federal privacy laws.

The management of health care data is fragmented among thousands of groups and is difficult to access, Ciox and Datavant said in a joint announcement. That makes it hard to transfer patients’ medical records among hospitals, clinics, health care insurance plans and others.

“The fragmentation of health data is one of the single greatest challenges facing the healthcare system today,” Ciox CEO Pete McCabe said in a news release.

Hospitals and health care systems have recently come under attack from hackers who try to steal patient health information. Elekta, a Swedish medical systems company with its U.S. headquarters in Dunwoody, was the victim of a cyberattack in April.

Both Ciox and Datavant are privately held. The New York investment firm New Mountain Capital is one of the largest shareholders of Ciox.

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