In the area of ambulatory electronic medical record (EMR) systems for practices with 11-75 physicians, three vendors
have pulled away from the pack, according to a new research report from the Orem, Utah-based KLAS.
The three vendors
are Verona, Wisc.-based Epic Systems, Watertown, Mass.-based athenahealth, and the Carrollton, Ga.-based Greenway Medical. According to KLAS, those vendors
have distinguished themselves with different strategies. Epic has done it by delivering in larger, hospital-based practices, athenahealth has done it with "nimble deployment" and frequent updates, and Greenway has provided service to smaller, independent practices.
“Clinicians and IT often have different sets of priorities,” report author Erik Bermudez said in a statement. “Vendors
must balance the needs of both groups in order to be successful, and athenahealth, Epic and Greenway have done the best job of that.”
On the opposite end of the scale, the Chicago-based Allscripts, San Francisco-based McKesson, and Vitera, which merged with Greenway this past year
all left their customers unsatisfied. Those dissatisfied cited a lack of easy upgrades, poor support, and a challenging vendor partnership as their primary reasons. Unfortunately, most say they do not have the money to switch solutions. Yet despite that, nearly half of McKesson's customers in this market say they are leaving the software for another system.
One constant complaint from all ambulatory, clinical respondents is EMR usability. Only eClinicalWorks, GE healthcare, and Greenway had positive scores in this area. Others like athenahealth and Epic scored well with clinicians also.
The report can be read in its entirety here