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McKesson and Meditech Named as First “Test EHRs” by CMS and ONC

CMS and ONC just announced the first two “Test EHRs” are McKesson and Meditech. Here’s the details of their announcement:

As part of our and CMS’ ongoing effort to improve interoperability among certified Electronic Health Records Technology (CEHRT), we are pleased to announce McKesson and Meditech are the first two “Test EHRs,” selected from among certified EHRs. We strongly encourage others in the EHR technology developer community to participate in the program to become a CMS designated test EHR.

Under Stage 2 of Meaningful Use transition of care objective measure #3 [PDF – 218 KB]eligible professionals (EPs) and eligible hospitals/critical access hospitals (CAHs) must either:

– Conduct one or more successful electronic exchanges of a summary of care document, with a recipient who has EHR technology designed by a different EHR technology developer than the sender’s.

Or

– Conduct one or more successful tests with the CMS designated test EHR during the EHR reporting period

ONC and NIST conducted a pilot that ran from September through November of last year to finalize the test procedures. The pilot participants were AthenaHealthMcKesson andMeditech.

To find out more about becoming a CMS designated test EHR, read the “EHR Technology Developers” section of the FAQs on becoming a CMS designated test EHR and the “Developer Participant Information for Cross Vendor Exchange” document.

I find it interesting that AthenaHealth was a pilot participant, but isn’t one of the official “Test EHRs.” I wondered what happened there. Looks like a lot of EHR vendors will be able to at least connect to McKesson and Meditech.

January 16, 2014 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

AthenaHealth (NASDAQ: ATHN) Acquires Epocrates (Nasdaq: EPOC)

It was just announced that AthenaHealth plans to acquire Epocrates. This is a big move by AthenaHealth and a really smart one. Here are the details of the agreement for AthenaHealth to acquire Epocrates from the press release:

The board of directors of each of athenahealth and Epocrates has agreed to a price of $11.75 per share, in cash, for an aggregate purchase price of approximately $293 million. The purchase price represents a 22 percent premium over the closing price per share of Epocrates on NASDAQ on Friday, January 4, 2013. This is an all-cash offer for all outstanding shares of Epocrates’ common stock, and athenahealth intends to finance this acquisition using available cash and funds available from its existing credit facility. The closing of the transaction is subject to the approval of Epocrates shareholders and other customary closing conditions and is currently expected to occur early in the second quarter of 2013. Epocrates shareholders representing approximately 17.5% of the outstanding common stock have agreed to vote their shares in favor of the transaction.

Of course, there are still a number of regulatory hurdles that must be overcome to make the transaction final, but this looks like it’s going to happen. Considering Epocrates stock price was so low after their initial IPO, this isn’t really a surprise. Plus, once Epocrates shut down their EHR business it presented a great opportunity for another EHR vendor to come in and capitalize on Epocrates relationships with the doctors. In fact, Jonathan Bush describes the value of the Epocrates brand really well:

“I have been an admirer of Epocrates since it first emerged and have watched the company grow consistently, one app download at a time, as it has cemented itself into the consciousness of America’s physicians. No other company has been able to replicate the brand awareness, familiarity, and trust that Epocrates has across the clinical mobile user base. We are confident that we can provide Epocrates with the stewardship and resources it needs to grow and develop within health care, and that Epocrates’ capabilities are going to mesh exceptionally well with athenahealth’s cloud-based physician and patient services.”

I’ll be interested to see how AthenaHealth chooses to integrate the Epocrates knowledge base within its EHR and how they use the Epocrates relationship to sale their EHR to doctors. Will the Jonathan Bush cloud mantra take hold in the Epocrates culture? I’ll be interested to watch that transition.

January 7, 2013 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

EHR Adoption to Potentially Reach 80 Percent by 2016

Meaningful Use incentives and cloud computing are two factors that are helping EHR become more widespread across the country. According to a new IDC MarketScape report, EHR will be adopted in more than 80 percent of health care organizations by 2016. In 2009, only 25% of health organizations had implemented EHR into their practices.

Because smart phones and tablets are becoming more and more prevalent in the health care scene, this is thought to be a driving force in the increase in EHR throughout the country.

The IDC report examined 11 EMR/EHR products in the United States. Athenahealth and eClinical works were recognized for their pricing modles, while Optum was found to have excellent collaboration with a health insurer.

However, even though this growth is predicted, adoption in small practices isn’t growing very fast. Of the companies examined, the companies that was most popular among small practices were AllScripts and eClinicalWorks, though Cerner, GE Healthcare and NextGen Healthcare Information Systems also appeal to these small practices. Although the incentive program is supposed to aid in adoption EHR, Judy Hanover, the research director at IDC Health Insights, believes that small practices will not benefit long term if only the meaningful use guidelines are being met.

This seems like a relatively small EHR market study with plenty of EHR vendor bias. However, it’s one more data point to consider when you look at the future of the EHR market. I personally don’t believe we’ll be anywhere near 80% EHR adoption by 2016, but I’d love to be proved wrong.

June 13, 2012 I Written By

Katie Clark is originally from Colorado and currently lives in Utah with her husband and son. She writes primarily for Smart Phone Health Care, but contributes to several Health Care Scene blogs, including EMR Thoughts, EMR and EHR, and EMR and HIPAA. She enjoys learning about Health IT and mHealth, and finding ways to improve her own health along the way.

EHR Related Stocks Up 82% Since EHR Stimulus Package

If you’re like me and work in the healthcare IT industry, you know that we’re in a really amazing environment right now. Turns out, healthcare IT related companies are enjoying the EHR stimulus money from the HITECH act as much or more than anyone else.

In an analysis by USA Today, they found that since 2009, the healthcare IT related companies stock value increased by an average of 82%. 11 of the 45 companies they analyzed they increased by a combined total of at least $20 billion since the HITECH act was passed.

They also break down how much each healthcare IT and EHR related stock increased since the HITECH act took effect:

  • 194% for Cerner;
  • 134% for Allscripts Healthcare Solutions;
  • 105% for Computer Programs and Systems;
  • 105% for McKesson;
  • 96% for Siemens;
  • 89% for UnitedHealth Group;
  • 83% for Accenture;
  • 55% for athenahealth;
  • 51% for Dell;
  • 34% for General Electric.
  • During that time, the stock value for Quality Systems dropped by 3%

Some pretty amazing numbers. Plus, it’s interesting to think that the stimulus money is just getting started. Greenway EHR users have gotten $5 million and Cerner EHR users have gotten well over $2.2 million in EHR incentive money.

I’m not stock analyst, but I’m sure these stocks will continue to grow in this frothy healthcare IT environment.

November 22, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.