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Population Health Management 2018, Part 2
Which Vendors Contribute Most to Patient and Financial Outcomes?

author - Bradley Hunter
Bradley Hunter
author - Paul Warburton
Paul Warburton
January 3, 2019 | Read Time: 4  minutes

Healthcare executives entering into value-based reimbursement (VBR) arrangements do so in an attempt to yield positive financial and patient outcomes. While provider organizations themselves bear some of the responsibility for achieving these outcomes, population health management (PHM) tools also play a crucial role. Yet not all PHM vendors have proven able to consistently contribute to customers’ goals. As a companion to KLAS’ report on PHM vendors’ partnering and guidance, this report examines which vendors are more likely to make a positive impact on customers’ outcomes and how well they perform in three areas highly correlated to customer outcome success: easy-to-use products, clear expectations, and high-quality ongoing training.

To meet their VBR needs, some organizations choose to engage not a technology vendor but a services firm that can provide both technology and fully managed value-based care services. Some of these firms do not sell their technology separately from their services, and their customers may have very little interaction with the technology. Because of this, managed services firms Evolent Health, Lumeris, and Premier are not charted in this report alongside technology-focused vendors. More information about these firms can be found in each firm's separate Vendor Insights section, available in the full report.


financial outcome success

HealthEC Biggest Contributor to Financial Success; eClinicalWorks Customers the Most Successful

HealthEC goes above and beyond to help customers achieve positive financial outcomes and is highly responsive and collaborative when responding to customer concerns about data issues that impact the reporting for pay-for-performance agreements. eClinicalWorks customers report significant success achieving financial outcomes in government MSSP programs, though it should be noted the data comes from a limited sample. While the vendor’s tool is viewed as very helpful for care management and data aggregation, customers feel eClinicalWorks needs to further develop their PHM expertise.

Customers of athenahealth, Cerner & Epic Report Fewest Financial Outcomes

athenahealth, Cerner, and Epic customers vary widely in the size and complexity of their VBR arrangements and thus have a wide variety of expectations for financial outcomes. While these EMR vendors may not be able to influence all expected outcomes, each could do a better job of setting realistic expectations in the areas they do impact and helping customers understand their total cost of care. athenahealth customers feel their vendor has failed to follow through on promises related to reporting and data reconciliation. Customers want Cerner to have better knowledge of the different metrics and documentation required by the various VBR contracts they participate in and to be more flexible in building out tools for tracking performance in these contracts. Some Epic customers want the vendor to have better familiarity with their organizations’ payer agreements so that Epic can help them leverage the tool in a way that maximizes reimbursement.

Contribution Low from athenahealth, Allscripts, GSI Health, & Philips Wellcentive

In order for PHM solutions to help drive financial results, they need to be closely aligned with users’ goals. Allscripts customers feel they do not receive enough out-of-the box functionality and have to do too much of the IT build themselves. GSI Health customers do not feel the solution meets their functionality needs; they would like easier-to-use dashboards and improved integration that produces trustworthy data. Philips Wellcentive customers want more financial-tracking abilities. athenahealth customers report the lowest vendor contribution for the same reasons mentioned above.


patient outcome success

Consistent Collaboration from Arcadia & Enli Drive High Customer Confidence

Arcadia and Enli customers report that after go-live, their vendors continue to work with them until they are comfortable using the solutions on their own. Arcadia customers receive help setting up accurate tracking for patient outcomes, and Enli customers note receiving similar guidance related to analytics for their unique organizational goals. The ongoing collaboration from these vendors leads to customer loyalty as well as to confidence among customers that in time they will be able to drive patient outcomes.


vendor performance in metrics most closely correlated to overall outcome success

HealthEC, Forward Health Group, IBM Watson Health, & SPH Analytics Leverage Training to Improve Physician Usability

Training is not a one-time event. HealthEC, Forward Health Group, IBM Watson Health, and SPH Analytics are noted for offering both ad hoc training and in-depth, on-site training. Additional training is offered with updates. These ongoing training efforts result in confident users and high ratings for ease of use. While Optum also provides strong training, this does not translate into high usability; customers report that the system isn’t customized enough or doesn’t provide enough data beyond claims data.

HealthEC & Arcadia Drive Strong Outcomes by Delivering Product That Works as Promoted

Customer satisfaction starts during the sales process, when expectations are initially set. HealthEC and Arcadia are noted for clearly setting expectations up front and being transparent about what their solutions can and (just as importantly) cannot do. This clarity enables the vendors to accurately deliver on their contract promises and to exceed expectations when it comes to integration.

Actual Product Development Lags behind Expectations Set by athenahealth & Philips Wellcentive

athenahealth and Philips Wellcentive customers report that the technology they have received does not meet the expectations the vendors originally set. Both customer bases expected to have easier-to-use tools that would allow them to accurately track their financial performance. Some customers still lack these tools; others have had to put in the work themselves to build promised capabilities.

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.