5 Ways EMRs Are Changing Healthcare Sector

by CXOtoday News Desk    May 03, 2016


The healthcare segmenthas witnessed a shift in the last few years riding on technology. Electronic Medical Records (EMR), which would enable healthcare providers to have a coded integrated healthcare system, is becoming a reality and can act as game changer for this segment. But with the advent in technology, electronic medical records were introduced that contains a patient’s full medical history in a digital format, allowing doctors immediate access to secure patient data.

Kalorama Information noted the 5 Most Important Trends in the EMR market in a recent white paper, bringing about a huge shift in healthcare.  The healthcare market research publisher said that global sales, vendor switches, Increased physician usage, a growing market are among the top drivers of market growth, it said.

The top 5 trends are:

1. EMR is a $26.5 Billion Market and will continue to grow

The market for electronic health and medical records is maturing rapidly, due to the influence of government incentives for the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. This Act presents an unprecedented opportunity for providers to take advantage of federal incentives that hopefully will improve the quality of care, enhance patient safety, and prepare practices for the future.

2. Rise of Epic and Allscripts - becoming a reality

Kalorama says that market share in EMR has changed in the last four years, with mid-size competitors Epic and Allscripts ousting large IT firms in the field for third and fourth-place market share in the EMR market.  Epic Systems continues to forge ahead landing sizeable contracts to implement their EHR system. Epic has picked up large and notable clients, including the Providence Network and most recently CVS Caremark Corp.  Allscripts Healthcare Solutions offers its software as a direct license product or as a SaaS product. The company services approximately 180,000 physicians nationwide and approximately 2,500 hospitals.

3.  More Physician becoming EMR Users

In the US, at present, EMR usage is advancing - partially due to the threat of penalties from the government in the form of reduced payments from Medicare and other government payers. In the future more physicians across the globe will start to become EMR users.

4. Vendor Switches Drive Market Growth

Currently, hospitals with EMRs are dissatisfied with their purchase and several have looked into replacing their current vendor. Because the cost of changing systems is so high, many hospitals have resigned themselves to their current EHR system. The main reasons for dissatisfaction with the system they have include lack of key features, a cumbersome and complex interface, poor EHR usability, and bad hardware.  There has been a growing dissatisfaction among customers with their present EMR vendors and many customers - however there will be greater consolidations and cost and quality of switches will drive growth.

5. Global market upbeat

Kalorama’s report finds several international EMR markets where companies developing solutions for the US market can find opportunities.  The Nordic countries have the highest penetration rates but systems are outdated and in need of refreshment to meet the needs of advanced technology.  In China there have been numerous government challenges within the market. Global vendors are concentrating on developing strategic alliances.  Japan uses a standardized EMR product with little customization and it relies heavily on local competitors to supply needs. However, only 20 percent of hospitals in Japan have implemented an advanced EMR system.

Nonetheless, the future of EHR looks positive if healthcare providers continue to personalize how they use these technologies in their practice. “There are growth opportunities for fast-moving firms in several areas, including upgrades and switches, international sales and web-based approaches,” said Bruce Carlson, Publisher of Kalorama Information. 

With the efficiencies that electronic health records promise, their widespread use has the potential to result in significant cost savings across our healthcare system, he summed up.