The e-prescribing market is quite valuable, apparently.
By 2017, the market will likely be worth $794 million worldwide. It is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 26 percent over the next four years, according to a report by MarketsandMarkets, a US-based global market research and consulting company.
E-prescribing systems allow healthcare professionals to submit and receive prescriptions electronically either through standalone e-prescribing software or EHR-integrated e-prescribing modules. E-prescribing is meant to reduce care costs, improve efficiency, and, above all, enhance patient safety. It allows healthcare providers to transmit prescriptions electronically and receive renewal authorizations through their EMR. E-prescribing is fast replacing paper prescriptions and is an integral part of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid’s (CMS) EHR Incentive Program and “Meaningful Use.”
In the United States, e-prescribing is encouraged by federal incentive programs, such as the EHR Incentive Program, which focuses on the meaningful use of electronic health record software. Standards for “Meaningful Use” are defined by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services – and e-prescribing is an important component of those standards. It not only helps improve patient health but overall patient safety as well.
“Major players such as Surescripts, Cerner Corporation, Allscripts, Athenahealth, iMedX, DrFirst, Emdeon, eClinicalWorks, Practice Fusion and Bizmatics are mainly focusing on the development of electronic prescription solution as standalone or as integrated module of Electronic Health Records / Practice Management.”
To read more about the Markets and Markets report, click here.
UPDATED: The New England Journal of Medicine recently published some early results of the Meaningful Use Program. Here is an excerpt of the findings as of May 2012:
- A total of 62,226 eligible professionals had attested to meaningful use under the Medicare program. This represents 12.2% of the estimated 509,328 eligible physicians in the United States, including 9.8% of specialists and 17.8% of primary care providers (PCPs).
- Meaningful Use of Electronic Health Records, April 2011 through May 2012.depicts the cumulative number of attestations, according to month. The attestation rate varied substantially according to states. Family practitioners had the highest number of attestations (with 14,122), and PCPs comprised 44.0% of all attestations.
- Providers used EHRs from 310 vendors, although the top 5 vendors (Epic, Allscripts, eClinicalWorks, GE Healthcare, and NextGen) accounted for 58.5% of attestations, and 15 vendors accounted for 80.1%.
To read more about the NEJM report, click here.