Cerner continues to hold the largest market share of the $27 billion electronic medical records (EMR) market, thanks to its acquisition of Siemens Healthcare’s EMR business last year, according to a new report from Kalorama Information.
Kalorama, a healthcare market research publisher, reports that Cerner leads the market slightly over rival McKesson, as Cerner overtook it last year following its purchase of Siemens. In third place is Epic, followed by Allscripts in fourth place.
According to the report, titled “EMR 2016: The Market for Electronic Medical Records” the action in the industry was in mid-sized companies.
"The trend over the past four years has been an increasing amount of revenue going to mid-size EMR specialist companies and away from IT companies and diversified healthcare companies," Bruce Carlson, publisher of Kalorama Information, said in a statement.
Information technology leaders GE Healthcare and Siemens have reduced presence in EMR and smaller specialized firms such as Epic and Allscripts have increased share, the report states.
“Epic Systems has its share of supporters and critics. However, the company continues to forge ahead landing sizeable contracts to implement their EHR system. Epic has a high price tag but that has not stopped the migration to Epic from such notable organizations such as the Providence Network and most recently CVS Caremark Corp.,” the report authors stated in a press release.
Epic moved from sixth to third place in Kalorama's survey since 2012, while Allscripts moved from fifth to fourth in the same period of time. “Not only did market share position increase for both companies, but both increased revenues from the previous year and have demonstrated stable growth,” the report authors stated.
The report also notes that the following firms were among the top companies in EMR: Athenahealth, QSI/NextGen, GE Healthcare, MEDITECH, eClinicalWorks, eClinicalWorks, Greenway and many other small EMR companies aimed at physician sales.
Kalorama's market estimate includes not only EMR software but also training and consulting, as these activities generate considerable income in information technology markets, the report states.
In addition, within the EMR market, competitors are combining with a flurry of mergers and acquisitions among EMR vendors.
“Mergers and acquisitions are not new to the health IT market but there seems to be an emerging strategy, which is attempting to reach a greater number of healthcare organizations, providers and patients through synergistic pairing,” the report authors wrote.
As companies jump in and out of the market at a rapid pace, this creates concern for consumers who wonder if their vendor will be around after they purchase the product, according to the report.
"At present, there are over 1,100 companies involved in the healthcare IT business in one aspect or another. This is not sustainable and so we are seeing consolidation activity,” Carlson stated.
According to the report’s analysis, larger companies have the advantage, as they are financially stronger, while smaller companies are looking for funds to expand growth and thus, are ripe for acquisition.