Best EHR Software & Buyer's Guide

Top Best EHR Software & Buyer's Guide

This guide explores the top 10 Electronic Health Record (EHR) software solutions available on the market to date. It also includes information about what key factors you should look for in an EHR solution, helping you choose the best system for your business. Whether you’re a small practice, a large hospital, or a solo practitioner, this guide will help you to find the right software that meets your organizational needs.

10 Best EHR Software

In this section, we will cover the current best EHR software solutions as well as their key functions:

  1. Cerner Millennium: Best for large healthcare organizations with complex workflows.
  2. NextGen Healthcare EHR: Best for optimizing the patient experience with integrated solutions.
  3. Athenahealth: Best for cloud-based EHR and practice management solutions.
  4. Veradigm EHR: Best for its user-friendly interface and customizable workflows.
  5. AdvancedMD: Best for smaller practices and independent physicians.
  6. Practice Fusion: Best for its free customer support and patient engagement tools.
  7. Kareo: Best for its affordable pricing and seamless billing integrations.
  8. Valant: Best for behavioral healthcare providers with unique needs.
  9. EHR Your Way: Best for its highly customizable and modular platform.
  10. Netsmart muUnity: Best for senior living and long-term care facilities.

Expert Pick

Cerner Millennium

Cerner Millennium 82


Cerner Millennium is an integrated, interoperable, patient-centered EHR platform that spans the continuum of care. View Listing...

Best for large healthcare organizations with complex workflows.

EHR Software Buyer’s Guide For 2023

What Is EHR Software?

EHR software is a digital platform that healthcare providers and organizations utilize to manage patient health information. It allows healthcare professionals to store, organize, and access patient data securely and efficiently. Having a centralized location for all patient data streamlines administrative tasks and lets healthcare providers access up-to-date patient records in real-time. It allows healthcare organizations to manage large volumes of data while still ensuring compliance with industry regulations.

There are two types of electronic record solutions: Electronic Medical Record (EMR) and Electronic Health Record (EHR) software. EMR software contains information specific to a single practice or hospital and is focused on the clinical aspects of healthcare. However, EHR software includes a broad scope of information from all healthcare providers involved in the patient’s care, is more comprehensive and interoperable than an EMR system, and is designed to be shared across different healthcare organizations.

Types Of EHR Software

There are many types of EHR software, some of which include:

General EHR Systems: These solutions cater to a wide range of healthcare providers, including hospitals, clinics, and medical practices. They offer features such as patient demographics, medical history, e-prescribing, lab integration, and billing functionalities. General EHRs can be used by businesses of all sizes.

Specialty-Specific EHR Systems: They address the specific needs of particular specialties or disciplines. For example, there are EHR systems tailored for dermatology or mental health. Some features of these systems include specialized templates, workflows, and clinical decision support tools relevant to their specialty.

Hospital EHR Systems: Designed for larger healthcare organizations, these systems handle complex workflows involving multiple departments. They can handle inpatient management, order entry, results reporting, interoperability, and integration with other hospital systems.

Ambulatory EHR Systems: These EHRs are best suited for outpatient settings such as physician offices, clinics, and ambulatory care centers. They focus on appointment scheduling, patient charts, prescription management, referral tracking and billing, and patient portal access.

Integrated Practice Management Systems (PMS): These systems combine EHR capabilities with practice management software modules. This all-in-one solution offers clinical documentation as well as scheduling, billing, revenue cycle management (RCM), insurance claim processing, and reporting functions. This software is best suited for small to mid-sized practices.

How To Choose Which EHR Software To Buy

Choosing the right EHR software for your business is an important decision. There are a wide range of options available, each with unique features and capabilities, so making the right choice requires careful consideration as well as a clear understanding of your practice’s needs. In this section of the buyer’s guide, we will explain what factors to consider when choosing the right software to benefit your business.

Which type of buyer are you?

Below you’ll find a list of the main buyers of EHR software:

Hospitals and Healthcare Systems:

Large-scale healthcare organizations, including hospitals and integrated healthcare systems, often seek EHR solutions to help them manage workflows and meet the diverse needs of their various departments, specialties, and facilities.

The best EHR software for hospitals and healthcare systems:

  1. Cerner
  2. Epic Systems
Medical Practices and Clinics:

Small to medium-sized practices, independent practices, specialty clinics, and outpatient facilities are common buyers of EHR software. They require solutions that can streamline clinical documentation, appointment scheduling, billing, and payment management.

The best EHR software for medical practices and clinics:

  1. Athenahealth
  2. NextGen Healthcare EHR
  3. eClinicalWorks
Ambulatory Care Centers:

These types of buyers, such as urgent care centers and surgical centers, rely on EHR software to efficiently handle patient encounters, medical records, pharmacy prescriptions, and coordination with other healthcare providers.

The best EHR software for ambulatory care centers:

  1. NextGen Healthcare EHR
  2. Athenahealth
  3. Kareo
Specialty Practices:

EHR software designed for certain medical specialties can cater to the unique needs of practices like cardiology or orthopedics. These buyers often require specialized features, templates, and workflows to enhance their clinical processes.

