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Electronic health records

EMR sales hit 7-year low in 2008, KLAS says

OREM, Utah – According to healthcare technology research company KLAS, in 2008 EMR vendors won the fewest number of new contracts in the United States and Canada in the seven years since KLAS began tracking clinical market share information.

KLAS has announced its annual clinical market share report, which details the gains and losses of acute care electronic medical record (EMR) vendors at large hospitals with more than 200 beds.

Still, despite a tough economy, Epic continued to make gains among large hospitals, capturing nearly 40 percent of the new business. McKesson and Siemens also scored some unusual wins, while Cerner saw no net growth in its clinical market share for the first time.

The KLAS report, “Physicians, Nurses, and EMR Adoption: Which Solutions are CEOs Betting On?”, reflects data collected from more than 1,600 hospitals with over 200 beds in the United States and Canada.

While acknowledging the seven-year low in EMR sales, the report also notes that the recent past does not appear to be an indication of the future.

“The advent of new meaningful use requirements, plus the ongoing debate around broader healthcare reform, has many organizations looking for new clinical information system,” said Jason Hess, KLAS general manager of clinical research and author of the new report. “During this study, KLAS identified more than 400 large hospitals that either have no EMR or are using a legacy system; and we are already aware of purchasing activity that, if the rate continues, will far exceed 2008 sales.”

Beyond the steady progress of Epic EpicCare Inpatient, Siemens Soarian Clinicals and McKesson Paragon Clinicals found some unusual wins in 2008.

Siemens was able to communicate its vision for Soarian to providers outside its client base, as five non-Siemens hospitals (four organizations) bought Soarian in 2008, despite the product’s historically low computerized physician order entry (CPOE) adoption. Further, the company won three hospitals in the over 400-bed space, bucking Epic’s trend of pushing vendors out of that market.

McKesson Paragon also made some surprising inroads with larger hospitals, given its reputation as a smaller community hospital solution. Of the 12 McKesson EMR wins in hospitals over 200 beds, four of the organizations chose Paragon as opposed to Horizon. These wins indicate that Paragon, one of the lowest-rated systems that KLAS followed in 2000, is now gaining significant momentum, not to mention leading performance scoring in the community hospital information system (HIS) market.

For Cerner and Eclipsys, the KLAS report noted that leadership in CPOE adoption did not necessarily translate into EMR wins. As validated by KLAS earlier this year, Cerner has the highest number of hospitals doing CPOE, and Eclipsys has the greatest number of physicians doing CPOE – yet neither vendor was among the top three in new large hospital EMR sales in the United States and Canada in 2008.

Other vendors highlighted in the KLAS report include GE, Meditech, Medsphere and QuadraMed.

To purchase the full report, healthcare providers and vendors can visit

About KLAS
KLAS is a research firm specializing in monitoring and reporting the performance of healthcare vendors. KLAS’ mission is to improve delivery, by independently measuring vendor performance for the benefit of our healthcare provider partners, consultants, investors, and vendors.

Posted Aug. 27/09.