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eClinicalWorks Creates Healow; Integrates Multiple EHRs with Mobile App

Posted Feb 27 2013 12:00am

eClinicalWorks has always been one of the most popular office EHRs (see, for example: More on eClinicalWorks: A Successful PMS for Office Practices ;  President of eClinicalWorks Discusses PHRs and Patient Portals ). I consider the company to well managed, innovative, providing a product valued by its office-based physician customers. Their EHR seems to be reasonably priced and designed to meet its customer' needs. Interestingly, the company now comes to market with a product to integrate electronic records from multiple EHR vendors (see: Healow integrates patient medical records from multiple EHR systems ), Here is an excerpt from a blog note about this news:

eClinicalWorks has created a new business called Healow (Health and Online Wellness).The $25 million investment is aimed to better connect patients, doctors, and medical data. They started with the Healow mobile app . The app is built on the back of eClinicalWorks’s Join the Network. This is a secure system that allows the transfer of medical data to and from EHR systems designed by eClinicalWorks as well as their competitors. Healow uses this ability to allow patients access to their medical records as well as to manage their own healthcare. The app allows the patient to integrate the data from all of their healthcare providers. With this kind of access, the patient can get a full view of their medical history in one place. In addition, the data can be used to help you manage your medication and appointments by setting up reminders. It allows you to enter notes into the app about things the patient would like to discuss with their physician, and it even allows for a secure way to send messages to the physician. If their physician uses eClinicalWorks’s EHR, the physician can use the app to push data updates into the system as well. This app is another example of how mobile technology can be used to integrate all the aspects of a patient’s care, improve the doctor-patient relationship, and keep the patient informed about their own healthcare.

EHR interoperability is absolutely critical. The current dominant hospital EHR vendor for large hospitals, Epic, seems to be more interested in promoting interoperabiity among it own hospital clients than across 'foreign" systems (see: Judith Faulkner, EMR Interoperability, and Washington IT PoliticsA Reader Comments on Epic Interoperability and Care EverywhereMore on Epic's (Non)-Interoperability and the Recent NYT Puff PieceSurescripts May Capture the Health Information Network (HIN) Business ). The initiative by eClinical Works makes a lot of business sense to me. The physician office EHR business may be drying up in the long-run. More and more physicians are taking salaried positions with hospitals. They will then be forced to accept the EHR product chosen by the hospital executives rather than one fine-tuned for ambulatory care settings. EHR integration, particularly with a mobile app, may be a sweet spot where the company can thrive.

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