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96% of Paragon EHR Users Confident About Allscripts Acquisition

A new survey found that nearly all responding Paragon users are confident the Allscripts acquisition will lead to overall improvements.

Paragon EHR

Source: Thinkstock

By Kate Monica

- A recent Black Book survey found 96 percent of surveyed Paragon users are confidently optimistic the Allscripts acquisition will improve daily clinical and operational processes and benefit their healthcare organizations.

Black Book researchers polled healthcare professionals from 216 inpatient facilities and health systems currently using McKesson Paragon EHR about how the Allscripts acquisition may affect their practices in the next 24 months.

Prior to the survey, Black Book determined there are no reported board level or administrative level initiatives in place that have not already been announced to replace the current Paragon platforms in 2018 or 2019.

Researchers invited 1200 healthcare industry leaders to take part in the survey, ultimately receiving responses from 280 individuals. Respondents included healthcare CEOs, executive directors, CFOs, CIOs, board of trustee members, and various representatives from clinical leadership.

Ninety-six percent of board and executive financial leaders reported being confidently optimistic Allscripts would improve Paragon client processes and technologies.

"Hospital boards and executives are clearly hopeful the Allscripts acquisition will benefit their organizational processes and relieve their looming Paragon concerns,” said Black Book Managing Partner Doug Brown.

Ninety-seven percent of administrative leadership reported viewing the Allscripts acquisition in a positive light, while 86 percent of clinical leadership similarly viewed the announcement positively.

Additionally, six of the eight surveyed Paragon clients that reported being in the midst of an EHR replacement process before the acquisition announcement stated they would include Allscripts in future consideration stages.

Meanwhile, 63 percent of Paragon client hospital boards reported their financial positions are too insecure to replace their EHR systems in the next two years. All of these hospital boards stated they have not approved capital expenditures for EHR replacements.

"Nearly every Paragon client facility responding is focusing on acquiring other long delayed software initiatives because of previous EHR investments including revenue cycle management, analytics and population health tools and these will remain their primary strategic IT initiatives for 2018-2019, not EHR replacement,” said Brown.

This survey stands in stark contrast to a recent KLAS report that found McKesson Paragon EHR users to be equally split over whether the acquisition will lead to real improvements. Twenty-nine percent of surveyed CIOs, directors, managers, analysts, physicians, and nurses reported being confident Allscripts would continue to develop and improve Paragon EHR.

“They believe Allscripts is looking to fill a gap, and they see the acquisition’s lower price point as a signal that Allscripts plans to put additional R&D resources into Paragon,” wrote researchers.

Meanwhile, exactly 29 percent of respondents reported doubting that Allscripts would be able to devote an adequate amount of time, resources, and attention to developing Paragon because its focus will be divided between Paragon and its own EHR system—Sunrise Clinical Manager.

“Allscripts’ decision to maintain a small-hospital system and large-hospital system is reminiscent of the failed strategy that McKesson is still suffering from,” wrote one Paragon user. “I don’t know why Allscripts thinks they can make it work.”

The acquisition announcement came in August when Allscripts and McKesson signed a deal valued at $185 million. Allscripts acquired McKesson’s inpatient health IT division, signaling the end of McKesson’s role as a technology provider.

Allscripts gained Paragon as well as two RCM solutions (Star and HealthQuest), a laboratory information system (McKesson Lab), and a content management system (OneContent.)

“This strategic acquisition further advances Allscripts strategy to offer the most comprehensive, high performing health information technology and solutions,” wrote the two companies in a joint statement. “Upon close, McKesson will have furthered its focus as a global leader in healthcare supply chain management solutions.”

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