Allscripts and Eclipsys: Together at Last

There have been rumblings for months that Eclipsys and Allscripts would be getting together. I’m convinced that most of these rumblings were from people who had no specific knowledge of what was going on, but the pairing made enough sense to have a real conversation. The discussion would ultimately turn to Microsoft and Eclipsys or some other potential merger in the market.

So now what? Allscripts and Eclipsys are engaged, and for all intents and purposes should be married in a few months. How does that look to providers? From my seat, the strategic fit is a no-brainer. Eclipsys customers were clamoring for a stronger EMR, and Sunrise Ambulatory Care wasn’t cutting it for many. Allscripts has the magic bullet to fill that need…if they can get back to the success they had with v.10 of Enterprise EHR back in the TouchWorks days. One provider today was thanking their lucky stars that they have a viable option to take to the physician community now, grateful that Allscripts will do the integration work instead of them.

Allscripts can begin to do what NextGen has started, in leveraging their ambulatory base to get their inpatient focused solutions into nearby hospitals. How that plays out is a question, as the Sunrise Clinical Manager solution has typically targeted sites that are larger than today’s normal buyer (community hospitals).

So can this work? It’s all about execution. Those darn details. I’ve been impressed with how Allscripts handled the Misys merger. Moving customers at little or no cost to the newest system is simply unheard of. Building a “factory” that allows Allscripts to convert Misys EMR customers to Professional EHR in a matter of weeks is stunning, even if the results are early. Have they “arrived”? No, but they seem to be on track, and the changes are built around people who can execute. Now, if they can just be turned to focus on the Enterprise EMR challenges.

So what’s next? A few Eclipsys customers will likely decide that the time is right to move to another vendor. Some products will be seen as overlap, and customers will be encouraged to move to the go-forward product. Luckily, there are not many of those…but there are five EMRs currently being sold between the two companies. Two ED products may not be an issue as they serve different purposes (Healthmatics for the best of breed shop and Eclipsys Sunrise ED for the SCM customers). You can be sure there will be the normal time adjusting to each other and taking a few steps back before going forward, but at least the two love birds seem to be a fit.

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