Crickets in the EMR audience…

Zackary Berger is a faculty member of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He contributed a new post to the Kevin MD blog (yes, we’re fans of Kevin, too!) because his institution recently switched from a home-grown EMR to EPIC, which as you know has been reputed to be an EPIC failure. Supposedly we’re reaching the “nexus” of electronic records and communication, a future where scientists and physicians and patients can give meaningful information and get meaningful insight in return.

Fact is, we think this future might remain for the time being just that, the future. That’s why we’re starting small, focusing our EMR on patients and docs having a meaningful electronic interaction. In time, this might lead to more paths of communication, and more meaning to be derived from digital data. The metaphor we use is this: imagine someone in a time predating the wheel, planning a system of stone roads. For now, maybe we should get the wheel spinning, and then see where we can go with it.

This complex highway of data and boxes and buttons might be a little premature. When Berger read an article by a colleague of his who is researching the use of these new EMRs he noticed something. Patients are given “access codes” in order to tap into the extraordinary benefits of these EMR programs. But guess how many people are actually activating them?

Only 20%. Hmmm, is that even a good number? Berger is wondering the same thing. We’re thinking it’s more like crickets in response to the big sell that is EPIC EMR, perhaps indicative of the disengaging reality of today’s EMRs.

READ ZACKARY BERGER’S NEW BLOG POST ON KEVIN MD

Will Pagers Go The Way Of The Dodo? Not If Doctors Can Help It.

Will Pagers Go The Way Of The Dodo? Not If Doctors Can Help It.

In a new post on Fortune, writer Verne Kopytoff looks into the current state of pagers. At their heyday in the mid 90s, some 61 million of the devices were in use. But since then numbers have dwindled to around five or six million today, according to Ronald Gruia, an analyst with Frost & Sullivan. It’s an educated guess, though because Frost & Sullivan officially stopped tracking the pager market in 2006. That’s because of their admitted irrelevance.

Read more

New Study Predicts that Majority Of Physician Practices Will Lose Money On Their EHR Systems

Dark Daily writer Patricia Kirk shares Michigan University research that suggests there are opportunities for physicians to make more money using EMR. However, a major factor that would theoretically help them make this proposed “money” includes using ONLY THE NEW EMR, not the new EMR in conjunction with pre-existing methods. Hmmm, so why would someone buy something to replace something, and then keep using the old thing? Oh right, the government paid them to buy it. We almost forgot.

Read more

LINKS: Even With Meaningful Use, EHR Might Break The Bank

“Healthcare Observers Disagree on Cost-effectiveness of Electronic Health Record Systems” | Dark Daily
Along with the researchers at the University of Michigan, other experts have questioned EHR’s promise to deliver greater financial rewards. READ MORE

“If Practices Don’t Change, EHRs Lose Money” | Med Page Today
The average physician lost nearly $44,000 over 5 years implementing an electronic health record system, a large pilot study found, but the technology itself was just part of the reason. READ MORE

A Survey Analysis Suggests That Electronic Health Records Will Yield Revenue Gains for Some Practices and Losses for Many” | Health Affairs (abstract)
This Health Affairs abstract will require membership. However, the title alone should be cause for concern. READ MORE

“Health Insurers Spending Big Dollars to Be Players in ‘Big Data’; Trend has Implications for Clinical Pathology Laboratories” | Dark Daily
With healthcare reform not likely to increase their growth, health insurers are expanding into data management to find new ways to make money. READ MORE

“New Study Predicts that Majority Of Physician Practices Will Lose Money On Their EHR Systems” | Atlas Blog
It appears that government intervention, while useful in certain cases (for instance, monopolies), can impede the marketplace. In EMR’s case it encouraged mediocre products to be bought and sold, costing money and wasting time overall. READ MORE