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When it comes to Urology EHR market share, there are four major players fighting for the top spot. The first and third are familiar names—Allscripts (17.6 percent) and Epic Systems Corp. (14.5 percent)—that appear at the top of most of our Meaningful Use (MU) attestation reports. Second and fourth are Intuitive Medical Software (17.6 percent) and meridianEMR (10.7 percent), both urology-focused products who have made 95 percent or more of their sales in this particular field.
|Intuitive Medical Software||689||15.8%|
|Epic Systems Corporation||632||14.5%|
These four vendors represent almost three-fifths (58.9 percent) of the urology EHR market. There’s a big jump from fourth to fifth place. The next set of products are all bigger-name cross-specialty EHRs, with 1 percent to 6 percent market share each.
|Greenway Medical Technologies, Inc.||176||4.0%|
|Community Computer Service, Inc.||140||3.2%|
|Vitera Healthcare Solutions, LLC||80||1.8%|
Below that are 107 more products, each with less than 1 percent market share. Altogether, 85.7 percent of urology EHR sales go to these top thirteen vendors.
Out of 4,220 providers, there are 106 who use a modular product. Most of these are used in conjunction with another modular EHR: 43 of them used multiple Cerner products, but other popular combinations include Jardogs/Allscripts and Wellcentive/DrFirst. Only 1 percent (42 providers) are using the data in an inpatient setting—the rest are all ambulatory.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has published Meaningful Use data on their website. Although that data is not exactly the same as market share, we’ve been using them to create market share reports since the data is related: any EHR worth considering will be ONC-ATCB certified, so although the cross section of data being reported is different, the proportions will likely be similar.
Of the 171,226 medical providers attesting to Meaningful Use in the CMS data, 4,220 of those were Urologists. That data has been pulled into a separate file, available here.
Urologists need a system that supports them in treating their patients in a discreet, respectful manner, while maintaining all the functionality of generic and specialty electronic medical record (EMR)/electronic health record (EHR) solutions.
|Urology SOAP notes templates||Rather than using a one-size-fits-all approach, urology EMRs have dozens of customized templates for every condition imaginable, including: cystoscopy, hematuria, incontinence, infertility, prostate screening and/or cancer, sexual dysfunction, UTI and vasectomy. These templates can often be customized, but most physicians prefer simply taking advantage of the ample pre-existing templates already at their disposal.|
|Urology-specific medication management||Your urology workflow solution can suggest medications, and can help prevent errors by alerting the physician if he or she tries to prescribe a dangerous or ineffective dosage, or urispas instead of urocit for a patient with kidney stones. These alerts are customizable to the needs of the physician.|
|Urology-specific coding & billing||Urology-specific EMRs use the unique vocabulary of urologists, incorporating the terminology into the system. They provide more assistance on ICD9 and CPT coding and billing for common urology encounters, while avoiding the clutter of thousands of codes unrelated to your practice. Since these systems tie into the administrative and clinical workflow, they also know what procedures have been performed and which treatments prescribed, making the claim process faster and more accurate.|
|Integration with lab and pathology reports||Automatically receive results of electronic urinalyses, kidney MRIs or other medical tests. Before buying your solution, make sure it will be compatible with all your urology reports and devices.|
In addition to these features, a a strong management system will support medical billing and scheduling and improve office workflows, efficiency and patient correspondence.
Software as a Service (SaaS). The adoption of SaaS-based systems are on the rise. With a Web-based system, urologists and their staff are able to access patient records, import new patient data and manage appointments online. And because upfront costs are generally lower with a SaaS model, these Web-based systems are very appealing to urologist practices. While HIPAA compliance and the security of patient data in the Cloud is a concern for some, vendors are tackling these issues head on, to ensure sensitive data remains secure.
Mobile device support. The growing popularity of online EHR urology software is also driving innovation in the way medical professionals access patient records. Vendors are increasingly offering robust mobile technologies that make it easier to manage a practice on the go, and also increases mobility in the office. Many have developed mobile versions, and some are even developing native apps for popular mobile operating systems (like Apple, Android and Windows). For example, on February 3, 2012, meridianEMR—a leader in urology EHR—launched a native app for the iPhone: meridianMobile. The app gives users access to real-time data, and the ability to schedule office visits and review appointments. The app also runs on the iPod Touch and the iPad, working for any user with the meridianEMR Version 5.2.3 or higher.
ONC-ATCB certification. In 2009, President Obama signed the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act into law, further driving the move towards EHR adoption with official U.S. government backing. The HITECH Act includes $19 billion to incentivize urology practices to move their medical record systems into the cloud. To qualify for reimbursements (up to $44,000 worth of increased Medicare and Medicaid premiums), urology practices have to show “meaningful use” of an ONC-ATCB-certified system. The most recent update in this major movement came with Stage 2 of HITECH Guidelines, announced in early 2012. Urologists who fail to show meaningful use by 2015 will face decreased Medicare and Medicaid payments. As such, you should verify that any urology EMR systems you’re reviewing are ONC-ATCB-certified.
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