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Home Health 2019 Home Health 2019
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Home Health 2019
Decision Insights Report

author - Doug Tolley
Doug Tolley
author - Sam Eaquinto
Sam Eaquinto
February 7, 2019 | Read Time: 7  minutes

For many home health agencies, a quality EHR is a critical factor for staying in business. Home health EHR vendors are expected to be a strategic partner, helping customers navigate the current regulations and upcoming regulatory changes in the home health market. Accuracy of documentation and a focus on outcomes over activity are primary themes in market segment discussions. This report answers the critical questions of home health executives: Are other customers of my vendor satisfied? Which vendors do other home health agencies see as the most competitive when they are making their selections? When other agencies decide to make a change, where do they go?

Homecare Homebase and Epic Lead in Mindshare but Trail in Satisfaction

retention vs consideration

The A-List: Thornberry

medalThornberry is viewed as a partner who provides good value. Because Thornberry’s market share is smaller and consists mostly of small-to-midsized agencies, a few potential customers feel that Thornberry would need to demonstrate an ability to scale their customer base and take on more large agencies before these organizations would consider the vendor.

What Is the A-List?

To qualify for the A-List, a vendor product must demonstrate a track record of high market energy (considerations), high overall customer satisfaction (overall performance of 85 out of 100 or better), and high customer retention (no more than 10% of customers planning to replace the product).

Homecare Homebase leads all vendors in considerations, and no existing customers KLAS interviewed are looking to replace the vendor. Organizations report a strong product, although some see it as expensive. Respondents also note some challenges with relationships. Epic also has strong consideration energy and high retention but falls just short of the A-List requirement for customer satisfaction. Organizations report that Epic’s home health offering is maturing.

MEDITECH clients report strong satisfaction supported by solid partnering relationships. Although MEDITECH has loyal customers, they are infrequently considered in new home health decisions by agencies that are not affiliated with an acute care organization using MEDITECH. WellSky (Kinnser) is often considered, and customers are generally satisfied. Some clients do complain about a lack of integration with other critical software solutions.

Measuring the Customer Experience

home health vendor performance compared to other software vendors

Functionality, Consolidation, and Technology Are the Primary Decision Drivers

reasons for consideration
reasons for replacement

What Differentiates the Frequently Considered Vendors?
Ordered Alphabetically

brightree logo

Organizations who look at Brightree have mixed reactions to the solution’s iPad-only interface. Some see the interface as innovative and like the iPad's portability, while others would prefer the solution to be more device agnostic. Some feel that the solution lacks functionality and that Brightree needs stronger revenue cycle expertise. Some existing customers and potential buyers are disappointed by the time it takes to document a patient encounter. Pre-sales responsiveness was another drawback for potential buyers, but existing Brightree customers praise the vendor’s proactive service. Generally, customers feel that the solution provides good value.

“Brightree Home Health was very close to another product we considered in terms of compliance. But Brightree had an iPad version, and the other vendor did not. With that version, we could implement and use the Brightree system in various other areas of the business. We thought the device would be lighter to carry, so the device is what made the difference, and the price was less, too.” —Executive Director

cerner logo

Existing Cerner customers suffer from poor functionality and are missing promised development enhancements that have not been delivered, and potential customers notice these issues as well. Customers’ expectation of an integrated home health product that seamlessly communicates with acute care and ambulatory solutions has not yet come to fruition. Half of interviewed current clients say the Cerner home health product is not part of their long-term plans, and many report the product is hard to use and has difficult workflows.

“Home and Community Care is dated and neglected by Cerner. They keep promising that it is going to the Millennium platform, but that isn't happening.” —IT Analyst

epic logo

Current Epic customers talk about the advantage of having a single patient record across the continuum of care. This integration is also a significant consideration factor for potential customers, even when these organizations point out deficiencies in product maturity and analytics. Strong market-consolidation energy among healthcare organizations also drives Epic considerations and wins. Some potential customers see Epic as an expensive option.

