EHR vendors among Forbes' richest

Epic Systems CEO Judy Faulkner and Cerner Chairman, CEO and President Neal Patterson are among the Forbes' 400 wealthiest people in America. Well-known billionaires Microsoft founder Bill Gates, Berkshire Hathaway Chairman Warren Buffett and Oracle CEO Larry Ellison take the top three positions.

[See also: Epic, Cerner reap benefits of meaningful use.]

Forbes describes both CEOs as “self-made.” Both started their companies in 1979.

Today, Cerner and Epic have the most market share of any EHR vendors, with Cerner ahead of Epic, according to a recent report from research firm KLAS.

Faulkner, 68, comes in at No. 285 on the list, with a net worth of $1.7 billion. She founded Epic Systems in 1979 in Wisconsin. Forbes pegs Epic’s 2011 revenue at $1.2 billion.

Faulkner is a member of the government's 20-member Health IT Policy Committee, which advises the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC).

Clients include many of the country's top hospitals, Forbes names the Cleveland Clinic, Johns Hopkins, and Cedars-Sinai. Among the many health systems currently rolling out and Epic EHR, driven in part by the government’s meaningful use program, are Partners Healthcare in Boston and MaineHealth in Portland, Maine.

Neal Patterson, 62, is listed at No. 391, with a net worth of $1.12 billion. In 2011, Cerner, a public company, headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., posted $2.2 billion in sales and net income of $307 million. Over the past five years sales have grown an annualized 9 percent and earnings 22 percent.

[See also: Cerner's second quarter profit up 24 percent.]