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The Health IT Vendor Market: A Shifting Landscape

June 12, 2017
by Heather Landi
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Two weeks ago, beginning May 22, Healthcare Informatics released the newest edition of its unique industry offering: the Healthcare Informatics 100 (THE 100), a compilation of the top health IT companies based on HIT revenues from the most recent fiscal year. The Healthcare Informatics 100 provides a complete listing of the top 100 revenue-earning companies in the industry. Any company that can identify its U.S.-based HIT-based revenues is eligible to submit its figures. 

Complimenting The 100, Healthcare Informatics editors, and contributing writers, have provided further analysis of this year’s list, including ST Advisors’ Ben Rooks and Michelle Mattson-Hamilton’s examination of the list as it relates to investments and M&A activity and Healthcare Informatics Managing Editor Rajiv Leventhal’s analysis of the top takeaways from The 100 this year. In addition, Healthcare Informatics Most Interesting Vendors 2017 coverage includes Editor-in-Chief Mark Hagland’s in-depth profile of Epic, and Leventhal’s profile of Optum, ranked No. 1 on The 100 this year.

To continue our examination of the vendor market, Healthcare Informatics Associate Editor Heather Landi interviewed Bob Cash, vice president of provider relations at Orem, Utah-based KLAS Research, and Colin Buckley, director of research strategy, clinical IT at KLAS Research, about the trends they are seeing in the healthcare IT vendor market, including progress towards interoperability. In October 2016, KLAS published a report examining the interoperability landscape and the study revealed something that most clinicians know today: between-organization sharing of medical records is happening only in pockets and is often frustrating for clinicians.

As healthcare IT leaders at patient care organizations attempt to keep pace with rapid changes in policy, technology and reimbursement models, Cash and Buckley also share their perspectives about how health IT solutions vendors also are adapting to the ongoing and rapidly accelerating transformations occurring in healthcare. Below are excerpts from that interview.

What are the biggest trends that you are seeing in the health IT vendor market?

Bob Cash: Certainly, we’ve heard a lot in the population health arena, an area that people are exploring and trying to find new opportunities and ways to do things better. And, you could broaden that to the value-based care conversation, so that includes both the product vendors as well as consulting groups that are helping people establish a strategy for that. Cybersecurity is certainly an area of deep interest, and we’re seeing some progress in that arena and a lot of decisions being made.

Bob Cash

Colin and I are quite involved in interoperability studies for the past three years, and certainly that remains a topic that people are grappling way, trying to find the best way to address that, both on the vendor and on the provider side of things. From just a product issue, there are challenges all the way from resources within the organization that try to implement a strategy to standards across the country, so all kinds of challenges in that arena.

Are you seeing the mark of value-based care and value-based payment on the health IT vendor market right now?

Colin Buckley: Absolutely, it’s an undercurrent for almost everything.

Cash: It’s the motivation for a lot of what is being done, and that doesn’t suggest that everything that is being done is working, but it is the driver of the strategy.

As many healthcare provider organizations shift from fee-for-service to value-based care and payment models, how are healthcare IT solutions vendors shifting and adapting?

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