Last updated: May 10, 2018
TOP 10 Medical, EMR & EHR Products
A Buyer's Guide to Medical, EMR & EHR SolutionsEHR/EMR Software Buyer’s Guide
Is your EHR solution ONC-ATCB certified? This question is intended to both the software solution provider and the medical institution that is already using an Electronic Health Record (EHR) system. ONC-ATCB stands for “Office of the National Coordinator-Authorized Testing and Certification Bodies” and it is a law that mandates healthcare providers to make “meaningful use” of “certified” EHR systems. If you’re a physician, you have to ensure that the EHR system that you or your organization is using shall be ONC-ATCB certified by 2015. And if you’re planning to purchase EHR solution anytime from now, consider choosing an ONC-ATCB certified EHR system.
Electronic Health Record (EHR) and Electronic Medical Record (EMR) both refers to a system that collects, stores and manages health or medical information of an individual patient. The main difference is that the use of EMR is exclusive only to a single organization while EHR is open for use across different organizations. While there are other distinctions between the two, using EHR or EMR interchangeably on different contexts is just fine. What’s more important is that for a future solution buyer like you, choosing the right EHR/EMR solution should always be your top consideration. So in this Buyer’s Guide, we from ITQlick.com would like you to become more familiar with a system that would keep your patient’s data accurate, readily accessible, and could help promote the overall organization of your medical practice.
EHR/EMR solutions cover almost all types of medical practice. Having mentioned the main differences earlier, if you’re a first time buyer, probably the initial question that will pop out on your mind is: is it EHR, EMR or both? The right answer to this is to buy only one solution that is just right for your organization. In that respect, let’s further clarify EHR and EMR in relation to the medical practice and size of the organization that will use it.
EHR can contain comprehensive details of a patient’s health information because data are usually coming from different sources or medical systems. Perhaps, a hospital providing healthcare services to more than a thousand patients each month shall invest on EHR solution. One of the advantages in using EHR systems is that they can be integrated with larger Medical systems.
EMR is designed to contain specific-only records of a medical patient. Specialists working in their private clinics or physicians in large hospitals taking care of unique health problems are advisable to use EMR. EMR solution can also be called as a “specialty-specific” system.
At large, we can consider EHR and EMR as two different types of medical software solutions. Both solutions offer the following benefits:
- Improve the documentation process
- Improve the quality of healthcare
- Improve security of patient’s information
- Reduce the documentation expenses
- Reduce the time spent on activities while increase time spent on patients
- Improve the customer service efficiency
- Increase the overall collections
Similar to the advancements going on in medical devices, improvements on the features offered by EHR and EMR solutions are also happening at a faster speed. In a sense, a digital record of the different types of diseases being discovered in the past few years among patients can help doctors and specialists of the future in conducting in-depth laboratory testing and analysis with the main objective of finding the better cure. Therefore, sophisticated EHR/EMR features of today play very important roles on the success of those activities. In this section, we will provide to you the basic and advanced features of modern EHR/EMR solutions that can serve as your guide in choosing the right solution.
- Patient Reminders
- Image and Document Management
- Patient Education
- Optimize Scheduling
- Streamline Check-in/out
- Manage Patient Care
- Customize view of patient info
- Track patient health over time and across visits
- Analyze, monitor and quantify population health
- Engage with patients online
- Synchronize and coordinate staff communication
- Computer Based Provider Order Entry (CPOE)
- Role-based security
- Evidence-Based Medicine
- Medics Portal
- Encounter-based model
- Meaningful Use and ICD-10 Compliant
- Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS)
- Create custom health plans
- Medical Billing Solutions
Solutions per Business Size, per Vendor
There is a wide array of EHR/EMR solutions provider in the market today. While many of them are offering solutions that can be customized to suit the specific needs of an organization, majority of them are offering solutions that are ready for immediate deployment and use. Below are the categories that you are about to encounter during your vendor selection process.
By Deployment Model
This is the pay-as-you-go solution. There is no need to install any software program. Since most cloud-based solutions are web-based, you can instantly access and use the EHR/EMR application using your tablet, mobile phone, laptop or desktop. Offered as subscription-based package, cloud-based solutions are best suited for small practices and specialists.
