• by esalazar@marketresearch.com
  • September 16 2014
  • EMR

Kalorama, AMA, WSJ Bring Attention to EMR Falling Behind in a Device-Driven World

Kalorama, AMA, WSJ Bring Attention to EMR Falling Behind in a Device-Driven World

Physicians in the United States need only glance down at their iPhone or other handheld device to see what is missing in their current electronic medical record (EMR) office systems: an intuitive interface and advanced data-entry features that integrates seamlessly and assists in their everyday activities. Usability is a key product metric in the regulation-driven EMR market, and yet a predominant concern among users represented by the American Medical Association (AMA). In an interview with the Wall Street Journal (WSJ), AMA President-elect Steven J. Stack pinned deficient usability features on many EMR systems to vendors’ development process rushed by federal mandates.

The paradigm of EMR market success is bound to change: extraordinary market growth fueled by industry Meaningful Use program EMR implementation will slow on higher penetration and competition will mount between vendors in a matured market. While re-investment costs understandably deter hospitals from switching EMR/EHR vendors, physician practices can more easily make the leap, making EMR product features all the more important.

Consolidation in the EMR and supporting healthcare IT industry will undoubtedly continue past the recent Cerner-Siemens and Cognizant-TriZetto acquisitions. While fewer industry competitors could stand to discourage vendor responsiveness to client demands, the need to claim market share and sell additional products for new Meaningful Use requirements are expected to drive product innovation and improvement.

 According to surveys, vendors need to make significant progress related to product usability: almost twice as many (24% to 46%) of respondents to a 2014 Physicians Foundation survey reported that EMR systems detracted rather than improved their efficiency and only 32% believed EMR improved the overall quality of care for their patients. Physicians look for EMR systems that integrate easily into their daily routines, facilitating immediate access to records and streamlining prescriptions, referrals and medical orders - all without interfering in physician-patient interaction. Allscripts is developing separate workflows for mobile devices and desktop computers, and will focus on touch-speech recognition and other non-keyboard interface features. Athenahealth’s program analyzes physician clicks and keystrokes to provide feedback on how to streamline data entry.

Kalorama Information has studied the fast-changing EMR market for nearly a decade. The most recent market research study EMR 2014: The Market for Electronic Medical Records is an authoritative source for EMR/EHR market sizing, market share, and analysis of current trends.