Top 10 HIPAA Compliant EHR Solutions
All healthcare providers in the United States must maintain HIPAA compliance standards for all electronic health records (EHR) and electronic medical records (EMR). HIPAA stands for the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, which President Bill Clinton signed into law on 26th August 1996.
All healthcare providers and covered entities are required to implement an Electronic Health Records solution, one that can manage and maintain protected health information (PHI) and electronic Protected Health Information (ePHI) by the requirements outlined by HIPAA for compliance.
What is the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
HIPAA compliance is a vast subject, but the principal idea is that all forms of digital patient data access are regulated. Business associates and covered entities must protect patient records as per HIPAA rules. Electronic health records are subject to stringent HIPAA rules and regulations. This includes adherence to the HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules of 2003.
Several key rules relate directly to Electronic Health Records, such as:
- Covered Entities must only disclose ePHI when authorized by the patient or in the event of exceptional circumstances.
- The patient must be able to view their individually identifiable health information; if necessary, they have the right to request the data be updated, amended, or redacted.
- All access requests and disclosures of ePHI from the EHR system must be auditable.
- The EHR System is bound by HIPAA Technical Safeguards, including:
- Access controls, encryption, auditing, and data integrity controls.
- The EHR System is bound by HIPAA Physical Safeguards, including:
- Controlled access to data centers and medical record facilities, staff training, and risk assessments.
- The EHR System is bound by HIPAA Administrative Safeguards:
- Such as security policies and procedures, plus remediation activities.
What is an EHR Solution?
An EHR solution is an electronic media software program designed to create and manage a patient’s complete medical history in a digital format. It goes beyond simply storing data; most provide standard tools and features that include:
- Clinical documentation: Documenting patient encounters, diagnoses, procedures, medications, and allergies.
- Ordering and reviewing diagnostic tests: Integrating with lab systems and imaging devices for seamless test requests and result viewing.
- Prescribing medications: Sending electronic prescriptions directly to pharmacies, reducing errors and delays.
- Patient engagement: Online access to records, appointments, and educational resources.
- Reporting and analytics: Generating reports on practice performance, population health, and quality measures.
Choosing the right EHR solution for your practice requires careful consideration of your specific needs and budget. For this reason, we have compiled our Top 10 HIPAA-Compliant EHR Solutions to help your healthcare organization achieve HIPAA Compliance. Remember that the software is only part of the solution; the cloud infrastructure you use to operate the EHR system must also be HIPAA compliant.
Electronic Health Records
Electronic Health Records (EHR) are vital components of health information technology. They’re digital versions of patients’ medical records, consolidating information such as medical histories, diagnoses, medications, treatment plans, and clinical laboratory test results.
EHR systems streamline healthcare workflows, enabling healthcare providers, including office-based physicians and healthcare organizations, to securely access, manage, and update patient data. These systems comply with HIPAA regulations, ensuring the confidentiality and integrity of patient health information.
Here are our top 5 HIPAA-compliant electronic medical records solutions:
#1: Epic Systems Corporation:
Epic is a leading healthcare software company founded in 1979 and headquartered in Verona, Wisconsin. Their flagship product, Epic EMR, is widely used throughout the United States. It is estimated that over 70% of U.S. patients’ electronic medical records are on the Epic system.
Epic EMR is a centralized hub for protected health information, including:
- Medical history: Diagnoses, medications, allergies, immunizations, surgeries, etc.
- Clinical data: Lab results, imaging reports, physician notes, progress notes, etc.
- Administrative data: Patient demographics, insurance information, appointments, billing, etc.
The software’s impact on healthcare is profound, as it simplifies tasks, enhances team communication, and provides effortless access to patient data. Epic EMR brings many advantages to U.S. healthcare providers; it helps to enhance patient care through increased accuracy in medical records and improved medication management, which in turn reduces the risk of errors.
Efficiency is improved, with faster workflows, decreased paperwork, and more dedicated time for doctors to focus directly on patient care. Data analysis also improves by offering insights for population health studies and research.
#2: Oracle Cerner Corporation:
The Oracle Cerner Corp has provided healthcare information technology services for over 40 years and is headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri. Millennium is the primary EHR platform of its many healthcare products, with spin-off products including FirstNet (for front-line care), SurgiNet for Healthcare surgeries, and RadNet for Radiology departments.
At its core, Millennium is a centralized patient record database, providing the covered entity with access to demographics, medical history, allergies, medications, immunizations, lab results, imaging reports, and care plans.
Medical professionals can order medications, labs, and other diagnostic tests directly through the system and track results in real time. It also creates an ecosystem for communication and collaboration between healthcare providers involved in patient care.
Patients also have access to the system, with an easy-to-use patient portal to view medical records and test results and book appointments. If the patient participates in patient monitoring, such as a heart monitor, the data can be remotely uploaded, saving a trip to the healthcare provider.
Veradigm is a Chicago-based healthcare software house originally founded in 1981 as Allscripts Healthcare Solutions.
They have more than 180,000 physician users, and their products are used in over 2,700 hospitals and 13,000 extended care organizations.
