Study: Not all portal vendors adequately support Meaningful Use Stage 2

Patient engagement is a major component of Stage 2 of the Meaningful Use program, but patient portal vendors vary in their ability to meet the requirements, according to a new study released Sept. 17 by Orem, Utah-based KLAS Research.

In a survey of more than 200 providers, KLAS found that athenahealth was "the leader for patient engagement," earning top marks in each of five Meaningful Use categories:

  • Clinical summaries
  • Ability to view/download/transmit information
  • Secure messaging
  • Patient reminders
  • Educational content

Epic and Allscripts followed athenahealth.

Patient portal interoperability with EHR systems was a top concern, with 84 percent of respondents noting that this was their main criterion in a portal. Only athenahealth and Intuit Health rated above average in this category.

The report also noted that many providers have yet to choose a portal, and that  "some providers are confident in their portal's ability to satisfy the basic Meaningful Use Stage 2 criteria, but others are still waiting for a portal to meet their needs."

An earlier KLAS report found that hospitals tend to opt for convenience when choosing a patient portal to go with their EHR systems, with many of them using the same vendor for both the portal and their EHR system.

The proposed requirements for Stage 3, which are not yet finalized, likely will require even greater patient portal functionality, such as requiring providers to offer patients the capability of submitting patient-generated information, the ability to request amendments of their records online, and include caregiver name and contact information.

To learn more:
- here's the KLAS announcement