Interoperable Electronic Health Records Can Revolutionize Healthcare Delivery in Europe

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

The growing use of clinical and non-clinical information systems, including patient administration systems, scheduling and billing, is fuelling the demand for electronic health record (EHR) technology in Europe. EHR and ePrescribing are now priority areas in digital health across Europe, accounting for 30 percent of total healthcare IT spendingin the region.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, European Electronic Health Records Market, finds that the market earned revenues of $2.74 billion in 2014 and estimates this to reach $3.69 billion in 2020. The study covers hospital and ambulatory EHR.

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The rising aging population, the need for remote monitoring and chronic disease management, and the establishment of health information exchanges are driving the European EHR market. The emergence of real-time patient data management and the transition to personalised healthcare delivery are lending further momentum to the market.

"Uptake has traditionally been higher in the hospital EHR segment than the ambulatory EHR segment as hospitals have a larger budget than ambulatory clinics," said Frost & Sullivan Healthcare Research Analyst Shruthi Parakkal. "In the next five years, however, the hospital EHR segment is expected to mature, while the ambulatory care market witnesses considerable growth."

In addition, EHR adoption rates have been more encouraging in large- and medium-size practices than in small practices as the former have bigger budgets due to more spend per physician. Limited budgets have pushed small-size practices towards subscription-based cloud and Web EHR solutions, which do not involve initial capital expenses.

Though there has been considerable progress with regard to the planning and allocation of budgets for EHR, much work is left to be done in the coming years. While some healthcare providers are ahead in terms of the implementation of EHR, the majority of industry players have only just embarked on the path towards full digitisation.

As such, healthcare organisations in Europe vary in their skills, resources and readiness to use EHR technology. In some instances, healthcare players have adopted a fragmented approach to EHR implementation and set ambitious plans, resulting in slipping deadlines and/or deliverables being scaled down. In other cases, persistent challenges pertaining to healthcare data security and the lack of interoperability standards have altogether discouraged the uptake of EHR technology.

"Healthcare authorities and governments across Europe have begun to realise that EHR implementation is not a one-time process and requires a continuously-evolving strategy to keep pace with market developments," noted Parakkal. "Specifically, there is a need for country-specific implementation models customised to the healthcare environment and regulations rather than a region-wide strategy."

European Electronic Health Records Market is part of the Connected Health Growth Partnership Service program. Frost & Sullivan's related studies include: Opportunities in Healthcare Cloud Market in the US and Europe, Video Telemedicine Market inEurope, and Global Enterprise Content Management (ECM) Market for Healthcare. All studies included in subscriptions provide detailed market opportunities and industry trends evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.

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SOURCE Frost & Sullivan