Veradigm has three primary EHR solutions:
- Eclipsys EHR: Eclipsys is a subdivision of Veradigm and was formed when Veradigm purchased them in 2010. Eclipsys writes software for multiple industries, but their EHR solutions are very popular. Eclipsys Peak Practice is common within smaller practices, and Eclipsys EHR is often found in large hospitals. Its features include Acute Care EHR, Clinical Content, Nursing Solutions, Physician Solutions, Critical Care, Emergency Care, Medication Management, Surgery, Diagnostic Imaging, and Laboratory Software, and it is tailored for highly customizable and complex healthcare setups.
- Practice Fusion EHR: This is designed for smaller groups and physician practices. It’s user-friendly and cloud-based with scheduling, billing, and e-prescribing. Practic Fusion EHR is popular because it is available as a managed service or can be used in a self-hosted environment. Although licensing is expensive, it’s a very popular solution.
- Allscripts Practice Manager: is for medium-sized healthcare organizations such as smaller hospitals and healthcare groups. It is an add-on for Practice Fusion, but it deserves its place on this list because it encompasses both practice management and EHR management in one single pane of glass. It’s a mature system with extensive features and integration capabilities.
Founded in 1997, athenahealth is based in San Diego, California and specializes in network-enabled services for U.S. healthcare providers. Not only does athenahealth write the software, but it also provides a managed service wrap-around.
athenahealth aims to simplify and streamline healthcare operations for healthcare providers, improving their performance and the overall patient experience.
Its flagship product is athenaOne, an electronic medical records system that provides a comprehensive range of solutions for healthcare organizations of all shapes and sizes.
athenaOne includes clinical documentation tools for charting and note-taking, an online patient portal, and remote telehealth tools such as video and voice chat. The system also integrates into the healthcare payments system.
athenaOne is cloud-based; it can be scaled on demand, used for data exchange with third parties, and works seamlessly with mobile platforms.
#5: NextGen Healthcare:
NextGen Healthcare (owned by Thoma Bravo) is an American software and services company specializing in the healthcare industry, creating software electronic medical records solutions for various clinical needs.
They were founded in 1974 as Quality Systems Inc. and headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia.
NextGen bundles its products under NextGen Enterprise, which features a customizable EHR system and HIPAA-compliant Office suite. The EHR system focuses on storing and accessing patient data like medical history, medications, and allergies
It helps automate insurance claims and track payments while encouraging patients to manage their health online and providing evidence-based recommendations to improve patient care.
Protected Health Information
Protected Health Information (PHI) underpins HIPAA compliance. It comprises sensitive patient data, including health insurance portability details, patient health information, and medical records. HIPAA’s security rule mandates stringent measures to safeguard Electronic Protected Health Information, ensuring accountability for covered entities and business associates in maintaining the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of patient data.
HIPAA-compliant EHR solutions rely on an environment built from the ground up to be highly secure. At the forefront of the design process is the need to protect patient healthcare data. Any provider responsible for PHI must sign a business associates agreement that stipulates the basis of what PHI is in the scope of the service, what data is processed, and how the data is handled.
Next, the provider must be compliant with the HIPAA Security Rule and The HIPAA Privacy Rule. Each provider must guarantee the HIPAA-covered entity’s confidential patient information is protected at all times.
With this in mind, let’s uncover our top 3 HIPAA compliant EHR solutions specifically relating to Protected Health Information:
HIPAA Compliant Hosting Solutions and Managed Services are one of the most sought-after services offered by Florida-based Atlantic.Net. All healthcare practices are aware of the complexity of becoming HIPAA compliant; with Managed Hosting from Atlantic.Net, a huge piece of the complicated HIPAA puzzle is completed when the service goes live.
It’s easy to provision a VPS server in a health insurance portability and accountability act-approved environment; you get the piece of mind that the hosting environment is secured and protected to the required standards of HIPAA.
Atlantic.Net HIPAA systems feature:
HIPAA-compliant Cloud Hosting and Storage: A solution specifically designed for ePHI, making it easier for healthcare organizations to leverage the cloud securely.
Encrypted VPN: the VPN connections are encrypted using AES-256 encryption methods to comply with HIPAA requirements for secure data transmission.
Access Controls: The infrastructure features granular access controls, restricting access to ePHI based on authorized roles and permissions.
Data Encryption: Data is encrypted at rest using strong encryption AES-256.
Firewalls: Robust Web Application Firewalls, both perimeter and server-side, protect against unauthorized access and network intrusions.
Intrusion Prevention: A proactive Intrusion Prevention System constantly monitors for threats and malware, safeguarding against security vulnerabilities.
Log Monitoring and Security Analytics: Logs are monitored, and security analytics tools are employed to detect suspicious activity and potential breaches.
We have just scratched the surface of Atlantic hosting and managed services. Check out this detailed checklist for a full rundown of what is included in the award-winning service.
#7: Oracle Cloud:
Oracle Cloud is a major cloud hosting provider that has a specialized Oracle Health function. As a word of caution, Oracle is very expensive, and they prefer large enterprise healthcare customers; however, if you can absorb the high costs, they have some great managed services and partnerships.