This solution will require you to pay for a one-time software license fee. This is applicable to organizations in the mid-sized to large practices. Unlike the cloud-based type, on-premise solutions need software installation at the client’s server network. On-premise solution offers broader customization and configuration capabilities compared to cloud-based.
By Application Type
This solution is often offered as a core module of much larger and complex medical systems. Such solution encompasses practice management and medical billing and invoicing and therefore can be considered as complete solution for large organizations. Majority of on-premise solutions are integrated Suite types.
EMR or EHR solutions are stand-alone packages on their own. These packages are also referred to as best-of breed solutions since they are only focused on a specific function of the medical practice. Most cloud-based solutions are best-of-breed types.
The market is currently a mix of all these four types of EHR/EMR solutions. Although it is quite challenging for us to provide you a list of vendors based on these groups, we can however recommend to you these comprehensive lists where you can further extend your search for the right solution.
Top Market Players (mostly offers integrated suite)
- Epic Systems Corporation
- eClinical Works
- NextGen HealthCare
- GE Healthcare
- Practice Fusion
- Greenway Medical Technologies
- Vitera Healthcare Solutions
New Entrants/Players (mostly offers best-of-breed)
- Advanced EMR MD
- Waiting Room Solutions
- Acrendo Software
An EHR/EMR software solution can significantly reach $50,000 in total cost during the first year of use alone. Cloud-based solutions are usually offered at lower cost compared to on-premise types. And considering the features, best-of-breed solutions are way much affordable than the integrated suite types. However, as a medical practitioner who does not want to risk your profession over a low-cost system, it is advisable that you conduct your own pricing-versus-features analysis. Here are ITQlick.com’s “getting the right solution at the right price” helpful tips.
- Starting your comparative price analysis with cloud-based solutions can save your time and energy. Many of today’s cloud-based solution, specifically the Software-as-as-Service model, are significantly rich in features while the cost is considerably lower than any other deployment models. Cloud-based price ranges from $1 to $500 per user per month while on-premise type ranges from $1,000 to $60,000 (already included are the cost of software, server, training and support) per one-time deployment.
- Always check if the solution you feel like buying is in compliance with government incentive programs and regulations – particularly the ONC-ATCB certification and HITECH Act. Also consider checking the “Meaningful Use” and ICD-10 certifications.
- While there are new market entrants that offer better solutions, it is always smarter to go over first with those names that have established reputation. They are the providers whose level of confidence over their offered EHR/EMR and Medical Software solutions has been strengthened by times.
- Check all the options; Integrated Suite versus Best-of-Breed, Cloud-based versus On-premise. Which combination can best complement your budget? Note that upgrade fees, server costs, training fees, and support fees can be part of the solution that you are about to select. Weigh all these options against your company’s budget and needs.
The “Meaningful Use” program remains to be the hottest topic in the EMR/EHR industry. Many hospitals and medical institutions have already lodged their registration onto this program since 2011 and they are already seeing the benefits as well as receiving the incentives from the government. According to a report, the US Federal government is estimated to pay around $20 billion in total incentives before the program shifts to a penalty in 2015.
The mobile EHR is grabbing the attention of many physicians in the last two to three years. Many of them are comfortable in practicing their profession via their mobile devices.
The Software-as-a-Service solution is also becoming the top choice of many healthcare providers.
While many organizations are still puzzled in determining the real Return of Investment (ROI) of EHR/EMR solutions, many of them already have their budget allocated for this software technology. While this trend is contradicting in some aspects, it still shows that the entire medical industry is healthy and the EMR/EHR solution will remain to become a software solution of choice. Overall, this is also a good sign for you to start moving into a better system that could offer better performance in your medical practice.
ITQlick chart - 2018 best Medical, EMR & EHR Software
Finding the right Medical, EMR & EHR software for your business
Proper Medical, EMR & EHR software selections are the precursor to successful deployment and business growth. Finding the right Medical, EMR & EHR solutions doesn’t have to be complicated, and it doesn’t have to take days or weeks of your time.
After researching over 2,000 systems, we can identify the best solution for companies of all shapes and sizes. ITQlick.com is 100% free for software buyers.
