EHR Selection and Procurement Case Study
A Southeastern medical provider group with multiple medical clinics and diagnostic centers engaged Change Healthcare Consulting to oversee the selection and procurement process for its new electronic health record (EHR) system. First, the client needed an assessment of its current EHR structure and processes in order to inform the buying journey. Next, the client sought recommendations on which EHR systems to consider, evaluate, and implement in order to gain efficiencies across its organizational platform.
In a series of onsite visits spanning several weeks, the Change Healthcare Consulting team conducted interviews with key staff to assess the efficacy of each clinic’s workflows. The team focused on the areas of referral management, medication management and reconciliation, discharge instructions, billing-related documentation, and overall case management. The consultants identified multiple gaps and inconsistencies in the clinics’ operational processes. The team recommended several interventions the medical group could stage in the short term to rectify these issues, before undertaking longer-term initiatives with the benefit of the new EHR. The consultants ranked the current system’s ease of use and noted the visibility of key performance indicators. The compiled results informed the consultants’ recommendations on which EHR market options were likely to be a good fit for the organization.
In the second phase of the project, the consulting team led the medical provider group through the EHR selection and procurement process. After assessing leadership’s preferences and identifying EHR market options that aligned with the organization’s criteria, the team issued a Request for Information (RFI) to the selected semi-finalists. The consulting team reviewed all responses and guided key leadership through the process of scoring the replies and evaluating system demonstrations from the final contenders.
With more than 20 clinic locations, the medical group’s staff had varying levels of expertise with the legacy EHR system. The degree of variation between clinics made it difficult for the consultants to assess congruent processes. Some locations were using the legacy system to its best potential, while others were still attached to manual processes which were later transcribed into the system.
In addition, the legacy system vendor was included in the RFI process, which created some obstacles in scoring. While the consultants were familiar with the system’s limitations and the varying usage levels in play across the client’s organization, they wanted to ensure the scoring provided fair and equitable results.
The consulting team developed a tool to use during onsite visits, which included a maturity rating of the clinical staff’s system usage. By combining the relative maturity rankings with staff interviews and workflow assessments, the team devised a weighted assessment that provided a more balanced grade. The consultants also notified the legacy vendor about the replacement project and met with the vendor to review its market offerings and potential replacement systems. This provided the vendor with an opportunity to discuss its roadmap and prepare a more nuanced response to the client’s RFI.
After the Change Healthcare Consulting team presented its medical center review findings, the organization adopted its recommendations and took immediate steps to improve its patient experience and clinical workflows. The organization subsequently reviewed the RFI responses and evaluated solution demos from selected vendors before ultimately choosing a new EHR system to provide greater efficiencies.