Oracle offers an Open Systems healthcare platform; EHR is a comprehensive electronic health record platform for clinical, operational, and financial transactions.
Oracle Population Health Platform is a source-agnostic data and insights platform that connects and transforms data from any EHR and a wide span of sources—both clinical and nonclinical—to enable meaningful actions and outcomes.
Oracle Health CareAware Platform facilitates bidirectional medical device connectivity, communications, and operations at scale. The CareAware Platform harnesses the expectations of the Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) by enabling interoperability between medical devices.
Healthcare Providers, encompassing a broad spectrum from individual medical professionals to healthcare organizations, rely on HIPAA-compliant EHR systems. These systems cater to various healthcare settings, offering electronic health record solutions tailored to the needs of different covered entities. EHR solutions like Epic Systems Corporation and Cerner Corporation facilitate the digital transformation of patient records, empowering healthcare providers with efficient health information technology, thus enhancing patient care, privacy, and security.
DrChrono is a California-based healthcare technology company founded in 2009. Their key product is DrChrono EHR, and fully integrated electronic medical records platform with added billing and practice management HIPAA Compliant tools.
The EHR solution is available on PC and Mobile and features numerous benefits for healthcare providers, including customizable clinical notes and charting shortcuts that cater specifically to over 20 medical specialties.
Its design is mobile-centric, prioritizing mobile accessibility across iPads, iPhones, and desktops. The system facilitates scheduling and conducting e-consultations directly from within the EHR, enabling efficient and convenient patient interactions without the need for additional platforms.
Kareo is another California-based software provider that specializes in cloud-based clinical management platforms. It was founded in 2004, and its cornerstone product is Kereo Clinical.
Kareo Clinical is popular in smaller medical practices that need an all-in-one solution, merging electronic health records (EHR), billing, and practice management tools into one solution.
Its design prioritizes efficiency, and users benefit from its cloud-based accessibility across various devices, ensuring convenient usage regardless of location. The software offers an intuitive interface featuring drag-and-drop capabilities for easy navigation.
With a diverse range of over 200 system templates, including specialized ones for mental and behavioral health, it caters to various medical needs. Notably, Kareo Clinical enables the customization of templates and note types, allowing practitioners to tailor documentation according to their preferences.
Its integration with SureScripts for e-prescribing ensures a smooth medication management process. The software is Meaningful Use Stage 2 certified, affirming its adherence to robust standards for healthcare technology.
#10: CareCloud Inc:
Founded in 1999, CareCloud Inc. is a modern health information technology software provider headquartered in Somerset, New Jersey. They have multiple EHR solutions: CareCloud Charts, which integrates EHR and healthcare finances into a simple package; talkEHR, an EHR-enabled telehealth platform built around practice communications; and VertexDR, a fully featured electronic medical records anesthesiology product.
CareCloud is one of the front runners on AI integration into EHR systems. It’s exciting to see the possibilities that AI can bring to healthcare.
- Improved clinical documentation: CirrusAI can help clinicians document encounters more efficiently and accurately by suggesting diagnoses, medications, and procedures based on the patient’s presenting symptoms and medical history.
- Enhanced patient care: CirrusAI can provide real-time clinical decision support, helping clinicians make more informed treatment decisions and improve patient outcomes.
- Increased revenue and productivity: CirrusAI can automate tasks such as coding and billing, freeing up clinicians to see more patients and generate more revenue.
- Reduced costs: CirrusAI can help reduce costs by improving efficiency and preventing errors.
The Best HIPAA Compliant EHR Systems
In conclusion, the use of cloud computing within U.S. healthcare has advanced rapidly in recent years, with the digital transformation of patient records significantly impacting the delivery of healthcare services. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) contains the stringent guidelines necessary to protect patient privacy and data security.
The demanding regulations over the handling of electronic health records (EHR) are complicated. Compliance with these HIPAA directives is not only a legal obligation but also a critical step toward ensuring the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of protected health information (PHI).
The top HIPAA-compliant EHR solutions showcased in this article have revolutionized healthcare operations, offering comprehensive solutions that help with the day-to-day operations of your healthcare organization.
Epic Systems leads the pack with its widely adopted Epic EMR, streamlining tasks and enhancing patient care through improved accuracy and efficiency. Oracle Cerner Corp, Veradigm, athenahealth, and NextGen Healthcare also stand out, each providing tailored EHR systems that cater to various healthcare needs, empowering providers with tools for effective patient management and collaboration.
Atlantic.Net’s HIPAA-compliant hosting solutions and managed services offer a robust foundation for healthcare organizations, ensuring secure and encrypted storage while complying with the rigorous standards of HIPAA. Oracle Cloud, DrChrono, Kareo, and CareCloud Inc. show the diverse landscape of EHR solutions available, catering to different practice sizes and specialties while highlighting advancements in AI integration for improved clinical documentation and decision-making.
Selecting the right EHR solution involves careful consideration of specific practice needs, ensuring that the chosen platform aligns with both operational requirements and HIPAA compliance standards. Ultimately, embracing these innovative EHR solutions is a pivotal step towards a more efficient, secure, and patient-centered healthcare ecosystem.
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