Google in Pharma. Healthcare Blockchain. EMR funding.
Data Blocking vs. Blockchains
As a patient, have you ever wondered why you have to fill out a new form each time you go to a doctor? Why can’t your information just travel with you? This is one of the core problems of the electronic medical record (EMR): Interoperability.
Meaningful Use incentives are dollars paid out by the government to encourage hospitals to adopt EMRs and interoperability. To date, approximately ~$35B in incentives have been paid out by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. But apparently $730M were improperly paid out, which is not an insignificant amount given just under the total amount of private funding that went into private EMR companies since 2013.
One result of this incentive program was to help a very small number of existing players (Epic, Cerner, Allscripts) dominate the market further, despite their very low satisfaction scores. If you’re a doctor, and you really LOVE your EMR, please tell me. I expect to hear from a very small number of you.
Going head to head with these large EMR companies is a Sisyphean task considering the long sales cycles, implementation costs, and risk-averse purchase behavior by hospitals. And now because of how entrenched they are in the system, EMR systems are slow and not exactly incentivized to promote interoperability between their systems and others. And turns out some of them are gaming the system anyway.
A handful of new fundings to EMR companies happen each year, but these are mostly to startups developing EMRs for smaller practices and/or more niche use cases (e.g., physical therapy-specific). You can see our full collection of EMR companies here.