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Report: EHR Adoption to Reach 80 Percent by 2016

May 30, 2012
by Gabriel Perna
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According to research from Framingham, Mass.-based IDC Health Insights, the U.S. EMR/EHR market will move from 25 percent adoption in 2009 to over 80 percent adoption by 2016. The report, IDC MarketScape: U.S. Ambulatory EMR/EHR for Small Practices 2012 Vendor Assessment, says this growth will be influenced by regulatory stipulations and government incentives under American Recovery and Reinvestment Act/Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (ARRA/HITECH).

The report, which is an assessment of 11 EMR/EHR products from 9 U.S.-based vendors that target small physician practices, says the growth will come from quality of care improvements from using EMRs/EHRs in ambulatory practices, the systems’ growing capabilities and use of cloud computing, the use of mobile devices in ambulatory practices, and the consolidation of provider vendors as market saturation increases, as well.

Judy Hanover, IDC Health Insights research director, said in a statement: “ARRA presents an unprecedented opportunity for providers in small practices to garner federal incentives for demonstrating meaningful use of clinical applications that will help to improve the quality of care, enhance patient safety and prepare their practices for the future.”

However, Hanover says EHR technology itself, the requirements and deadlines for achieving meaningful use and capturing incentives, and the need to change their business practices and integrate the new technology into practice patterns, present complex issues and challenges for small physician practices.

“If providers allow the constraints of meaningful use to dictate their technology choices and limit the goals for implementation, they may only see the short-term incentives and not the long-term strategic advantage that EHR can bring to their practices and may fail to compete under healthcare reform,” she says.

In the report, IDC Health Insights provides an opinion on which vendors are well-positioned today through current capabilities and which are best positioned to gain market share over the next one to four years. Vendors included in the report are: ADP AdvancedMD; Allscripts; athenahealth; eClinicalWorks; Greenway Medical Technologies, Inc.; LSS (MEDITECH); Lumeris; Optum (OptumInsight); and Practice Fusion. The report included the top five market leaders in the U.S., and a selection of additional vendors that offer compelling technology, strategies or services, such as advanced software-as-a-service (SaaS) offerings, innovative pricing or service options, platforms or architecture capabilities.

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