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25 MUST Ask Questions Before Buying Medical, EMR & EHR Software
The prime purpose behind investing in the software solution is to boost efficiency and growth. Ask the software vendor (iSALUS Healthcare) how their business app would improve efficiency of your enterprise.
iSALUS EHR Software has tremendous exposure to different companies. They offer the same type of software to different industries, so they are better aware of who is doing what with their technological product. This also helps them understand and foresee whatâ€™s really working. Allow them to share their observations so that you get an ideas about their experience, expertise, and intelligence. This will also be an opportunity to identify the service providers who come up with the most insightful suggestions.
Perhaps your business is growing, will expand in the future and your Medical, EMR & EHR requirements with it. So you would be interested to know if iSALUS EHR Software is scalable and can grow with you. Itâ€™s no use investing in a solution that can be scaled.
Each business has different needs. Yours is no different. When it comes to selecting a software solution, you are looking for a tool that can be easily customized and configured to cater to your specific business needs. So you want to understand if iSALUS EHR Software you want to buy is easy to customize.
Such a community forum is the best way to engage users. Getting access to iSALUS EHR Software forums can help new or proposed users connect with product experts through peer-to-peer discussions.
iSALUS EHR Software should answer how their business software will improve your bottom line and ROI.Most service providers make tall claims, so you want to make sure you get your hands on the best solution.
Before choosing a business app, you want to understand that the implementation would be smooth. So you should be interested to find out about the person responsible for handling the implementation process. Do not hesitate to ask iSALUS EHR Software about their qualifications.
A good software vendor should be able to show you a positive track record with their implementation strategy.Try to find out if iSALUS EHR Software method is structured. Your purpose should be to look for one that is structured and flexible to adapt to unexpected situations.
The software vendor should give you a structured data conversion methodology that will enable smooth migration of your information to the new system.
A growing business is always in need for expansion and integration with thrid-party apps is a part of the growth model. When it comes to choosing software, make sure the business app provides an application programming interface for easy integration.
Ask the software product vendor if the tool will allow you to export data to an external file or import data from external sources.
Ask the software vendor (iSALUS Healthcare) if the software package includes consulting hours. Do not hesitate to ask if there are any hidden charges involved.
You do not want to be caught unawares when a software vendor sends a technician to resolve an issue that may crop up due to varied reasons. You want to make sure the charges are reasonable. Better still, you should be aware of what needs to be paid to the technician sent by the vendor to fix a problem.
You do not want to fall in love with the front end unless you are 100% sure that the software is compatible with your existing system. Ask the software vendor is you need any specific hardware to install the software. Will the business application run on your existing workstations. How much space will the software take on the disk drive? Is there a need for RAM upgrade to successfully run the software for optimum performance?
You should enquire about the cost of having more than one terminal in your store. While some software vendors charge on the basis of the number of store locations, others charge per terminal.
When you are looking for a software solution, make sure you know if the vendor charges any fee to get you started. You should also be interested to know if there are any software maintenance charges for you to pay.
Your business is accountable to customers, regulators, employees, and partners. So you should look for one software vendor who has adopted a comprehensive, technically sound security and compliance program. Does the vendor map your needs for security controls?
Data loss can prove extremely risky for any business. So you should always ask the vendor about their backup policy. How often is data backed up and what is the cost for the same?
What is the software vendor's policy on disaster recovery? Are any charges involved for disaster recovery support if a catastrophic hardware failure affects your system?
How easy is the software to work on? Is it user friendly for your end users? Does it involve any complexities that are difficult to understand for the team? Even a feature-rich solution is of no use if end users find it difficult to use.
iSALUS Healthcare should clearly mention whether the solution is complex or simple to use. If it is not an easy-to-use software solution, then do they provide training? What is the level of training your team requires to make the most of the solution?
You will be interested to know about the software updates. When is it updated? Does the service provider notify customers when the upgrades are scheduled? Does the software work when the upgrades are under way? How long does the process take?
You should be interested to enquire about how an issue is handled at the side of the software vendor. Do not hesitate to question about who will respond to your emergency calls. What is their experience in software industry?
If the software vendor is widely popular, chances are that they have a good product. So always check their client base to measure their product's competence in the market.
Testing is crucial to ensuring that the software runs as promised. So you should try to find out if the vendor offers any free trial runs or try before you buy the product. By testing the concept first, it gets easier to understand the software product's functionality and allay fears before signing a contract.