According to a recent report from Kalorama Information, a leading market researcher, the sales of electronic medical records (EMR) in the United States during 2011 recorded an increase of 14.2% than 2010. The sales of EMR in 2011 recorded around $17.9 billion.
A report titled “EMR 2012: the Market for Electronic Medical Records,” discussed the reasons of the boost in EMR sales in the US market. Kalorama’s report indicated that a number of factors resulted in higher demand for EMR, including improved physician and hospital acceptance, increased competition, and more budgets for EMR.
Despite there is no significant sales leader in EMR market, the report says “Allscript and Epic have made considerable gains,". The report continues "However, due to the fragmented industry, there seems to be room for additional mergers and acquisitions and new players.”
Kalorama’s report also indicated that the incentives provided by the US government to the hospitals using EMR systems via the Meaningful Use program helped in increasing EMR sales. According to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) discussed in February 2009, the government is to provide around $20 billion as incentives.
Moreover, some hospitals, according to the report, are encouraged to install EMR systems early enough before they become affected by government penalties. Bruce Carlson, publisher of Kalorama Information, explains “After 2015, it is no longer voluntary to get EMR and to demonstrate ‘meaningful use’ if you are a physician or hospital,”
Mr. Carlson continues “A penalty (will be) assessed if you continue to submit claims by paper. Medicare will actually reduce payments in reimbursement to physicians for paper submission. They plan so far to reduce Medicare reimbursements for physicians who are ‘non-meaningful users of EMR’ (a long way of saying paper record users) 1 percent for 2015, 2 percent for 2016, 3 percent for 2017 and future penalties to be determined. This won’t happen until 2015 but since that is two years from now, we see it impacting software sales a little this year and very much next year.”
Kalorama expects that these penalties will result in more growth for EMR sales, up to 20%, in 2012-2013.