EMR Selection Time, Mobile EMR, and Difficult EMR Selection

A prudent investment is an understatement. The very best use of your time in an EMR implementation is in the selection process. Although, I’ve also seen some clinics go too far and run into the issue called “paradox of choice.”

Mobile EMR has always been a wonderful idea, but how many are really using their EMR on a mobile device. Let’s also not confuse mobile EMR with remote EMR. Certainly many doctors are using the same EMR from multiple clinics. That’s common and beautiful. However, far fewer are using their EMR on a mobile device. The most common response I get from doctors about a mobile EMR is “I can access my EMR on a mobile device, but the experience is terrible.” I expect this will dramatically change over the next 3-5 years, but won’t likely be the full EMR. Instead, I think it will be a really focused set of EMR functions on the mobile device. I’m not sure anyone has nailed that experience yet. Although, a lot of EMR vendors are working on it.

Everyone that’s read this site for a while knows how much I love analogies. Both of these are pretty spot on. The root canal is necessary and can relieve a lot of long term pain, but it’s no fun going through the process. Buying a car is hard because there are so many choices and so many details that it’s hard to know what really differentiates the complex item you want to buy.

About the author

John Lynn

John Lynn

John Lynn is the Founder of 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.


  • There’s no need to wait 3-5 years for effective mobile EMR access that provides a good physician user experience; some hospitals have it today. This CTV news clip features one example (http://london.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=869332&binId=1.1137796&playlistPageNum=1), and Community Memorial in Ventura, CA provides another (http://www.prweb.com/releases/2013/5/prweb10727895.htm). Also, Modern Healthcare included one mobile EMR access app on its list of Most Important Mobile Apps of 2012: PatientKeeper (http://www.patientkeeper.com/news_events/newsitem.html?id=22644#main).

  • There are some EHRs that have been designed from the ground up to run on mobile devices. For example, Health Fusions MediTouch. It was designed to run on the iPad with full functioning. Pretty cool stuff!

  • David,
    It looks like PatientKeeper is just CPOE and not the full EHR. Is that right? I think if it is, then it illustrates my point that the mobile apps of the future will have very focused uses.

    What percentage of the EHR access and documentation is done on the iPad vs on another device?

  • John, PatientKeeper’s mobile app is a “physician overlay” to a hospital’s core HIS. It offers a complete view of patient clinical data aggregated from multiple clinical systems; CPOE; physician documentation; physician sign-out; and charge capture. But the point from your original post that I take issue with is, “I’m not sure anyone has nailed that [physician user] experience yet.” The anecdotal evidence from our physician users says, “PatientKeeper has.”

  • #John Lynn,

    100% EHR access and documentation via the iPad and other tablet style devices with internet access. Cell phone platforms, however, do not have access.

    The beauty of the system was that it was designed for a mobile device platform so its function is nearly exact to that of a desktop platform.

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