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Post-Acute Care 2020
Portfolios Grow with an Eye on Enterprise

author - Paul Hess
Paul Hess
author - Jennifer Hickenlooper
Jennifer Hickenlooper
November 10, 2020 | Read Time: 8  minutes

Every health system knows that their long-term success hinges on what happens in the post–acute care and behavioral health settings. As a result, this report examines customer satisfaction with the technology vendors available in these areas and explores which offer the broad, comprehensive portfolios many healthcare organizations seek. Future reports will validate which vendors are being used in an enterprise fashion and how solutions are being used to enable referral management and care transitions.

A Few Notes about This Research:

• This report examines customer satisfaction only for vendors with at least 100 unique customer organizations (combined total across all post–acute care and behavioral health offerings).

• Historically, KLAS’s customer satisfaction data for home health and hospice solutions has been reported on jointly. This report marks the first time KLAS has examined the two areas separately, so feedback for all hospice solutions is early.

Enterprise Path Available from Epic and MEDITECH

Epic and MEDITECH are the only enterprise EMR vendors to offer solutions across all areas in this report. Epic’s home health and hospice solutions have been available for several years. Adoption of Epic’s long-term care (LTC) and behavioral health modules is early, and customers report limited interest in migrating to the offerings—most behavioral health customers already use Epic’s inpatient and ambulatory modules. MEDITECH has a highly satisfied base of home health and hospice users. As with Epic, adoption of MEDITECH’s recently released LTC and behavioral health modules is slow; the LTC module has garnered little interest, and most customers already use MEDITECH’s inpatient EMR for behavioral health. Cerner continues to offer their natively developed LTC and behavioral health modules but is no longer an enterprise option as they now offer home health and hospice technology through a partnership with MatrixCare. Allscripts has also moved away from an enterprise path—they have divested their post–acute care and behavioral health solutions and plan to sell their CarePort business to WellSky.

post acute care and behavioral health portfolios from enterprise emr vendors

Netsmart Delivers Complete Portfolio but Fails to Meet Customer Expectations 

Catering to standalone organizations (i.e., those not tied directly to an acute care organization), Netsmart has significant market share in behavioral health and has pieced together an end-to-end post–acute care and behavioral health portfolio by acquiring solutions from Allscripts, Change Healthcare, DeVero, and HealthMEDX, among others. Post-acquisition satisfaction with these solutions has dropped due to diminished support and Netsmart’s failure to keep development and integration promises, resulting in high turnover for some solutions—a quarter of Netsmart’s behavioral health customers and almost half of their home health and LTC customers plan to leave, mostly for other non-enterprise solutions. WellSky also offers a full portfolio thanks to acquisitions of LTC and behavioral health solutions (acquired customer bases are small). MatrixCare offers the next-most-complete and broadly adopted post-acute-focused portfolio, which includes several Brightree products acquired by parent company ResMed. Most MatrixCare customers are satisfied, citing the vendor’s proactive service and interoperability road map.

post acute care and behavioral health vendor landscape

Home Health Solutions

MatrixCare a Strong Home Health Option for Cerner Customers

Since discontinuing the sale of their poor-performing Home and Community Care, Cerner has encouraged customers to move to third-party partner MatrixCare for home health and hospice. The handful of customers KLAS has interviewed who have made the jump report increased satisfaction. They are pleased with MatrixCare’s ticketing and problem resolution and say their clinical staff like the product experience. Some former Cerner customers, particularly large agencies with a high average daily census, have moved to Homecare Homebase, who is frequently chosen by very large home health and hospice agencies. Satisfaction with the vendor, a previous Best in KLAS winner, has declined over the last several years, and customers now report a middle-of-the-road experience for integration, functionality, and support. Customer satisfaction for Kinnser customers has stayed relatively steady following their acquisition by WellSky.

home health solution ratings

Hospice Solutions

Epic’s Hospice Solution Appreciated but Functionality Gaps Remain

KLAS’s initial look at Comfort, Epic’s hospice-specific module, has been mostly positive—customers say the solution delivers what was expected and has a positive impact on clinician productivity. Functionality is a weak spot, with customers citing the need for additional documentation capabilities and improved integration with Dorothy (home health) and Hyperspace. Described as intuitive, MatrixCare’s solution leads the way in hospice customer satisfaction. Helpful training is provided by the vendor as well as within the product itself. Homecare Homebase’s hospice solution is rated well below their home health product, with customers reporting unkept promises and stretched support resources. The hospice functionality is considered robust and helpful, but customers are frustrated with the vendor’s slow development. WellSky’s performance in hospice, as in home health, meets most functionality and integration needs.

