With all the talk about Meaningful Use and because many EMR vendors are clamoring for their share of the health information technology pie, the stories get better and better. One such vendor suggested that they are the obvious choice for physician specialties because they were a well funded company with a large
hedge fund fronting their R&D. It happens when the faucet runs dry. The free market will take care of the wild west of HIT eventually. There will be consolidation, buyouts and bankruptcies. This is life in the big city and it what happen in the EMR business like it does with every industry.
The Meaningful Use payments doctors receive for complying with certain standards is off to a very strong start. A recent report from CMS shows Meaningful Use payments given to about 2300 providers so far totaling 40 million dollars. But is MU a good idea for certain specialties? It’s too early to draw conclusions. I do know that for a paper based medical practice to complete the process of selecting, installing and implementing an EMR on the schedule imposed by MU can be discouraging. The key is not to rush the process and raise the risk of making mistakes in the selection and implementation process.
Wireless health technologies and healthcare IT are exploding onto the scene with alarming speed. They both have similarities which we will explore. Both mHealth and HIT companies like to say that they are making healthcare more efficient. They also say in the long run that money will be saved. I suppose we’l wait and see on those predictions.
EMRs are seen as tools for the provider whereas Mhealth are viewed as more patient-centric and less labor intensive. When these technologies begin to connect we will see more change in the industry and the free exchange of information within the HIPPA rules. EMR adoption will have a positive impact on mHealth in that it will have people thinking digitally about healthcare. Wireless technologies will mature as a natural progression when the majority of doctors go digital.
Educational materials for the management of disease will eventually make their way to smart phones for patients who require it. Updates on medication and reminders can come straight from an EMR via the doctor or hospital. Perhaps this will prove to be the shift in the healthcare industry that will transform to better care overall.