With the world of Health IT booming and hundreds of EHR vendors vying for attention, the prospect of choosing the perfect fit for a practice can seem daunting. Many physicians have
reported jumping on board with an EHR only to later question whether or not the vendor they
are using is reliable. Medical Economics recently posted an article noting that an EHR vendor's development cycle is a strong indicator of its financial health.
“Your company should be sending you information about updates and developments for the next 18-24 months,” says Derek Kosiorek, Principal Consultant for the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) and certified EHR and healthcare technology professional. “If not, their lack of innovation could be a red flag.”
I absolutely agree. Innovation is the watchword of our development team at Hello Health. We bring to the table the unique value of a measured, but agile development cycle. In the agile philosophy, the pace of release is an advantage. What we have learned is that we can’t always trust our understanding of customer requirements. We might think they need one piece of functionality and spend a lot of time implementing it, but until the users actually try the tool, we don’t know whether what we've built fits their purpose. An intensive Early-Access Program, pushing minimum viable releases of the product (as it’s being built) out to customers as quickly as possible and encouraging early and regular feedback, dramatically reduces the risk of building the wrong product and maximizes the value as it creates a infinite positive feedback loop. Yes, we designed our business to be in a constant state of positive change. Our customers are the ones who use the platform every day; they can sometimes envision shortcuts and features even faster than our own experts. Knowledge gleaned from these exchanges is what drives us to move quickly. We deliver upgrades to our customers every six weeks − more than triple the amount of most EHR vendors.
And, because we've strategized our schedule this way, we are able to keep away the bugs that come when overloading a system with too hefty of an update all at once. The result is happy Hello Health customers, pleased with the seamless functionality they experience from having an EHR that surpasses most in reliability.
Let's talk a bit more about reliability. Like all market "boom" times, customers are rightly wary about newcomers to a glutted field of vendors. When I look across the EHR landscape right now, I'm reminded of the dot.com boom of the late 1990s. How should those in the market for an EHR determine which vendor has the staying power to become a long-term partner? Dr. Peter Basch, Senior Fellow for Health IT Policy with the Center for American Progress, recommends that customers: "follow the money." It's the only way to know. In fact, Basch states that a small company boasting a strong business model may provide more stability than an older company lagging behind with older technology. His point perfectly illustrates Hello Health's position in the field. We're a stable, funded company delivering a strong, flexible EHR platform that is frequently updated, and best of all, easy to use. Our unique business makes it possible for physicians to earn new revenue for their practices and retain revenue they might have previously written off. We follow the money, too – and we make sure physicians are being paid for their work.
It's important to listen to experts like Kosiorek and Basch when they advise you to "stay alert" when monitoring your EHR company. Be sure to keep an eye on the market and ask the right questions. A good, solid, reliable EHR vendor will be there to support the needs of your practice in an innovative and financially reliable way. At Hello Health, we pride ourselves on being a modern, yet sturdy company that is constantly changing for the positive. Watch as we work our magic behind the scenes so that you can work yours where it matters most - on your patients.
Barry Holleman is the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Myca Health, the parent company of Hello Health, Inc.