Big Winners of EMR Stimulus, Top EMR Companies and Effect of EMR Stimulus on EMR Adoption

Welcome to my Sunday look back on past EMR posts. Tonight, I’ll look at 3 posts that I remember quite well and have actually referenced a number of times. Let’s also take a look at what’s happened since I posted them.

Big Winners from Obama EHR Stimulus HITECH – I loved this post. It was a really really early look at which stakeholders would benefit most from the $18 billion of EMR stimulus money. I still think the list is pretty accurate. If you disagree with the list, I’d love to hear it.

Top EMR Companies Method of Selecting an EMR – This is the type of post that I love to write, but I’m not sure how many people love reading them. However, the comments did highlight one interesting theme. People really are looking for help in selecting an EMR. It really did give me motivation to finally start selling my EMR selection book. I also just recently started a page listing a number of different EMR selection websites. Hopefully both can add some value for users.

Effect of Stimulus Package on EHR Adoption – I think this was a somewhat pivotal post for me. I sadly articulated the lack of value of the EMR stimulus money and how I believed that it wouldn’t have the desired effect on EMR adoption. However, it also helped me to realize and conclude how important it is for doctors to take their time selecting the right EMR and not be distracted by the EMR stimulus dollars. Something that I’ve repeated a lot the past year and a half.

About the author

John Lynn

John Lynn

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com, a network of leading Healthcare IT resources. The flagship blog, Healthcare IT Today, contains over 13,000 articles with over half of the articles written by John. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 20 million times.

John manages Healthcare IT Central, the leading career Health IT job board. He also organizes the first of its kind conference and community focused on healthcare marketing, Healthcare and IT Marketing Conference, and a healthcare IT conference, EXPO.health, focused on practical healthcare IT innovation. John is an advisor to multiple healthcare IT companies. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can be found on Twitter: @techguy.

3 Comments

  • Sadly, all three posts appear percipient in their outlook on the EHR stimulus. I say sadly because after listening to Dr. Blumenthal and the members of the ONC policy/workgroups members during several online meetings, I believe they truly are trying their best to make this mandate a reality. I think your reasoning in “Effect of Stimulus Package on EHR Adoption” is spot on: if you don’t believe a tool will help you (or if you believe it will actually cost you more than help), then being offered more money (potentially) isn’t going to do much to change your mind.

  • It was really good post lot of useful information. On the point of usability and defining the term ‘meaningful use’, I would add further that the medical practitioners are looking to avail of this federal incentive by trying to comply with the definition of meaningful use but at the same time EHR providers are looking at their own set of profits.
    This misunderstanding is mostly I believe as a result of wrong interpretation of the federal guidelines. The EHR providers need to look at these guidelines from the prospective of the practitioners who deal with different specialties.
    Each specialty EHR has its own set of challenges or requirements which I believe is overlooked by im most EHR vendors in a effort to merely follows federal guidelines. This is resulting in low usability to the practitioners, thus less ROI, finally redundancy of the EHR solution in place.
    I think ROI is very important factor that should be duly considered when look achieve a ‘meaning use’ out of a EHR solution. Though one may get vendors providing ‘meaning use’ at a lower cost, their ROI / savings through the use of their EHR might be pretty low when compared to costlier initial investment. Found a pretty useful ROI tool [http://www.waitingroomsolutions.com/wrs/emr-ehr-roi-calculator] that is pretty customizable and easy to use. It also accounts for the different specialty EHR’s too.

  • Following is my response to a related post on this site, “User Experience is Hot HIT Topic with Good Reason.” I have pasted it below because it speaks, as well, to the premise of this article. I hope it is helpful…

    I find your accolades for McKesson laughable and extremely ironic considering my own personal experience with them and their “VARs.” I can only describe McKesson as opportunists and extortionists. Having wasted almost years in a doomed attempt to implement McKesson’s antiquated and worthless EMR product, Medisoft Clinical, I can confidently say this, “Avoid McKesson and any EMR/EHR product marketed & sold via third parties (VARs or consultants)!”
    Skeptical? Consider the following: While anyone with any inkling of honesty will have to admit that the only reason for being in business is to make money, McKesson and it’s VARs have refined that monetary extraction process, as well as avoiding any responsibility to an art form. First, they sell you an antiquated product that they know can’t work or meet your needs. Also, they subtly and slyly reveal after the sale that portions of the purchased product really aren’t ready for delivery or usage, so they don’t even give you that software. “Maybe they’ll get to at later.” Second, they delay and drag their feet for months on the implementation, getting upset when we call to inquire or request progress or status reports. Then they claim that the implementation period has expired, despite the fact that the implementation is not even close to complete and the product is not even close to usable. They then claim that they need more money and a new support contract to continue the unfinished implementation.
    Severing the ties with the first VAR & paying another VAR for the support contract really doesn’t improve matters. The new VAR doesn’t do anything to keep customers apprised of updates or patches. Nor will they do anything to help complete the still incomplete implementation, unless more money is paid to them.
    Then we get to the core product itself… Medisoft Clinical is an antiquated code base that so restrictive and cumbersome that it simply can not fulfill the needs of a modern practice or clinic. For instance, when we finally got to the point that we could consider using it for billing encounters (office visits) we discovered that the program would allow no more than 4 diagnosis codes per encounter claim. This limitation was (or should have been) known to the VAR at the time of purchase. A casual perusal of our SuperBill and/or a single question during the preliminary conversations about our practice workflow and billing procedures would have identified this glaring problem. The fact that never during the conversations about our workflow and billing practices did the VAR mention this program limitation, despite being provided with numerous copies of actual encounter SuperBills that revealed the obvious practice billing needs, indicates nothing short of willfull, intentional omission and avoidance of this issue. Furthermore, we actually asked the VAR on several occasions when we would be able to begin using the EMR software for billing, only to be put off by the VAR with statement that we “were not even close to that point, yet.”

    I could go on, but I am getting too tired and frustrated.

    Suffice it to say that Meaningful use reporting for the McKesson Medisoft Clinical (Practice Partner) product was just a horrible after thought. A report generator is provided, but it provides only a sheet of paper with numbers on it. There is no way to research the validity of the reported numbers. So, good luck if any of your measure values are low and you wish to search for answers in the software. Also, the order and wording of the measures on the generated report don’t even correspond to the CMS measures. Furthermore, requests for assistance in researching measure reported numbers only falls on deaf ears. And don’t think for a minute that you’ll ever see a more useful MU tool for Medisoft Clinical (Practice Partner). Nor is any VAR likely ever to risk their relationship with their cash cow (McKesson) by relaying to McKesson the concerns or issues faced by the customers.

    So, tell me again how great McKesson is…

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