ERCIM News No.24 - January 1996 - VTT

Health Care Information Systems

by Esa Soini

Mylab Corporation (Mylab Oy) is a high-technology enterprise in Tampere, Finland. The company was founded in 1987 as a spin-off from VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland to develop and market health care information systems and related services. From the beginning Mylab Corporation has aimed its activities to the information technology of the clinical laboratories. Within this field Mylab Corporation is the leading enterprise in Finland with the market share of some 50%.

Mylab Corporation started by consulting clinical laboratories in Finland in their data processing problems. The main function was to sell services and expertise. It had acquired from the Technical Research Centre of Finland the rights to a clinical laboratory information system, which was also called MYLAB. Mylab Corporation sold this system to one private clinical laboratory, but it was obvious that the marketing potential of MYLAB was fairly limited.

Meanwhile many large hospitals in Finland started to outsource part of their data processing activities. The university hospitals had data processing staff of their own with vast experience in medical and clinical data processing. But in the late 1980s the time of the in-house systems development was over. Many large hospitals selected Mylab Corporation to maintain their laboratory information systems, to modify them, and finally to coordinate the development of their common laboratory information systems.

At the beginning of 1990s Mylab Corporation developed a set of new laboratory information systems together with the hospitals and is marketing these systems to other hospitals and clinical laboratories. The development costs and ownership of the systems were shared between Mylab Corporation and the hospitals.

Mylab Corporation has managed to establish a very fruitful cooperation with the hospitals, universities and research organizations. The costs of the development and maintenance of the laboratory information systems can be distributed among several organizations. Mylab Corporation can gain from the vast pool of clinical laboratory expertise of its partners and can focus on the data processing technology.

Currently Mylab Corporation has eleven employees: nine systems analysts, an office manager and a CEO. Mylab Corporation is located in Technology Park Hermia, next to Tampere University of Technology. Mylab Corporation is a privately held company. All employees are also share holders of the company.

Mylab Corporation has five major products: MULTILAB II - comprehensive clinical laboratory information system MYLAV - real time quality control system for clinical laboratories SAMBA - microbiology laboratory information system PATI - anatomic pathology laboratory information system MYLINK - laboratory instrument on-line interfacing system

Mylab Corporation has installed over 40 large clinical laboratory information systems in Finland and it keeps on maintaining these. The company is very experienced in interfacing laboratory instruments to the information systems. It has over 100 different instrument interfaces ready to be installed. Even competitors use Mylab's expertise in laboratory instrument interfacing projects.

The customers of Mylab Corporation cover the whole spectrum of clinical laboratory activities in Finland:

Mylab Corporation has been the member of the international OpenLabs Consortium. OpenLabs is part of the large Health Telematics Program of the European Union and its goal is to create a fully open systems architecture to allow the OpenLabs modules and the existing laboratory information systems to be integrated and to support full interoperability. This is an example of co-operation between Mylab and VTT, which also exists in other tasks.

Please contact:
Esa Soini - Mylab Oy
Tel :+358 31 3165111

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