Healthcare organizations are making big investments in population health and patient engagement platforms as they prepare to move past meaningful use and toward value-based reimbursement, according to "The Big Mega HIT Purchasing Report" released Monday by market research firm peer60.
Electronic health records remain core to healthcare IT, according to the report, which gathered 567 responses from CEOs, CIOs, nursing and financial leaders and others with purchasing authority at hospitals and medical practices. However,many customers are still dissatisfied with their products.
Projected EHR replacement rates for 2016 show 23 percent of health providers (inpatient and outpatient combined) planning to look for new vendors, according to peer60.
Still, "population health and patient engagement are the hottest areas by a wide margin," wrote peer60 executive vice president Chris Jensen in the report. "It’s really no surprise these two segments continue to lead the way among hospital IT upgrades considering their impact on successful migration to value-based care and value-based purchasing."
As for pop health, peer60s sees some stabilization in contracting plans. In 2015, roughly 25 percent of providers were certain they'd keep their population health vendor; in 2016, that amount has doubled.
"The pressure is on for vendors that have not already made their mark in this market because they’re about to be squeezed by increasing renewal rates and a declining pool of hospitals that have not already adopted," said Jensen.
But when it comes to patient engagement, authors see the opposite. "More enterprise vendors are capturing more of the minds of providers, while interest in the best of breed crowd is beginning to dwindle," Jensen said.
Other big purchasing trends are also unsurprising. Data security, enterprise analytics and revenue cycle management are all in play. Security technology, especially, has seen a big jump in provider interest.
"In 2015 it was at the bottom of the list of top IT priorities and placed third this year," said Jensen. "Since this is not a growth market with 90 percent of hospitals already employing a true data security solution, the jump in interest in this area likely means the replacement market for more robust solutions in this very critical segment is heating up.