2010: The Final Tour

The end of the year always makes me feel a little nostalgic as I review the successes and challenges of the year and excited as I contemplate the future. With the publication of the new Top 20 Best in KLAS Awards report I am amazed at some of the changes this past year. Here are a few of the biggest, as I see them:

I've seen the biggest turnaround with Siemens, especially around Soarian adoption and satisfaction and having John around doesn't hurt the anticipation of good things to come. And Cerner has made big improvements in the ambulatory market space. They haven’t quite caught up with best-of-breed, but have some real proof statements out there. I’m continually impressed with how Epic delivers consistently amid their extreme growth as well. They have the ability to hire, train and move new people into fast growing areas of the company, and their client satisfaction scores remain high again and again. 

Looking back, another interesting story is LSS as an ambulatory EMR. If they were able to satisfy clients as Meditech generally has, they would have a million clients today, rather than causing some Meditech sites to look elsewhere for everything.

Looking ahead, there is going to be a lot of change in the community hospital market. Two years ago, the key players were HMS, CPSI, Meditech and Dairyland (now Healthland). Now the key players are Meditech, Cerner, and McKesson Paragon. It is worth the time to keep a close eye on these vendors to see how they deliver in this new world, including Meditech with version 6. These community hospitals are moving faster than any other space.

Finally, as meaningful use assessments continue to grow, an added challenge comes from making sure that when contracting for those assessments you get the vendor’s A-team. Many services companies are growing to accommodate market demand and meaningful use, and--while their people are bright--you don’t want to be the one stuck with the team that is only six weeks out of training.

Vendors have multiple opportunities to make strides in every phase of customer relations—from sales to implementation to ongoing service and support. In looking at 2010, many vendor scores reflect that they are doing just that. We look forward to monitoring the industry’s evolution and customer satisfaction again this coming year. 

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