Anyone who’s wandered the showroom floor at a Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society convention knows there are tons of health information technology companies. There were upwards of 1,100 exhibitors this year.
But earlier this month, Jodi Daniel, director of the Office of Policy and Research within the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, presented a slide at an Health Information Technology Policy Committee meeting with some health IT market numbers that I found nothing short of astonishing.
Believe it or not, according to Daniel, there are 613 “complete” electronic health record systems and 399 “modular” systems that have been tested and certified for use in the federal EHR incentive payment program in the ambulatory-care market alone.
There are another 87 complete and 378 modular EHR systems for inpatient venues.
All totaled, as of July 5, there were 816 different EHR vendors offering 1,477 “unique” certified products on the ONC’s official Certified Health IT Product List, from which Daniel drew her incredible numbers.
Chase Titensor is a researcher and data analyst for KLAS Enterprises who worked on his company’s latest report on the ambulatory EHR market released earlier this week. We talked Thursday and when I asked what surprised him most from the research for the report this year, it was just how large and increasingly diverse, the ambulatory EHR market is.
Titensor and his fellow KLAS researchers interviewed 318 shoppers for ambulatory-care EHRs—either first-time buyers or those looking to replace existing systems. Of those buyers, 64% are considering EHRs other than the top 11 brands, up from 49% in a similar research a year earlier.
Consideration of products from these “other” vendors spiked to 88% for those docs in the solo or small-group market (up to 10 physicians).
Simply put, it is a market that is still expanding and not yet consolidating.
“It is amazing to see the rise of solutions being considered outside of the top 11,” Titensor said. “You can see that in the ONC numbers and the number of private venture capital groups getting into the business. It’s just a market in total upheaval.”
So, I asked Titensor, do you think it’s possible there’s an EHR out there in that herd of 602 “other” EHRs not in your top 11 that’s the “killer app” in the making, one that may one day challenge today’s market leaders?
He said he’s had conversations with several CEOs of name brand companies and “they’re very cognizant of the fact there is somebody out there who could replace them.”
“I’m sure there is somebody in the weeds,” Titensor said. “I just can’t say who it is. I just don’t know.”
Renee Brannan is Director of Sales and Marketing at HIT Consulting Jobs. She can be reached at email@example.com