All-In-One EMRs: Don’t Believe the Hype

All-in-one EMR solutions may look sexy, but they can be your worst nightmare. That’s why we partner with other vendors to provide you with an integrated solution to meet your needs. Photo Credit: pennuja via Compfight cc

“The whole point of electronic medical records is to allow the payers (insurance companies, not patients) to monitor, critique, and penalize us for our work. It is not and has never been for the benefit of patients or to improve patient care.”

This physician, quoted in a recent Medscape article, captured the sentiments of countless doctors toward their EMRs. (We’ve also gotten an earful from doctors in recent years.) What’s at the heart of this mass dissatisfaction?

Our diagnosis: “All-in-one” syndrome.

Far too often, clinicians seek out all-in-one EMRs that aim to do everything for everyone, in part because that’s what health IT product developers and designers build and tout as the best practice management solution. On paper, it sounds great; a product that’s your one-stop Mission Control for practice management, that captures information for billing and for patient encounters.

But if you take a look at successful products outside the healthcare industry, you’ll notice that they have one thing in common: they focus on satisfying the needs of one stakeholder extremely well. There’s a reason why OpenTable only manages restaurant reservations and doesn’t take menu orders, why Salesforce doesn’t dabble in accounting for businesses. Many all-in-one EMRs end up focusing more on administration and meeting industry mandates than on meeting doctors’ needs at the point of care because the administrative stakeholders are easier to get a hold of.

At Elation, our focus is to serve the clinicians. We developed our EMR specifically to help deliver the right information, at the right time, to clinicians to help them more easily and efficiently provide excellent care. As such, we decided that we couldn’t build a tool that tried to manage billing and support clinicians’ workflow at the same time. Instead of building an all-in-one EMR that’s mediocre on all fronts, we decided to focus on what we’re best at — supporting the way doctors deliver care — and make sure that the data in Elation are accessible in other IT systems that our doctors need to use to run their practice.

One of the most maddening problems doctors and staff encounter with separate EMR and practice-management tools is double data entry. We understand that this specific pain is why doctors look for an all-in-one solution. But you don’t need an all-in-one solution to eliminate double entry. We have worked intimately with our practice management partner vendors to ensure a seamless integration to capture and organize scheduling, billing, and demographic information between our two systems and eliminate double data entry.

When you’re searching for a practice management solution, don’t succumb to all-in-one syndrome. Instead, seek out systems that are both tailored to meet a specific stakeholder’s needs and also work together to make data available where and when you need it. Our goal in building a multi-partner system for practice management is to empower you to power your practice more efficiently and intuitively. You’re already delivering excellent care. We just want to make it easier.

Experience how Elation’s interface solutions can enhance your practice. Sign up for a demo today and explore how our EMR can be tailored to your style of care.

Read more blog posts like this: How to request your data when leaving your EMR, 9 pratical tips to improve the use of your EMR, and What EMR metrics really matter.