Some Hospitals Turning to Aggregation to Help Frustrated Clinicians

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New study from healthcare research firm KLAS profiles the growing market for aggregation solutions and the role they play in integrating healthcare IT data.

As healthcare CIOs struggle with better integrating dozens of IT systems, some are turning to new aggregation solutions to improve patient safety by providing a more complete view of medical records and documentation. Most notably, software giant Microsoft - not previously considered a major player in healthcare IT - is rapidly expanding its user base in this emerging market.

Aggregation solutions, which provide a single view of clinical data from disconnected systems, are profiled in a new report from healthcare market research firm KLAS. The report, Beyond the CIS: Why are hospitals buying aggregation solutions?, examines why healthcare providers are deploying aggregation solutions, whether those solutions are meeting expectations and which aggregation vendors are doing the best job delivering on the promised benefits.

"In most cases, providers are choosing these solutions to put all relevant patient information at a doctor's fingertips," said Jeremy Bikman, executive vice president of research and strategy for KLAS. "However, other benefits like meeting reporting requirements, avoiding downtime and accessing information across care venues are also proving to be decision drivers."

Unifying Patient Information
Giving physicians easy access to basic clinical and demographic information is a real challenge for many organizations. Access to third-party software for labor and delivery, diagnostic images, emergency department records and other functions can create a daunting obstacle for physicians who want to see concurrent patient data. That obstacle has triggered a number of organizations to consider and adopt third-party aggregators.

Most clinical information system (CIS) solutions do offer some functionality to bring data together from disparate systems, but few if any providers expect core CIS vendors to fill this gap. For one, those native integration capabilities typically require caregivers to mentally combine data from multiple sources - even if they have it electronically at their fingertips - because PDF documents, text strings and specific values all travel in their own unique data formats. Because aggregation solutions are vendor agnostic, they can combine and deliver patient information from multiple sources in a standard format that is relatively easy to compare and analyze.

The KLAS report profiles six leading vendors in the aggregation solution market - Carefx, dbMotion, Medicity, MEDSEEK, Microsoft and PatientKeeper - which together account for 85 contracted deployments. MEDSEEK enjoys the largest installed base among those 85 organizations, as well as the highest KLAS performance rating.

From a purely functional standpoint, dbMotion and Microsoft appear to be in a peer group, while Carefx, Medicity, MEDSEEK and PatientKeeper comprise another peer group. Microsoft and dbMotion market platforms that are meant to replicate the databases from literally dozens of systems, approaching 100 for some healthcare organizations. The other vendors have shown the ability to connect with a handful of primary and secondary systems, but as of yet have found challenges in branching out much further.

To learn more about the aggregation solution market, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of participating vendors, the Beyond the CIS: Why are hospitals buying aggregation solutions? report is available to healthcare providers online for a significant discount off the standard retail price. To purchase the full report, healthcare providers and vendors can visit

About KLAS
KLAS is a research firm specializing in monitoring and reporting the performance of healthcare vendors. KLAS' mission is to improve delivery, by independently measuring vendor performance for the benefit of our healthcare provider partners, consultants, investors, and vendors. Working together with executives from over 4500 hospitals and over 2500 clinics, KLAS delivers timely reports, trends, and statistics, which provide a solid overview of vendor performance in the industry. KLAS measures performance of software, professional services, and medical equipment vendors. For more information, go to, email marketing at KLASresearch dot com, or call 1-800-920-4109 to speak with a KLAS representative.


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Shawn Dickerson
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