8 key takeaways from the KLAS report on EMRs

Published
  • May 04 2017, 4:00am EDT

8 key takeaways from the KLAS report on EMRs

In its just-released report entitled US Hospital EMR Market Share 2017, KLAS detected a shift in activity in 2016 as more small community hospitals opted to make decisions on electronic medical records. In its report, KLAS contrasted trends in 2016 with the previous year. Here are eight of the top trends in EMR decisions found by KLAS researchers.

2016 was busy, but not the barn-burner that 2015 was

EMR purchases in 2016 were spurred by developments involving major vendors, such as Cerner’s acquisition of Siemens, athenahealth’s entry into the acute-care market, McKesson’s 2018 sunset date for Horizon, MEDITECH’s Web Ambulatory release and continued adoption of community platforms from Epic and Cerner.

Even so, activity was notably down from 2015, which KLAS characterized as a prolific year for actue care EMR purchases, “with provider organizations making purchasing decisions in numbers not seen since the introduction of meaningful use.” Integrated delivery networks made fewer purchasing decisions in 2016.

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Three largest vendors represent two-thirds of the market

KLAS data from 5,286 acute care hospitals puts Epic’s market share at 25.8 percent, Cerner’s at 24.6 percent and MEDITECH’s at 16.6 percent. Including CPSI—which includes Evident and Healthland brands—adds its 10.8 percent, thus representing more than 75 percent of all facilities.

IDNs preferred Epic in 2016

KLAS data show that 13 of 23 contracts from integrated delivery networks went to Epic in 2016. KLAS attributed Epic’s results to its integration and track record of customer-to-vendor trust. In addition, about 25 percent of IDNs chose Cerner last year.

A majority of EMR decisions were ‘competitive’

About 60 percent of hospitals that made an EMR decision in 2016 were involved in a competitive decision, which KLAS defines as either a hospital or organization that terminates use of one or more EMRs and switches to one vendor or a completely different vendor, or a hospital or organization that purchases an EMR for the first time.

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Multihospital organizations are active in EMR moves

In 2016, much of the activity in the competitive market came from multihospital organizations, the KLAS report indicated, but noted that almost all of those organizations operated hospitals with smaller bed sizes. Epic and and Cerner recorded the largest increases in multihospital contracts.

There's a demarcation with standalone hospitals

There was an increase in the number of standalone hospitals buying EMRs in 2016, compared with the previous year. Smaller standalone hospitals with fewer than 200 beds showed more interest in web-based solutions, such as those from athenahealth and MEDITECH. Standalone facilities with more than 200 beds gravitated toward EMRs from Epic.

Small hospitals making more EMR purchasing decisions

In 2016, community hospitals with fewer than 200 beds made decisions to buy electronic medical records systems “at one of the highest rates seen in years,” KLAS reports, saying that those purchases accounted for almost 80 percent of all hospital EMR decisions in the U.S. KLAS attributed the growth in decisions to continued growth of community-specific platforms from Cerner and Epic, the acquisition and EMR standardization activity of larger organizations, and smaller hospitals’ increased interest in athenahealth’s new hospital offering.

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Providers aren't standing pat with legacy systems

Providers using legacy systems sometimes face a decision when the product they’re using is no longer what their vendor offers going forward. KLAS found fewer providers using legacy EMRs chose to migrate to their vendor’s next platform in 2016 than 2015.