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eClinicalWorks 2017
Snapshot of Customer Reactions to the DOJ Settlement

author - Aaron Gleave
Aaron Gleave
author - Jonathan Christensen
Jonathan Christensen
July 27, 2017 | Read Time: 4  minutes

On May 31, 2017, news broke that EHR vendor eClinicalWorks had reached a settlement with the Department of Justice over allegations stemming from the False Claims Act. Subsequently, a number of healthcare providers reached out to KLAS asking how customers were responding and what implications the settlement held for eClinicalWorks’ customer base moving forward. KLAS reached out to users who had previously rated eClinicalWorks to see how their satisfaction and future plans with eClinicalWorks have changed.

1. Settlement Validates Some Customers’ Concerns, Raises Questions for Others

The settlement’s biggest impact has been on customer perception of eClinicalWorks. Nearly two-thirds of customers state that their opinion of the vendor has declined. About one-fifth describe the settlement using words like “unsurprising,” indicating that their personal concerns about the vendor’s ethics and business practices have now been confirmed. Some question the company’s long-term viability. Others are more tempered, saying that the revelation of eClinicalWorks’ behavior is just one more negative in a string that includes a decrease in support over the past few years.

While most users now view eClinicalWorks more negatively than they did previously, a small subset (<5%) feel the increased governmental oversight will cause the vendor to improve the customer experience and make things better in the long run.

how has your perception of eclinicalworks been impacted by the recent settlement

2. Small Percent Leaving Due to Settlement News; Many Customers Already Leaving or Considering Leaving

When it comes to future plans with the vendor, eClinicalWorks’ customer base is fairly evenly divided into thirds. More than a third (34%) plan to leave, an increase of six percentage points from last year, though only 4% of respondents specifically state that they are leaving because of the settlement. Another third feel stuck in their contract but would like to switch and may do so when their contract expires or more resources become available. The final third are satisfied with their overall experience; they feel the announcement has relatively little impact on them as they have already qualified for meaningful use money or think eClinicalWorks is just the first of many vendors that will come under scrutiny.

100 percent 0 percent customer status pre settlement vspost settlement

3. eClinicalWorks Widely Considered and Widely Replaced

Like many longstanding ambulatory EMR vendors, eClinicalWorks has seen a decline in market consideration over the past five years as providers have moved toward integrated inpatient/outpatient options. Through the first half of 2017, serious consideration of eClinicalWorks by potential customers was close to the levels KLAS observed over the previous two years. While providers have actively considered and selected eClinicalWorks, their overall market growth has been kept in check by the number of customers that have left. The recent nature of the settlement limits KLAS’ insight into how it will affect ambulatory EMR considerations, but initial indications show a potential drop in serious consideration of eClinicalWorks as a replacement EMR; it remains to be seen how the news may impact acute care EMR decisions in which eClinicalWorks 10i is being considered.

percent of decisions in which eclinicalworks was considered 2012 2016

4. What Customers Are Saying

By Change in Perception

Moderately Improved

Internal compliance and quality-control systems are exactly what eClinicalWorks needs.” —CIO

No Impact

In my opinion, eClinicalWorks was in the unlucky position of being first. What happened to them is a shot across the bow by the feds to the industry as a whole. Other EHR vendors will have negative findings against them in the future as well.” —IT Director

Moderately Worsened

I wasn't surprised to hear what eClinicalWorks has been doing. They have been cutting corners, and it has caught up to them. I feel like I have a good relationship with them, but we are already in a mode to replace them. We are just deciding who to go with. This news just makes me double down on my opinion that eClinicalWorks is not doing things the right way.” —CIO

“None of the legal issues surprised us. We have complained repeatedly over the years about many of these issues, such as poor software control, the lack of change control, and the lack of a process for addressing patient-safety issues or tracking. Our belief is that eClinicalWorks will not be able to develop the business structure needed to address these issues.” —CIO

Significantly Worsened

eClinicalWorks isn't accepting any accountability for their actions, and that is a red flag for us.” —Executive Director, ACO

“eClinicalWorks’ ethics were already in question. The recent whistleblower lawsuit and five-year corporate integrity agreement just solidify that conclusion.” —Health System CEO

5. Snapshot of Current Performance and Research Participants

eclinicalworks current overall performancesurvey participation

author - Alex McIntosh
Alex McIntosh
author - Natalie Jamison
Natalie Jamison
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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.