Life After De-installing CCHIT

Our recent announcement regarding a practice that has decided to de-install their existing CCHIT-certified EMR and replace it with the SRS hybrid EMR has been referred to as “gutsy” in the HISTalk blog and has generated a tremendous amount of interest. The determination to move away from a CCHIT-certified product may seem surprising in light of the Economic Stimulus Plan, but this is just the most recent in a series of de-installs/conversions that we have successfully completed.

SRS has been approached by an increasing number of practices interested in replacing their traditional EMRs with a hybrid EMR. This trend is dominated by high-performance, high-volume practices, even in the face of the government’s apparent interest in CCHIT-type EMRs.

These practices share a number of common experiences. They selected and purchased their EMR with high expectations and confidence that it would be implemented successfully throughout their practice and deliver a substantial ROI in a reasonable timeframe. Despite their best efforts to make it work, they have been frustrated by the inability to achieve universal adoption and to realize the anticipated benefits.

Although individual physicians within the practice may have been successful in using the CCHIT EMR, the majority have not embraced the technology. In almost all cases, the practice has not eliminated its transcription costs or changed its coding, which had been the driving forces for the purchase of an EMR initially. Physicians are still dictating their notes, refusing to be forced into productivity-sapping templating of patient exams.

In addition, practices are experiencing one of two things. They are either running simultaneous paper and EMR chart systems, experiencing the worst of both worlds, or they are using their EMR as a crude document management system. In many cases, they are still overrun with paper and the accompanying costly filing demands. Anticipated ROI has not materialized.

As our clients who found themselves in this position have testified, transitioning to a hybrid EMR can be accomplished relatively quickly and easily. Our hybrid EMR is built on a non-proprietary, OpenPath™ foundation, which allows for an easy, one-time transfer of data from the CCHIT EMR to the hybrid EMR. The transition to the hybrid EMR can be accomplished without repeating the protracted implementation process experienced by these practices with their first (and sometimes second) CCHIT EMR. Physicians quickly adopt the hybrid EMR and the practices quickly move toward realizing a true ROI.

7 thoughts on “Life After De-installing CCHIT

  1. “Gusty” is correct, however we need to lobby for CCHIT approval of SRS hybrid EMR. Specialties such as Orthopaedics do not need all the extra thickness of the CCHIT EMRs to accomplish the goal EMR’s intended.

    I retired Federal in 93 and through a mandate by congress we had already achieved what many are attempting to just begin to accomplish, “go paperless.”

  2. Jim,

    You are correct. When reading the CCHIT criteria, it becomes clear that onerous requirements that do not impact the quality of care provided by orthopaedic practices (and are of questionable importance to other types of physicians) are layered onto the fundamental features that make an EMR valuable.

    As you may know, I have been nominated as a member of the HIT Standards Committee, the group that will be charged with defining the EHR certification criteria. I have also volunteered to serve on a CCHIT work group. Although I anticipate an uphill battle, these are two opportunities for the voice of the 4,000 SRS physicians, as well as other high-performance physicians to be heard.

  3. As a medical billing and accounts receivable management company specializing in Orthopedics, we see 1st hand how reluctant orthopedic surgeons are to adopting a full blown CCHIT EMR. We work with several SRS Hybrid EMR customers who, although, they are interested in the incentives provided for EMR, are extremeley leary about the disruption it will cause to their practice.

    Barry Haitoff
    President
    Medical Management Corportation
    of America

  4. You do have a gutsy EHR and business model, and I applaud your innovation.

    Help me understand your thinking. Is it:

    “We’re not CCHIT certified and don’t intend to become certified.”

    “We’re not CCHIT certified but would like to be HITECH certified if the certification criteria were more reasonable”

    “We’re not CCHIT certified but intend to be HITECH certified as some point in the future”

    something else? what I’m getting at is understanding how you present to physicians groups the probability that they will get ANY $$ from the Feds when they purchase you EHR: The probability certainly isn’t 100% since you’re not CCHIT certified today. but is it 0%? or somewhere in between 100% and 0% depending on how the certification process gets defined?

  5. Pingback: Medical practices face death by software - SmartPlanet

  6. Wow, late to this post. However, i have always supported a practice’s decision to not look at the meager incentive money but look at the benefits an EMR will provide. My clients are more interested in that because the only reason why someone would want to go for the CCHIT certified EMR is because of the incentive program. If you are not looking for that money, then a non-CCHIT certified system is best for you.

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