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Behavioral Health EMR 2020
Struggling Market Sees Some Changes in Satisfaction

author - Tyson Blauer
Tyson Blauer
author - Jennifer Hickenlooper
Jennifer Hickenlooper
April 7, 2020 | Read Time: 4  minutes

Organizations using behavioral health EMRs report some of the lowest satisfaction scores of any market segment KLAS rates. While there is still broad need for improvement across vendors, the last year has seen significant shifts—some vendors have stepped up and improved their delivery, while others have seen significant drops in customer satisfaction. What factors are driving these changes?

Missed Expectations Driving Dissatisfaction for Netsmart Customers

Market share leader Netsmart—whose customer base includes many large standalone behavioral health organizations—has seen a significant drop in overall score since 2018, with almost 60% of interviewed customers reporting high dissatisfaction. This is due largely to many customers becoming increasingly frustrated with Netsmart’s failure to deliver promised reporting, integration, and interoperability. Customers say it is difficult to interface with third-party systems (e.g., EMRs, lab systems, and pharmacy systems) and that interoperability (i.e., data sharing with outside organizations) is limited to static documents. The approximately 40% of customers who are satisfied describe the system as reliable, easy to use, and customizable. Unmet expectations are also a common complaint among Harris Healthcare customers. Acquired from CoCENTRIX in 2016, CCP EHR customers feel Harris has continued CoCENTRIX’s pattern of overpromising and underdelivering. Two-thirds report slow delivery or unkept promises for things like issue resolution, third-party interfaces, connectivity, data flow, and care plans.

overall satisfaction and performance

Qualifacts Customers Attribute Jump in Overall Satisfaction to Improved Follow-Through from Executives

health support and engagementQualifacts customers report greater follow-through from executives and feel it has resulted in decreased support response times (due to a new ticketing system), more proactive communication regarding updates and system downtime, and better delivery of new technology. While Qualifacts still has trouble hitting promised timelines, customers are generally optimistic Qualifacts will continue to improve (100% would buy the product again). Areas in which customers would like additional improvement include all-inclusive pricing (rather than ad hoc costs), reporting consistency, and integration. Core Solutions customers are also seeing more executive involvement—the vendor brought in a third party to improve their problematic implementations, and lingering implementation issues are being addressed via an increased focus on customer support. While execution is not perfect, customers are cautiously optimistic Core Solutions is moving in the right direction.

Credible Commended for Exceptional Handling of Painful Server Outage

delivery of new technology and proactive serviceCredible’s software is the highest performing fully rated product that KLAS measures in the behavioral health EMR segment. This is especially notable given the significant server outage that occurred in the latter half of 2019, which many interviewed customers (who are mostly small to midsize organizations) attribute to the influx of new customers created by Credible’s rapid growth. Customers praise Credible for communicating frequently and effectively during the outage. Still, multiple respondents say the outage caused significant disruption and has shifted Credible’s focus from delivering new technology to fixing bugs and downtime. Many customers are confident that Credible will soon return to providing requested enhancements (e.g., improved mobile functionality, improved reporting, and two-way communication with patients in the portal).

Cerner Stands Out for Customer Service; Implementation Experience Inconsistent for New Millennium Customers

implementation and trainingWhile support is a weak spot for many vendors, most interviewed users of Cerner Millennium Behavioral Health (a 2020 KLAS Category Leader) report timely, responsive support from behavioral health–specific resources. Cerner customers—many of whom are hospitals or health systems—are the most likely to say their vendor supports their integration and interoperability goals, and a few praise Cerner for partnering, listening to needs, and then updating the software. Implementations and training are some of the more pressing issues reported by Cerner clients (though they are also a pain point across the market). Three of the five interviewed organizations who have deployed Millennium within the last two years report a poor implementation experience, and some customers had to redo the Cerner training or provide their own because Cerner’s was inadequate or ineffective. Additionally, over half of respondents say the product lacks some behavioral health–specific workflows and functionality, especially for the outpatient setting. Customers report that going forward, Cerner does not plan to develop Community Behavioral Health (Anasazi). 80% of organizations still on this product plan to move to a different solution; most plan to migrate to Millennium.

validated care settings

What about Epic and MEDITECH?

While both Epic and MEDITECH offer behavioral health–specific modules, most Epic and MEDITECH EMR customers meet their behavioral health needs by either using a third-party system or customizing the standard EMR. Neither Epic nor MEDITECH provided KLAS with behavioral health customer lists, but KLAS validated one customer apiece using the vendors’ behavioral health modules. Sample sizes are currently too small for performance data to be shared, but the Epic customer reports using the solution in a variety of care settings.

author - Elizabeth Pew
Elizabeth Pew
author - Madison Moniz
Madison Moniz
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This material is copyrighted. Any organization gaining unauthorized access to this report will be liable to compensate KLAS for the full retail price. Please see the KLAS DATA USE POLICY for information regarding use of this report. © 2024 KLAS Research, LLC. All Rights Reserved. NOTE: Performance scores may change significantly when including newly interviewed provider organizations, especially when added to a smaller sample size like in emerging markets with a small number of live clients. The findings presented are not meant to be conclusive data for an entire client base.