EHR Denial

Have You Been Turned Down by Your EHR Vendor of Choice?

I have been hearing from an increasing number of physicians and practices that they have been turned down by the EHR vendor of their choice or are faced with a long wait time before the vendor can install the system. All of the practices I have heard from were relatively small (under 10 physicians) and in areas that were rural or logistically difficult to reach. As these are just anecdotal observations (and may be coincidence), there are reasons to suspect that many EHR vendors are struggling to deal with the demand from practices wishing to adopt an EHR. A couple of weeks ago, the Department of Health and Human Resources announced that data collected by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) showed a twenty percent increase in EHR adoption since their last survey in 2009. You can find the NCHS report here. When combined with the results of a recent AmericanEHR Partners EHR survey that showed 10 EHR products were being used by 78% of the physicians taking the survey (AmericanEHR Partners Market Share and Top 10 Rated Ambulatory EHR Products by Practice Size), it is understandable that many of the most popular vendors simply have more business than they can handle and are prioritizing their implementations and sales efforts accordingly.

So what should you do if you are turned down or cannot have the system implemented for a year? First, take this as an opportunity to reassess why you wanted that specific system. Were there other top contenders that you were considering before you made your decision? Don’t forget to take a look at some of the smaller EHR systems. The survey results presented on AmericanEHR Partners (http://www.americanehr.com/find-an-ehr/ehr-vendor-directory.aspx) show that many of the smaller/midsize vendors have strong ratings for both usability and customer support. However, you should balance the fact that, while there are more than 600 EHR products that have now received an ONC-ATCB certification, and while many may have innovative products, you want to be sure the companies are stable and that you expect they will get you through the multiple stages of Meaningful Use and healthcare reform.

If you decide to wait for an EHR product to become available, ensure your practice is ready for the implementation. As eligible providers rush to take advantage of the incentive money offered through the Meaningful Use Incentive Program, many of their practices are shortcutting their preparation. Work through all of the questions in our EHR Readiness Assessment tool, and remember that you can repeat the test at any time and view your previous results by navigating to “My Account.” Also consider implementing some standardized charting forms. Using standardized forms can help you become comfortable with template-based documentation, while making it simpler to find the information you will need for chart conversion. ACP has developed several forms that you are welcome to use (http://www.acponline.org/running_practice/practice_management/forms/matrix.htm), but it matters less which forms you use than the process by which you use them.

Let us know if you have been turned down by an EHR vendor of choice! If so, what have you done as a result?

This post is the personal opinion of the author and does not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the American College of Physicians (ACP). ACP does not endorse a specific EHR brand or product and ACP makes no representations, warranties, or assurances as to the accuracy or completeness of the information provided herein.

Comments:

3 responses to "Have You Been Turned Down by Your EHR Vendor of Choice?"
  • February 28, 2012
    stefano
    said:

    Evan, thank you so much for following this important issue for all of us. I’ve read each of your posts on this rapidly unfolding topic and have found few other sources as editorially in agreement with our practice’s philosophy. We do not treat populations and do not perform clinical studies. We treat patients one at a time, we read and appreciate the diligent work provided by medical researchers to determine most effective treatments and cannot imagine every physician in the country becoming his or her own researcher just because they have the data. The inherent suggestion that every doctor in the country will begin to somehow to conduct research based on his practice’s limited outcomes experience is only surpassed by the fallacy that insurance carriers will be able to amalgamate this data into meaningful clinical protocols for their enrollees.The irony is that the academic physicians have not seen this as a greater threat to their role in researching and developing treatment protocols. Perhaps they are less concerned about where to data originates and more interested in the epidemiological significance i.e. more patients = more data = more significance, despite the fact that most of the controls and even validity may well be totally lacking from this more data .

  • March 17, 2012
    Barry Waters
    said:

    Recently my EHR/PM product was terminated by the software company. As it is cloud based when it’s shut off I am left with no system. I’ve had the most difficult time in trying to find a new vendor to agree to “go live” within the necessary time frame. Even after signing on with the most cooperative new vendor I could find, it will still take 11 weeks minimum to go live. This will leave me without a usable EHR/PM system for around 2 months! Thanks for bringing this issue to everyones attention.

  • August 9, 2016
    Triyam_Gautam
    said:

    One key reason for failure of new EHR implementation is failure to bring over all historical medical records to the new system. EHR vendors should make it clear to hospitals that they do not convert over all data to new systems. Hospitals by now must be aware that they need to engage professional Data management companies who can help transition all the historical clinical and clinical data into the new EHR or archive them. When a nurse is forced to lookup two different systems to get a one year old lab report of a patient, I am sure they are not a happy customer! Check more for successful EHR implementation on
    http://www.triyam.com/data-conversion.html

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