Despite Meaningful Use Misgivings, Ambulatory Providers Marching Toward EHR Adoption

Sept. 4, 2014
Two recently released research reports reveal that while the ambulatory market is marching toward universal adoption of electronic health record (EHR) systems, most do not believe that meaningful use is having a positive impact on patient care.

Two recently released research reports reveal that while the ambulatory market is marching toward universal adoption of electronic health record (EHR) systems, most do not believe that meaningful use is having a positive impact on patient care.

The reports, one from Chicago-based HIMSS Analytics and the other from Orem, Utah-based KLAS Research, both looked into the insights of IT executives at ambulatory providers. HIMSS Analytics surveyed 563 IT executives from U.S. hospital owned and free standing ambulatory facilities on adoption of EHR and practice management systems.

What the researchers found the market is a high rate of EHR and PM system adoption, which they say indicates that the sales of these systems reached a tipping point in 2011. The researchers found the opportunities in the market are limited due to a low level of solution replacements occurring. This, HIMSS Analytics says, suggests that ambulatory practices plan to stick with their current vendor to help them meet the different stages of meaningful use criteria.

Meanwhile at KLAS, researchers found that most ambulatory providers are not seeing the clinical benefit of meaningful use. Only 25 percent of the ambulatory providers KLAS interviewed have found that meaningful use is having a positive impact on patient care.

 “The vast majority of providers were vocal about their feelings surrounding meaningful use not yet realizing its objective of positively impacting patient care,” report author Erik Bermudez said in a statement. “A common sentiment we heard from providers is that so far, the meaningful use program has mostly missed the mark.”

HIMSS Analytics found that many have yet to attest to Stage 2 of meaningful use, even though that’s their central focus.

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