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Patient Access 2021 Patient Access 2021
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Patient Access 2021
How Well Do Enterprise EMR Vendors Meet Organization Needs?

author - Dustin Cragun
Dustin Cragun
author - Alex McIntosh
Alex McIntosh
December 9, 2021 | Read Time: 5  minutes

Due to the ever-increasing complexity of revenue cycle management, organizations have historically had to supplement patient access functionality from their enterprise EMR vendor with third-party revenue cycle vendors. But with the push toward software consolidation, organizations would like their enterprise EMR vendors to further develop patient access capabilities and better meet customers’ growing needs. This report examines the patient access offerings of enterprise EMR vendors Cerner, Epic, and MEDITECH and shares customers’ perception of how well positioned these vendors are to deliver functionality currently provided by third parties. To view performance data for third-party vendors, click here.

† KLAS was unable to interview a sufficient number of Sunrise Financial Manager customers to include data for Allscripts’ patient access offering.

What Is Patient Access?

For the purposes of this report, patient access functionality includes address verification, cost estimates, coverage discovery, eligibility verification, medical necessity, prior authorizations, propensity to pay, registration QA, and scheduling. KLAS acknowledges this functionality is closely related to other areas like patient experience improvement, patient financial engagement, and patient intake management. To access data about these additional areas, view the relevant market segments on the KLAS website.

High Customer Satisfaction with Epic; Cerner Clients Struggle to Integrate with Third Parties

Epic customers report the highest overall satisfaction and describe the registration and scheduling functionality as strong. They appreciate Epic’s transparency around their modules’ limitations and their development road map. Cerner customers are significantly less satisfied. Because of Cerner’s strategy of using third-party partners for patient access, their clients report more patient access limitations than other vendors’. Multiple customers mention integration difficulties between Cerner and their third-party partners; users often must leave the Cerner system to use third-party functionality, resulting in duplicate documentation. Most MEDITECH customers are very satisfied with their solution and feel the vendor provides a reliable, workhorse product. Those who are unsatisfied cite missed expectations during the sales process and issues with communication and support.

overall performance score

Epic Customers Eager for Future Development; Cerner Customers Unsure of Long-Term Patient Access Needs Being Met

how well positioned are vendors to meet long term patient access needsCustomers of Epic and MEDITECH are optimistic about their vendor’s future development of patient access capabilities. Epic clients mention the benefits of having a standardized, integrated workflow contained in the Epic environment and look forward to implementing new functionality as it becomes available. Because MEDITECH’s solution is still being developed, customers are not sure whether they will more fully adopt future functionality from the vendor rather than continuing with third-party solutions. Many are satisfied with the delivered functionality so far and remain hopeful about MEDITECH’s future patient access development. Respondents using Cerner feel the vendor’s solution falls behind others in the market, largely due to aforementioned integration issues. While a few customers expect to see some improvements, the majority wish Cerner would offer more native patient access functionality and question whether Cerner will meet their long-term patient access needs.

Integration, Ease of Use, and Support Drive Epic Customers’ Satisfaction

Epic customers report the integration with third-party systems in use is seamless. Respondents say the workflow feels entirely contained within the Epic system, allowing users to operate more efficiently and optimize patient access functionality so it is easy to use. Additionally, customers feel well supported by Epic and appreciate the vendor’s willingness to share their product road map.

operations vs product

Cerner Perceived as Struggling to Deliver New Technology

overall performance score variationCerner customers highlight the relationship they have with Cerner and the support they receive. Cerner relies on third parties to meet the majority of customers’ patient access needs, and while not directly asked, respondents did not mention Cerner sharing a road map for future development in this area. Several customers are unsatisfied with this approach; nearly 40% of respondents say that although they use a Cerner-recommended third party for patient access, the integration is insufficient. Even among those who are satisfied with the existing integration, multiple are frustrated with the number of add-ons required. 63% of respondents are dissatisfied with Cerner’s delivery of new technology, and some feel Cerner is behind the curve. Many would like to see Cerner address these issues by investing more into their patient access offering.

Majority of MEDITECH Customers See Success with Patient Access

Multiple interviewed MEDITECH customers are very satisfied with the solution’s patient access capabilities. These customers feel the solution integrates well and is easy to use and train on. MEDITECH is seen as a responsive partner who supports and communicates well with provider organizations. One dissatisfied respondent used Epic’s solution in the past and feels their Epic experience is superior to their MEDITECH experience, mainly due to Epic’s BFF support program. Another dissatisfied customer says the product has more limitations than they were led to believe during the sales process; this customer would like MEDITECH to invest more in developing new functionality.

meditech satisfaction distribution

About This Report

Each year, KLAS interviews thousands of healthcare professionals about the IT solutions and services their organizations use. For this report, interviews were conducted over the last 12 months using KLAS’ standard quantitative evaluation for healthcare software, which is composed of 16 numeric ratings questions and 4 yes/no questions, all weighted equally. Combined, the ratings for these questions make up the overall performance score, which is measured on a 100-point scale. The questions are organized into six customer experience pillars—culture, loyalty, operations, product, relationship, and value.

customer experience pillars software

To supplement the customer satisfaction data gathered with the standard evaluation, KLAS also created a supplemental evaluation to delve deeper into several questions specific to the patient access market. This evaluation asked customer respondents (1) which patient access functionalities from their enterprise EMR vendor are the strongest/weakest, (2) how well positioned third-party vendors are to address various patient access needs, and (3) how well positioned their EMR vendor is to address various patient access needs.

about this report

Sample Sizes

Sample sizes displayed throughout this report (e.g., n=16) represent the total number of unique customer organizations interviewed for a given vendor or solution. However, it should be noted that to allow for the representation of differing perspectives within any one customer organization, samples may include surveys from different individuals at the same organization. Ratings from these individuals are aggregated in order to prevent any one organization’s feedback from disproportionately impacting a solution’s score. The table below shows the total number of unique organizations interviewed for each vendor or solution as well as the total number of individual respondents.

Some respondents choose not to answer particular questions, meaning the sample size for any given vendor or solution can change from question to question. When the number of unique organization responses for a particular question is less than 15, the score for that question is marked with an asterisk (*) or otherwise designated as “limited data.” If the sample size is less than 6, no score is shown. Note that when a vendor has a low number of reporting sites, the possibility exists for KLAS scores to change significantly as new surveys are collected.

author - Sarah Hanson
Sarah Hanson
author - Natalie Jamison
Project Manager
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.