Physicians and administrators across the country are preparing to make investments in electronic medical records software. The priority for many right now is ensuring that the software they select will be Meaningful Use compliant, as required by ONC for the ARRA funds.
Unfortunately, the Final Rule defining “Meaningful Use” has not been released. In light of this, there are a few considerations as you review EMR software ratings and compare features.
> Many vendors are offering guarantees that their software will be ready to help you meet Meaningful Use. Review the small print but this might helpful in allowing you to proceed now instead of waiting.
> Don’t rely on the EMR software to get you to compliance. While the vendors tout “Meaningful Use” compliance, there will be some necessary workflow changes (CPOE, etc), interfaces (quality reporting, etc), and axillary products (Web Portal, Secure Mail, etc.)
> While the certification process has not been defined, current certifications may offer reassurance that the software will be capable. One of the most notable & trusted certification bodies for the EMR world is CCHIT, so you may want to consider this in your comparison studies.
> Finally, while the incentive is significant, the highest priority has to be to improve patient care. EMR software can help you do this, but it will take careful planning and workflow design to be sure it is actually meaningful for you. When you evaluate solutions, consider how your team will work with each vendor; they will be your partner in this project.
Use the free form below as a starting point. ChartZoom can help you identify EMR software providers that serve your area and have solutions that meet your needs.