Cerner leads the worldwide electronic health record market, with Epic behind in second spot, Allscripts in third and GE Healthcare now among the top four companies, according to new research into the industry. 

“In the competition for large healthcare systems, it's the top four EHR companies mainly participating, with some exceptions,” Mary Anne Crandall, a senior analyst at Kalorama Information, wrote in the firm’s annual report on the industry.

For the overall global market in 2017, Cerner earned 17.3 per cent of the market share, while Epic trailed at 8.8 per cent. Allscripts, thanks to mergers and the acquisitions of Misys and Eclipsys, rose to 6.1 per cent.

But when homing in on the physician office space, Crandall said Epic is in the lead and Meditech is also in play. 

"In the physician office arena, competition is fierce,” Crandall said. It’s not just the big four at play, as it is among larger customers. Instead, athenahealth, eClinicalWorks, NextGen and NueMD are all vying for clients. “There are a lot of competitors.”

In Kalorama’s 2016 report, McKesson was in the second spot behind Cerner and ahead of Epic and Allscripts. 

McKesson's EHR technology was bought by Allscripts in 2017, part of the enterprise information solutions business unit that includes the Paragon EHR system. Kalorama said that will enable Allscripts to offer a stronger hospital offering, especially among smaller providers and health systems.

[Read more: Cerner’s revenue is hit by delay with EHR contract for US Veterans Affairs | As Mayo Clinic readies for its Epic EHR go-live, a look at major milestones leading up to big switch]

Looking ahead to 2018, Crandall said Epic is expected to continue gathering market share and adding to its ambulatory customer base.

What’s in store for athenahealth is unclear. Activist investor Elliott Management, which owns 9 per cent of athenahealth’s stock, placed a $6.5 billion takeover bid last week, which athenahealth’s board is currently reviewing. 

Cerner, for its part, has achieved a revenue boost from its modernisation contract with the US Department of Defense and is awaiting a final decision on whether the country’s Veterans Affairs will sign a contract to modernise its EHR with Cerner as well. VA CFO Jon Rychalski told the US Senate Committee on Appropriations that the VA will make that decision by May 28. 

Kalorama determines market share by looking at revenue for EHR and EMR platforms, Computerized Physician Order Entry systems, and consulting, installation, training and servicing. 

A version of this story was originally published on the US edition of Healthcare IT News.




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