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How does a behemoth like EPIC win over the masses with their EMR?

A couple of weeks ago EPIC sprung upon us their new user interface across our campus. The lime green theme and shaded and unshaded text was dizzying to navigate and everyone was puzzled as to why EPIC would make such a change.

How does a company like EPIC gain so much market share without keeping its end-user happy with its product? What happened to the KISS model? Aren't products supposed to delight its customers?

6 Replies

Robb Vaules
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Robb Vaules Entrepreneur
Western Region Marketing Director
Have you read up about their CEO? That should answer most of your (justified) questions.
Thomas M. Loarie
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"Bringing Entrepreneurs and Technology to Life" CEO and Chairman, Mentoring and Coaching of C-Level Executives
A large installed base that provides economies of scale and the cost of switching by users provide significant barriers to entry for incumbents.
Michael Kelso, Jr., M.D.
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GI fellow at UTSW
Yes. I know that there are significant barriers to switch, which keeps competitors out the market but who would ever consider switching to them in the first place? I would expect there would be something out there better than EPIC. Yes. I've read about the CEO.
Brian Baum
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Brian Baum Entrepreneur
Founder/CEO vitaTrackr, Inc.
Acquisition of an EMR platform is a risky business. A benefit of being a behemoth with a huge market share is perceived "safety" in following the lead. Unfortunately, it is only "perceived" safety http://www.beckershospitalreview.com/finance/md-anderson-blames-ehr-costs-for-56-6-drop-in-income.html - Attributing a 56+% reduction in income due to "epic costs" - that will leave a mark!

Michael - I see you're at UTSW. I'm down in Austin setting up a first implementation of our "health data marketplace". Among others, working with UT - Dell Medical School. Glad to touch base some time.
Michael Kelso, Jr., M.D.
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GI fellow at UTSW
Brian that is an interesting read. The article doesn't elude the reasons why the implementation caused them such a decline in revenue. I imagine it is mainly because individuals have not figured out how to work with it.

I would be happy to touch base with you and hearing more about your business.
Steven Atneosen
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Steven Atneosen Advisor
Technology Company Growth Operator
This is typical of a legacy EMR/ERP solution that primarily sold into an industry that was slow to adopt disruptive products. Most EMR customers were large healthcare systems that had complicated (or so they thought) and robust requirements, proffered by IT stakeholders, procurement and compliance who didn't get paid to take innovation risks. Given the amount of money that your organization invested in the system, you're likely a captive to the vendor at this point (much like Kaiser), and EPIC knows that; hence their reluctance to make their solution truly interoperable. Most solutions of yesterday have what you would call a high transaction cost for moving to an alternative. As technology improved (cloud-based systems, etc...) and HITECH required, more innovative solutions, such as Practice Fusion and Dr. Chrono became available to smaller practices. These solutions will mature over time to perhaps address your organization's needs. All companies get lazy over time - look to Microsoft et al - and the people who created that initial creative product have long moved onto something else, leaving folks who may not have the skills or incentives to delight the customer.
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