Six 2014 Healthcare IT, EMR, and HIPAA Predictions

Let’s take a bold, but realistic look at what we can expect in 2014 when it comes to healthcare IT, EMR and HIPAA. It will be fun to look back at the end of 2014 to see if I’m right. Hopefully you’ll add your 2014 predictions in the comments.

HIPAA Omnibus Poster Children – In 2014, I think we’re going to see a few companies have major issues with HIPAA Omnibus. Those examples will be widely reported and be the “poster children” for violating HIPAA Omnibus. I’ll go further in my prediction to say that a couple of them will be companies who are business associates who didn’t comply with HIPAA. In fact, I won’t be surprised if one of those poster children isn’t a really large corporation who didn’t realize that they were a business associate and required to comply with HIPAA. Plus, we’re going to see some major HIPAA violation related to SMS messages.

Direct Project Takes Off – With many getting set for meaningful use stage 2, watch for 2014 to be the breakout year for Direct Project. Direct project won’t surpass the fax machine for sharing medical records in healthcare, but many doctors will start asking for someone’s direct address as opposed to fax number. Doctors will finally start being able to know the answer to that question.

EHR Adoption Increases – Meaningful Use Participation Falls Off a Cliff (ambulatory, not acute) – This seems to be a contradiction, but I know many doctors who happily use an EHR and have no desire to touch meaningful use with a long stick. As the meaningful use money goes down and the requirements ramp up, many doctors are going to eschew meaningful use, but continue meaningfully using their EHR the way they think is right. EHR is here to stay, but meaningful use is going to take a big hit.

Wearable Tech Finds Its Place in Hospitals – In 2014, Google Glass will finally be put out as an official product. I believe it will be considered a failure as a consumer product in 2014 (give it until 2016 to be a great consumer device), but it will find some amazing uses in healthcare. Kyle Samani talks about some of his thoughts in this video, but I think we’ll discover many more. A PA and dentist friend of mine were some of the most interesting demos I’ve done with Google Glass. Of course, other competitors to Google Glass will come out as well. It will be fun to see which one of those wins.

ICD-10 Will Drive Many Organizations Towards Bankruptcy – Many underestimate the impact that ICD-10 will have on organizations. If it doesn’t send many to bankruptcy it will certainly cause cash flow issues for many. This is going to happen and many organizations are planning for it. We’ll see how well they prepare. Overpriced EHR software won’t be helping those that head towards bankruptcy either. Combine the two forces and some organizations are going to suffer this year.

EHR Vendors Will Start Dropping Like Flies – As I’ve said many times before, we won’t see the EHR consolidation that many are talking about (ie. 5 EHR vendors). However, we will start to see major EHR vendor fall out in 2014. Most of the press releases will spin it as a win for the company and the end users, but there are going to be a lot of unhappy EHR users when these companies start folding up shop through acquisition or otherwise.

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.

6 Comments

  • Direct Project Taking off is a good thing. EHR adoption – yes will increase and we see that on the ground everyday.

    EMR Vendors consolidation – as you say is unlikely to happen in a big way. Yes there are a few companies already in the process of winding down and all that’s interesting is their portfolio of clients who are willing to migrate to the acquirer’s platform. Its too expensive to maintain multiple systems – which the likes of All Scripts have realized overtime. Foot print and size matters and 2014 will be a pivotal year to determine the haves and have nots.

  • Direct project is dead on arrival (despite its strong twitter support) – patients don’t have them (it was set up for doc to doc communication) and there are other easier options.

    ICD-10 won’t bankrupt anyone – it changes the billing system but it doesn’t change what you can bill for now what you receive.. Most docs won’t see much impact – they learn the codes they need or their ehr does it for them now.

    There are really only a few EHR vendors in the market now so yes your brother in the garages system will close shop. One or two big ones might bail but Epic will continue to own the large system market and is now the defacto national HIE. (1 in 4 docs on it by full roll out).

  • “EHR Vendors Will Start Dropping Like Flies – As I’ve said many times before, we won’t see the EHR consolidation that many are talking about (ie. 5 EHR vendors). However, we will start to see major EHR vendor fall out in 2014. Most of the press releases will spin it as a win for the company and the end users, but there are going to be a lot of unhappy EHR users when these companies start folding up shop through acquisition or otherwise.”

    Just like the consumer and recently the enterprise software market, most of those companies that do not embrace their users and design solutions that meet USER needs and not just meet functional requirement will fail (drop like flies).

    Usability is the new black. User-Centered design not engineering-centric design makes for successful software. ISO-9241-11 usability provides a framework for Effective, Efficient and Satisfying software.

    MU2 certification requires documentation of a UCD process and those certified vendors that truly design their software for Doctors, Nurses, and other Medical Professionals will not drop like flies, but will transform from caterpillars to butterflies (sorry for sticking with the insect metaphor, but it works!)

  • Usability and User-Centered Design: A reminder to members of the EHR Developers Association

    http://healthcareusability.com/article/usability-and-user-centered-design-reminder-members-ehr-developers-association

    The Electronic Health Record Association (EHR Association), a non-profit association of more than 40 EHR companies, created an electronic health record (EHR) Developer Code of Conduct, which aims to encourage transparency and collaboration among EHR developers, as well as developers, providers, and industry stakeholders. The latest version of the code of conduct is available as a pdf here: http://bit.ly/13A1oLc

    On the first page, the very first item (after a general statement) is Patient Safety.
    The code says:

    “Recognizing that patient safety is a shared responsibility among all stakeholders in an increasingly health IT-enabled, learning healthcare system:

    We are committed to product design, development, and deployment in support of patient safety. We will utilize such approaches as quality management systems (QMS) and user-centered design methodologies, and use recognized standards and guidelines.”

    Let’s hope it is more than just lip service.

  • “Direct project is dead on arrival (despite its strong twitter support) – patients don’t have them (it was set up for doc to doc communication) and there are other easier options.”

    This statement doesn’t make sense. Indeed Direct Project wasn’t intended for anything but doc to doc communication. So, yes it is dead for anything else, but it will be a great asset for doc to doc communication. It will replace many and possibly most of the faxes that happen today.

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