“We had a demo with Epic before we decided to get our former product a few years ago. Epic wasn't ready yet. We looked at a couple of other programs, and those were not ready either. We went with the tool that had the best demo, but we kept in contact with Epic through the years that we were with the other vendor. We knew we were going to choose Epic eventually; we were just waiting. We eventually saw a demo of Epic's product again, and it was ready to go.” —Quality Improvement Manager

homecare homebase logo

Homecare Homebase (HCHB) is seen by healthcare providers as a market share leader in the home health industry. Many potential and existing customers praise the vendor’s innovation as well as the system functionality, the documentation workflow, and users’ ability to use the product on multiple devices (laptops, tablets, or phones). Clinicians report the user experience is exceptional. HCHB customers are slightly more satisfied overall than the segment average but fall well below the top performer, Thornberry. Some HCHB users report IT-administration challenges such as buggy updates, and the product is seen as expensive compared to other options. Lack of dashboarding contributes to some dissatisfaction. As HCHB grows, some customers worry that their support experience may deteriorate in the future.

“Homecare Homebase is the solution that is the most advanced and has the most robust enterprise reporting functionality. Other products just don't have that, and with our growth, we need a solution that can scale along with us.” —CFO (Potential Customer)

netsmart logo

Potential Netsmart customers may consider two products from Netsmart, both of which were acquired by the vendor. Perceptions of the former Allscripts product, Netsmart Homecare, and the former McKesson/Change Healthcare product, Netsmart Homecare Advisor, are different. Those who consider the Netsmart Homecare product (from Allscripts) see it as not very user friendly and worry about poor support. The product road map and integration are mentioned as reasons for consideration. In contrast, organizations interviewed about Netsmart Homecare Advisor (from McKesson/Change Healthcare) mention poor integration and unkept functionality promises as reasons why they do not select the product or why it is replaced. Netsmart Homecare Advisor has overall negative buying energy with more potential and likely replacements than new considerations.

“We are taking a hard look at McKesson Homecare [now Netsmart Homecare, acquired from Change Healthcare]. McKesson seems to be on top of their regulatory piece, and that is extremely important to us. McKesson has made it onto our list of the top contenders for our business. McKesson Homecare isn't the flashiest product, but it works, and that is 80% of the battle in our area. We like what we have seen from McKesson so far.” —CEO/President (Potential Customer)

“We have a lot of other Netsmart applications, and it would make a lot of sense for us to go with Netsmart, yet their system [Netsmart Homecare, acquired from Allscripts] doesn't seem as developed as another system we are looking at. It is a toss-up between Netsmart Homecare and that other system. It is a tough decision because we would like to have a set of systems from one vendor so that we can have enhanced interoperability. It would also be nice for our IT team to manage a single system instead of multiple systems.” —VP of Information Technology (Potential Customer)

thornberry logo

Thornberry’s existing customers rate them very high for having needed functionality, delivering new technology, and supporting organizations’ integration goals; this results in high overall product satisfaction. Thornberry has a strong service culture, which is reflected in their segment-leading scores for keeping promises, proactive service, and the product working as promoted.

“We are a small homecare agency, and we wanted to get away from an enterprise and departmentalized environment. We wanted a closer, more personal vendor/client relationship. . . . [We expressed] how important it would be for us to be able to interface with at least one large, primary data source at the nearby hospital. Thornberry was the most willing to do that and offered the best solution to handle that request.” —IT Director (Potential Customer)

wellsky logo

WellSky (recently created from the merger of Kinnser and 30+ other companies) garners strong considerations in the home health market. Those considering WellSky point to a good user experience driven by a strong user interface. Existing customers rate WellSky very high for training, and for ease of use, the vendor is rated the highest in the market segment. WellSky could provide more proactive service and needs to better integrate their solution with systems in other care settings to increase customer satisfaction.

“There is a lot to like about Kinnser. The problem is that their product seems to be wide open on the clinical documentation side; users can float through it pretty quickly, and there are not a lot of checks or balances. The opposite end of the spectrum would be a very structured system that would force users to capture the screen data or check a lot of boxes. For us, it is important to try to capture things as early as possible and do so with a compliant nature. However, some people really like the flexibility in Kinnser's tool.” —CFO (Potential Customer)

exclamation point

Decision Insights help provider organizations understand which vendors have market energy and why other organizations are considering these vendors. Decision Insights are not designed to be a comprehensive census or win/loss market share study.

author - Jess Wallace-Simpson
Jess Wallace-Simpson
author - Robert Ellis
Project Manager
Robert Ellis
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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.