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Electronic health record sales reported to climb


Recent reports show electronic health records sales increasing sharply in recent years.

Recent reports show electronic health records (EHR) sales increasing sharply in coming years. According to HIMSS Analytics, a Chicago-based research firm, 86% of hospitals are not in a position to qualify for the first of 3 stages of EHR meaningful use criteria, which start in 2011. But 51% of hospitals are close to meeting the first criteria stage, and another 17% are a year or 2 behind.

Preliminary results from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's annual survey of office-based physicians show a large increase between 2008 and 2009 in physician adoption of EHRs. Some 20.5% of physicians reported using a basic EHR in 2009, up 23% from 2008. Use of a fully functional EHR rose to 6.3% from 4.4% in a year, a 43% increase.

Frost and Sullivan, a Mountain View, California-based research firm, estimates that physicians and other ambulatory providers spent $1.3 billion in 2009 solely for EHR software licenses and basic training. Ambulatory EHR software spending is estimated to double to $2.6 billion by 2012 and to $2.9 billion in 2013. Sales are predicted to fall to $1.9 billion in 2014 as physicians will have spent most of what will be necessary to achieve EHR meaningful use.

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