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KLAS: In Drive to Accountable Care, Niche Vendors the Choice

December 12, 2013
by Gabriel Perna
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A new report from the Orem, Utah-based KLAS Research indicates that most providers will be looking to niche vendors, and a best-of-breed integrated mentality, to comply with the IT demands of a value-based payment model.

The report surveyed 73 organizations and up to 75 percent said they would look to niche vendors, rather than their electronic medical record (EMR) provider, to invest in population health, business intelligence, and health information exchange (HIE).

"This is a major shift from what we are seeing in most healthcare IT areas," report author Mark Allphin said in a statement. "What we are seeing in many areas is a migration toward integration. The fact that providers tell us that they will be looking to niche vendors over their EMRs tells us that the ACO market very likely is still up for grabs."

The report’s authors say EMR vendors are invited to support accountable care, but must grow in their capabilities. The report looked at Allscripts, Cerner, Epic, McKesson, MEDITECH, and Siemens, and only providers who used Epic had a long-term vision for their vendor’s role in accountable care.

In the migration from volume to value, KLAS researchers divided providers into three categories: first, second, and third waves. The first wave had begun to implement technologies to support accountable care or was going to do so in the new 1-2 years. The second was prepared to do it in the next 3-5 years and they have begun to dabble in at-risk agreements. The third wave said accountable care was a distant reality.

For those providers where accountable care was a distant reality, Allscripts, McKesson, and MEDITECH were the prominent EMR vendors. In those cases, the provider tool sets are not quite ready.

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