The best EHR software for specialty practices:

  1. NextGen Healthcare EHR
  2. Athenahealth
  3. AdvancedMD
Long-Term Care Facilities:

Nursing homes, assisted living centers, and other long-term care facilities often require EHR systems tailored to meet their specific needs. They need features such as resident management, medication administration, care planning, and regulatory compliance.

The best EHR software for long-term care facilities:

  1. Netsmart myUnity
  2. PointClickCare
  3. MatrixCare
Independent Healthcare Providers:

Buyers like private practices, nurse practitioners, and allied health practitioners use EHR solutions to manage patient records, appointments, and billing efficiency. It also helps them manage care coordination and communication with other healthcare providers.

The best EHR software for independent healthcare providers:

  1. Athenahealth
  2. Kareo
  3. Practice Fusion

Key features to look for

Electronic Health Records Management: This feature gives users the ability to create, store, and manage electronic health records. It allows healthcare providers to access and update patient information, such as previous diagnoses and immunizations. Improving care coordination, patient safety, and practice effectiveness.

Interoperability and Data Exchange: Interoperability enables users to share patient data between different healthcare systems and providers. It allows for the secure exchange of information, such as lab results, imaging reports, and referrals. Interoperability is key to effective communication and streamlines care transitions.

Automated Scheduling: This is an essential feature for efficient healthcare operations. It enables healthcare providers to manage patient appointments, optimize schedules, and send patients real-time notifications. By automating the scheduling process, healthcare providers can improve patient satisfaction, reduce no-show rates, minimize wait times, and increase productivity.

Clinical Documentation and Templates: This feature includes customizable templates and structured data entry, which enable clinicians to effectively capture and organize patient information. This improves documentation accuracy, reduces documentation time, and enhances communication between healthcare providers.

Integration with Billing and Revenue Cycle Management: Integration with billing and revenue cycle management systems ensures accurate and timely reimbursement for services rendered. It facilitates coding, claims submission, and tracking payments to optimize revenue generation for healthcare providers.

Functionality to look for

Streamlined Workflows: Look for an EHR system that helps streamline clinical and administrative processes by automating tasks, reducing manual paperwork, and optimizing workflow. This will improve staff efficiency, reduce human error, and allow for more focus on one-on-one patient care.

Regulatory Compliance: Make sure your software complies with various regulatory requirements; for example, it should be HIPAA-compliant. Implementing security measures ensures patient data privacy and protects against penalties or legal issues related to non-compliance. It also facilitates the documentation of required information and simplifies reporting.

Telehealth and Remote Patient Monitoring: Find a solution that supports remote patient monitoring. It can expand access to care by enabling healthcare providers to offer virtual visits, remote consultations, monitoring patients’ health remotely, and e-prescribing. This enhances patient convenience and reduces the need for in-person visits.

Efficient Documentation and Reporting: Evaluate whether the software automates and streamlines the clinical documentation processes. It should reduce paperwork and transcription errors by offering customizable templates, structured data entry, and automated coding. Efficient documentation saves time, improves communication, and supports proper billing and reimbursement.

Enhanced Communication and Collaboration: Choose software that facilitates communication and collaboration among healthcare providers. EHR software should have secure messaging, real-time updates, and shared access to patient information. These functionalities promote seamless communication, care coordination, and collaboration among different healthcare teams, leading to improved quality of care.

Important purchase considerations

Data Migration and Transition Support: If you are transitioning from a legacy system or another EHR software, evaluate the vendor’s data migration and support. Verify that they offer assistance in transferring existing patient data and provide training and resources to facilitate a smooth transition so no important information is lost.

Ease of Use and User Interface: It’s important to choose software with a user-friendly interface and intuitive navigation. Having a clean and organized layout makes it easy to find key information and allows for easy adoption among staff, customizable preferences, and minimal training requirements for your staff.

Pricing and Cost Structure: Understand the pricing model of the EHR software, whether it’s based on a subscription, per user, or per patient encounter. Assess the upfront costs, ongoing maintenance fees, and any additional charges for training, upgrades, or support. Ensure that the software suits your budget and offers a return on investment.

Future Updates and Innovation: Inquire about the EHR vendor’s track record of releasing updates and new features. An EHR software that consistently aligns with industry trends and incorporates technological advancements can ensure long-term usability and a competitive advantage.

Data Security: Before purchasing EHR software, guarantee that it will have comprehensive data protection. It’s critical to safeguard patient privacy and stop unauthorized parties from accessing their sensitive data. Security measures will help to maintain your patients’ trust and prevent data loss.

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Key Takeaways

EHR software is a digital platform that streamlines the management of patient health information, offering secure storage, efficient organization, and real-time access for healthcare providers.

There are many different types of EHR software, so it’s important to consider your business’ specific needs when choosing the right solution. Evaluate which type of EHR system would benefit your patient care the most and deliver the best return on investment.

Some of the key features and functionalities to look for in EHR software include compliance, interoperability, data sharing, automated scheduling, efficient documentation, and streamlined workflows.

Before purchasing EHR software, ensure that it not only fits within your budget but also has technologically advanced features, robust data security, and allows you to safely transfer data from any previous systems.

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