hospice solution ratings

Long-Term Care Solutions

PointClickCare Is the Standout Solution for Long-Term Care

PointClickCare’s loyal customer base reports a balance of robust functionality and strong usability (PointClickCare outperforms all competitors for functionality and ease of use). The system is considered stable and reliable, even through upgrades, bolstering customer confidence in future development. MatrixCare’s overall performance score has declined about 10 points (out of 100) over the last two years. This is due in part to rapid growth that has strained support resources and the vendor’s ability to effectively develop and deliver new technology. Former HealthMEDX customers have suffered following the acquisition by Netsmart, with support declining and development and integration promises failing to come to fruition. Cantata Health customers report similar challenges and say they predate the acquisitions by NTT DATA and then Cantata.

long term care solution ratings

Behavioral Health Solutions

No Vendor Consistently Meets Behavioral Health Needs

In a low-satisfaction market, Cerner, Credible, and Qualifacts do the best job meeting behavioral health needs, though not consistently. Cerner’s customer support is one bright spot—customers appreciate that Cerner resources have behavioral health–specific knowledge, and several customers say responsiveness has improved in recent months. Functionality is an opportunity for improvement; users say the product is click heavy and the notes are not intuitive. Satisfaction among Credible customers has declined since January 2020, particularly around development and value. Customers say upgrades are oversold, and the timing of development does not match the promised road map. In contrast, the Qualifacts experience has improved compared to past years, though challenges still persist. The vendor’s support is said to be more effective, and the solution’s usability has improved. The vendor relationship, while moving in the right direction, is still tactical (as opposed to strategic); frequent nickel-and-diming and a failure to keep promises prevent customers from viewing Qualifacts as a true partner.

behavioral health solution ratings

Health System Plans for Future Growth

The following insights come from focused interviews with 47 large health systems (>500 beds) regarding which post–acute care and behavioral health services they currently provide, which they plan to expand, and how this expansion will be accomplished (i.e., internal growth or through a partner/affiliate).

Large Health Systems Targeting Home Health and Behavioral Health for Internal Expansion

Large health systems that provide home health services plan to grow their services mainly through internal growth strategies, with occasional focus on partners or affiliates. When their acute care EMR vendor is not an option, the 47 organizations interviewed will most often consider Homecare Homebase for go-forward technology. Behavioral health is the most frequently offered service line currently, and those planning to expand are likely to eschew partnerships in favor of aggressive internal growth. Hospice and LTC services are not as high of a priority for internal expansion; instead, organizations more often plan to expand through affiliates, especially for LTC. These organizations are looking mostly at Homecare Homebase for hospice and PointClickCare and Netsmart for LTC.

future expansion priority

Record Sharing with Acute Care Setting Still Not Consistent

Healthcare organizations are looking for innovative, standardized ways to share data across the continuum of care. Many interviewed large hospitals use Carequality or CommonWell to improve their ability to share data, though connections to these frameworks can be limited, especially among certain customer bases. While many Cerner and Epic customers are connected, adoption among MEDITECH users is low, and the first Allscripts customer just went live with Carequality in Q3 2020. Many of the software vendors used by referral partners and affiliates are likewise unconnected to these national frameworks. MEDITECH customers are the least likely to report using digital means of sharing records with referral partners. Though Epic customers were not specifically asked about EpicCare Link, one-third mention using it as a way to share data.

commonwell carequalityMore information on the early post–acute care and behavioral health adopters of CommonWell and Carequality will be available in an upcoming KLAS report (Q4 2020).

health system connectivity to post acute partners

About This Report

Each year, KLAS interviews thousands of healthcare professionals about the IT products and services their organizations use. These interviews are conducted using a standard quantitative evaluation, and the scores and commentary collected are shared in reports like this and online in real time so that other providers and IT professionals can benefit from their peers’ experiences.

customer experience pillars

To supplement the data gathered with this standard evaluation, KLAS also creates various supplemental evaluations that target a subset of KLAS’ overall sampling and delve deeper into the most pressing questions facing healthcare technology today. For this report, KLAS used a supplemental evaluation to survey 47 large health systems (>500 beds) regarding which post–acute care and behavioral health services they currently provide, which they plan to expand, and how this expansion will be accomplished (i.e., internal growth or through a partner/affiliate).

The data in this report was collected over the last 12 months; the number of unique responding organizations for each solution is given in the tables below.

home health and hospice solutions
long term and behavioral health solutions

What Does “Limited Data” Mean? 

Some products are used in only a small number of facilities, some vendors are resistant to providing client lists, and some respondents choose not to answer particular questions. Thus a vendor’s sample size may vary from question to question and may not reach KLAS’ required threshold of 15 unique respondents. When a vendor’s sample size 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.

Overall scores are measured on a 100-point scale and represent the weighted average of several yes/no questions as well as other questions scored on a 9-point scale.

author - Elizabeth Pew
Elizabeth Pew
author - Madison Moniz
Madison Moniz
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.

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