Community hospitals move 2016 EMR market

Community hospitals dominated the EMR purchasing market in 2016, according to KLAS Research.

KLAS Research reports high rates of electronic medical record (EMR) purchases by community hospitals, while Epic and Cerner roughly split half the overall market share.

The KLAS Clinical Market Share Report found that nearly eight of ten EMR purchases in 2016 were made by hospitals with fewer than 200 beds, which bolstered market share of platforms targeted at the community hospital segment.

That spelled good news for Cerner and Epic, each of which controls around a quarter of the overall market share. While both continued their growth trajectories, Epic continued to open its lead, losing only two hospitals in 2016, both due to merger and acquisition activity. Nevertheless, Cerner was the biggest winner among small hospitals, which accounted for most of its share growth last year.

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Interest from community hospitals also drove growth at athenahealth, whose platform, cost structure, and integration of inpatient and outpatient records reportedly doubled their number of contracts. Despite this movement, athenahealth’s share of the overall market remains under 2%, and KLAS found questions among providers regarding functionality in ancillary departments.

Some of athenahealth’s gains came in the form of providers who switched over from CPSI, whose market share dropped below 11% in 2016, continuing a multiyear slide. McKesson’s share of the market also slid below 5%, in part due to uncertainty over its platform’s future given plans for its sale, per the report.

While Meditech’s market share dropped to just under 17%, marked by heavy losses among the platform’s legacy customers, KLAS suggests some potential for a turnaround story. For one thing, community hospitals have reportedly begun to show some interest in Meditech’s web-based offering. The report also cites heightened interest in the company’s newly released integrated ambulatory and acute care system as a possible factor in turning market perception around in the near future.