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Will Canadians turn to Telus for Healthcare?

Telus CEO Darren Entwistle says a crisis in healthcare could eventually affect all Canadians. He believes technology can change this outcome. Telus (TSX:T) today introduced TelusHealth.com, an online hub the company said is aimed at improving the health of Canadians and the effectiveness of the country’s entire healthcare system.

Management says that over the past decade it has invested more than a billion dollars to become a Canadian leader in healthcare IT verticals such as the electronic medical records and pharmacy benefit management spaces. The new site will allow clients to file eClaims, access personal health records, and will aid in home monitoring. Telus says it will also enable doctors and pharmacists to provide more accurate and timely care.

Telus says it will address five areas it believes its technology can impact the healthcare industry; chronic disease management, medication errors and non-compliance, long hospital wait times, prevention, and the need for performance improvement.

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Paul LePage, the senior VP of Telus Health says the healthcare space is a natural fit for the telco: “We believe that for Canada’s healthcare industry to truly improve, it must harness the power of the very same technologies that are revolutionizing every other industry – from banking, airlines and insurance, to automotive and beyond,” he said, adding: “By combining the experience of a trusted telecommunications company with healthcare expertise and innovation, TELUS Health has created the new TELUSHealth.com to showcase solutions that link Canadian patients with their providers and turn information into better health outcomes.”

In a video on the front page of TelusHealth.com, CEO Darren Entwistle echoed those comments, pointing out that Telus is charged with moving data country-wide across various platforms and devices, and that this is a “syngergistic” fit with the healthcare industry, which is suffering from crowded emergency rooms and staffing shortages. He says the healthcare industry is nearing a crisis, and that this will impact the lives of all Canadians.

Founded in 1990, Vancouver-based Telus provides a range of telecommunications products and services, including wireless, wireline, data, digital television, and IP services. The company was created by the government of Alberta to facilitate the privatization of a crown corporation, called the Alberta Government Telephones Commission. The Telus we know today was created by the 1999 merger of Telus and BC Tel, a move that instantly made it Canada’s second largest telecom behind Bell Canada. The company’s stock has been a star performer; in the past decade it has moved from under $8 to more than $60.

At press time, share of Telus on the TSX were down .5% to $61.90.

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About The Author /

Nick Waddell
Cantech Letter founder and editor Nick Waddell has lived in five Canadian provinces and is proud of his country's often overlooked contributions to the world of science and technology. Waddell takes a regular shift on the Canadian media circuit, making appearances on CTV, CBC and BNN, and contributing to publications such as Canadian Business and Business Insider.

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