Then why do Healthcare Organizations continue to pay so much for their under performing EMRs?
An EMR implementation is by no means cheap, especially from the giant vendor in the market Epic. As expensive as an Epic system may be (plus additional components after the initial deployment) the competition is just as pricey. However, the price tag is not as egregious as the extreme complexity and lack of usability. Unfortunately, hospitals are not seeing any where near the value for their purchase. That is evident in the fact that 67% of physicians are currently dissatisfied with their EMR. It’s akin to buying a luxury car, an extremely expensive luxury car like a Bentley, but when you drive it off the lot it magically becomes a Taurus.
Let me paint a picture (a rather ugly one at that) of what happens when an Enterprise Healthcare Organization spends an exorbitant amount of money for a system that severely under performs.
- Most hospitals will throw more money at the issue, requesting the EHR vendor to create custom solutions, or to incorporate premium (expensive) add-ons. Sadly, this does not solve the problem, and more money is wasted.
- The clinical staff eventually accepts defeat and develops work arounds to the inflexible system, which cause huge inefficiencies.
- Processes that once took 15 minutes per patient now take 30.
- Processes that didn’t exist prior to the implementation now take 15 minutes per patient!
- The work arounds get significantly worse, the staff relies on other tools (like pen and paper, or their smartphone) and eventually they begin to violate certain HIPAA laws and jeopardize sensitive personal health information (PHI).
- Rather than risking a HIPAA fine and a spot on the HHS Wall of Shame the IT staff recommends another EHR vendor, and the switch begins.
- Another 6 months and many millions of dollars get wasted on implementation and training all for another EMR system that is just as inflexible and disappointing.
If you have found yourself in a similar situation (and many have) switching your EMR is not the solution, at least not the most cost effective solution. Cost, complex and confusing functionality, poor user experience, and lack of inter-operability are major issues that need to be addressed by the EHR vendors, but that is a discussion for another day, and a battle too expensive to fight. Our solutions complement your pre-existing legacy systems (from your EMR, to your SharePoint Portal, or your Oracle Database) to extend the functionality and improve the user experience for your clinical staff, patients or any other end-users that interface with your systems.
With access to the Application Programming Interface (API) of a legacy system we are able to layer our platform on top, and surface the data that the end-user needs to interact with. These large Health IT Systems say they can do it all, but we all know there are always gaps in functionality – our solutions fill those gaps in a flexible, and effective way. This gives the user an experience that is commensurate with the original price of the system, and can be accomplished at a fraction of the cost of switching legacy systems all together, without the overhead of licensing fees.
If these legacy systems remain closed than Enterprise Healthcare Organizations will continue to pay for Bentleys without reaping the full benefits of the expense. Open APIs are by no means a silver bullet, but at Achieve Health we see them as a viable solution to many of the ailments plaguing the Healthcare Systems on a whole.